FMCG companies tackle talent management as a key for growth in 2018

February 13, 2018 | Thought Pieces

FMCG Companies Tackle Talent Management

A study by Kantar Worldpanel showed that Filipinos are spending less on FMCG products, with their actual household spend dropping from -7.8 points in September 2016 to -16.5 points in September 2017. Filipinos felt no improvement in their financial situation last year, and with prices of consumer goods rising, they exhibited less confidence in their shopping power.

As consumers become more mindful of their spending, the competition for customers grows stronger. FMCG companies are challenged to offer consumers more value and accessibility, placing greater emphasis on the skills and efforts of their employees. If brands are to continue growing their business, they need to prioritize their workforce and address the issues that hinder their development and productivity.

The growing war for talent

The FMCG industry is known for hiring high-caliber talents and training them well, making their employees prime candidates for poaching. While the movement of people was formerly limited to companies within the industry, the competition has expanded to include sectors such as banking, retail, and technology—all intent on acquiring the best people.

Companies must now find better ways of retaining their key talents, especially when it comes to millennials who want flexibility and dynamism in their work. To that end, FMCG companies are taking the cue from startups and technology companies offering non-financial incentives on top of bonuses and training programs.

Retaining and motivating employees

Attrition rates are particularly high in sales teams of FMCG companies. With their job requiring them to be out in the field and working during weekends and holidays, salespeople often do not get the attention and motivation they need to stay invested in their company, so they seek better opportunities elsewhere. Rather than spur them on, incentive schemes based on sales targets can add to their stress and dissatisfaction.

Companies need to reassess the way they motivate their employees. Aside from simply offering rewards, they must ensure these are relevant to the different personalities in the workplace. More importantly, they must cultivate a culture of recognition to encourage everyone—not just the top achievers—to put in their best work.

Engaging employees as customers

Studies show the role of employee engagement in lowering turnover rates and increasing productivity and profitability. Instead of focusing on the bottom line, companies must build their relationship with their employees so that they too will feel invested in their brand’s success. This entails promoting communication between managers and team members and increasing awareness of the company’s goals, their individual contributions, and their progress throughout the year.

As multiple generations come together in the workplace, the onus is on human resources to understand the varying needs of their employees and tailor solutions to address them. These may include offering flexible benefits and working schedules, health and wellness programs, and training opportunities.

FMCG companies hinge their success on their ability to give consumers a satisfying purchase and turn them into loyal buyers. Now, they must channel their efforts in providing that same satisfaction to the key assets to their success—their employees. By taking care of their people, companies develop ambassadors for their brand, thus setting the foundation for long-term growth.

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