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Targeted Talent Acquisition: Mitigating the Brain Drain

The recruitment of millennials in particular is a significant issue

Future talent acquisition and management trends must focus on attracting talent back to emerging economies whilst recruiting from a larger pool of diverse individuals.

Companies in Malaysia and other counties around the world need to start waking up to the challenge of attracting and retaining talent before it is too late. According to a report by Hays, the need for talent within certain sectors in Malaysia, notably information technology, is set to rise and companies that want to succeed need to respond – now.

The so-called ‘brain drain’ affecting firms in Malaysia has been attributed to the loss of talent to businesses operating in other countries. A strategic approach to acquisition will therefore need to motivate skilled individuals to return to Malaysia, in addition to stemming the exodus.

The implementation of a talent acquisition strategy is clearly paramount to success in the 21st century for Malaysian businesses. And this strategy needs to take a top-down approach that is nurtured, supported and led by the senior team in hiring organisations. Without board-level engagement, any such strategy will almost inevitably fail at the first hurdle.

Further to the need to attract and retain talent, devising a strategy which recruits from a diverse pool of individuals is also paramount. According to a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers, some CEOs have already started implementing a strategy designed around diversity. This no longer applies merely to gender and ethnicity, but to a combination of specialist skills, age, disability, attitude and career progression.

The recruitment of millennials, in particular is a significant issue. Millennials are defined as individuals who were born between 1980 and 1995, a group which is over represented in some sectors such as technology. Female millennials specifically represent an important target pool, with some projections suggesting that this group will constitute up to 25 per cent of the workforce by 2020.

Given this outlook, a talent management strategy that nurtures and concentrates on this and other key target groups is clearly essential.

Staying ahead of the demographic curve is absolutely paramount for Malaysian technology companies and those in other industries that are serious about attracting and retaining the best staff.

Recruiters and HR specialists in the UK should also take heed of demographic trends in talent acquisition and management. Whilst the UK is not currently facing the same ‘brain drain’ as Malaysia, strategies to recruit from a more diverse pool of individuals are just as essential to long term business success.

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