Companies That Practice Talent Optimization Fared Best During Turbulent Year: 93% Avoided Major Financial Loss, Only 22% Experienced a Reduction in Force, According to The State of Talent Optimization Report

In a Study by The Predictive Index, 500+ Executives Reveal Key to Thriving is Aligning Talent and Business Strategies; Remote Work and Manager Burnout are Top Concerns


BOSTON, Mass – March 30, 2021 – It was not a boom year; but for companies practicing talent optimization, it was a fortifying year. The 2021 State of Talent Optimization Report—published today by The Predictive Index—found that more companies (55%) are prioritizing their talent strategy than a year ago and the companies that focus on talent optimization are able to utilize behavioral data to increase engagement and foster employee development to build successful, long-lasting teams.

“In a year that was in upheaval for many organizations, this study validates that practicing talent optimization is the best way to future proof your business,” said Mike Zani, CEO of The Predictive Index. “By prioritizing the alignment between talent strategy and business strategy, 93% were able to prevent significant financial loss; and of the reductions of force reported, only 22% were from talent optimized companies. Talent optimization is a crucial differentiator to the bottom line of businesses.”

The goal of the study was to understand how companies that practice talent optimization fared in one of the most tumultuous business years on record. Key findings show talent optimization leads to better business results, including:

  • Talent optimized companies outperform other companies. 93% of talent optimized companies were able to prevent major financial loss (vs. 76% of non-talent optimized companies).
  • Talent optimized companies had fewer reductions in force (RIF). Of the RIFs reported, only 22% were from companies practicing talent optimization
  • Talent optimized companies build dream teams. 98% of talent optimized companies said their teams continued to work well together (vs. 78% of non-talent optimized companies).
  • More companies see the importance of talent optimization. With an increase of 11% year-over-year, 23% say they aligned their business and talent strategies.
  • Hiring is coming back. 73% of ALL respondents said they plan to hire more than 100 people this year.

In addition to uncovering the business value of talent optimization, The 2021 State of Talent Optimization Report also revealed challenges seen in remote work and company culture, which include:

  • Remote work is exhausting. More than one-third of ALL companies said their employees experienced higher levels of burnout than normal in the past year. 64% of ALL respondents believe that the shift to remote work “increased levels of exhaustion among employees.”
  • Managers are at highest risk for burnout. A critical role within organizations, 32% of respondents listed managers as the group at highest risk of burnout.
  • Individual contributors are least engaged. Given managers are burnt out, it follows suit that 38% said individual contributors have the lowest levels of engagement.
  • Remote work reduces engagement. 42% said their employees are working more hours than they would in the office, with employee engagement and productivity (47% each) being cited as the greatest challenges moving forward for companies implementing remote work policies.

A full copy of the 2021 State of Talent Optimization Report is available at:


About The Predictive Index 

The Predictive Index (PI) is an award-winning talent optimization platform that aligns business strategy with people strategy for optimal business results. Over sixty years of proven science, software, and a curriculum of insightful management workshops make PI the solution for any company looking to design great teams and culture, make objective hiring decisions, foster engagement, and inspire greatness in their people anywhere in the world. More than 8,000 clients and 350+ partners use PI—including Nissan, Citizens Bank, DocuSign, Subway, 47 Brand, FAM Brands, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Omni Hotels—across 140+ countries. Learn more at https://www.predictiveindex.com/.


Media Contact:
Jennifer Moebius (she/her)
The Predictive Index