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Navigating the Talent Landscape: The Power of Strategic Thinking in Talent Acquisition

Strategy 8th January 2024
Navigating the Talent Landscape: The Power of Strategic Thinking in Talent Acquisition

Shaping a talent strategy that best identifies the talent and skills needed to fulfil organisational needs continues to be a vital goal for all businesses – with a recent Gartner survey revealing that CEOs rank workforce issues as the second most pressing priority for their organisations

Companies without dedicated talent acquisition (TA) teams have seen HR departments spend 25% more time on TA over the past year. This makes it even more important for businesses to invest in specialised TA teams, equipped with strategies that proactively tackle workforce challenges, such as bridging skills gaps, improving employee engagement and advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEI&B) initiatives. 

So, the question is: what does strategic thinking in TA entail, and how can businesses unlock the full potential of their TA teams?

Looking beyond the now 

Adopting a holistic approach is crucial when navigating the hiring landscape. With a 49% increase in candidate ghosting and a 57% decrease in applications for job openings, improving the efficiency and quality of your recruitment strategy is vital. It should not just address questions like “What works for my business today?” but consider what might work in five to ten years’ time. Short-term thinking today will only hurt your business in the long term.

Leaders must align TA plans with overarching business goals and strategy if they hope to achieve sustained success. In an environment where the only constant is change, teams strengthened by strategic thinking will be more resilient, agile and adept at navigating the evolving workforce landscape. 

Becoming strategic partners 

TA experts offer invaluable insights and support that impact the entire employee lifecycle – from attraction to retention, which is why senior leaders must view their TA teams as one of their most valuable partners in driving business success.  

This partnership approach can support all areas of business – from productivity, company culture and turnover to employer brand, customer satisfaction and staffing levels. 

A central component of this partnership is giving TA teams the time and resource to stress test new ideas and initiatives. This allows TA teams to anticipate workforce challenges, foresee trends and implement strategic solutions. This is what will elevate TA teams and, ultimately, their organisations. 

Navigating the boom-and-bust cycle

In 2022, we all watched as many of the world’s top technology companies – including Google, Meta and Amazon – laid off more than 100,000 employees due to the period of economic uncertainty that followed the COVID pandemic. This is a difficult reminder of the consequences of hiring too quickly, without long-term value in mind. 

Companies must avoid knee-jerk reactions during unpredictable boom-and-bust cycles in the future. And this includes the use of their TA team. During market slumps, TA teams can be one of the first places organisations make cuts, but this can have dire long-term consequences for talent pipelines and business success. 

The work of TA teams in preserving company culture and retaining key business knowledge becomes even more crucial during periods of lower demand. And the companies that don’t have a plan of action in place when economic conditions improve will be at a disadvantage in the battle for top talent.

Empowering future-proof talent acquisition

Ultimately, future-proof TA teams are those that take a strategic approach, aligning their efforts with business objectives for better success. However, to unlock their full potential, business leaders must collaborate with TA teams as long-term strategic partners that offer significant expertise and unique insights. Viewing talent acquisition this way has transformative effects on organisations, especially during times of uncertainty. 

This is the last blog in our six-part series on the key pillars of future-proof TA teams. If you haven’t already, check out the other blogs in the series:



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