Talent Management Strategies for 2021

15 December 2020
3 minute
Talent Management Strategies for 2021

2020 has proven to be a challenging year for businesses and individuals alike. With some sectors being hit particularly hard and others just scraping through. 2020 has shown us however, that adaptation is the key to survival and equally success. 

From remote working & managing to changing organisational structures and goals, resilience has been one of the least spoken words, but the most important asset we could turn to. Of course, there have been mass job losses and businesses not surviving changing the landscape of industries and sectors for years to come. 

We can all take many lessons from 2020 and bring these into 2021 with a greater preparedness. As organisations, we have learnt that community, support, & compassion are important qualities that our teams, managers and leaders must demonstrate more of going into the new year. 

There is an opportunity to grow in 2021 using the lessons of the past year. It starts with the talent in the company. Selecting, building and growing individuals into key players for business success.  

HR challenges expected in 2021 

For 2021 we can expect to see some major challenges when it comes to our HR requirements. Businesses of all shapes and sizes are still fighting against the effects of a global pandemic whilst also having to deal with trade uncertainty following the UK’s exit from Europe. 

We’re going to take a closer look at these challenges and how they can be managed. 

Furlough and redundancies

2020 saw the introduction of furlough on mass scale to help businesses combat the effects of the global pandemic. For those unable to trade, government support was there to help cover the wages of staff at this delicate time. 

What we didn’t expect to see was furlough being extended into the new year and at the scale of implementation that many businesses still rely on to be able to keep trading. Because of the health crisis and the economic impact, furlough has been an effective tool for business survival but it has also caused employees to feel stressed about their work situation and if they may even face redundancy. 

Managers that can deploy a greater sense of empathy and be in touch with their team over their concerns and frustrations will be a key strategy to manage this delicate period. Compassion and support are key assets your managers should have, and with the right tools they can develop a more empathetic management style.

Even if key staff may not be on the list of potential redundancies, company culture and how the situation is managed will be a better way to ease tension and unease for employees across the organisation.  

Retention and development

Retaining and developing your key talent should be a priority for your organisation’s 2021 goals. The key is to identify key members of the team, and those that have future potential in more senior roles.

This is about looking at your retention and onboarding policies as an organisation and understanding who has the potential and how you can develop that talent moving forwards. Software packages designed to assess a candidate's behaviour, aptitude and personality will ease this process and make it much easier for HR and management to concentrate on candidate’s that they retain and develop. 

Knowing how your staff are also feeling at this time is essential. If you are trying to retain your best then understanding what their concerns are, how furlough is/has affected them, the organisation and their roles, you need to have engaging conversations and feedback. 

Again, this is about understanding where you think your company culture lies and what is being experienced. Engaging in 360 degree feedback gives all stakeholders an opportunity to voice their concerns and provide a pathway to help develop talent. 

By having regular formal and informal appraisals you are developing an organisational culture that promotes open communication and discussion, helping to drive forwards the business culture. 

We’ve seen how 2020 has made us change and adapt to new organisational realities. Through no-fault of their own, employees at all levels have had to deal with job uncertainty at unexpected rates. Management and leadership need to take ownership of the situation and change their work practices for the foreseeable future. More empathy, communication and developing talent will yield positive outcomes for all parties involved. 

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