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‘Talent Hoarding’ and Why it Could Hinder Organizational Growth

You might have heard about talent hoarding lately as organizations work to shore up resources in the face of possible hiring freezes, layoffs, and reorganization. It’s tied directly to internal mobility (one of the signs of a healthy organization), and you might not even know it’s happening.

Talent hoarding is when companies prevent employees from career development opportunities because they don’t want to lose their top performers. It can also happen at the micro level within an organization if managers hoard their high performers from the rest of the organization. This creates a lack of employee career opportunities, negatively impacting retention, productivity, and morale. 

You don’t have to have an expensive learning management system (LMS) to create a culture of learning and development within your organization. However, it is essential to communicate why internal mobility is crucial for the future success of your company. It ensures you have a future talent for positions you haven’t yet identified, learning opportunities for employees, managers who support teams in cross-training and cross-functional roles, and employee morale and retention. 

What Your Employees Want and Your Candidates Expect: Career Growth

We have to understand what candidates expect from us and what our employees want, which is especially important in the current talent marketplace (where, despite announcements of layoffs and hiring freezes, we need to hire and retain our top performers). 

Consider that Generation Z, or Gen Z (born between 1997 and 2012), currently make up 30% of the world’s population and is expected to account for 27% of the workforce by 2025. Gen Zers surveyed for LinkedIn’s 2022 Workplace Learning Report were more likely than any other generation to agree with the statement, “I used to think learning was not worthwhile, but now I think it is.” The survey also asked people what would motivate them to spend more time learning. Gen Z employees led all other generations in selecting “if it helped me get another job internally, be promoted or get closer to reaching my career goals” as their number one motivation for learning. Their close second choice was “if it was personalized specifically for my interests and career goals.” 

According to a 2021 Employee Well-Being Report, employees see “opportunities to learn and grow” as the top driver of work culture. A culture of learning not only engages your existing employees but can also help attract talent seeking an employer that prioritizes learning. Data shows that Gen Z employees with hopes or plans to leave their current roles have the clearest job-hunting agenda of any age cohort. They’re the leaders seeking more opportunities to move up or increase responsibilities (61%) and more opportunities to learn or practice new skills (76%). If your company isn’t ready to support these opportunities, you will lose great employees to your ready competitors.

Instilling a learning culture within your organization supports your current employees and helps your employer’s brand and talent attraction efforts. An employee whose employer is looking out for their best interests when learning new skills – whether those new skills are used at their company or another organization – is more likely to recommend your company to friends and colleagues and use your referral program. 

Your workforce should have insight into your open jobs, and your recruiters should be rewarded for recruiting internally and externally. Transparency, honesty, and management training can support your goals, close skills gaps, and prepare teams and individuals with new skills and training opportunities so your organization can plan for future growth.