tap’d Meet Dave Millner, the @HRCurator – Interview Blog 4

Welcome back to our series of video interviews with Dave Millner, @HRCurator. We are now midway through this series and in this fourth blog in the series we ask Dave Millner:

What are the greatest challenges that organisations face in retaining their best talent in 2016?

This is one of the most fundamental questions that effect all areas of the business from the senior board through to middle managers and supervisors. With the UK approaching what economists call “full employment”, the idea of retention of Talent will soon become a major factor into the competitiveness and longevity of a business in the 21st Century.

Once again, Dave Millner’s ability to grasp such a complex matter and distil it down into structured activities was evident. The @HRCurator described 3 key themes that HR and Business Leaders need to think about.

Carry on reading or watch the video interview now:

1)     Retaining talent isn’t just about retaining those who are destined to the top.

Dave highlighted that prolonged organisation success also relied upon identifying the key BUSINESS CRITICAL roles that drive the profit and income into the organisation. The business needs a pipeline of credible leaders yet we often overlook the similar importance of the specialist roles that create the added value of your organisation. Focusing resource and thinking into how to retain this pool of people is essential. It might mean that you operate different retention programmes within the same business depending on the criticality of the role to the DNA of the business.

2)    We need to think about the recognition channels within the organisation.

This was a great reminder that the psychological contract is always evolving between the worker/employee and the organisation. Dave agreed that Reward is a challenge now and will continue to be so, however organisations need to be thinking more about Recognition. More and more people have surplus income over and above paying the rent and putting food on the table, Therefore the choice of employer and compulsion to remain is lessening in modern years and will continue in 2016. Not everyone will strive for more and more salary.

Having an open and honest dialogue with employees is really important. Your people’s ability to see and feel the fairness and transparency in what is happening builds trust and adds “stickiness” for people to build relationships within the organisation, just like Dark Matter does in the universe – to don’t often see it but the relationships between workers, managers and employees is evidence that open recognition works!

3)    How do we ensure that every employee has the opportunity to grow and improve?

Every increasingly we have flatter organisations as automation removes the need for multiple levels of hierarchy. Dave reinforced that people still needed to get new opportunity but that does not need to be new jobs. With flatter organisations this can be new tasks in old jobs or a promotion of the idea of job rotation and new experience as a way of personal improvement. Do we unlock enough doors to allow this to happen? Do we advertise this idea constantly? Or do we play it safe and try to keep the best current person in that role for as long as possible.

There is a need to identify skills needed for different job roles in the organisation. So many of these are transferable allowing development in the new 20-30% of the role whilst maintaining the existing 70-80%.

In summary, Dave Millner finished by saying “we need get creative about learning opportunities”.

tap’d's opinion:

Dave is right. However, to do the 3 strategies above requires not just hard work, but more importantly, a consistent focus to achieve success. How can you move away from doing projects in these areas towards making retention part of the HR Engagement Strategy, into which all HR activities must feed?


I hope you liked this third blog in this series. The @HRCurator will be answering more key questions soon in future blogs. Follow these blogs and please comment at:

Twitter:  @tapdSolutions and @HRCurator

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Anthony Ryland

tap’d Solutions