One of our departments is haemorrhaging staff - 10 people out of a total of 30 have left in the past six months. The most common reason cited is a lack of career progression. This is something we are trying to address but I would like some advice on how to put a 'talent spotting' programme in place.
It is helpful to distinguish between a 'fast track' scheme for new and current staff which identifies, recruits, develops and retains those with the right leadership skills - and workforce planning and development, designed to retain talented staff.
In setting up a fast-track scheme, you must ensure a fair, open and robust system for selection and progression, and need to consider the following:
>> Encourage self-nomination (avoids line manager bias)
>> Identify key principles (such as equality of opportunity, open competition, honesty, openness and transparency)
>> Ensure rigorous, unbiased assessment
>> Identify problem areas through workforce planning data
>> Review entry routes into jobs
>> Consider positive action (help with application forms and interviews for under-represented groups)
>> Monitor performance.
The scheme should be based on your organisation's competencies, which need to include behavioural, technical and, most importantly, leadership skills. Attendance at an assessment/development centre will provide information as to how candidates measure up against the requirements. Individuals should then be given feedback on their strengths and areas for development.
Director, Improvement & Development Agency