An Approach to Talent Management
Talent management is a complex collection of connected HR processes that delivers a simple fundamental benefit for any organization:
Talent drives performance.
We all know that teams with the best people perform at a higher level. Leading organizations know that exceptional business performance is driven by superior talent. People are the difference. Talent management is the strategy.
Analyst research has proven that organizations using talent management strategies and solutions exhibit higher performance than their direct competitors and the market in general. From Fortune 100 global enterprise recruiting and performance management to small and medium business eRecruiting, leading companies invest in talent management to select the best person for each job because they know success is powered by the total talent quality of their workforce.
The Talent Age
In 1997, a McKinsey study coined the term: war for talent. Now in the new millennium, we find ourselves in the talent age. During the agricultural age, the economy was based on land, a truly physical and very tangible asset. The industrial age followed with a manufacturing-driven economy. Higher business performance was derived through the most effective use of factories and distribution networks.
The knowledge age moved the basis of economic value to information assets through integrated communications and computer technology. Now the competitive battlefront is for the best people because they are the true creators of value.
The New HR Mission and Talent Management Processes
Many challenging workforce issues confront HR, including:
- Heightened competition for skilled workers.
- Impending retirement of the baby boomers.
- Low levels of employee engagement.
- Acknowledgement of the high cost of turnover.
- Arduous demands of managing global workforces.
- Importance of succession planning.
- Offshoring and outsourcing trends.
This requires new thinking and a new mission to achieve business success. These factors—coupled with the need to align people directly with corporate goals—are forcing HR to evolve from policy creation, cost reduction, process efficiency, and risk management to driving a new talent mindset in the organization.
One important distinction is the evolution of the difference between tactical HR and strategic talent management. Transactional HR activities are administrative overhead. Talent management is a continuous process that delivers the optimal workforce for your business.
In this new model—instead of being the owners of processes, forms, and compliance—HR becomes the strategic enabler of talent management processes that empower managers and employees while creating business value.
With this view, talent management may be defined as the implementation of integrated strategies or systems designed to improve processes for recruiting, developing and retaining people with the required skills and aptitude to meet current and future organizational needs.
Anecdotally, talent management is often defined as performance management, incentive compensation, or talent acquisition. Talent management is also often confused with leadership development. Although leadership development is a crucial function of your organization, focusing on it exclusively is a legacy of last century. Our modern service and knowledge economies in the talent age require a broad and holistic view. A high performance business depends on a wide range of talent.
Taleo’s graphical representation emphasizes the mandate of talent management to respond to business goals and consequently be the driver of business performance. Talent management is depicted as a circular—not a linear—set of activities.
Why Talent Management?
Workforce cost is the largest category of spend for most organizations. Automation and analysis of your recruiting and hiring processes provides the immediate workforce visibility and insights you need to significantly improve your bottom line. Performance management provides the ongoing processes and practices to maintain a stellar workforce.
Today, many organizations are struggling with silos of HR processes and technologies. The future of talent management is embodied in solutions designed from the ground up to provide business-centric functionality on a unified talent management platform.
Since nearly all competitive business factors have become commoditized, talent is what ultimately drives business success and creates value. Leading organizations rely on Taleo solutions and services to assess, acquire, develop, and align talent with business objectives while significantly reducing process costs, improving quality of hire, reducing risk, and achieving higher levels of performance.
Though it may seem intuitive, it is worthwhile to articulate the fundamental significance of successful talent management practices:
- The key enabler of any organization is talent.
- The quality of your people is your last true competitive differentiator.
- Talent drives performance.
Talent management requires strong executive support, along with systems and processes all directed towards having the right talent doing the right work at the right time. That’s when talent truly drives higher business performance.
Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) survey