In the autumn of 2013, we were pleased to partner with the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD) on Employee Outlook - a twice yearly survey that explores employees' current and changing attitudes to work and working life. The autumn 2013 survey revealed some interesting findings that underscore the importance of talent management and employee engagement in the UK.
This spring we were pleased to again partner with the CIPD for the Employee Outlook: Spring 2014 survey - the highlights of which I would like to share with you now.
Employee Outlook: A closer look at the numbers
While the survey results reveal employees' fears of redundancy are decreasing, their concerns regarding career progression have increased. Job-seeking intentions remain high and talent in the UK continues to be on the move.
Here are some survey highlights at a glance:
- Job satisfaction levels have risen 2% to just over 42%, with a 3% decrease in in the number of employees who say they could lose their job due to the current economic context (currently 15%).
- Employees' views of career progression are not positive, with more employees believing it to be unachievable (32%) than achievable (31%).
- More employees reported that they believe their organisation's performance management process to be fair (39%) rather than unfair (30%).
- Overall, 35% of employees are engaged, which is a slight decrease from previous surveys.
- Confidence in senior leadership is now +3% (a fall of 5 net percentage points) and trust at +1% (a fall of 4 net percentage points).
Claire McCartney, Research Adviser at the CIPD, and author of the Employee Outlook report shared the following insight into these most recent findings:
"It's not surprising that job seeking intentions are still high, as employees lack faith in their leaders. This survey shows a marked increase in negative perceptions of senior leaders, with overall trust and confidence hitting a two year low. The survey also reveals real performance management and progression issues, with performance issues being particularly poor in the public sector. This is likely to be linked to the current unrest in that sector related to pay, pensions and performance. Organisations need to focus on issues of trust and confidence in senior leaders and getting performance and progression opportunities right as a matter of urgency if they are to retain the best talent."
UK organisations need to be more proactive about their retention strategies
With employee perceptions of the job market improving, organisations need to be proactive about their retention strategies if they want to prevent their best talent from jumping ship.
An effective talent management strategy can address many of the concerns and sentiments employees shared in the survey. This strategy should:
- Advocate a performance management process that aligns employees to their organisation's vision
- Support an approach to performance management that facilitates effective and continuous two-way communication between line managers and employees, thereby building trust across the workforce
- Identify the learning and development needs of each employee so that they can develop and progress within the organisation
- Enable line managers to identify and highlight those employees who add the most value to the business for differential reward and career progression
Organisations that are proactive in implementing talent management best practices will find themselves in a favourable position from a workforce perspective. They will be far more successful in retaining their top talent while supporting career progression - and spend significantly less time dealing with the negative impacts of talent on the move.
For more information on Employee Outlook findings, you can download the full report on the CIPD website.