Businesses are failing to plan for their longer-term staffing needs as they rush to fill post-lockdown vacancies. That is the warning from the CIPD following publication of its latest Resourcing and Talent Planning Survey. It shows just 46% of firms had a workforce planning strategy based on their current and future workforce needs. 43 per cent are taking an ad hoc approach to the issue with little or no planning.
Personnel Today reports on this and quotes Claire McCartney, senior resourcing and inclusion adviser at the CIPD. She says the pandemic has meant that many organisations haven’t had the bandwidth to look ahead when it comes to resourcing yet that’s precisely what they need to be doing to survive and thrive. The report argues that now, more than ever, organisations need to take a more strategic approach to resourcing, particularly since they may need to train and reskill more domestic workers or increase routes into work for young people, both of which takes time and investment.
Louise Shaw, director at resourcing specialist firm Omni is quoted too. She says the stark reality for many businesses is that currently they lack the right people with the right skills. She says businesses need to retain and upskill their workforce and think creatively about the future of work and how to diversify talent.
We agree with that and it’s a message we were putting out as that report was published. So in September we hosted a couple of webinars on this area. So on a general level, ‘How to recruit and retain employees in tomorrow's world of work’ and then the following week ‘The People Challenge’ which was a deeper dive into the challenges and opportunities for businesses in the in the oil & gas sector on becoming, or remaining, an employer of choice. The numbers signed up for those two webinars ran into the hundreds which goes to show how important clients view this subject currently so let’s hear from one of the lawyers involved in both events. Claire Scott is a specialist in the energy sector and she joined me by video-link from Aberdeen to discuss the issues:
Claire Scott: “So clients are now thinking about what their future and workforce looks like and what the future world of work looks like and as part of that we are advising some clients who are perhaps thinking about scaling back their activities in the centre of cities, moving to cheaper premises somewhere else and ensuring that people are working in a more flexible way, whether it's hybrid working with a bit of working in the office and a bit of working at home, or fully working at home in some circumstances. As part of that there are big change projects with offices shutting, perhaps, and we're able to help with the people aspects of that. So that might be changing terms and conditions and in some circumstances unfortunately it's involving some redundancies as well, but we're able to support clients with all of that.”
Joe Glavina: “The CIPD’s report is clear that diversity and inclusion are going to play a crucial role in this.”
Claire Scott: “Yes, well, diversity and inclusion is a hugely important aspect of culture within an employer's organisation and if you're looking to recruit the new generations and diversity of thought and you want to retain your staff in a climate where they could go elsewhere and get another job relatively easily then you should be looking at whether you have an inclusive culture and whether you are meeting what employees want from an organisation. So we are finding that we're giving a lot of advice on diversity and inclusion together with our consultants, Brook Graham, around this to ensure that employers are doing all they can to be an inclusive working environment. One of the things that that we find employers are becoming more and more interested in is what the their purposes as an organisation and really whether they are delivering on that in real terms and it's not just a piece of paper that that is referred to every so often. So looking at really what's happening on the ground and whether employees believe what the organisations are saying. So that's something that we can really help with here at Pinsent Masons.”
Joe Glavina: “Climate change is, of course, a huge issue now, across all sectors. I imagine that must be a big part of a client’s strategy?”
Claire Scott: “Sure, so this is a massive area that will affect all employers in some way in the coming years and some industries and sectors are more heavily affected now than others. So obviously the energy industry is one of those which is leading the way in the changes that are required to get to net zero and those all have a people impact. But any employer who wants to retain and recruit needs to start thinking about what their own green credentials are as part of attracting employees into their businesses and we are finding that a lot of the questions that graduates are asking are around, you know, what are you doing to help meet our climate change obligations and what is your strategy and really drilling down on that. So we can help the people aspects of that and more widely at Pinsent Masons. In terms of an HR equal audit, we can do that for our HR teams in our clients where they need to make sure that, as part of the wider employer strategy, they are also following that through with HR policies and just ensuring that all of the climate change strategy and initiatives that the business is doing are followed right through to the ground to what employees are doing day to day.”
That report by the CIPD is their latest Resourcing and Talent Planning Survey. They describe it as their trend analysis and benchmarking data on recruitment, workforce planning and retention which, they say, will help HR and employers map their pandemic recovery. We have put a link to it in the transcript of this programme.
- Link to CIPD’s Resourcing and Talent Planning Survey