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Positioning your organisation to succeed

As part of the ACCA Scotland Annual Review and AGM we invited Peter Russian (CEO of Investors in People, Scotland) and Tony Osude (Head of Professional Development, ACCA) to give us their thoughts on how important people are in developing your organisation in any economic climate.

During his presentation Peter suggested that in the current economic climate, organisations are looking at survival, increased efficiency, cost reduction and making sure that the future strategy is right. In doing so, organisations have to ensure they maximise productivity and this can only be done by keeping your people involved.

Peter went on to discuss the ways to get the best from your most expensive resources, ranging from matching the right skills to the right jobs to ensuring managers are aware of the impact they have on their team's productivity and performance. Staff involvement can be summed up as, recognition, development, communication, feedback and involvement.

Peter left the audience with a list of five things that could make a difference to their organisations:
  1. review your objectives and what you need from your people
  2. champion good management practice
  3. ensure CPD includes leadership and management
  4. find out more about what works
  5. ask yourselves how great are we?
Tony Osude's presentation was based on the recent ACCA Insight paper Perspectives on talent management in challenging times.

It is increasingly recognised that finance professionals and the roles that they perform are central to the performance of an organisation. This centrality means that a changing external business environment will have a direct impact on the roles accountants undertake and the skills, knowledge and experience of value to employers, but also it will shape the career aspirations they hold. Therefore, it's critical organisations get the recruitment, development, retention challenges right.

At the moment there is an understandable concern in businesses of all sizes regarding the current global economic conditions. ACCA's concern is that these businesses will react with short-term measures to cut cost rather than considering the businesses' long-term future.

Even in these difficult times, staff cuts should always be a last resort. Now is a good time for businesses to invest in their current talent pool and to add depth to that pool through continued investment in training and professional development.

Tony highlighted the economic challenges many organisations are facing right now are unprecedented, but experience tells us that those organisations that take holding positions or 'paths to growth' strategies with corresponding investment in people, typically are the fastest to recover and enjoy more sustainable commercial success over the longer term.

Getting talent management practices right is now more important than ever, particularly with renewed organisational focus on returns on investment - it needs to be a key business imperative for organisations.
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