Retaining top talent has never been more difficult. With the continual need for businesses to keep growing and evolving, new ways to attract and engage their talented employees must be identified.  According to research by Mercer, nine out of ten organisations anticipate their competition for talent to increase. The research also reveals that 85% of businesses admit their talent management programs and policies need an overhaul.

What is now apparent from recent research is that companies looking to retain the best workers need to update and expand their employee development process. Employees, now more than ever desire proactive and regular interactions with their managers and expect their organizations to place a focus on implementing strong employee engagement initiatives. In order to engage, motivate and ultimately retain top talent, employers must first understand the underlying motivation and engagement styles of their employees.

Invest in understanding your employees: One of the first steps is to understand what motivates and engages your employees. A simple, cost effective way to do this is via psychometric assessment. This will help employers to understand the motives and values of their employees, their different reward and remuneration requirements and their engagement styles.

Enable regular dialogue based on objective data: Annual reviews are outdated. Many unhappy and unfulfilled members of staff leave long before they can air their grievances in an annual review, leaving employers confused as to what was amiss. In order to prevent this happening organizations should ensure that there are multiple opportunities for employees to feel that they are both appreciated and that their needs are understood. Studies show that randomly allocated batches of psychometric assessment can identify where employees feel a lack of appreciation, motivation or stimulation. In turn this can help to reduce turnover by identifying problems and miscommunications in the early stages.

Follow-up on action items:  If employees feel nothing comes from their talks with managers they will be more inclined to seek a company that delivers on its promises. Research has found that less than one-third of employees believe their company is proactive about engaging with them. After psychometric assessments are carried out, managers can then meet with employees to discuss their results and how they may improve. When communication is based on relevant, objective data, it can be greatly improved.

Employees are every company’s most precious resource. Companies must take the lead in fostering an employee-focused work culture where development, training, education and support are treated as a priority and a true dialogue exists between employees and their managers. Companies that adapt to this new reality will be in the best possible position to ensure they have the right talent to achieve their future ambitions.

(Adapted from article by Andy Campbell, 2017)