People & Culture, Performance & Measurement, Strategy

The staff retention challenge in the digital age

Businesses late to digital are struggling with retention strategies. The root of the problem arises from legacy staff rotation programs, as a result we’ve observed direct impact on digital performance and team dynamics. So this makes fixing this problem the number one priority for senior executives and HR practitioners across APAC.

Digital roles need specialists, and by rotating non-skilled employees into  skilled positions is proving to be risky and ineffective. DTS questions the validity of rotation programs; where employers offer staff short-term assignments across business functions? The stakes are too high and we advise companies to be very selective, especially when digital projects are considered.

Benchmarking data provides clarity

It’s no surprise hiring managers are turning to external benchmarking services. Analysing external data points enables you to gain a broader perspective whilst, at a minimum, establishing a baseline between your organisations and direct competitors.
For example, DT’S scoring framework benchmarks roles across a particular category. E.g. Did the Chief Data Officer from company A score higher than Company B? Scoring criteria comprises employee experience, company achievements, tenure, education and  past roles. This benchmarking process also helps to identify skills gaps. Enabling you to fine tune existing learning and development programs.

New Trends and data

DTS observed a hiring increase over the past twelve months.  In Australia, our analysis identified industries such as Banking, Retail Energy and Health Insurance as having successfully augmented their work force – balancing digital experts with long serving staff members. These roles are across People & Culture, Training, IT, Marketing, Operations and Data. This new trend signals that  companies are rethinking their recruitment strategies and looking to the future.

Within banking, ANZ Bank has an average tenure of 4.5 years for critical digital transformation related roles. Moreover, 30% of these have a tenure of 2 years
or less, contributing to increased diversity, new ideas and complementing the
existing employee set.

In comparison, Singapore Airlines (SIA) in Singapore is averaging 9.5 years
and less than 10% been at the organisation for 2 years or less for critical digital transformation related roles!Here lies the challenge for this organisation. Digital projects are being led by long term staff, placed there on rotation programs. When you drill down into specific roles SIA digital skill-sets benchmarked lower than the broader industry. Thus placing SIA at a competitive disadvantage.

Solutions available to SIA.  For example, L’Oreal hired over 2000 digital experts, embedding these specialists with long-term employees. This initiative is also supported with company wide digital training programs. An alternative is to replace them all together, which will result in a skills gap reduction and minimise any strategic blind spots. This option may seem drastic to the likes of SIA, however, time restraints coupled
with lowly skilled teams is not driving business growth.

If you would like access to more benchmarking results across Banking, Health Insurance,
Retail Energy or Airlines DM me or email




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