How Brexit will change the game for talent management pt3

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Written by Chris Kerridge on 8 April 2019 in Opinion

Chris Kerridge concludes his piece about Brexit's impact on HR and talent management.

Reading time: 3 minutes.


There is no clear indication of what Brexit will really look like in practice, but there are things that you can do alongside existing practices and strategies to prepare for the changes. HR Directors need to carry out thorough scenario planning to ensure they are at least vaguely prepared.

Brexit checklist

  • Undertake a ‘Brexit Assessment’, taking time to properly understand the impact of Brexit in all areas of the organisation, at employee and business level – and consider communicating your findings.
  • Check over international employment contracts and ensure familiarity and clarity. Also check that all offer letters and contracts contain adequate “right to work” clauses that would support a contractual basis for change if needed in future
  • Ensure you have a strong ordinance around continuing to employ EU citizens – it is HR’s role to ensure their organisation is not at risk of unlawful discrimination if it is seen to be taking steps to reduce employment opportunities for this group
  • Ensure you have the technology you need in place – an end to end solution that will give you full workforce visibility, all within one system.

Workforce planning

  • Consider the impact of changes to immigration laws on succession and workforce planning strategies – is there an area of the business that will be more affected by Brexit than the rest? The technology you have in place should allow you to model scenarios and should really be able to heat map this out so you can easily identify areas of concern/focus
  • Scenario modelling could give you the edge when it comes to planning for Brexit – being able to identify what areas of the workforce will be most affected, or even planning the possible impact of workers leaving before Brexit is complete, will drive real business value.


  • Develop strong employee engagement strategies, considering morale, involvement and motivation amongst employees that could be impacted by Brexit and need reassurance that their HR department is on top of things. Be ready to address queries and drive better employee engagement across the board.
  • Support a strong communication strategy across the organisation to ensure all employees are aware that business leaders are ready to deal with any post-Brexit fallout, and know how to voice their concerns. Be connected.


  • Engaging and retaining talent in a period of uncertainty can be tricky. It will be more important than ever to keep the talent you have. HR and L&D can drive programs to reassure key talent with solutions to Brexit scenarios, such as loyalty bonuses, assistance packages, etc. 
  • Plan to get creative. The challenge of continuing to fuel an organisation with the best talent may be the making of HR and L&D in some organisations. With access to a potentially smaller pool of talent, You will need to look to look for more ways to attract and develop the internal talent needed for continued success.

This will include the use of smart talent tools that allow you to optimise your talent resources and boost their engagement level.


There is certainly a time of pressure ahead following Brexit, with some great opportunities and some incredible challenges. Legislation and talent lie at the heart of these opportunities and challenges.

If you haven’t already started analysing, scoping and planning for the processes and procedures that Brexit may ultimately affect, it’s time to start gaining an understanding of your organisation and the tasks that lie ahead.

Understanding the organisation, planning for current and future workforce scenarios, and engaging with employees will give you a critical edge when it comes to retaining /continuing to attract talent after Brexit negotiations.

Read part one here and part two here


About the author

Chris Kerridge is employee engagement expert at MHR


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