Manufacturing companies face a lot of challenges every day. The pace of change is increasing, and the need for flexibility and responsiveness is increasing as well. It’s no wonder that manufacturers are struggling to stay ahead of the curve. Doing so requires a constant stream of innovation, original thinking, and new ideas. And managing human capital across multiple locations is a never-ending challenge. But talent has never been more valuable than it is today.
In an increasingly digital world, where data and analytics drive decision-making, manufacturers must have access to high-quality data at their fingertips to make informed decisions.
Making hiring decisions based on cruder metrics – like several late-night phone calls or lateness – is ethically problematic at best and ageist and potentially hazardous at worst.
Working with data requires great amounts of human capital; humans are expensive, which means manufacturing companies that can afford top talent will win every time.
What to look for in a top talent acquisition
The first step to building a talent management system is to identify what characteristics matter most. What are the top talents in your industry? What are their characteristics? What are their needs? If you don’t know this information in-house, it’s easy to find out. Most companies now have dedicated talent acquisition teams. Ask your team what types of hires they look for, and then implement a hiring process tailored to the types of talent you’re seeking.
How to build a strong talent department
Once you’ve identified the top talent in your industry, the next step is to make sure they are aware of the opportunities at your company. Offer training and certification programs to help candidates navigate the hiring process. Make it easy for candidates to find you through a transparent hiring process with clear paths to selection. Remember to communicate your hiring decisions promptly, consistently, and directly with candidates. This communicates trust and legitimacy that you are making the proper hiring decision. It encourages candidates to share their insights and learn from their experiences. It also lets you avoid the “what happened” question when candidates accidentally click on your job postings instead of yours
Focus on diversity and Inclusion
Manufacturers that want to build a successful talent management system must be conscious of maintaining a diverse workforce. This is especially important for SMEs, as the workforce is the single source of your product’s success. You cannot build a strong business if your product is inferior because the employees are all the same. To maintain a diverse workforce, you must also have a diverse management team. Managers come in all forms, and they must be aware of the skills and perspectives of those working below them. To maintain a diverse management team you can’t downplay the importance of leadership skills or the importance of having senior-level managers who can help guide the company as a whole. While senior management and leadership positions are essential for success in today’s world, they are by no means necessary. A great manager can be promoted to a senior role without having all the skills or experience necessary to handle the responsibility.
Make collaboration a priority
Collaboration is a key factor in any manufacturing strategy. This includes both the collaboration between teams and the collaboration between teams and manufacturers. When teams are working together, the knowledge, ideas, and creativity of each can be leveraged to create a sustainable competitive advantage. When teams don’t communicate, collaborate, or reach an agreement, then the results can be far opposite. That’s why collaboration is so important. It’s what makes companies like Google, Facebook, and Uber so successful – without any employees having to do any coding or data science work. When teams don’t collaborate, they don’t learn. That’s why teams must meet regularly, share ideas, and learn from one another. This is easier said than done, but it’s one of the best ways to ensure a diverse team. It’s also how Vaxel works with teams to create common goals and uniting themes for annual reports, position papers, and reports to shareholders.
Make decision-making faster and easier
As the pace of change in manufacturing increases at an alarming pace, so does the need for manufacturers to be nimble. They must be able to respond quickly to changing market conditions without losing sight of their core business objectives. Real-time data analytics are a key component of being nimble. Decision-making should occur based on actionable data, not on outdated estimates. Data-driven decision-making means fewer meetings, fewer emails, and more accurate decision-making. That means it takes less time to make decisions that result in more productive manufacturing and fewer costly mistakes.
Manufacturers are challenged by both the speed of change and the need for flexibility and responsiveness. As a result, manufacturers will continue to look for ways to add value through collaboration and data-driven decision-making. Now more than ever, employers need to focus on hiring the best talent available and creating an inclusive environment for individuals to be creative and share their ideas.