In an interview with Cheddar, President of SAP North America, DJ Paoni claims that retaining every 1% of SAP talent equates to $60m. Paoni explains that SAP has launched a number of initiatives to encourage employees to stay with the firm and goes further to say that traditional combinations of adequate compensation, providing a safe working environment and an opportunity to work with purpose are no longer enough on their own to retain the best people. 

“The next generation of worker really wants their voice to be heard” – DJ Paoni, President, SAP North America

The challenge to retain top talent is not SAP’s alone and will resonate with most ambitious, self-aware organisations. It is also exacerbated by the much-publicised shortage of talent, identified as one of the biggest risks to business in 2019 by the Gartner research used in the interview.

How SAP is working to retain talent

of the initiatives that SAP has launched to encourage staff retention and to give next-gen employees the voice they demand has been to invite recent graduates and employees with only a few years of experience to join an Emerging Talent Advisory Board which meets with Paoni once a quarter (Advisory Boards traditionally being the stomping ground of high-profile, seasoned professionals).

The ETAB discusses fresh initiatives for the business, examples listed in the video interview below, and offers advice from a previously untapped demographic on how to best recruit and retain high performing talent.

How bluewaveSELECT can help

Clearly as a specialist SAP recruitment business our ability to influence talent retention is more effective at the front end; getting the right SAP people hired in the first place. 

We work with our customers to ensure that team fit, and company culture are on a par with if, not surpassing, technical requirements when evaluating candidates. It goes without saying that if the fit is equally good for organisation and candidate and both the tangible and intangible aspects of a vacancy are met from the outset, the chances of talent retention is much improved.

Results count and since we started measuring retention in 2015, screening for long term alignment between company and individual goals has contributed to 98% retention rate of SAP professionals we have introduced to customers based on contractors fulfilling assignments and permanent professionals still being in post at least 12 months after induction. 

The phrase and ‘war for talent’ is not new but equally, it’s not going away anytime soon

Top performers with sought after skills will continue to be in high demand and expect to see the talent shortage highlighted once again as a key business risk in 2020. Whether talent retention is worth $60m to your organisation or not, hopefully it is being given the top priority that it deserves.

Our ability to introduce the best SAP people to the best SAP businesses is driven by our network, and we never take this for granted. Our referral scheme is our way of rewarding you for introducing us to another a great person, or new organisation that could use our help. 

We are one of the only 100% SAP focused recruitment businesses in the world – and we’re the best! From core ECC to the evolution of S/4 HANA, IoT to digital transformations – when you talk to us, you’ll be talking to like-minded SAP enthusiasts.

We’ve been recruiting SAP people from early R/3 right up to the present day. This gives us an in-depth understanding of the technologies, processes and people needed to evaluate candidates thoroughly.For more information on SAP give bluewaveSELECT a call today on(0)1423 559 559 or contact us via our online form.


By Richard