New Cielo study finds companies dramatically shifting strategies to compete for talent


This article is brought to you by Retail Technology Review: New Cielo study finds companies dramatically shifting strategies to compete for talent.

A global survey of over 1,000 HR, Business, and Procurement professionals has revealed that the competition for talent is causing major shifts in corporate strategy, as well as significant disagreements among business functions regarding their companies’ approaches to finding, recruiting, interviewing, and hiring new employees.

The report entitled Talent Acquisition 360 from Cielo, the strategic Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) partner, combines the views of C-level executives, business leaders and talent acquisition leaders on their talent teams’ performance across 16 strategic and core dimensions.

Nearly 70 per cent of business leaders surveyed worldwide believe the existing talent pool is shrinking while the competition for talent is increasing, and 54 per cent say their company has more open positions than ever before. Although leaders in all of the business functions surveyed agree that retaining talent is a core business driver, they disagree on talent acquisition priorities, effectiveness, metrics for success and the role of technology and outsourced services to help them compete for talent. The research showed that only 10 per cent prioritised implementing technology to achieve their strategic goals. With big data and artificial intelligence having advanced rapidly over the past several years, it’s therefore surprising, when faced with an automated future, technology is struggling to move further up the agenda as a top priority for businesses.

Seb O’Connell, Managing Director – Europe and APAC of Cielo commented, “Over 70 per cent of C-Suite leaders now say they want to play a role in talent acquisition decisions, a clear indication of the increasing pressure to align talent acquisition and retention with business goals. There is a tremendous opportunity to improve outcomes through better collaboration and communication across the enterprise and taking the time to implement technology into talent acquisition programmes will achieve this at a much quicker pace.”

Cielo’s study also revealed that nearly 30 per cent of companies are now hiring contingent labour across all job levels, including 24 per cent of senior roles, 28 per cent of manager level roles, 32 per cent of individual contributors and 41 per cent of entry-level talent. This contingent labour includes temporary employees, independent contractors, consultants, interim executives and gig workers.

“There appears to be a rapidly growing trend as 65 per cent of companies we surveyed said they expect flexible workers, contingent workers and project-based workers will take over a significant amount of the work currently being done by full-time employees,” continued Seb. “We’re seeing more and more companies embrace a ‘total talent’ approach that incorporates the recruiting, hiring, and retaining functions of all their employees into a single strategy. This shift introduces important challenges, specifically around who owns that single strategy for the organisation,” he concluded.

Total talent acquisition is a consistent and comprehensive approach to recruiting and hiring both full-time and contingent labour, including temporary staff and independent contractors. In a rapid shift in business strategy, the study shows that 90 per cent of companies view total talent acquisition as a top priority. This is in stark contrast to Cielo’s 2015 study, in which total talent acquisition was merely a future goal that companies were not yet prioritising.

The Cielo Talent Acquisition 360 study consists of more than 1,100 surveys of C-Level executives, HR leaders, procurement leaders, business leaders in North America, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and APAC in July and August of 2018. The companies surveyed have 1,500 or more employees.

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