For our last HR and Talent leaders’ dinner, hosted in partnership with Omni RMS, we brought 25 delegates together at one of our favourite haunts, the Lotos Room at the Beaumont Hotel.
Our discussion ranged across lots of different topics including:
What differentiates the performance of TA leaders in the current market?
In what is undoubtedly a challenging market, there was a consensus that there is still strong underlying demand for top TA talent. There were two key attributes highlighted to stand out to prospective and indeed, existing, employers: The clear ability to lead a high performing team; and evidence of successfully managing scale and complexity. It was felt that TA leadership should generally be able to translate effectively across different sectors. My favourite comment of the evening was: ‘If you crave accountability, resourcing is the place to be.’
Where (and how) do you draw the line in your C-suite’s demand to do more with less?
One of the biggest challenges for TA leaders is the expectation that they can continue to deliver against an ever-expanding agenda with the same or even fewer resources and whilst our group had no shortage of commercial nous, and a recognition that times are tough, there is also a clear belief that the C-suite must step up. The talent agenda is either mission critical or it isn’t and if it is, it needs to be supported accordingly. The role of Talent Intelligence (or market gossip plus data!) was seen as fundamental in helping to build the business case for more investment.
Workforce planning is impossible…
…it always has been, but it’s harder than ever. Understanding how to use external resourcing in a more agile, flexible way is more important than ever and our partners at Omni shared a lot of insight into tips and tactics on how that can be achieved.
Mike Sixsmith from Omni said, “Maintaining business continuity in the turbulent economic climate is a top priority for most companies today. With hiring challenges and uncertainty ahead, organisations need flexible staffing solutions to meet their talent needs. As Ken noted, workforce planning is difficult in this environment, but we’re seeing that focussing on process improvements, coaching hiring managers, and empowering talent teams is helping to attract and retain the right talent.”
Let’s talk about AI
Inevitably, we also explored AI trends in TA, both at a tactical and strategic level, and especially in the context of employer brand and candidate experience. There were some brilliant insights:
- Don’t pretend to be human. AI is an increasingly ubiquitous feature of our lives; people are getting used to it more and more so differentiating between human and AI interactions is important.
- Right now, AI is a great tactical tool: Use it for admin and processing tasks and use your humans to build relationships.
- There are some genuine ‘strategic shifts’ not least in how AI is helping employers move towards hiring for skills, but the costs and complexity means this is really for the largest employers for now.
- Data integrity is key – especially with regards to the D&I agenda.
There was so much more we covered but, to be honest, you had to be there…