World War Talent: But Australia left behind

by Cameron Edmond03 Dec 2013
The Global Talent Competitiveness Index from Insead, Human Capital Leadership Institute (HCLI) and Adecco ranked Australia as 15th in an international study of competitiveness, coming in above New Zealand (17th), but failing abysmally against the likes of Switzerland, Singapore and Denmark.

The report indicated that Australia’s ability to grow and enable talent is overshadowed by a lack of ability to retain it.

It was found that Australia’s ability to attract and foster talent through Government effectiveness, intensity of local competition, regulatory landscape and ease of doing business is sound, but the extent of taxation, a lack of global knowledge, and poor researching and entrepreneurial activity reduced the country’s competitiveness.
The report analysed 103 countries, and found the top 10 globally competitive countries to be:
  1. Switzerland
  2. Singapore
  3. Denmark
  4. Sweden
  5. Luxembourg
  6. Netherlands
  7. UK
  8. Finland
  9. US
  10. Iceland
It was noted that these top-ranking nations – aside from being predominantly European – shared a number of characteristics. The nations have a long-standing commitment to education, a history of immigration and clear talent progression strategies.

“While Australia is excellent at growing and enabling talent competitiveness, our Government and companies need to review how we can improve our retention of talent to ensure we are best addressing the skills shortages we are still experiencing in certain sectors and fostering innovation in this country,” Neil Jones, CEO of Adecco Group ANZ, said.
Ilian Mihov, dean of INSEAD, stated that educational institutions in Australia are under heavy pressure to supply employable skills that a new global economy understands, and added that schools, businesses and governments need to become collaborative forces to address the issues facing Australian workforces and their ability to compete at a global level.
“Rich countries need more ‘global knowledge skills’ to foster innovation and a job-rich recovery; developing countries still need the labour and vocational skills required to build infrastructure, health and education systems,” Paul Evans, chair professor of HR and organisation development at INSEAD, said. “But all of them need to make and build better environments to grow, attract and retain the skills and talents they need.”


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