Finding and keeping talent

Business Times, Monday, 12th March 2012

What are the key challenges organisations face in recruiting and keeping skilled and talented employees? Are businesses and the authorities doing enough to facilitate the supply of talent, both home-grown and from overseas?

THE competition in attracting and retaining talented employees is certainly fierce given Singapore’s tight labour market and low unemployment rate. The obvious challenge is in containing labour costs as organisations need to offer competitive compensation and benefits packages in order to attract the best talent out there. Another challenge organisations face is the fact that it is currently an employees’ market and there is a high demand for good workers.

So the question is, how do you engender loyalty among your workforce? It comes back to employee engagement – once you’ve got them onboard, you need to ensure that both their hearts and minds are engaged in order to keep them from decamping and joining a competitor company. SMEs, especially, feel the crunch, as they may be disadvantaged compared to MNCs in terms of having a strong employer branding or the financial muscle to offer the level of compensation packages that MNCs may be able to afford.

Certain industries face a tremendous shortage of workers as they entail jobs that Singaporeans are not keen to do. The only solution for employers had been to engage foreigners. However, the recent announcement of further measures to deter the hiring of foreign workers is intensifying these businesses’ labour crunch problems.

While we understand the theory behind the government’s push for increased productivity to drive growth and ultimately enhance wages, such legislation presents businesses with greater challenges in the short run.

Ronald Lee
Managing Director
PrimeStaff Management Services Pte Ltd

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