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Dealing with Talent Shortage in the Workplace

The widening gap between the demand and supply for the talent workers has become a major cause of worry. A report by McKinsey & Company stated that a 70 million baby boomers exit the workforce in the next 15 years in US as compared to a 40 million people who makes the entry. According to McKinsey & Co. the next three decades will see a 25% increase for people between the ages of 35 and 45 while the supply falls short by 15%.

The last few years saw very less number of people in US opting for a job in IT on account of the fall of the dot-com era and the outsourcing of IT jobs to countries like India. India too is facing the situation of a shortage of key talents. Dealing with the talent shortage has become a major cause of worry to the management. The reason behind the actual hiring can give an insight into the future of the company. If the people were recruited with the intention of filling a vacant position, there is a great chance for labour turnover. But if the employees are given the opportunity to grow within the organisation the chances of retaining them is higher. The management must provide a platform for growth within the entity through training and developmental activities. Similarly job rotation can give the opportunity to explore newer possibilities within the entity.

The last few years saw a change in the policies of the organisation. The employees of the Generation Y prefer a salary structure with frequent incentives as opposed to the baby boomers who were presented with an annual incentive. For retention the management was forced to modify the pay structure. To quote Richard Nordstrom, global CEO, McCann Healthcare Worldwide, "There is enormous pressure on our salary structure to get the best and brightest. It's very competitive at [junior] levels. At the mid-level, there is very little resistance for a person to move from one agency to the next. [Mid-level talent is] the most difficult to find and keep. There's less movement at senior levels. Talent is at the greatest premium at the senior levels because that's what our clients want."

Succession plans is another way of dealing with the talent shortage in the work place. But only a very few companies have so far succeeded in creating the plan of progression. After the identification of the employees with huge potential, the company paves way for their growth through job rotation within the entity.

Some industries have opted for a sharing system of the talent. This is more popular in the educational industry where the people with key talents shuttle between various institutions. But this is not possible in majority of cases, where the employee has to give full attention to the job in hand. Creation of a brand image and loyalty, and poaching from other companies are other ways of keeping the talent.

Meeting the requirements temporarily by appointing mediocre employees might turn out to be expensive with their less than average performance which has greater chances for errors. Dealing with the talent shortage therefore requires a conscious effort from the part of the management at the earliest.

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