3 ways to keep top talent & reduce turnover: how to highlight career opportunities and hold onto human capital

People & Culture

Special thanks to guest author, Sofia Arisheh

It can be a tough market attracting the best talent to our organizations, but it’s a whole new ball game trying to retain them.

Time and time again, I hear from business owners and executives who are feeling the brunt of losing their top talent. Understandably so, they’re frustrated that they’ve fallen short in retaining their greatest asset, their people.

The scary truth is that “87% of active and passive candidates are open to new job opportunities” according to LinkedIn Talent Solutions, “The Ultimate List of Hiring Statistics”. This means that at a drop of a hat, you could potentially be losing your talent pool. So, how do we retain our people?

Building a reputation as a place of work where people want to stay long-term is only possible if employers begin to invest in their people. Enter skill and career development.

94% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their careers.” – LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Learning Report

Given the alarming details above, here are three actionable ways you can begin to promote career growth so it’s no longer the exception, but the norm.

1. Build career paths

It’s important to lay out a career path, outlining the competencies required for each level or job within your organization. This career path will help your employees better understand the skills and knowledge required to transition to a different role, whether a lateral or upward move.

Having transparent career paths better equips and empowers your employees to navigate their career journey. Knowing that there are options for them internally, they can begin to:

  • Assess their current skills in comparison to the competencies and expectations for roles in their path
  • Identify gaps in their skills to hone in on
  • Develop a more robust career plan, with tailored and well-defined goals to reach their desired position

Now that career paths are built, it’s time to share them with staff.

2. Communicate and promote career opportunities

If your employees are not aware of career paths or opportunities in your organization, they will presume that there is no room to grow. It’s a dead-end road!

To showcase your commitment to and investment in your people, communicate, communicate and communicate. Here’s how:

  • Build a career path showing progression with competencies and expectations per level
  • Make this career path a focus point of your coaching and performance conversations
  • Leverage career pathing into your goal-setting meetings, inquiring about employees’ desires for skill and career growth

With everyone on the same page, it’s time to offer leadership guidance.

3. Provide support to facilitate successful transitions

To facilitate effective career pathing and skill development, organizations need to adopt practices that support their people through their learning and growth. Employee aspirations go nowhere if the employer is not an active and willing participant in helping employees realize their goals.

Here are some ways you can begin to better support your people through their careers:

  • Meet with employees regularly, taking on a more proactive approach to career and skill development
  • Inquire about their goals and vision of where they see themselves in 2-5 years within the organization
  • Share your stories and act as a mentor in guiding them through their career journey
  • Recommend learning and training opportunities to help them build their skillset and equip them with the competencies they need to transition or advance internally

You’re not alone in this fight to keep talent in-house. Don’t lose sight of your human capital.

Ultimately, employees want to see a future with your organization. And that future must contain learning and advancement opportunities that they’re made aware of. Promoting internal career opportunities will give you that advantage to retain your top talent.

Finally, remember, it’s talent that will supply the competitive edge you need.

Sofia Arisheh is the Principal of Upskill Consulting, a Human Resources (HR) Consulting firm offering tailored HR support, services and solutions. With more than 14 years of senior level HR experience, Sofia has an in-depth understanding of how to help organizations build a stronger focus on people practices to translate into better business results. Sofia partners with clients, including companies of all sizes and in a wide scope of industries, to provide end-to-end HR services and support. To learn more about Upskill Consulting, contact Sofia at info@upskillconsulting.ca or 604-312-4482.

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