(Solution) 7HR02 Workforce Planning and Employee Retention


Talent planning involves the people management processes that the employees apply to recruit and retain the top talent. As described by Jakobsson (2018), talent planning is aimed at establishing and maintaining competent individuals and is also tailored towards meeting the organisational goals and objectives. Amazon’s talent planning is mainly characterised by sourcing for candidates from various backgrounds, investing in the employees’ learning and development, and creating opportunities for all individuals regardless of their diversity affiliation. At Amazon, individuals from minority populations are recruited to ensure balance. These include the disabled and members from the LGBTQ community. Amazon has also partnered with various organisations, including Lesbians Who Tech, Girls in Tech, and Grace Hopper Celebrations to access and foster diversity and inclusivity in talent planning.

Three analytics applied at Amazon’s talent planning and retention strategies include the turnover and retention rates, research into the company’s strategies, including the available online information, and the recruitment practices and activities. Turnover rates involve the number of individuals leaving a company during a specific period or duration. At Amazon, there is readily available about the attrition rate. In The Guardian, an internal memo reveals that Amazon may be running out of employees in the US in two years. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sainato (2022) note that the company’s attrition rate was 3% of the workforce per week, which was 150% annually. Contrasting these figures and rates to the turnover in warehousing, utilities, and transportation in 2021, which was 49% it is evident that Amazon faces a significant issue that needs to be addressed to avoid further escalation of the attrition rates.

Another analytics is the available information for research from the company and other companies about the talent planning and retention strategies. From the firm’s data, it is evident that Amazon is making efforts to enhance its recruitment and retention strategies through various strategies. Primarily, the company offers opportunities to all potential candidates regardless of their diversity. The company recruits from universities and colleges for various groups, including the Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) and the tribal colleges in the US (Amazon Staff, 2022). Another set of information about Amazon’s talent planning and retention is how it hosts career enrichments and fairs to partner with the minority groups. Another analytics is the recruitment data and activities, which are all available online. Notably, Amazon has continuous recruitment activities. On the one hand, these activities may reflect on the company’s growth and development. On the other hand, the numerous recruitment activities may signify high attrition rate.

From the analysis of available information about Amazon’s talent planning and retention strategies, it is apparent that amazon faces some challenges in employee retention. Addressing these issues require adequate resources and time to ensure that the recruited individuals remain in the company to steer its objectives. An important aspect to note is the difference between dysfunctional and functional turnover. According to Gong and Wang (2019), dysfunctional turnover entails the voluntary leaving of an individual from a company. The turnover is termed as dysfunctional due to the impacts, which are costs and indirect ones of other employees leaving the company. Therefore, the following four measures can be introduced to reduce the voluntary turnover rate.

Enhance the working conditions: Research on Amazon’s challenges in talent management and retention reveals that the company’s hiring practices, attendance policies, productivity quotas, and unequal enforcement of the contribution and rules are key drivers of the company’ turnover. This reflects on the working conditions, which according to Hsiao and Lin (2018) are important in employee satisfaction, motivation and retention. Applying Herzberg’s two-factor theory, the working conditions are key players in employee retention. Amazon needs to ensure that the hiring and working policies are equal and are aligned with the workforce needs and preferences. Issues such as inequality and fairness in the recruitment and section and workplace relationships should be positive.

Sufficient rewards: Employees feel valued when provided with sufficient and diverse rewards. Amazon needs to consider the strategic and total rewards concept. This will imply that the employees are compensated according to their needs and preferences. Applying Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory, meeting the employees’ diverse needs, including psychological and self-esteem is essential in individual motivation, satisfaction, and retention (Hopper, 2020). The total rewards concept is described by combining the intrinsic and extrinsic rewards. For instance, it is essential for the company to offer recognition to the employees, besides the base pay and benefits.

Eliminate or clarify the time-off task: Among the key metrics at Amazon is time-off task. This refers to the time that the warehouse employees spend from the workstation. The company applies the strategy to monitor the workforce productivity and punish the workers that fail to meet the quotas. The strategy, however, faces criticism from the employees who espouse that it means they do not take bathroom breaks (Sainato, 2022). Notably, an employee can be terminated if the accrued time-off task is too high.  In their defence, the company notes that they time-off task was a measure system of the bugs and productivity was secondary. It is therefore essential to alleviate the employees’ fears about the use of the strategy to measure productivity and eventually terminate the employee.

Invest in technology, including robotics for carrying the items: Part of the working environment involves the employees lacking adequate support, especially in their daily activities, roles, and responsibilities. This is specifically reflected in the warehouse where the employees have complained about the lack of robotics technologies as the products are brought to the pickers (Kassem, 2022). When the bins are overfilled, they are heavier and there are risks of injuries. The recommendation, therefore, is to invest in health and safety of the employees, which is tied to the employees meeting the productivity quotas.

Performance Management

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