Inclusion is King in 2019...

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, it is also that pivotal time when we look back and start planning research for the year ahead…

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2018, the year GDPR came and empowered candidates and forced recruiters to be, well, just a little better at their jobs! 2018 was also the year in which we realised millennials were about to become our Leaders, they will become 75% of workforce by 2020, and without a social talent plan what hope did we have of attracting them, let alone, Gen Z's to our organisations. And then as we thought Talent Analytics and AI would make life so much easier, we all had to live under the impending doom of Brexit, we all know those pesky talent pools are likely to shrink and become even more tricky to fish.

I carried out a piece of research earlier this year asking Women in Tech at various stages in their career what their main career motivator was. Interestingly, women at every job level and job family apart from senior management valued a well-defined career path and career development opportunities over flexible working, management style, culture and altruistic purpose of the role.

Upon hearing Fuel50 speak at the Reimagine HR Conference I am even more convinced that clarification of job levels, managing expectations and opportunities to develop will be key in talent attraction strategies moving forward. Career ladders aren't new but innovative approaches to internal mobility are and enabling employees to experience other job roles and contribute their experience will enable your staff to gain broader experience and combat group think. It is a true investment in their development and the organisation benefits from spotting hidden skills and individuals who truly align to your values. Hierarchical structures seem old fashioned but whilst we were busy stripping out layers of unnecessary management a few years ago we may have also stripped out the motivational layers that everyone is craving. Employees want to feel that they are progressing and if they don't they will move organisation to do so.

As well progressing they want to feel the love. If Diversity is the attraction conversation, then it seems Inclusion is the retention narrative. As cited in Deloitte's Inclusion Pulse Survey 72% of employees surveyed would leave their job for a more inclusive culture and 30% of millennials already have! Such is my passion for this topic and fuelled by the recommendations in the Parker review I have decided to investigate how organisations can position themselves and succession plan to attract (and ultimately) retain BAME candidates at Board level ready for 2021. It is a sensitive topic rife with positive discrimination and ultimately a need for a shift in mind set as to why diversity and inclusion is business critical and what competitive edge it brings to business results.

As well as D&I, I think the other old classic "The war for talent", less a theme now more a continuous state of play, will hold true for 2019. I think the interesting word here is "talent" – this word to me means, not just anyone who can do the job but the over performing, engaged, innovative, agile, future leaders who are passionate and highly engaged – what do they all want? What will make your organisation irresistible to them?

2019 looks like it will be a year of shrinking talent pools and increased immigration legalities. Combine this with technology developing quicker than you can train developers to, well develop it and you quickly realise that this isn't a problem reserved to 2018. Whist the Technology sector has always fought for talent, Fintechs seem to be at the eye of the storm. The number of Fintech companies is set to double by 2030 and the number of employees will reach over 100,000. The sector has seen unprecedented growth and led to numerous initiatives to solve the talent shortage. There are many incubator programmes, global mobility schemes even festivals such as the one thrown by FintechTalents in November 2018 with the aim of linking Financial institutions, Fintech companies and talent together. At BrightPool we will be delving into this topic early in 2019.

Working in Talent Consulting we have enviable position of taking a helicopter view of the market and feeding insights and actionable recommendations. If you are interested in contributing to either piece of research in 2019 or having a conversation about your talent challenges in the coming year please get in touch.

Emmie Blower is the Head of Talent Consulting for BrightPool. Call 07852387522

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