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Addressing the natural resource industry’s succession problem

Posted by Jackie Burns, Hays VP on Monday, Dec 14, 2015

SG2016 Blog RM1 14.12The resources and mining industry in Canada is seeing a split between mining and forestry as one area slows due to falling commodity prices, while demand for lumber continues to drive a busy forestry sector. However, no matter which industry you’re working in, future talent should be a concern with three-quarters of hiring managers saying their industry is affected by the skills shortage.

With a shortage of intermediate and entry-level candidates in natural resources, how can forestry and mining leaders improve succession planning to create a talent pipeline?

My colleague Jim Fearon, Hays VP, Central Region, has expressed concerns about the creation of skills shortages in the oil and gas industry, and his comments can certainly apply to the natural resources industries overall.

“The decisions made today in the height of the commodities downturn will have a significate impact on how deep the talent shortage will be in future years,” Jim says in the Hays 2016 Salary Guide. “The industry faces the potential of significate loss of knowledge as those nearing retirement look to exit, but have no one to share their considerable knowledge with.”

What can you do today to strengthen your future workforce?

The key is to plan ahead. Develop a talent strategy, including succession planning, internal talent assessments, and employee development programs so you know what talent you have now, what talent you will need in the future, and how you can align your hiring and training plans with those future requirements.

While there is uncertainly amidst the industry outlook, this shouldn't be confused with negativity. Control what can be controlled and make decisions based on all available information, as opposed to fear or trepidation. If organizations are afraid to commit to hiring for the future, they'll be unprepared when the future arrives.

Find out more about the industry trends for next year. Register for Wednesday’s Resources and Mining Webinar, 12pm ET.

Talk to Hays VP Jackie Burns about the British Columbia labour market, and resources and mining industry trends.


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