Investing in talent management programmes to help develop leaders is the primary focus for human resources professionals this year.

According to the Talent Management: Accelerating Business Performance survey by Right Management, 47% of HR professionals in Singapore stated 2014 will be a year of growth marked by increased spending on talent management initiatives to help develop leaders and build talent pipelines.

This focus on enhancing talent management strategies was a trend observed worldwide, with HR leaders in China/Hong Kong (88%), India (77%), Brazil (75%) and the United Kingdom (45%) also planning to increase investments in talent management programmes.

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The survey included that only 13% of the 2,221 senior leaders and HR executives surveyed worldwide reported they were confident in the strength of their leadership pipelines to fill critical openings.

In fact, this lack of skilled talent for key positions was highlighted as the top talent management challenge globally, followed by shortage of talent at all levels and less than optimal employee engagement.

“Organisations that can evaluate what drives engagement – and the lack of it – are in a much stronger position to reduce the risks of talent defection,” Bridget Beattie, group executive vice president, Asia Pacific, Middle East and global strategic partnerships at Right Management, said.

“Simply understanding current employee engagement levels is no longer a sufficient strategy to stem the tide of attrition.”

Close to six out of 10 (57%) of employers in Singapore also reported plans to broaden their employee engagement strategies.

Singapore was also highlighted as among the top three countries in the world where senior management is actively involved in making connections between talent investment and business impact.

Close to one in four (24%) employers in Singapore were reported as pressing for more rigorous measurements to judge the effect of talent management programmes on the business, beaten only by Canada (31%) and Norway (28%).

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