How to Successfully Attract and Retain Talent

28 January by Cognitive Group

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Tops Tips: How to Attract and Retain Talent

People are what make a business. Now that’s not the first time you’ve heard this said I’m sure, but there’s good reason for that – attracting and retaining top talent is central to digital success. When you take a look at the Microsoft Dynamics talent market specifically, it’s very competitive to hire experienced candidates. Currently in the UK there are 53,447 dynamics skilled professionals, which is 19% more than last year. And what’s more, of this talent pool, 27.5% changed roles within the year as well. So the good news is that a significant amount of candidates are open to, or are actively seeking new opportunities. The bad news? As an employer, you have to compete with more firms to hire these in-demand prospects. So here’s some tips on how you can do exactly that, and make sure that you’re a dream destination for those building a career in Microsoft dynamics.

Provide a clearly structured career pathway

Now this may seem obvious, buts the implications are profound. Research has found that the biggest reason employees leave their current role is the same as the biggest reason they joined their next employers: career path prospects. With the figures sitting at 45% and 59% respectively, it’s hard to argue with how important this factor is.

But what does a clear career pathway look like? Targets, appraisals, rewards. All of the above. Set ambitious but realistic targets that the candidate agrees that they can achieve. To monitor performance against these goals, you’ll need to ensure that you set regular appraisals in place to provide a timeline for completion as well as adequate feedback. This is where rewards come in. Employees need to understand what they need to achieve in order to receive certain bonuses and/or promotions. So at each appraisal candidates are given feedback, measured compared against their objectives, and progressed if necessary. This leaves no room for confusion or doubt in their mind as to how they are going to develop their career, and offering this to prospects is a great way to ensure they buy into your company.

On a similar note, it’s important that you think about training as well. It’s your responsibility to provide training around the latest technology and/or certifications that will help them advance their career by making them more qualified. The key point to make here is that professionals need to see is how you are going to help ensure their stepping forwards in their career, not sideways. Therefore, demonstrating to them how you can provide learning opportunities is an easy and direct way to communicate this.

Be competitive with your compensation package

Unsurprisingly, the financial and benefits incentives that you are able or willing to provide are going to play a massive part in all this. In fact, of the Microsoft Dynamics talent pool in the UK, the second most important employer value proposition to them is compensation and benefits, with as many as 49% citing this as important to them. We’ve also already discussed how competitive the market is currently, which needless to say places a greater emphasis on the ‘what’s in it for me?’ aspect. It’s nice to think that candidates will join your team because of the fantastic role, company and opportunity, but if you’re not offering them a competitive package you’re really going to struggle. Remember, if you rate a professional highly enough to make them an offer, you’re probably not alone. Don’t insult them or leave a window of opportunity for other firms to make a better offer – put something on the table that reflects how much you value them.

Work on your company culture

Everyone obsesses over company culture now, and it’s a good thing they do. After all, 41% of UK Dynamics professionals identify this as being important to them. Today there are so many awesome companies doing some really exciting things, and there’s no where this is more true than in the technology sector. It’s critical therefore to build a corporate culture from your company’s key values that extend beyond just creating a great working environment, but to be projected outwards within the market. This is not something that will go unnoticed. Having a great culture that is understood by outsiders within the industry will help draw in top talent down the line. But attraction is only half the challenge, it’s important your culture lives up to what you claim it is to ensure workers are happy, fulfilled and ultimately retained. For example, tenures are 20% longer and innovation 30% higher in firms where employees feel work is meaningful, and that all starts with, you guessed it, culture.
Make work-life balance central to your employee value proposition

Dynamics professionals in the UK value nothing more than opportunities for work-life balance. 59% of them to be exact, which is the most significant proportion of the market when it came to picking what was most important to them. Flexible hours, working from home, and 4 day working weeks are just a few examples of how firms are applying forward thinking to allow for this. It’s widely held that this phenomenon makes for a happier workforce, which of course translates to greater talent attraction and retention. But also, this helps remove any geographical barriers that may exist when recruiting new professionals. By offering the right to work from home on certain days and setting less rigid working hours, firms can open up their search to a wider market, and consequentially look to build out their workforce wit the best of the best.

Final Thoughts

The problem today is not that firms aren’t aware of how to attract and retain talent, it’s that firms don’t fully understand how to action that knowledge. The points made here aren’t ground-breaking, new knowledge. However, what is presented here is a more detailed look at to how you can apply what you know to make a direct impact on your hiring strategies.