One of the most dynamic areas of human capital management is talent acquisition. As outlined in my first post in this series, titled “Self-Transformation: HR on the Front Lines,” financial services organizations that want to succeed in the evolving market need to adopt a more human-centric approach. Many are already looking to create rich human and digital experiences to attract the top talent in their industry and build a workforce of the most skilled employees.

HR is uniquely positioned to help achieve this ambition, with a core understanding of organizational requirements and of what the emerging top talent looks for in an employee experience. These are explored in our report on Transforming the Employee Experience.

To better understand how HR can help organizations hire and retain the top talent, I’ve outlined the five key considerations in the acquisition process:

  1. Attraction: Candidates are more demanding, not just of the organization they join, but of the channels through which they find potential employers. As such, financial services organizations need to have competitive, human-centric structures that acknowledge the changing dynamic of the workforce, rather than trying to force the talent to adhere to traditional structures.
    The role of HR in this part of the acquisition phase is to help executives understand two things: how the emerging top talent thinks, and the value of taking a human-centric approach. It is also important for HR to shape the offerings for potential new hires—meaning it needs to recognize the needs of both the organization and the candidates.
  2. Sourcing: It is no longer sufficient for organizations to rely simply on traditional marketing channels such as online job boards or website career postings. It is important to leverage digital technology and new media to reach the right candidates in creative ways.
    As outlined in the second post in this series, titled “3 Keys to Digital Transformation”, financial service providers need to start approaching sourcing in the same way they market to customers. By showcasing their workplace in a similar way, these organizations will be better able to connect with new and top talent. This requires HR to play a leading role as the managers who best understand the new crop of workers.
  3. Selection: The selection process should be fast and flexible, and a positive experience for candidates. Organizations that require applicants to go through a long and laborious process may fail to capture the talent they require, as candidates are as likely to prioritize the employee experience as they are the compensation offered.HR can help with this process by encouraging and installing a human-centric approach to the process, listening to what candidates are saying and developing offerings that benefit both sides of the acquisition.
  4. Offering & Hiring: Candidates no longer sit and wait by the phone like they used to. They expect engagement, with quick response times, transparency and ease of access to the status of their application. They often want to meet their team and their manager before they join.
    This requires deft solutions by HR, both to manage expectations and to help senior executives better understand the non-traditional requirements of the new workforce.
  5. Onboarding: Embedded technologies now enable a new hire to integrate more seamlessly through the onboarding experience. Emerging talent values a more personal, connected experience while integrating into an organization, and is comfortable with digital tools and processes in doing so.
    When HR is able to access and use the various tools at its disposal for this and every other stage of talent acquisition, it creates a more appealing work environment that contributes to employee satisfaction and retention.

By understanding the organizational, talent and technological components of the transforming workplace, HR professionals are becoming more valuable. Navigating the digital transformation will require input from all sectors, no other function is as well-positioned as HR to help communicate, develop and implement the vital transitions and adoption of technology that will lead to success.

If you enjoyed this series, I encourage you to download the report, Reimagining HR in Financial Services, where you can read in more detail about the changing role of HR and strategies for success in an evolving financial services environment.

I encourage you to explore some of my other contributions to the blog, such as Barriers to the Reimagined Workforce, where I discuss how the “one job, one worker” philosophy gives way to new approaches to work, and how the term “employee” begins to span a range of meanings.

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