LibraryThe talent shortage has organizations struggling to find and retain top-tier talent. There simply aren’t enough qualified candidates to go around, and HR professionals are getting more strategic about how they approach recruitment and employee retention. However, organizations can get so caught up in the “here and now” that they often overlook longer-term strategies that can have significant positive impacts on their recruiting efforts.

An employee learning and development program can help organizations win new talent, retain the talent they already have, and maintain healthy pipelines of internal candidates for future hiring needs.

Win Top Talent for Your Team

Earlier this year, a LinkedIn study found that 59 percent of people join a new company because of they believe that company presents a stronger career path and more opportunities. An employee learning and development program is a great way to show your candidates that they can have opportunities for growth without leaving your organization.

If you have an employee learning and development program, make sure you’re promoting it in your job descriptions, on your career website, and through your direct-hire agencies. Show candidates examples of career progression within your organization. Illustrate how you help each employee reach their career goals. In addition to attracting top talent, you will also attract high-potential candidates whom you can then groom into the talent you need.

Retain the Talent You’ve Worked So Hard To Recruit

Richard Branson once said, “Train people well enough so they can leave; treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” Employee learning and development programs help you train the best talent on the market.

Employees feel more engaged and loyal to organizations that invest in them, which boosts your retention rates. Furthermore, employees who feel challenged and confident in their future with your organization will be more likely to stay longer. Top talent rose to the top by learning and growing — and your organization should help people continue to do so if you want to retain them.

Maintain a Healthy Pipeline of Internal Candidates for Future Hiring Needs

PipeThe aforementioned LinkedIn study found that 45 percent of people leave their companies because they are concerned about the lack of opportunities for advancement. Formal succession planning, coupled with an employee learning and development program, can help you create clear career paths for each employee.

An employee learning and development program allows your employees to learn the skills and leadership qualities necessary to advance within your organization. Internal candidates already understand your company, industry, and customers, and they are already screened for cultural fit — which can help you fill positions with qualified talent faster than if you only considered external candidates. While other organizations are struggling with a talent shortage, you will have a strong pipeline of internal candidates for your future openings.

A version of this article originally appeared on the BountyJobs blog.

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