In the War for Talent, is retention a chink in the armor? I believe it is and organizations are vulnerable.
The focus on retention in organizations for the most part has been on closing the front door once you get talent in, trying to keep them engaged and satisfied. That has been difficult, as many organizations have experienced alarming turnover in talent with less than five years service. That is one problem but at least organizations have started addressing it. However, the real retention issue that has existed for years is the one created by staff reductions and early retirements. The failure to fix this gap will only be exacerbated by the soon to be Retirement Tsunami.
The first wave of retiring baby boomers has not significantly drained talent. Nevertheless, it is only a matter of time before the next wave hits. How far into the organization will it go? I believe further than most people estimate. Why, because organizationís have focused their retention efforts on closing the front door while leaving the back door open. Those organizations have been losing experienced, seasoned, mature talent for years.
Sure, people are expected to retire, nothing you can do about that, except organizations have encouraged talent to leave by offering "severance packages" and "early retirements." This has resulted in a slow drain on talent that will be fully exposed once the real tsunami hits.
A natural Tsunami is the result of a slippage of a boundary between the Earth and the Sea. That slippage can be caused by a volcanic eruption, landslide, or earthquake. You cannot predict these natural occurrences but once they happen a warning can be issued and hopefully, in enough time to get to safety. Very few people ignore a Tsunami warning. A natural Tsunami cannot be avoided but you should have a plan of action once a warning is issued. The same is true for the pending Retirement Tsunami.