Engagement Freedom - Strategies to Connect with Global Talent

The opportunities currently available for companies to engage the right workers from a global talent pool is truly unprecedented. As organizations increasingly think about accessing global talent, the ones that most successfully connect to workers will do so through a model of meaningful employee engagement. They will utilize leading technologies and services, remain adaptable to change, and will attract top talent by offering work environments defined by freedom and autonomy. 

“The right talent equals a competitive edge,” says Teresa Creech, Chief Executive Officer of Talentwave. “The multiple forces including worker preference, technology enablement, increased communication accessibility and the global pandemic have created an unprecedented environment for companies to take creative action on their talent strategies.” 

These forces are creating “engagement freedom”, and it is the future of global talent. It is a future defined by the freedom for both employers and employees to decide when, where, and how to work. To successfully connect with global talent, companies need to factor this future reality of work into many of their business decisions. Here are some key strategies that you can apply to help your clients develop a global talent procurement strategy built for long-term success.

1. Adopting New Technologies and Services

Technology and managing human capital are now consistently identified by business leaders as being their biggest priorities, and both should be considered when adopting new technologies. Organizations should be looking to elevate human talent through technology, and thinking about how it can optimize skills like critical thinking and creativity.

Businesses should especially consider how automation will continue to transform their global workforce. Organizations that successfully integrate automation processes understand that the ultimate goal should be to maximize the innate human potential of their team. They will recognize that they should advance technology, processes, and talent simultaneously. 

Investing in and adopting new technology is not enough. Organizations are best positioned to leverage global talent when combining investments in technology alongside investments in the employee experience, training and development resources, and career growth opportunities.

2. Make Freedom a Guiding Principle

Offering freedom and flexibility throughout your workforce is an enormous incentive that will allow you to attract the most qualified candidates from a truly global talent pool. Research has shown that simply throwing money at your workforce doesn’t have much of an effect on morale, productivity, and loyalty. What matters most is freedom. Successful organizations in a post-pandemic world will prioritize the how, not the where, of work. 

With the ability to work anywhere, and with opportunities to work for anyone, the role of management is increasingly one of support and facilitation. Leaders should now focus on equipping their team with everything they would need to perform their work effectively and autonomously. 

This new model—management that facilitates freedom—starts with the resources and tools provided by employers. This includes providing communications and collaboration tools and frameworks that are appropriate for a distributed workforce. Employers should also look to provide resources that encourage personal growth, autonomy, and productivity. This could take the form of a “library” of content for workers that includes resources about productivity, remote work, self-management, and personal wellness. By regularly exposing employees to new perspectives and best practices, companies can proactively work to optimize performance while still ensuring employees’ autonomy.

Empowering employees by encouraging their personal autonomy and freedom is now an important strategy in attracting and retaining global talent. Employers should start focusing on how they can allow workers to make decisions, contribute ideas, determine responsibilities, and operate with minimal supervision. Smart organizations will engage employees through the principles that matter most to them as workers, and those who embrace freedom for their distributed workforce will likewise gain freedom to reach talent beyond the traditional constraints of geography.

3. Future Proof through Flexibility

Organizations that prioritized flexibility and nimbleness within their talent engagement strategies weathered the disruptions of the pandemic better than most, and are better prepared to take on future disruptions, whatever form they may take. 

Businesses that want to thrive should reimagine their workforces to be agile, and build in the ability to pivot quickly to meet unforeseen challenges. They can do this by:

  • Thinking ahead: Successful businesses are making decisions now based on where the global workforce is heading. They think about what skills to develop in their global talent pipeline that will best meet the future workforce needs.
  • Measuring results: Rapidly changing workforces means that metrics for measuring success should change as well. Smart companies will leverage technology and analytics to understand how to recruit and retain candidates that thrive in this “new normal” of rapid change.
  • Investing in reskilling: In times of crisis, training and development budgets are often the first to be slashed. But with the rate at which technology and workforce demands are changing, organizations should be doing the exact opposite to thrive in the future. The pandemic, along with technological innovations, are speeding up the rate of professional obsolescence. When developing a global workforce, businesses should put a high value on a candidate’s ability to learn and adapt.
  • Knowing what tomorrow’s talent wants: What employees want in a workplace has changed rapidly in just the last five years. What will tomorrow’s talent be seeking? To adapt appropriately, global talent procurement must become more strategic, holistic, and data-driven. Attracting top talent means aligning with their values, which will increasingly include flexible schedules, diversity, autonomy, and a meaningful connection to their work. Organizations that don’t adapt to attract global talent will lose out to their competitors. 

Building a robust global talent pool takes a lot of work, foresight, and adaptability. Companies should begin to future proof their organizations today through adopting new technologies, encouraging freedom and autonomy, and tuning in to the future trends of the global workforce.

Interested in learning more about effectively engaging global talent? If you are attending the summit in person, sign up to attend our CWS Summit Panel: Engagement Freedom: Borderless access to the world’s talent. Going to miss this event? Stay tuned for replays and key takeaways coming in October!

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