When an internal audit revealed a worrying lack of technical skills at Fujitsu – a particular problem, given its status as one of the world’s leading ICT providers – the HR team knew just how to respond.
The skills gap posed an existential threat to the organisation in a rapidly advancing technological landscape. But talent management, and some smart recruitment, soon came to the rescue.
The business’s graduate scheme was a key part of the answer. With skills scarce and competition fierce, especially among young, female graduates, 12 per cent of graduate-level IT roles remained unfilled in the UK, with many talented individuals entering entirely unrelated industries.
Fujitsu realigned its priorities, introducing an ambassador scheme that would encourage more women to apply, and partnering with schools and universities across the country to expose students to new technologies. The company inspired students by producing video lectures on exciting developments and fast-emerging topics, from big data to the Internet of Things.
With cost-effectiveness a key consideration, Fujitsu also developed a successful “pay it forward” initiative which saw alumni of the scheme supporting new starters. Using talent to develop talent in such an innovative and organic way meant cost per hire was reduced by £1673.
A keen focus on what Generation Z employees look for in a job also saw the team develop creative solutions that would aid retention of high performers, including the opportunity to work in different offices around the globe via an enhanced mobility programme. Meanwhile, a future leaders programme encourages employees to aspire to more senior roles: an impressive 30 per cent of those enrolled in the initiative began their Fujitsu careers as graduates.
The refreshed (and relatively frugal) focus on recruitment and retention has been a resounding success for Fujitsu. The organisation’s willingness to adapt and listen to potential applicants’ needs has been rewarded with rapidly closing skills gaps, while more efficient hiring practices and a focus on internal promotions saved millions over just a couple of years.
Meanwhile, the gender split on the business’s graduate scheme is now 50:50 and the number of graduates joining the company has doubled since 2010. This is one ICT business that can truly say it is fit for the future.