Human Capital Crisis: Are you prepared?

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People Are Your Greatest Asset
Engage Them Now!

By Denise Baril, Founder / Workplace Speaker Network

As a business leader in workplace training, I listen to the voice of industry and feel their pain and concern about a new perspective on supply and demand: human capital supply shrinking, and the demand for talent increasing. In some regions it’s a shortage of workers to fill jobs with specific skill sets, in other regions its the boomers retiring that is threatening business sustainability. This may not be a surprise for many who already have to deal with the limited pool of experts to access for opportunities. However, I see it as a wake up call for all business to pay attention to. I foresee a human capital crisis surfacing in the near future and suggest we work together to stop this leak in our business pipeline. We can no longer go it alone.

Many Hand and Minds Make Light Work

How we do our day to day business needs to change. Same old practices and policies no longer work. People are exiting organizations after 3 years ( considered a normal shift for employees) and this trend is turning companies upside down. This one shift can impact many factors such as: organizational cash flow, on boarding procedures, recruitment time, projects deadlines, team synergy, engagement/disengagement, talent management processes and the list goes on. In addition to a short term commitment being a new reality, the employee makeup is no longer homogeneous.

Workplaces are a mix of multicultural and multi-generational communities. As these new variations in employee composition show up in your workplace, how will you respond? Are you prepared to embrace the changes coming your way or are you missing the boat all together?

It’s time to shift how we think, plan and act to stay leading edge. It is no longer just a discussion about dollars and bottom line to keep the company running, but a discussion about how do we stop the leak of people (aka: money makers in our organization) and how do we attract the right ones to our door. It will require an openminded approach to looking at what is foundational about our company (aligned goals to match internal needs and core practices) so we get the results we want in the future.

Open Minds Required!

I think it would be amazing to have a sign erected above the entrance to any business that states, “ Open Minds Required Here”. A framework that welcomes open minds to embrace new realities. The success of all organizations will be shaped by the process at which they allow open discussion to flow in order to arrive at new solutions.

I read about shifts happening in the news. In a recent report prepared by Alberta Human Services shares the human capital crisis is coming. The statistic show that 1 in 4 will be reaching age 65 by 2036. In addition to this, social technology is entering the workplace at warp speed. Social media and managing on line communications has the power to shift everything.

There is a prediction that by 2020, we could see 5 generations working together at the same time. How is that going to impact internal and external communications? From my experience, these generations are not working from the same philosophy on what they want from their work experience. As the clock ticks, and the needs of this diverse community grows, the pressure to sustain quality human capital is mounting.

Add in the fact that competition who used to just be the guy down the street, is not the guy anywhere the internet is accessible. Meaning competition is growing in places you may not even expect. Are you feeling the need to respond now?

Sink or Swim Economy

I don't know about you but I predict we will see an interesting shift in the win lose game of business before we know it. The time to respond is now. What will set apart the winers and the losers will be a few simple shifts in operational strategies. Many of these strategies will require a new way of thinking. Are you going to be part of the open mind community?

What to Do Now?

I am not only one out there noticing this shift but have been applying strategies to innovate new ways of doing business. Here are my thoughts about how we can position ourselves to stay leading edge in an international economy:

Speak The New Language: Collaboration!

The way we need to begin responding to this crisis is by looking at how we harness and view stakeholders in our business community. We need to assess if we listen to all stakeholders (internal and external) to address current pressures. We need to tap into resource partners who provide forums and group think philosophies to solve problems collaboratively. What partners can we outsource to in order to address the shifts we are experiencing? Instead of a go it alone philosophy, companies need to expand their definition of stakeholders to maximize resources that could accelerate their growth.

Companies also need to establish management processes that ensure the right information is being gathered to move their company effectively forward.

Evaluate Your Needs!

Before you spend any more money on people and perceived needs, review what you are doing to see if it makes sense in your current reality. What are the goals of the organization? What skill shortages do you have? Do you ask your employees what they need to do a better job or excel in your company? What are the human capital challenges your organization is experiencing? Has this changed in the past few years? In the 2012 issue of Profit Magazine a study indicated that 61% of companies did not have the skills needed to grow. Would it be worth your time to explore your reality and where you are at today? The more you know about your diverse workplace community, the better the return of investment will be when you plan a strategy to react.

Find Innovative Ways to Serve

People want to feel part of something greater today not just a place to work 9-5 and collect a paycheque. Employees in this next generation and those before them want to know that what they are doing is purposeful. If an organization can incorporate their employees needs in the mix, they will find the answer or the glue to get people to stick with them longer.

As Nike Says...Just Do It

Take a step and get going. Time is ticking and you cannot afford to wait much longer. Start with evaluating your core principles, build relevant and measurable skill driven learning. A strategic investment in the human capital is needed to inspire the right change in your organization. Think about the impact....less turnover, more happy people, and focused teams to get the job done. The place we all want to end up!

About Denise Baril
Denise is the founder of the Workplace Speaker Network a company that evaluates workplace needs and matches resources for sustainable growth.
To reach Denise: (403) 620-5010

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