Talent retention: technology as a key asset

What is talent retention in business terms, how important is it, what are the key elements to be taken into consideration in any strategy to retain talent, i.e. our best employees, and how does it relate to new technologies? Let's take a look.

Are you familiar with the Big Quit?

"Big quit is the name of a phenomenon that started in the United States in 2021. It took place as workers returned en masse to their usual office or workspace after the most severe restrictions of the pandemic. It quickly spread to the world's most industrialised countries, shaking the labour market as rarely before in history.

The direct result of the great resignation is the voluntary and massive abandonment of their jobs by workers (up to 12 million between March and July 2021) fed up with the employment model from which they came and which was interrupted by the pandemic. And the indirect one, no less relevant, is the problem of talent retention in companies and the establishment of strategies to ensure the permanence of professionals.

Talent retention: definition, characteristics

Ensuring the permanence of the most relevant workers for the development of the organisation. That is talent retention. A strategy designed for and from human resources departments, although it is directly related to all team management processes in medium and long-term projects.

Talent refers to professional performance, the quality of the work performed and the level of results obtained, but also to attitude, courage, creativity and commitment. Losing people who represent these values means a significant loss for the company, starting with the investment made in time (we will need three months to a year to detect and measure talent) and resources (training, fees, additional resources allocated to the professional).

At the same time, new technologies are becoming a fundamental asset in talent retention strategies due to their enormous capacity for adaptation and the wide variety of applications they offer. Companies determined to implement these precise strategies tend to look for technological solutions, applications and software that integrate and develop every aspect of their plan to retain talent.

Employee retention

Talent retention is also used, but less widely, perhaps because of the possible discrimination it introduces between talented and untalented employees. In any case, the aim is to introduce strategies and organisational models in business organisations that retain talent, ensuring the well-being of all employees.

Measures to retain talent

Generating an open, accessible, collaborative working environment is as important as projecting an emotional personality of the company that reflects these same characteristics, based on a positive brand image.

Workspaces are a key element in ensuring the well-being of employees. In them, the employee can confirm or disprove his or her perception of the company's personality and brand image. The efficient and controlled allocation of these spaces contributes to the prevention of psychosocial risks, and promotes a sense of comfort that is a determining factor in the set of factors that workers take into account when deciding whether to continue in their job.

The design and organisation of the physical working environment brings together in the Office 5.0 concept all the trends that will mark the future of work in the office. These trends include the progressive definition of remote, face-to-face and mixed working models.

Determining aspects for the evaluation of the workplace from the employee's perspective

There is no doubt that there are many, and often clearly subjective, aspects that the professional considers decisive when evaluating his or her job. In general terms, we can highlight the following as the most relevant (and objectifiable) to consider in terms of talent retention:

- Salary. This is the nerve centre around which all other aspects are connected.

- Work-life balance. The satisfactory integration of work and personal life is fundamental, and here the key concept becomes flexibility.

- Work climate. Relationships, atmosphere and treatment determine the emotions that will eventually prevail in the group. In the same way that toxic processes and behaviours must be avoided, the feeling of participation must be encouraged and protected, initiative must be valued and critical thinking must be allowed.

- Opportunities for development and growth. Opening up the possibility of growth, movement within the organisation, access to training, in short: adopting and managing change, are factors that will prevent the feeling of stagnation and even boredom.

Talent retention from the perspective of the organisation

There are numerous typologies within the various strategies already developed in theoretical models. Trying to extract what is essential and common to all of them, we highlight the following measures aimed at retaining the talent that every organisation has within its reach:

- Employer branding. A good talent retention strategy begins with the brand image created and promoted by the company to attract talent which, if expectations are met, we will then try to retain. We know that half of Spaniards do not want to work in a company with a bad image. And yet, only half of Spanish companies are committed to employer branding strategies.

- Building trust. Right from the first interviews and the recruitment process. The job description, conditions and responsibilities must be clear and defined from the start. Likewise, any changes that occur once the activity has started must be communicated, reasoned and, if possible, agreed upon.

- Open, multidirectional and continuous communication. Between the company and the worker, between teams and departments, and between workers. The aim is to foster interpersonal relations and create an open, comfortable and accessible environment. Special attention should be paid to those who work remotely or in mixed models, and to external collaborators.

- Flexibility. Particularly in terms of working hours and work-life balance.

- Professional... and personal growth. Any action that contributes to providing opportunities for learning and growth will serve to retain our professionals. The lack of these opportunities is often one of the main reasons for changing jobs.

- Benefits for employees. Such as childcare vouchers, transport facilities, health insurance and discounts on services, health and wellbeing actions (coaching, nutrition, meditation, rest...). And even better if these benefits are personalised and offered as a sign of a corporate culture of appreciation and valuing.

- Technology. Use technology as a tool that contributes to improving the performance of each of the measures indicated.

Communication and transparency as cross-cutting elements

The measures, aspects and elements that we have tried to articulate in order to introduce in our talent retention strategies are, in turn, crossed and encompassed by the concepts of communication and transparency. Only business processes that ensure optimal and transparent team communication can guarantee effective collaboration.


Technology as an asset for talent retention strategies

New technologies are becoming a key asset in talent retention strategies due to their enormous adaptability and the wide variety of applications they offer.

Internal and external communication processes are already largely driven by technological systems, and the fluidity of communication and the ability to gather information about the needs and motivations of employees depends on their applications. This is one of the main objectives of human resources departments.

On the other hand, professionals are attracted to companies that offer them efficient and up-to-date technological tools to carry out their work, as well as to coordinate with the work of others. Technological applications based on artificial intelligence and machine learning software, or tools such as virtual, augmented or mixed reality, offer multiple possibilities for optimising all the processes described.

In conclusion, however, it is important to remember that value should not be found exclusively in technology. The real value lies in people. Making employees feel valued is also a question of leadership. An organisation whose leadership demonstrates commitment, the ability to recognise the strengths of its employees and the courage to take responsibility for the risks associated with innovation will in itself tend to ensure talent retention.

Back to blog