Focus on talent….. before it’s too late!

B2B Editor1 March 2015

While privatisation of Commonwealth Government functions continues to cause some uncertainty in Canberra, a big increase in new contract-based opportunities plus growth in the private sector are giving many employees in the nation’s capital itchy feet.

As the shift back towards a more typical candidate-driven market continues, Canberra organisations will need to be on their toes if they want to retain and attract high-calibre talent. Simon Cox, Director at HorizonOne Recruitment observes that, “We are starting to see skill shortages re-emerging. There is already unanswered demand for technically qualified professionals in Accounting and Finance, HR, Communications and specialist Government roles.”

According to ANZ Bank’s latest job survey, there were 13.5% more jobs advertised during January in Australia compared to the same month last year. Job ads on SEEK have increased for 8 months in a row, up 20% on the same time last year.

“Now is the time to focus on retaining high performers, as well as targeting talent before it’s too late!”

Complacency is not your friend

If complacency has crept into the way your organisation approaches its most talented people, you could find your stars leaving for greener pastures. What will the impact be if your most highly-valued team member jumps ship? As the demand for quality staff heats up, and with contractor scarcity already becoming a problem, you will have to wait significantly longer to source top talent.

The latest ICT Employment Trends Report has found it currently takes 83 days to fill an ICT contractor role, up from 40 days in the previous quarter. Can your business afford to lose a key employee when it could take close to three months to fill the critical gap? Probably not.

Develop your organisation’s value proposition

Almost one-third of Australian employees have indicated they’re looking to leave their current roles within two years, according to the 2014 Global Workforce Study. Similar studies conducted in the ACT/NSW region indicate around 35% of employees are planning to change jobs in 2015.HorizonOne’s General Manager, David Harrington, suggests that in order to attract the best talent before the market dries-up, employers need to develop “compelling value propositions”.

“Employers should be asking what they can offer highly-skilled professionals – and how well their business is perceived in the marketplace. How does your workforce approach talent management? Is your marketing content engaging and well-crafted? Is your website a static one pager? If so, for younger candidates your business may as well not exist.”

There are many factors that influence an employee’s decision to accept a position – strong career paths, professional development, training opportunities, and remuneration.

Importantly though, in Australia a preference for strong work-life balance trumps wanting a higher salary or a prestigious position for 73%of younger workers, according to a recent report, Understanding a Misunderstood Generation, by a leading employer branding group.

Becoming a flexible employer of choice for Generation Y, in particular, will give your business the edge as the race for talent picks up the pace in Canberra.

Attracting new talent

Whether you manage your own talent search or work with a specialist recruiter, having a clear talent identification and management strategy will help your business attract the very best.

“The days of popping an advert onto a job board and calling a few connections are over,” You need to be far more proactive, and one of the ways to do this is to build a partnership with a quality recruiter. We can help you target both active networks of candidates as well as access passive talent – so you can stay ahead of the game.”

Overall, it’s still an employer’s market in Canberra. But in a number of industries and professions, the momentum is swinging the other way. Now is the time to get be prepared.

Contact at the team at HorizonOne Recruitment on (02) 6108 4878 or horizonone.com.au Level 1, 27 Torrens Street, Braddon