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i4cp Study: Companies are Gearing Up for the Coming Talent War

As companies begin to see the light at the end of the recession tunnel, many are beginning to confront the reality that employees are preparing to jump ship en masse. After several years of decreased investment in employee development, layoffs and salary freezes, employers are vulnerable to having their best talent picked off.

And, of course, the most talented employees are the first to get poached.

The new The Critical Human Capital Issues of 2011 report from the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp) is based on research conducted last month with hundreds of human resources professionals. Findings indicate a growing urgency among these organizations, driving them to focus on issues that will see them through what appears to be a potential talent free-for-all.

Nine of this year's top ten issues increased in criticality from 2010, a measure determined by an i4cp index that is calculated by multiplying the mean score for the importance of an issue by another number related to an organizations ability to manage that issue effectively. The only issue that didn't show an increase, change management, remained relatively flat with 2010 results.

The top 15 most critical human capital issues of 2011 are:

Several of the top issues of 2011 are perennial favorites that tend to bounce up and down the top rankings but never move far or fall off the list. What is more insightful is the difference between what's critical for higher performers and lower performers, as determined by i4cp's market performance index (MPI).

Studying what's important for successful companies as well as seeing what issues they identify as being in need of strengthening for effectiveness is where true competitive advantages are found.

A deeper examination of the top ten issues, including those deemed most critical by high-performance organizations, are analyzed in the new i4cp report, now available for free.

Erik Samdahl
Erik is the head of marketing at i4cp, and has nearly 20 years in the market research and human capital research industry.