Skip to main content

How to attract talent in a global market

Published by , Editorial Assistant
World Cement,


A previous edition of World Cement featured an article about the first COMFLEX project to be installed in the Americas. Similar projects are continually pushing the boundaries worldwide. What are the implications from a talent point of view and how are companies ensuring that they are acquiring the right knowledge and experience to conclude the project successfully?

How are companies attracting top talent for global projects?

Entering new markets and being at the forefront of original projects is an exciting time for organisations. However, ensuring there is a level of expertise within the team to complete successfully and within budget can often be a challenge.

There are initial decisions when making use of local talent or team members that have completed similar projects elsewhere. Looking at your current team you should ask, is it possible to move them to a new region, are they willing to move, or do you need to look outside for talent?

If it’s the latter, a strong talent acquisition strategy is important from the very beginning. The recruitment landscape has changed in recent years, particularly in the cement industry. Mergers and acquisitions have disturbed the natural career progression of many. This has led to talent leaving the industry as well as proceeding to engage in interim and project work at a greater cost to the company.

As a result, the cement sector is now, more than ever, a candidate driven market. This means that the decision making and the power is firmly with the candidates. Typically, they will have numerous offers from suitable companies so it’s important that a company’s strategy is designed with that in mind.

What considerations do hiring managers have to take into account when attracting global talent?

The COMFLEX project located just outside Brasilia is a good example of talent attraction as it worked with outside company, German based KHD. In doing so, it’s likely that they attained the knowledge required to complete such a project. It’s unlikely that that local talent will have the knowledge required of project pitfalls and elements that could stall progress.

Organisations need to understand the challenges a candidate will face during relocation. Our candidates are excited to begin new projects but there are apprehensions about relocation. Companies with a thorough talent acquisition strategy manage the process using a number of key services. Normally, cement organisations that Chad Harrison International works with ensure there is a site liaison or a Mobilisation Expert on hand to help with the process. They will organise flights, accommodation, and a start-up package.

Some of the concerns that we typically encounter include, finding a place to live, schooling for children, and transport and visas for the family. Where possible, talent can be located remotely, by integrating flexible working solutions with technology such as Skype and Office 365.

For the COMFLEX project, it was probably important for the organisation to promote the benefits of living and working near Brazil’s capital city, Brasilia, including the economy, demographics, lifestyles, and culture, which are presented in a brochure to showcase the region.

Why is it important to have an efficient recruitment process?

The best talent at the top level does not remain available for long. Normally, we encounter scenarios where the candidate attends several interviews, has bought into the company culture, the organisation see him or her as the right fit and then, where there should be a job offer, there is a period of stagnation.

Quick feedback should be provided to ensure as smooth a process as possible. Regardless of the position, no candidate likes to be left hanging and it can leave doubts over the organisations ability and objectives.

Furthermore, top-level candidates are likely to have a number of offers or interviews lined up, especially in the cement industry. By showing a firm interest and generating excitement, candidates often buy into the organisation even more.

Other considerations?

There are a number of considerations when offering a remuneration package. By understanding the market, organisations can ensure that they are offering the correct package. Think of the net value for the candidate. If they are relocating from the US to France, where there is a higher tax bracket for top earners, the proposition will not look as tempting, if their net salary is reduced.

Attracting candidates is just as important as retaining them in the future, which is why an attractive company culture is important. Building a company with opportunities for development is important for candidate attraction.

Innovation, transparency, and communication are all key factors too. An organisation’s branding and reputation are important for candidates who are keen to progress in their careers. Employees with a sense of pride are more attuned to the common goal than those who are not.

This process begins with the choice of head hunter or search firm that the organisation uses. They act as a brand ambassador, representing your company throughout the hiring process. They are the first point of contact and the promoter of your company to candidates. Choosing one which understands the values of the company and is adept at promotion to attract the best candidates is vital.

About the author

Luke Robbins-Wells is the CEO of Chad Harrison International. With over a decade of senior leadership experience in the executive search and management consulting sectors, Luke is well placed to provide valuable, consultative, and, above all, honest advice on talent acquisition.
Luke specialises in all areas of heavy industry talent acquisition, including the Built Environment and has placed technical specialists, senior leaders and C-Suite candidates into global organisations, SMEs, and family-owned companies.

Read the article online at:

You might also like


Embed article link: (copy the HTML code below):


This article has been tagged under the following:

Cement news 2018