Recruitment and retention: Talent scarcity as pressing an issue as ever

As new technologies emerge, attracting and retaining staff with the requisite skills is increasingly challenging.

Our 2018 European Tech Index reveals:

Talent scarcity is affecting organizations' capacity to adopt new tech

For example, lack of staff expertise/availability in robotics remains the key barrier to the adoption of artificial intelligence across all businesses (52 percent of respondents)

Businesses making more targeted efforts to raise staff skills and abilities

Compared to 2016, fewer businesses overall felt the need to improve on their current efforts, with the biggest falls in emphasis on company sponsorship (down 7 percent), education (down 8 percent), and the level of technology/technological advancement in the company (down 11 percent).

Fig 6 Areas that need to be improved to raise quality of talented staff

Progression plans favored for talent retention

Having clear progression plans remains the most positively-viewed method of retaining talented staff (mentioned by 59 percent of respondents in 2018), along with training generally (48 percent overall, with particular prominence among financial services, 58 percent).

The emphasis on remuneration in recruitment has decreased

It is notable that remuneration, having been mentioned by 42 percent of respondents as a favored recruitment tool in 2016, was only mentioned by 32 percent of respondents in 2018.

Fig 7 Best method of retaining talented staff

As a retention method, restrictive covenants continue to decline

Restrictive covenants were the lowest favored for all sectors, with just 8 percent of respondents citing them as one of the best retention methods, down from 11 percent in 2016 and 20 percent in 2012. This suggests positive retention strategies are more valued than contractual restrictions.