Forum reveals HR directors are concerned by global skills shortages and regional challenges in talent attraction


skillsThe issue of finding and retaining new talent, overcoming skills shortages, and managing the exit of staff reaching retirement were all cited as current concerns facing HR Directors and Managers who attended Waddington Brown’s bi-annual ‘HR Leaders of East Anglia’ autumn meeting.

At the meeting, which is hosted by the HR recruitment specialist Waddington Brown, 30 senior HR professionals gathered from across the eastern region to discuss the topic of ‘Talent acquisition in a new business age’.

Dr Terri Simpkin, head of leadership and management at Anglia Ruskin University’s Lord Ashcroft International Business School led a talk looking at behavioural, cultural and structural issues relating to talent acquisition. This included taking into account the balance attracting new entrants to an organisation versus the requirements of managing an ageing population and workforce.

Claire Cherrington, Head of HR from law firm Linklaters also provided an insight into Linklaters’ strategy to create the best employer brand, utilising communication channels such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, in order to attract the best staff to ensure future success.

Emma Gunton, co-founder and director of Waddington Brown said: “Methods of recruitment and retention are continually evolving to keep up with the changing face of today’s workforce. We are faced with an unprecedented skills shortage, changing demographics and rapidly changing technological developments in terms of the way we communicate in business, and all of these factors mean HR professionals are facing new challenges in identifying and attracting talent to their businesses.

The discussions led by Dr Terri Simpkin and Claire Cherrington led to a hugely productive session for all involved and it was clear that everyone in the room is concerned at some level with skills shortages and what steps they need to take in order to attract and retain the best talent to their firms.”

The next HR Leaders of East Anglia Forum will be taking place in the spring.

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