Academic journal article The McKinsey Quarterly

The War for Technical Talent

Academic journal article The McKinsey Quarterly

The War for Technical Talent

Article excerpt

Two years ago, MoKinsey's War for Talent study [1] crystallized the struggle of US companies to find, train, and keep good employees. A recent McKinsey survey, buttressed by case studies and client work, focused on 5,000 computer science and electrical engineering graduates at top universities.

Fewer middle-aged people...

The original report took its cue from a UN study projecting a 15 percent fall in the number of 35- to 44-year-olds by 2015. People who can fill technical jobs are in critically short supply: according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, one-tenth of the more demanding technical openings (such as those related to information technology and electrical engineering) already can't be filled within the relevant time frame.

... mean that finders must look further afield ...

Typically, both large and small companies have hired from big businesses, whose resources and training programs make them good sources of talent. At present, however, most employees no longer work for a big business--they have already left!

...and employees aren't keepers anyway...

When companies, large and small, find qualified employees, they don't stay for long. Half of those who graduated in the 1971-90 period left their first jobs within three to five years, and among those who graduated from 1991 to 1993, more than two-thirds did. Recent graduates receive, on average, 30 new offers a year. …

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