4 take-outs from the 2016 RCSA International Conference

This year’s Recruitment & Consulting Services Association of Australia and New Zealand (RCSA) 2016 International Conference, of which SEEK was a premium supporter, focused on ‘next generation recruitment’. Speakers urged recruiters to integrate yesterday’s experiences with tomorrow’s recruitment solutions to achieve a new level of success.

Here are the four main topics discussed during the two-day event, held in Port Douglas 24–26 August 2016.

1. Creative thinking is critical

Andrew and Gaia Grant, co-founders of Tirian, led an interactive session on how you can rediscover your creative thinking capabilities to embrace the future and engage the next generation successfully.

Despite a recent survey of 1,500 CEOs in more than 30 countries and 66 industries revealing that creative thinking is considered the most important quality in contemporary leadership, creativity scores have dropped over time. Further stats uncovered that 79% of employees feel disengaged – so how do we fix it?

According to Grant and Grant, workplaces that offer a fun, attractive environment for groups to gather in and discuss ideas is crucial. It’s also important to assign time to creative thinking, since it can take up to 25 minutes to get into a creative state of mind, and every time you’re interrupted, the process begins again.

Ensuring a successful workforce of tomorrow also means offering millennials more than just money. Providing training and development, flexible hours and cash bonuses will give them a sense of purpose in the workplace and encourage them to stay in their roles longer.

2. Join the technological revolution

A regular commentator on employment trends and with more than 28 years of recruitment experience under his belt, Steve Shepherd is well placed to predict what’s in store for the recruitment industry of tomorrow.

His speech discussed the revolution taking place in our society, driven by social, technological and demographic change, which offers a bright future for recruiters who are prepared to adapt and evolve and grab hold of opportunity with both hands.

Shepherd said the three key drivers of change included:

  • Our ageing population – with fertility rates steadily declining in Australia and New Zealand in the past 50 years, we’re not producing enough workers for the future.

  • Economic fluctuation – uncertainty in our economy is the new norm, so what can be in place to ensure our economies will be successful in the future? Shepherd suggests flexible labour contracts is a good place to begin, as this is already taking place the world over.

  • Increased use of new technology – this big fish has been around for centuries. The key to it now is how it’s led the recruitment industry to become more data-driven, resulting in two outcomes:

Shepherd also said that some in-house HR professionals will embed this technology into their organisation and be done with recruiters – these people are the industry’s new competitors. They will disrupt if you fail to develop your business model. He encouraged everyone to work out what your competitive advantage is and go after your clients.

3. Be the prophet of your purpose

There are three key things people want out of life, says Dave Clare, author and award-winning coach. They are:

  • Something to believe in.

  • Someone to believe in.

  • Someone to believe in them.

With that in mind, now’s the time for leaders to consider how they plan to engage the incoming workforce, more than 50% of which will be millennials. Or as Dave put it in his speech, now, more than ever, is the time to become the prophet of your purpose, then you will profit from your purpose.

Knowing your target audience is key to achieving this. Millennials want work/life integration and meaningful work. The world of tomorrow therefore needs leaders who know how to ignite invincible cultures that capture the spirit of their people, creating sustainable and competitive advantages in the long run.

4. Lead by example

According to Brett Minchington, Chairman and CEO of Employer Brand International, employer brand leadership is being used by the world’s leading companies to stand out from the competition – going beyond promoting traditional employee value propositions, such as salary, and instead focusing their efforts on the employee experience.

Key areas he urges employers to target when seeking to position their company as the first choice for talent to want to work for include:

  • Take time to create your brand, thinking carefully about what type of image you want in the market.

  • Create a more agile company structure, focusing on competencies rather than job functions.

  • Understand that the world at work today requires a new perspective as we transition to an environment with many uncertainties – mainly driven by disruptive technology, a low growth economy and increasing competition. Don’t let these threats stifle innovation, creativity and productivity in your workforce.

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SEEK is the destination of choice for job-seekers and hirers in Australia, acting as the conduit between hirers looking to fill vacant roles and candidates looking for work across many and varied industries. SEEK's mission is to help people...

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