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Strategies to become an employer of choice

October 6th, 2017 Leave a comment Go to comments


Strategies to become an employer of choice

HR must continue to gain ground as the chief people strategist by providing attraction and retention techniques that create an employer of-choice environment.  Simultaneously HR must demonstrate a measurable ROI on human capital. These critical trends will continue to present both challenges and opportunities for the HR professional.

Becoming the employer of choice


Becoming and remaining an employer of choice is the top-ranking HR-related challenge organizations face today. Establishing employer-of-choice status is HR’s responsibility, and if HR does this well, all other practices become subordinate to this goal. The most important objective on the people side of the business is establishing a place where individuals want to work and remain working. HR should be concerned with providing potential, current and even past employees with this environment. Employees need a culture, a place in which to grow and feel good about their surroundings.

HR should be the designated keeper of the corporate culture. At its best, HR can be instrumental in creating or maintaining a culture that is truly great. HR must first clearly identify the kind of culture the company should have, then define that culture for the workplace and support the environment that emerges. An identifiable culture attracts employees, gives them a sense of purpose and offers a basis for participation in decision-making.

Branding promotes culture, it is indeed an HR function because of its power to attract and retain employees. Working together with marketing, HR must develop a compelling brand image for the workforce. Great companies do not create an external brand for customers and an internal brand to attract employees. Instead, they leverage their external brand for internal recruiting.


Winning the war for talent

Recruiting and Retaining Over Time:  Given suitably competitive offerings with respect to compensation, culture is an organization’s number one recruitment and retention tool. In an employer-of-choice environment, it is not necessary to pay top dollar if other key factors are in place. See value in pursuing the best and brightest. Simultaneously, future talent shortages and the expense of recruiting over retention give these employers a consistently keen eye for keeping their top performers.  Make every employee in the company a recruiter.

Leveraging an Essential Player: Technology : Meeting today’s HR challenges would be impossible without technology, a critical practice in and of itself. Most people want to work for companies that have good technology. For example, college graduates accustomed to using the internet for their work, research, thesis, and case studies expect the latest technology on the job. Given the widespread availability of technology, a company lacking in this component will not qualify as an employer of choice for the emerging workforce.


Contributing to the organization as a strategic business partner

HR’s role as a strategic business partner comes from both the company and HR’s own initiatives. One factor that supports HR in functioning better in the business world and becoming a key business partner is an appropriate use of the right technology. Technology can help HR assess opportunities, manage risks, take action, and communicate with employees. Measuring performance and tying it to overall business objectives is essential for demonstrable results at the corporate level. Yet an unfortunate number of performance evaluation criteria have nothing to do with overall company objectives. Measuring things like clocking in on time and getting along with co-workers does not provide tangible data that ties employee performance to overall company success. HR needs to evaluate the factors that have a direct impact on corporate objectives.


Cultivating leadership through e-learning and development

Most people instinctively want to learn, which is very different from being “trained.” Learning is an environment that promotes the ability to gain knowledge, whether via a course, access to expertise in the form of mentors, or participation in innovative projects. Loyalty to a single company is rapidly becoming a thing of the past. While culture attracts a new hire, the reason an employee stays on is because the working environment is challenging and meaningful, engendering growth and development. The number one reason an employee leaves a company is lack of respect of the immediate supervisor. The culprit is the aging workforce, which causes organizations to promote younger individuals before they might be ready to be managers.

While technology is better today than ever, today’s e-learning is only in its infancy. In this new world, people learn what they need to learn on their own time, at their own pace. Right-brain people can have more on-the-job learning, while left-brain thinkers can do more analytical learning online. Usually e-learning is accessed via collaborative self-service that leverages third-party expertise and/or content, which is what many are calling knowledge management today. In the future, e-learning will simply be a way the workforce is developed on an ongoing, just as needed basis.


Recognizing the workforce as a profit center

HR responsibilities include many specific details involving compensation, workforce trends and so on. However, it is critical that HR can answer questions such as:

  • Who are our top performers and how can we retain them?
  • Who are our high-potential employees and how can we develop them?
  • Who are we at risk of losing and how can we reduce that risk?

Thinking globally while complying locally

Even small organizations deal increasingly with customers and employees on a global basis. Great companies know how to think globally and comply locally. They act like a global organization, yet an understanding of the local environment permeates every relationship. Making global differences a part of corporate culture is a valuable endeavor. Indeed, diversity itself is a source of greatness. Organizational headquarters that have the attitude that “corporate knows best” will have a difficult time instilling a viable culture.


Incorporating flexibility and adaptability into the organization

For years companies have been moving away from hierarchical, structured environments because they are neither effective for organizing nor comfortable for employees. HR needs to mirror this movement by allowing employees — particularly managers — to be flexible, adaptable, and nimble. For example, instead of restricting a creative requisition that strays from an exact, predefined job description and salary range, HR can allow for variances that fit special circumstances. Guidelines, rules, and benchmarks are important, but flexibility is even more critical, particularly where people are concerned. Collaboration with all constituents requires adaptability. Organizations today are less about physical structure than logical structure supported by technology. Before doing anything else, HR must create a flexible environment where top prospects seek to be employed. This is a place where employees look forward to coming to work, enjoy working while they’re there, feel they play an important role in the company, and want to stay because the company is continuing to develop them and care about them.

HR ties in all the ingredients for success and leverages technology to capitalize on economic and organizational change. Successfully turning HR challenges into opportunities to become an employer of choice creates a dynamic place where people want to work and choose to remain. Efficiency, effectiveness, and monetary return are characteristic of the employer of. These lay the groundwork for world-class HCM.

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