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Fierce Competition for Talent Forcing Businesses to Compromise

Austin, TX – November 9th, 2021: As the Great Resignation of the global workforce rages on, intense competition for talent is forcing organizations to compromise on their new hire choices. It tops the list of talent-related challenges according to 89% of U.S. business leaders whose insights comprise the new Beamery Talent Trap Report published today. Candidate quality issues, compounded by retention woes, with 83% of respondents fearing talent loss, are stalling business growth. 

“Most organizations are feeling the frenzy to lock candidates in, but poor hiring decisions have the potential to seriously hold the business back in the long run,” said Abakar Saidov, Co-Founder and CEO at Beamery. “Today’s competitive climate demands that businesses are more deliberate and strategic in their approach to talent management. The expectations of top talent have changed on everything from flexible work to speed of decision making. Businesses need to become more agile and make changes using decisions informed by real-time talent data and insights.” 

Talent and Business Strategies Disconnected; HR Feels the Burden

More than 500 senior level executives from mid-to-large enterprises in the U.S. and UK participated in the study and the vast majority (81%) of respondents named talent, not technology, as the number one priority for business transformation. But more than three quarters (77%) of U.S. respondents say today talent planning is disconnected from business objectives – it’s one of the biggest “talent traps” tripping them up. 

Business Leaders Say It Will Take Years to Make Change, Become Talent-First 

Business leaders say they plan to act slowly – even amid today’s workforce mass-movement – when it comes to becoming a “talent-first” organization. A third of respondents report their transition will happen 1-2 years from now and another 29% say they have 2-3 years to go, despite also acknowledging that an inability to handle talent challenges carries implications: including increased talent loss (48%), competitive vulnerability (39%), damage to brand reputation (38%), and failure to achieve growth plans (37%). 

Meanwhile, HR feels the brunt of this disconnect, as 91% of business leaders want HR to do more to support the business strategically. In fact, half of respondents are looking to HR to focus more on building a future-fit workforce and find more effective ways to identify and fill skills gaps. That same 91%, with their over-reliance on HR, is very confident in their organization’s ability to adapt to changing working models and workforce requirements. 

“All too often, talent planning is disconnected from business objectives,” said Saidov. “Success requires letting go of false confidence in the ability to adapt to continually evolving workforce demands, and instead, taking meaningful action. Create cohesion between talent initiatives and the business, and drop the siloes because talent is a shared leadership responsibility – not HR’s alone.” 

Get tips to align talent planning with business objectives here.

Skills Gaps Impede Growth, Yet Retention Strategies Get Overlooked

Skills gaps and compromises around recruitment can have dramatic business consequences.  A third of U.S. respondents feel that 25-49% of their current employee base is holding their organization back due a lack of skills or appropriate mindset. Although this issue exists, there’s a disproportionately heavy focus on recruitment versus retention and development, say 81% of those in the U.S. surveyed – despite recent data reinforcing why retention strategies are crucial (in light of the fact that half of employees are currently job hunting, with high confidence in their ability to make a successful jump). When it comes to fear of talent loss, more than half (57%) are most concerned with the potential for middle management to leave. 


The research was conducted by Insight Avenue, in line with the Market Research Code of Conduct. 506 interviews with Business Leaders, of which 49% were C-Suite level, were conducted in the UK (x 253) and the U.S. (x 253) across organizations with a minimum of 1000+ employees across all sectors. The interviews were conducted during September 2021.

Read the Talent Trap report.