Personnel Decisions Limited surveyed 530 managers and found they’re putting extra effort into retaining staff during the downturn. We’ve obviously learnt the key lesson of previous economic ‘blips’: don’t slash and burn your staffing. Retaining core knowledge and skills upholds performance in depressed markets, speeds up growth at the upturn and prevents a collapse in engagement.
The research finds that training and development are the best strategy for retaining such talent; but companies don’t always focus on this or have the resources to fund a big development programme.
Here’s where tests fit in.
• Despite what is often said, people LIKE taking and getting feedback on personality tests. They see personality testing as evidence that their employer is focusing on them as a whole person. This increases motivation and engagement.
• Personality tests are often used as a preparation for development: to find out what people should learn and how. This is fine, but there’s another way of looking at them.
• Personality tests ARE a development exercise in themselves. Feedback from an expert trained user can give employees huge insight into how they act, what they’re good at, how they can adapt behaviour at work to be more effective…
• …and they’re a lot cheaper that sending everyone on a two or three day personal skills course.
• Once the upturn starts, you have a huge database of information on your staff which can then be used to plan courses and other sorts of development.
So, a cost-effective way of introducing personal development and thus retaining key staff is to introduce a well-constructed programme of personality testing and feedback. It’s important to explain the exact reasons for doing this. You know that, in a vacuum, people will invent black motives for any innovation. Get this right though and you’ll have a core weapon in talent retention.