One-third of Canadian employers rank talent shortage as most pressing HR concern

Low engagement levels also worrisome: Survey
|hrreporter.com|Last Updated: 04/11/2013

Canadian employers continue to worry about a shortage of talent, according to a survey by Right Management.

One-third (33 per cent) of Canadian executives say a shortage of talent at all levels is their most pressing HR concern, found the poll of 2,000 senior HR executives in 14 countries. This is the second year in a row that this concern is at the top of their list.

A lack of high-potential leaders came in as the second most pressing concern for Canadian executives (28 per cent), followed by low engagement and lagging productivity (24 per cent) and loss of top talent to other organizations (14 per cent).

The year-to-year consistency in shows that future leadership or lack thereof is top of mind for organizations nearly everywhere, said Gerald Purgay, senior vice president of Right Management.

“Companies are focused on talent as never before. It’s no surprise that organizations are now investing in growing their talent as development initiatives have now become a high priority,” he said.

“(Future leaders) will become curators of information and coaches for their teams, possessing opposing skill sets; strategic yet tactical, conceptual yet action-oriented; having the ability to anticipate and react; and always pushing the boundaries of what’s next.”

Where businesses employed individuals for the role they are currently performing, looking ahead, the best leaders will train individuals for the role they will likely take in the future — and increase their engagement by helping them understand the role they play in an organization’s success, said Purgay.

With respect to individual countries, the perceived lack of high-potential leaders appears most acute in Canada, China, India, Norway, Germany, United Kingdom and Japan.

“Companies need to invest in leadership development that creates organizational capacity through grooming of the most promising talent,” said Purgay. “This means translating business challenges into leadership behaviors, providing leaders with coaching, and succession planning based on an organization’s strategy, corporate culture and values.”

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