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Global Survey Indicates Uncertainty In Higher Management Retention India

KellyOCG survey discovers businesses struggle to navigate shifting demands for life-work design – and identifies how some companies are getting it right

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Constant modifications in work-style model and policies across organisations does not seem to indicate progressive sentiment in the Indian market. While some factors indicate steps taken in a positive direction, the overall feedback remains far from expectations of the employees. Globally, the pandemic-era phenomenon known as the Great Resignation shows no signs of slowing with senior executives planning to leave their organisations in the next two years, according to a new report released today by KellyOCG, the outsourcing and consulting business of Kelly. The 2022 KellyOCG Global Workforce Report – Re:work uncovers the disconnect between evolving employee expectations and the support firms provide. It also spotlights the actions an elite group of companies, the Vanguards, are taking to attract and retain the talent they need to grow their business.  

The report, a follow-up to the 2021 report, Next-level Agility: The Four Dynamics of a Resilient Workforce, identifies the greatest talent challenges and risks facing organisations as they emerge from the pandemic. It also explores how companies are transforming across four critical dynamics of success: workforce agility; diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI); employee experience; and adoption of tools and technologies. 

“Our research signals there is significant talent demand for a life-work shift. Even senior leaders are experiencing it and acknowledge that employers could be doing more,” said Tammy Browning, president of KellyOCG. “A shift in workplace culture is needed and organisations must evolve to remain competitive, profitable, and attractive to top talent. Organisations that aren’t taking action across the four dynamics will continue to see employees at all levels walk out the door.”  

Peter Hamilton, vice president and managing director, APAC, at KellyOCG said, “India is going through an uncertain period of time with regards to work model implementation and constant changes. Organisations are lining up to acquire the best talent available and add to their workforce but there are various challenges they face. Post pandemic, many employees have been planning to move jobs or switch roles in their teams, and that makes retention and nurturing of current talent critical. There have been some positive developments in terms of work-style flexibilities, and it is very important that firms continue to invest in technology and holistic development of employees to ensure that they do not drop out.” 

 

KellyOCG surveyed C-suite leaders, board members, department heads, directors, and managers in 12 countries and 10 industries. In India, the key findings include:  

  • Hybrid work-model facing multiple challenges. While 45% say that their employer promotes flexibility (flexible work hours, hybrid office and remote working), on the other hand 54% state that within their organisation, in-office employees are perceived as higher performers than remote/hybrid employees. 90% believe that their organisation regularly experiments with new ways of working to see if they improve the employee experience but only 49% believe that their organisation has a definitive plan for whether, when and how to return employees to the physical workplace. 
  • Firms are not going far enough or fast enough to achieve diversity, equity and inclusion and support employees’ mental health. While 54% say that their firms have open conversations or forums where senior management discuss issues around DEI with employees, only 42% state that advocacy or employee resource groups across the organisation focus on issues faced by specific groups of employees (such as representation, mental health, discrimination, etc.) are active.  
  • Holistic experience important for employees to continue with their firms. While 79% believe that their organisation is successful in providing a competitive remuneration and benefits package only 39% plan to stay with their current employer for at least two years.
     
  • Hiring contingent talent is one of the biggest talent barriers firms face today. More than one in three leaders say their firms struggle to hire the contingent talent they need to remain agile in today’s economy. 48% say that their organisation plans to increase their use of contingent talent by at least 25% in the next five years, but only 24% say that they use contingent talent to enhance workforce with specialist skills and infuse ideation and innovation into the organisation.
     
  • Firms are lagging when it comes to adopting the right tools and technologies required to develop their workforce. Only 57% have data analytics tools that enable them to capture trends around employee retention and productivity – yet 87% of firms who have adopted such technologies say they have been positively received by employees.  

 

The Re:work report provides a blueprint for firms interested in following the lead of the “Vanguards” – a group of thriving organisations that report an increase in employee wellbeing, productivity, and revenue growth in the last year. The Vanguards represent 15% of global survey respondents and they share four key dynamics driving their approach to culture, technology, and talent management: 

 

  1. Vanguards are strengthening workforce agility. These leading organisations are 15% more likely to use contingent talent to improve workforce agility (41% vs. 26%), suggesting a link between the use of contingent talent and higher employee productivity and wellbeing.

     
  2. Vanguards are taking concrete action on DEI.  Senior leaders at these firms are more likely to engage with workers across the organisation around DEI (82% vs. 60%) and are more likely to implement innovative initiatives to improve their DEI performance – but there is much more progress to be made to create an inclusive workplace environment.  

     
  3. Vanguards are reinventing the employee experience. Senior executives at Vanguard organisations are 24% more likely to indicate they have a positive life-work balance and are happy in their current role. They also say that their organisation is more respectful of employees as whole person and is reinventing work in partnership with them. Vanguards are also implementing strategies to assess employee sentiment and engagement and report C-suite accountability for improving the employee experience (57% vs. 29%).  

      
  4. Vanguards are adopting the right tools and technologies to empower today’s workforce. They are implementing knowledge-sharing tools that enable collaboration among in-office, hybrid, and remote workers (46% vs. 34%) and utilise platforms that allow a clear view of the mix of permanent and contingent talent across their business (42% vs. 32%).  
     

When these four dynamics are embraced together, businesses across industries can better attract, retain, and motivate talent to meet their business goals, the Re:work report finds. Independent experts cited throughout the report provide further insights and testimonials on how their organisations are navigating the life-work shift. 


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