Private equity firms have consistently ranked talent management as a key strategic priority to running a successful business. In 2022, the press was dominated by reports of widespread hiring challenges amid the Great Resignation.
The survey found that the biggest challenge during this unprecedented job churn concerned attracting and retaining talent at the junior levels, those with less than three years of experience. Private equity firms will need to determine whether this is the impact of a generational shift that would require a more strategic action plan or if it is something that firms can address simply by engaging more with junior employees.
With respect to overall talent management, nearly half of all firms continued to rank hiring, recruiting and onboarding talent as a top priority. While increasing diversity continued to be an important goal, 41% of the firms surveyed noted that creating a more inclusive workforce was also a top priority. Only one in three ranked developing an effective hybrid work strategy as a priority as firms continued to move forward with return-to-office plans, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
As firms encourage employees to return to offices and hire new talent that is expected to have an office presence, there continues to be disconnect between how frequently private equity firms want their employees in the office and how often employees actually want to be in the office.
Most CFOs, for example, expect employees to work more than three days per week in the office, which they believe to be line with employees’ expectations as well. That’s not always the case, however. For example, 38% of larger organizations believe that employees are more likely to want to work remotely, while 59% of smaller private equity firms believe their employees have a greater need and desire for in-person interactions.
Despite this disconnect, private equity firms remain confident in their ability to meet return-to-office goals, with 87% of all firms believing they will achieve these goals within the next 12 months.