Source | CLO Media : By Bravetta Hassell

Looking ahead to 2017, companies that want to keep their competitive edge will explore employee-centric talent management strategies to better engage and retain high performers. In doing so, they will execute their learning and development strategy in ways that benefit the business and prioritize the learner as a customer.

When promoting a specific kind of culture, leaders have only to look at their employee engagement levels, workforce turnover rate, and internal employee mobility to begin to gauge their company’s employee centricity. “An employee centric workplace is a workplace that provides incentive and opportunities for growth and advancement for the employees,” said Tanya Bakalov, founder and CEO of talent development software provider BetterSkills.

A workplace where that is not a priority is likely one where teams work in siloes and lack clear communication, which inhibits productivity. In those kinds of organizations, it’s also not uncommon for leaders to create employee policies without employee input, there may be skepticism and confusion about performance management processes, and learning and development programs are likely deployed reactively on an as-needed basis.

More progressive companies will promote measures that improve the employee experience. Informed by needs employees have expressed themselves, these efforts could involve implementing a flexible work policy, and driving a culture of recognition among other things.

For learning and development, Bakalov said companies could incorporate job rotations into their development strategy — exposing high-potential employees to experiences and opportunities across functions. “It encourages employee growth, learning and job satisfaction and affords them the opportunity to try something new,” she explained. If some organizations aren’t doing this formally already, she said mentorships are also a hallmark of employee-centricity. In addition to mentors and mentees exchanging valuable insights, mentees also will feel like their company values their experience, development and career advancement, which will strengthen their engagement.

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