February 26, 2018

HR departments are prioritizing learning and talent acquisition in 2018: report

The HR and Talent Management Benchmarking Report, conducted by HR.com in partnership with Ceridian, is a snapshot of how HR departments stack up today. Here, an overview of some of the top priorities for 2018 and why they’re critical to organizational success.

Danielle Ng-See-Quan

Dani is the Managing Editor, Content Marketing at Ceridian.

HR departments will focus on learning development and recruiting talent to support growth as their top two priorities in 2018.

These findings come as part of The HR and Talent Management Benchmarking report, conducted by HR.com in partnership with Ceridian.

The report, which gathers 653 survey responses from HR professionals at organizations of every size, provides a snapshot of the current state of the HR industry, along with trends and best practices. According to the report, “today’s primary HR challenge can be boiled down to a single word: skills.”

One of the main reasons that learning and development and recruiting talent are top priorities for HR departments is that organizations are competing in a war for talent. Not only do companies want to keep and upskill their top performers to help them adjust to the rapidly changing work environment, but they also want to continue to acquire top talent from the available pool.

Related: How to embed a learning culture within your organization

Reduce voluntary turnover with career advancement

The report found that organizations that fill more than 40% of their vacancies with internal candidates tended to have lower voluntary turnover rates. However, most organizations look to outside candidates – nearly half of the organizations surveyed said they fill 10% or fewer openings with internal candidates.

This supports the finding that lack of career advancement opportunities is a major reason for voluntary turnover, which is also a finding from Ceridian’s 2017 Pulse of Talent.

Another interesting finding from the report is that succession planning is not widely used, but comprehensive succession planning is linked to lower voluntary turnover. Weak succession management could factor into the current state of low internal hiring rates in the organizations surveyed.

The takeaway? There’s an argument for HR departments to expand or improve their succession management programs to offer more career advancement opportunities and reduce voluntary turnover rates.

Room for improvement with recruitment

From a talent acquisition perspective, only 20% of survey respondents said their HR departments are very effective at recruitment, so, there’s room for improvement. In particular, HR departments can focus on improving time-to-fill. The study found that very few organizations fill job vacancies in less than a week, or even two weeks.

It’s well-documented that unfilled jobs can result in a range of challenges across an organization, including lost productivity and lower morale on understaff teams, not to mention the cost of recruitment itself. One way to improve time-to-fill could be to source talent for more job openings internally, and identify high-quality internal candidates who can move into leadership roles.

How does your HR department stack up when it comes to talent management? Download the full report.

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