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Aon : New York City must take action to remain “Destination of Choice” for talent

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Aon released a joint study with the Partnership for New York City, the city’s leading business group, that outlines steps New York must take to sustain a diverse talent pipeline and bolster long-term competitiveness.

Key recommendations include:

– Establishing a Chief Talent Officer to oversee the city’s talent agenda

– Recruiting highly-skilled graduate students, entrepreneurs and existing professionals in technology and financial services to work in New York

– Creating an agency to build and reinforce partnerships between industry and academia to ensure residents are trained for the jobs of tomorrow

– Appealing to the workplace preferences of millennial generation workers

– Supporting the growth potential of the life sciences industry

“Aon is committed to helping New York maintain its preeminent status as a global leader in commerce, finance and innovation,” said Kristi Savacool, chief executive officer of Aon Hewitt, the firm’s global human resources solutions business, who presented the study findings at a Partnership for New York City event today. “While Mayor Bloomberg has done a superb job of fostering economic growth and innovation, public and private sector stakeholders must seize the opportunity to keep New York City ahead of the curve as a magnet for businesses and talent for years to come.”

The Partnership for New York City and Aon collaborated on the study in an effort to make sure that New York City continues to have a talent supply that matches the needs of its employers. Aon benchmarked New York against other global cities across key drivers of economic vitality, with a particular focus on the financial and technology sectors—two industries that are particularly important to maintaining New York’s talent pipeline.

“New York City’s depth and diversity of talent is our competitive edge,” said Kathryn Wylde, President & CEO of the Partnership for New York City. “In this report, Aon has identified actions that employers and the city can take to keep talent flowing to New York and ensure that we remain an economic powerhouse and center of innovation.”

“New York City is home to the world’s most talented workforce, and that makes New York City a great place to do business,” said Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. “In order to compete in the 21st Century, we must continue to attract the talent of tomorrow – the creative innovators, daring entrepreneurs and top students that will add value to our economy.”

The study finds that only Singapore is currently competitive with New York when it comes to attracting talent in these industries. This is consistent with results from Aon Hewitt’s global People Risk Index, released yesterday, which measures the risks that organizations face with recruitment, employment and relocation in 131 cities worldwide. According to the Index, New York City was ranked the lowest risk city in the world to recruit talent.

However, in the Aon-Partnership for New York City report, stakeholder interviews and data analysis reveal that as technological innovation increasingly dominates the economy, there could be a growing mismatch between employer needs and available talent in New York, putting the city at risk for losing its ranking and historical competitive advantage.