talent mobility hero.jpg

i4cp Study Finds Managers Who Cling to Good Talent Are Bad for Business

Companies with Agile, Mobile Workforces Outperform Competitors

High-performance organizations make talent mobility a priority and reward managers for developing employees, according to research by the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp). The study, Talent Mobility Matters, also found that talent hoarding by managers--admitted to by half of the 665 global companies surveyed and 74% of low-performing organizations--is the leading obstacle to creating mobile workforces.

“Talent mobility is about being able to rapidly and strategically identify, develop, and deploy talent to meet the needs of the business, its customer, and the aspirations of its employees,” said Lorrie Lykins, Director of Research Services at i4cp and co-author of the study. “Our research found that prioritizing talent mobility directly correlates to higher market performance in areas that matter most to business leaders--profitability, revenue, customer satisfaction, and market share.”

According to Lykins, providing high-value employees with latitude to take on new roles is a strategy high-performance organizations use to attract and retain talent. “But building a culture of mobility--one in which managers are invested in both developing their best people and offering them opportunities for new assignments--requires a mindset that prioritizes mobility as a workforce strategy and links the performance reviews and incentives of leaders on how well they develop the their talent.”

“Leaders must be held accountable for developing their people if talent mobility programs are going to work, yet 63% of respondents said their organizations have no formal reward mechanisms for managers to develop and promote talent,” observed Lykins. “Mobility opportunities help young talent to be engaged and developed, and as they move into leadership roles, they will then likely take on the role of developing the next generation as well. Over time this creates a cultural legacy of leaders and a cultural shift that can help managers overcome the urge to cling to high-performers.”

When assessing the different talent strategies used by high-performance versus low-performing organizations, the study identified three additional key findings:

  • Transparency. High-performance organizations are 4.5 times more likely to have the criterion for talent mobility transparent to their entire organization.
  • Commitment. High-performance organizations are more than twice as likely to prioritize the movement of talent, while low-performance organizations are 2.5 times more likely to say the movement of talent doesn’t matter.
  • Retention. High-performance organizations reported retention being the leading catalyst for investing in talent mobility and a further 30% said that talent mobility demonstrates to employees they have a future with the company.

“Building a culture that is committed to talent mobility takes work,” advised Lykins. “It requires making investments in onboarding and 'reboarding' for every job change, tracking turnover and engagement related to employee moves, and involving external stakeholders – such as customers, suppliers and distributors – to help with employee rotations and new job assignments. These are the strategies that we’ve found successful companies use to build agile, mobile workforces.”

i4cp members: download the Talent Mobility Matters report now.

Attend the webinar on Tuesday, April 26

In addition, don't miss out on our upcoming complimentary webinar on Tuesday, April 26, 3pm ET (noon PT), presented by Kevin Martin, Chief Research & Marketing Officer, i4cp, and Kevin Wilde, former Chief Learning Officer, General Mills.

In this webinar, we’ll explore:

  • How high-performance organizations address talent mobility
  • The challenges they face building cultures that encourage the movement of talent
  • Next practices for talent mobility in use by leaders around the world.

The webinar is HRCI-credit approved and all attendees will receive a recording of the webinar afterwards. What are you waiting for? Register now.

Read here