How do businesses attract and develop the talent of the future? How do they satisfy Millennials’ quest for purpose in the workplace? What is the role of business in helping young people to become ‘rounded and grounded’? And what’s the balance between business impact and social impact when it comes to embracing the future talent agenda?
These were just some of the topics of discussion at the recent Three Hands Forum on Future Talent. Discussion was rich and varied, with plenty of case studies of programmes designed to develop young people, whether driven by HR or CSR motivations.
So what were the key take-aways?
1. Future talent is a social issue as much as a business issue. Companies are committed to the agenda, whether or not the young people they benefit end up as their employees.
2. Despite the apparent choice that employers have as a result of high levels of unemployment and so called ‘under employment’ amongst graduates, businesses still want and need to be seen as employers of choice to attract the most promising candidates. Employer brand is important.
3. When talking about future talent, you’re also talking about social mobility and diversity & inclusion. Having a more representative and diverse workforce starts with meaningful interaction with potential recruits from untraditional backgrounds, through social impact programmes as well as recruitment initiatives.
4. Volunteering in schools is a great way to engage employees – it’s fun and challenging, but can be daunting – even for the most senior of colleagues. If you’re responsible for this kind of community engagement, part of your role is, ironically enough, influencing upwards to ensure that senior people feel comfortable facing a group of school pupils.
5. Graduates need to be engaged in community, CR and sustainability from the very beginning. Businesses invest a lot of money in grads, but many of them don’t stick around that long. Any initiative that allows them to experience a wider sense of purpose will help them feel good about their employer and increase the chances of them staying put.
Three Hands would like to thank their event partner charity Vital Regeneration and the brilliant speakers:
- Martha Jennings, Starting Out Manager, Sky
- Natalie Tickle, Group and UK Charity and Community CR Manager,RSA
- Yogesh Chauhan, Director of Corporate Sustainability, Tata Consultancy Services
- Andy Winter, Chief Executive, Coventry & Warwickshire YMCA
- Mike Backhouse, TCS Tech Challenge participant, University of Warwick
- Zinnia Siddiqi, TCS Tech Challenge participant, University of Bristol
- Hannah Dickinson, UK Co-ordinator for Corporate Social Responsibility, BNP Paribas
- Christian Tilleray, Deputy Chief Executive, Vital Regeneration
- Kanika Premi, Graduate intake 2014, BNP Paribas
Read an article about the event on Blue & Green Tomorrow and don’t forget to watch the film!