BBC training chief urges employers to value talented employers as much as profits

Employers must begin to value their talent as they value their money, according to the BBC’s head of learning and development.

Nigel Paine, who is responsible for the training of the corporation’s 24,000 staff, said the impending talent shortage and the ageing workforce meant that people were more important than ever to organisations.

“We will look back in five years and think how irresponsible we have been with our human resource,” he told delegates at the European Leadership and Talent Management Summit in London last week. “Organisations must start treating their talent like we treat money.”

Paine admitted that the BBC was not immune to the pressures that a shortage of talent would bring.

“There is a belief in the BBC that we don’t have to try very hard to get people to join us,” he said. “But talent will dry up in the future and we need to be aware of that.”

A new breed of workers who will “walk away” from organisations if they are not being developed will also challenge employers, Paine said.

The BBC is currently suffering from staff difficulties of a different kind. Last week, unions representing about 10,000 workers at the BBC announced plans for a strike vote in a row about pay, pensions and job losses.

Bectu, the NUJ and Amicus said staff were angered by the level of top managers’ salaries when most workers were being offered pay rises of 2.6%. Internal restructuring at the BBC has seen almost 4,000 job losses and the outsourcing of a number of HR services to Capita.

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