Talent doesn’t stop at 25.

In these days I wouldn’t like to use “war for talent” to describe the shortness on the labour market. We have something very real going on, where we can only hope this stops sooner than later.

Being around for quite a while now in the HR arena I have been noticing quite some waves, shortages of people, followed by lay-offs and reorganizations etc., until the next one came. HR followed the waves and was either in hire or fire modus.

The current wave has more the character of a tsunami. It keeps coming and getting stronger and higher and it seems endless. And the shortage on the labour market is expected to continue for quite a while longer.

This urges us to adapt and be more agile and creative than ever before. In the company that I help running we try to do the same, we have young talent programs to train newcomers, but also reskilling programs for more senior people, as talent development doesn’t have an age limit.

But more creative ways are also being explored and applied, like seeking cooperation with other sectors where there might be a surplus, to jointly solve mutual challenges. Or hiring “second-wave talent”; highly intelligent and motivated people that had to leave their home country for whatever reasons and retrain them and thus supporting them in a new future. Good for them, for society and for our company.

In all this enhanced focus for recruitment, retention should not be overseen. Taking care of our people and helping them to develop is the easiest way of ensuring labour force. And they deserve it, as they are the ones that are on the frontline delivering services every single day.

In general, we all need to be more agile and continuously creative. More than ever before. And this also opens new opportunities for HR to go off the beaten tracks and explore and develop new ways of thinking and working.

Picture Bas Ossewaarde

By Bas Ossewaarde on March 1 2022