Global study reveals strategic business objectives misaligned with talent acquisition efforts

Alignment with business strategy and use of mobile technologies key to unlocking true potential of talent acquisition.

A new global study commissioned by the Futurestep division of Korn Ferry reveals the missed opportunity for companies that fail to strategically link talent acquisition with business strategy.

In Part Two of Talent Forecast, Futurestep’s global survey of more than 1,100 hiring professionals, 38 per cent of hiring professionals acknowledge their recruitment team is aligned to business objectives, while 35 per cent of hiring professionals in EMEA say they do not have a strategic workforce plan, which helps map future talent needs to business strategy.

This misalignment sits in the context of fierce competition for skilled candidates. Part One of Talent Forecast found that 48 per cent of respondents in the region say it is harder to find qualified candidates compared to just one year ago, while new skills in a rapidly changing market was the top business issue impacting recruitment (23 per cent).

‘The findings clearly tell us too many businesses in EMEA are failing to make the most of the talent within and around their organisations,’ says Jan Mueller, managing director, talent acquisition solutions, EMEA, Korn Ferry Futurestep.

‘When talent strategy and business strategy are not aligned, talent acquisition becomes tactical and ineffective. However, if companies get this alignment right, they give themselves a stronger long-term view on talent, achieve greater efficiency with personnel and, crucially, give themselves the best chance of meeting business objectives.’

The digital age

It is not only the business that talent acquisition is misaligned with, but candidate realities too. In a digital and mobile-first world, where candidates browse potential jobs and apply via mobile devices, just 20 per cent of respondents in EMEA use mobile technology tools for recruitment – the lowest usage rates in the global study.

In addition, just 45 per cent say they use video interviewing, while only 46 per cent use online assessment tools. A missed opportunity as these can help make the talent acquisition process streamlined and more efficient.

‘The reality today is that candidates expect to be able to use the technology they are used to utilising in everyday life to get through an application and interview process,’ adds Mueller.

‘If businesses are to attract the best talent, they must adapt to this mobile first approach to talent. If not, they can expect to see the most desirable hires head to competitors with up-to-date technologies and processes.’

One option for businesses looking to help address challenges is the use of recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) partners. However, companies are not making the most of the services that such partners offer.

The top two ways respondents worked with RPO partners in EMEA is sourcing (84 per cent) and screening (70 per cent) candidates. Relatively few organisations are availing themselves of other services that RPOs offer, such as employer branding, building communities, or creating metrics for reporting and decision making.

Mueller concludes, ‘The value RPOs can bring to organisations goes way beyond a tactical recruiting machine. With a strategic partnership, RPOs can help businesses use the right tools, make long-term hiring plans and collect valuable data to develop even more sophisticated acquisition processes.’

Further reading on talent acquisition

Owen Gough, SmallBusiness UK

Owen Gough

Owen was a reporter for Bonhill Group plc writing across the and titles before moving on to be a Digital Technology reporter for the

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