In the News

External recruitment and loyalty

Penny Brooks

16th October 2017

An article by the FT's Management Editor last week shines a light on issues from the HR side of the syllabus. It centres on the changing workplace, particularly for young managers who have the potential to be the future leaders of a business. In the past, a blue-chip multinational employer would spend time and money seeking out the most promising candidates to join them for life, with a career progression around and up through the organisation that prepared them to join the top strategic team. In today's market, the candidates are more likely to view the employer as a staging post en route to a bigger challenge offered by others, who may well be the business's rivals.

This had advantages and disadvantages for the employer. They are more likely to look to expensive external recruitment than to developing staff through internal appointments. Evidence shows that the big four accountancy groups have to hire at a phenomenal rate simply to replace staff who move on. On the other hand, some of the most prestigious employers are able to pay their staff less because the training they receive and the reflected glory of the brand will make them more marketable in future. They will move on fast, as soon as an opportunity arises, and these 'portable' careers mean that there is a risk that they never become immersed in the corporate culture of the organisations they pass through. 

It also means that they need to bring with them an ability to swiftly earn the trust of those they work with and lead. The article argues that those who seek to develop future leaders have a duty also to teach them the relationship skills that will make them personable as well as portable. The soft skills could become the key to a successful career.

Penny Brooks

Formerly Head of Business and Economics and now Economics teacher, Business and Economics blogger and presenter for Tutor2u, and private tutor

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