Businesses must adapt because current skill shortages are set to become more acute, warned the conference’s “Fight For Talent” panel. New approaches are required for hiring and making the most of each individual’s potential.


Conference heard substantial survey evidence about the growing skills gap. One report states that half of employers fear this will limit future innovation, another pointed to a 10 million people shortfall in the global financial sector by 2030, and in another, two-thirds said modern leaders are not up to the job.


“Businesses understand the need for client experience, but more attention has to be focused on candidate and employee experience,” noted panel chair Susanne Schartz, COO of SEQVOIA. So how to attract, retain and motivate the millenials that firms need? “Employers have to sell their company and the role during the interview process”, noted Sinead O’Donnell, Director, DO Recruitment Advisors. Candidates need to feel valued, and this ranges from simple steps like the receptionist offering a warm welcome through to streamlining the interview process.


Once firms have found the right people, it is vital to keep them engaged. Offering staff opportunities to grow is central to encouraging employee retention, which ultimately boosts client-service quality. “As well as training, enabling people to move around your organisation helps them gain broader understanding, and develops their ability to adapt,” noted Martine Kerschenmeyer of Korn Ferry.


Values are also important. Ola Fadipe a director at BlackRock said: “millenials want to see that their business has a positive social impact, but this must be done in an authentic fashion.” For example, it is important that employees understand the important social function of investment funds: helping people to save and channelling investment to the economy. Similarly, adopting ESG screening as part of investment strategy can be motivating and attractive for staff as well as clients. “Yes traditional profiles around risk, compliance, and legal are important,” said Katharina Flechtner, Chief of Staff and Head of Business Management UBS, “but it is also important to have a sense of innovation and social commitment. We need this mix.”


This article is part of our ALFI EAM '19 Newsflash. To start receiving our mailings, subscribe here.

(Image source: ALFI Funds)

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