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By Human Capital Magazine | January 31, 2012 5:00 PM PST

Succession planning and strengthening the leadership pipeline are the top talent concerns for corporate executives throughout the Asia-Pacific-Asia region, according to a new study.

In the latest Talent Edge 2020 report by Deloitte, it was found that executives are forecasting severe leadership shortages in the coming years and are looking at various ways to accelerate leadership development within their organisations to stave off the shortfall. Despite the economic uncertainty, many leading companies are completely reshaping their HR strategies to account for the burgeoning talent pipeline. Survey respondents anticipated greater executive leadership shortages over the next several years than any other talent category in their companies.

Talent management priorities over the next 12 months

  • Performance management 73%
  • Talent assessment (focusing on potential) 42%
  • High-potential employee deployment 72%
  • Experienced hires 71%
  • Job-specific/functional training 63%
  • Regulatory, security and risk training 62%
  • Onboarding and orientation 55%
  • Right-sizing/down-sizing 58%
  • Offshore hires 49%
  • Campus hires 56%
  • Contract and part-time 47%

Jeff Schwartz, co-leader of Deloitte's talent, performance and rewards practice, said the report identified two notable phenomenons, namely that there appears to be uniform agreement that there is currently a shortage of executive leadership, and the problem is most acute in the Asia-Pacific region. Senior management and HR are now focusing investments and capabilities on rebuilding and developing new talent programmes for leaders and critical employees

Additionally, the departure of potential leaders will remain a pressing concern, and 71% of those surveyed expressed a "high" or "very high" concern about retaining critical talent, alongside 66% who had the same concern about keeping "high-potential" talent. Data from a similar survey conducted in early 2011 confirmed that employers are right to be concerned, as two thirds of employee respondents said they were looking or planned to be looking for a new job in the following 12 months. Despite many employers believing the youngest workers pose the greatest 'flight risk', the Deloitte report showed 72% of Gen X employees were already planning their next career move, compared to 63% of Gen Y.

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