Human Capital Management

The Great Retirement – How to Start Up-Skilling and Growing Your Workforce

/ May 9, 2023 May 9, 2023


1 in 5 people in the current workforce will retire in the next 5-10 years. That’s about 20% of the workforce population. We’ve all heard of the Great Resignation, but few are talking about the Great Retirement.  From now until 2030, 10,000 baby boomers reach retirement age every day. Attracting and retaining talent in a post-pandemic market is proving to be very challenging in most industries. Many organizations already have vacancies in critical roles. Gens Y and Z report spending more years pursuing education and starting careers later than previous generations. It will be important to have plans in place for mentoring and growing staff to be prepared to fill increased vacancies on the horizon.

Here’s how you can start planning:

Career Pathing. Career pathing allows visibility into the progression of each role in the organization and how an individual can move up and play incremental roles over the course of one’s career.  There could be multiple career paths, depending on the skills and interests of individuals. While not everyone’s career path will be identical, people want to see how they can grow into more senior roles as they build their skills and experience. This also allows companies to plan for growth and identify potential gaps in skills early on.

Skills inventory. Assess what skills your team has currently and where there may be skill gaps.  This will allow leaders to plan for upskilling existing staff, as well as identify skills that may need to be filled through recruiting efforts.

Motivational Drivers. Studies have shown that each generation is motivated in different ways.  It’s not always just about the dollars and cents. Find out what motivates your staff and try to activate as many of those drivers as you can. Could it be a flexible work arrangement? Not only remote, hybrid, or on-site but also about working hours. Could certain roles operate a 10-6 or 11-7 vs the classic 9-5?  Has your company integrated inclusive culture practices and policies?  Do people get to see the impact of the work they do? Are they a part of the decision-making process? Do they understand the organization’s vision? Are there relevant benefits and perks that speak to the different needs of a multi-generational workforce?

Mentoring/Coaching.  Invest the time and money in 1:1 coaching. Employees are craving focused time on how they, as individuals, can learn and grow. Often, people get promoted into leadership roles because they were good at their current job. However, they don’t have any leadership skills. Organizations need to spend more time mentoring and coaching to allow them to grow in these areas. Create a formal coaching program. Set up at least monthly 1:1 coaching meeting where the topics don’t include any check-in agendas but only talks about their own development.  Hire an external coach.  This is an investment that will develop people much faster than letting them figure it out on their own. Spend the time and money here.

Maximizing Potential. When was the last time you asked your team what they enjoy doing at work? Or what they would enjoy doing more of or learning to do? Find out what people are good at and what they enjoy. Then maximize that for them. That’s what keeps people happy and happy people are more productive. Keep people happy in the work they’re doing, and performance will increase.

Stay in Touch with the Market. The market is quickly evolving and always changing. Stay up to date with the market trends and try to stay ahead of the curve. Read trades/news for your industry and follow the social media of your competitors. Dedicate a quarterly leadership meeting to just brainstorming how to stay ahead of the curve where you’re not talking about regular program and department updates. Question if what you’re doing is going to take you to the next level. Talk about ways you may need to pivot. Always be evolving.

Talent retention and attraction are still among the top concerns most organizations are facing in today’s market. The Great Retirement will leave many more vacancies in the coming years. Start getting yourself prepared for how you can stay competitive to keep your people and fill upcoming roles. At Exude Human Capital we can partner with you in any of these areas. We can assist you with a talent strategy, competency modeling, compensation studies, formal 1:1 or small group coaching programs as well as team development experiences. Reach out today for a free consultation to see how we can help.