Talent Management at the Department for International Development

Supporting its best people operating in the toughest locations


The 2005 Department for International Development (DFID) Fragile States paper committed the organisation to working more effectively ‘in the hardest countries in the world to help develop’.


To succeed, DFID must have its best people operating in the toughest locations and supported by a committed organisation. The challenge of filling these posts with enough of the right people significantly hampers DFID’s effectiveness to address poverty and security in Fragile States.


DFID’s HR Strategy and Change team committed to asking the question: ‘How does DFID attract enough of the right people to work effectively in Fragile States?’ Two consultants from Impact International were seconded to DFID for six weeks to research this issue.

The research process gathered input from over 270 people.

Impact’s report proposed a strategic approach to improving staffing in Fragile States.


"The final report produced by Impact was of a high quality, demonstrating that the consultants listened effectively and had a strong grasp of the strategic organisational drivers. The work involved sensitive conversations with a range of staff and senior management, and without exception the consultant team applied a style which won the confidence of staff and which respected the use of sensitive data. I would not hesitate to work with Impact in the future." - Jane Clark , Head of HR Strategy and Change