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Many managers ignorant of the skills and performance of staff


New research by Benchmark for Netengines has suggested a worrying lack of awareness by managers. 100 HR managers/directors from companies between 500 – 5000+ employees were questioned about their knowledge of staff, their current staff sourcing, resourcing and deployment processes, including skills, accreditation, and ability to re-deploy staff internally.

According to the results, one in five companies (18%) have no idea how many people work for them, half don’t know what skills their workers have, and three in five (59%) don’t know how hard their staff are working. Up to 2.4 million workers – the equivalent of the population of Birmingham, Glasgow and Leeds – have been ‘lost’ by their employers. Two in three companies can’t efficiently match employees to jobs – despite needing to in the current economic climate. Instead they spend money recruiting new staff.

Andrew Binns, Netengines’ CEO, said: “Workers used to resent being ‘just a number’. Now millions of employees aren’t even that, as far as their bosses are concerned. Their firms don’t know they’re there, what they’re good at or how much work they’re doing. Two in three firms told us this sloppiness was harming them – but they don’t have plans to do anything about it. Companies admit they could step up their output by a quarter. Businesses’ lack of knowledge about their staff also wastes skills and money. Businesses can’t afford to lose staff they can use better because the cost of recruitment is rising.”

3 Responses

  1. Performance reviews
    I agree, however my observation is that many managers look upon the Annual performance review with dread. They want “to get it over with as quicly as possible, leaving the Job Holder feeling devalued and de motivated.
    Not all managers behave in this way, those that treat the exercise as development opportunities reap the rewards of improved performance thereby achieving organisational goals

  2. I’m willing to believe it
    When the last company I worked for was closed down, it was discovered that there were more paychecks being issued than there had been employees.

    Maybe some other creative companies had a similar idea.

  3. Really?
    Though I’m prepared to believe that many HR managers/directors do not know what skills their staff have, it’s stretching incredulity a bit too far to suggest that 1 in 5 HR managers have no idea how many people work for their organisations!

    Were these a special breed of HR managers? Or is the ‘research’ flawed?

    Jeffrey Brooks
    Institute of Training and Occupational Learning.

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