Learning & Development, Talent

Why You Need to Focus on Talent Development More Than Ever

Talent makes all the difference in the survivability of any business. Facing a tight pandemic economy, Human Resources (HR) workers have a responsibility to cultivate talent as a focus of their business approach.

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Source: EtiAmmons / shutterstock

But developing talent can be a difficult task for any HR department. Professionals must first understand the importance of creating a workforce that makes continued education and training a priority of its overall values. Then, they can apply the necessary steps toward a more expert workforce.

In the meantime, COVID-19 has impacted talent search, retention, and development. HR professionals must consider all these factors and more in their approach to streamlining a workforce for the modern era.

The Importance of Developing Talent

Talent plays directly into the ways a company responds to challenges and emergencies such as the coronavirus pandemic. This is why cultivating and managing talent is a vital part of growing a business in any industry.

A wide variety of HR duties fall under talent management efforts, including, but not limited to:

  • Employee recruitment
  • Job description crafting
  • Employee onboarding
  • Career planning
  • Feedback and goal setting

All these factors influence a company’s success, from its pool of available talent to the potential it cultivates in its workforce. With effective candidate matching of employees whose values align with the company’s own, HR teams can integrate employee career plans with overall company goals, marrying personal ambition with an effective business.

The importance of training and development from the recruitment process onward became that much clearer when a survey found that 80% of Millennials believe a personal growth culture is the most important quality their place of employment can have. Modern workers do not want to feel static in their personal goals or in their development of talent, and HR can help.

But first, HR professionals must consider how COVID-19 has changed talent development and retention.

Impacts of COVID-19 on Talent Development and Retention

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more necessary than ever for employees to feel valued and fulfilled. The modern workforce faces an increasingly isolated environment and conditions that can have damaging effects such as enhanced risks of economic inequalities, loneliness, stress, burnout, and addiction.

The isolation that comes with remote work and the stress of navigating a pandemic economy can be a heavy burden on workers’ mental health and productivity. If such a working environment then does not allow for growth opportunities for its workers, feelings of hopelessness can creep in, damaging the potential for an agile and efficient workplace.

But the pandemic has also made such opportunities more difficult to provide. For instance, global assignments were previously a powerful incentive for businesses and their ambitious employees, with 71% of Millennials reporting they look for such an opportunity from their employer. Now, however, these opportunities are hard to come by.

With the difficulties in global development and expansion due to the pandemic, employee growth and development often must be centered on rotational experiences. Employees must be allowed to develop their talents and leadership skills in a sampling of different positions. This can help to reduce burnout while ensuring employees feel like they are progressing in their careers.

As unemployment and mental health continue to be problems for many workers, retaining and developing talent in the pandemic landscape takes the application of some well-considered strategies.

Ways HR Can Promote Talent Development Companywide

Luckily, HR can play a significant role in developing talent due to the department’s position within a business. From the hiring processes to continued training programs and resources, a workforce is contingent upon HR for the effectiveness of innumerable processes.

Attract, retain, and develop the best talent for your business with the following strategies:

  1. Provide and integrate worker flexibility options such as remote and hybrid possibilities.
  2. Offer an alluring benefits package, including reimbursement for continued training and education.
  3. Craft training programs that accommodate different learning styles.
  4. Ensure employee achievements are recognized and celebrated across the company.
  5. Hire internally, and frequently check in with employees.

These strategies can help any business develop and retain talent that cultivates business potential, and the best part is there is no one way to succeed. HR teams can try out a wide variety of technologies and workplace practices to best learn how to motivate and educate workers to fulfill their potential.

When employees feel they can progress and make a difference, you’ll have a much more agile and innovative workforce.

Key Takeaways

Developing workforce talent will be perhaps the top priority of HR departments going forward. With the impetus on survival rather than growth for many businesses in the wake of the pandemic, HR departments that can find and cultivate a diverse and talented team will make all the difference for modern industry.

Be aware of the challenges faced by the modern workforce, then follow these strategies to develop an effective approach to talent development and retention. As a result, you can better craft an agile and flourishing business.

Luke Smith is a writer and researcher turned blogger. Since finishing college, he is trying his hand at being a freelance writer. He enjoys writing on a variety of topics, but business and digital marketing topics are his favorite. When he isn’t writing, you can find him traveling, hiking, or gaming.