How Do You Define Talent Management?

“Nothing is more important than the quality of hiring.” Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Google (Schmidt & Rosenberg, 2014).

Talent management is clearly one of the biggest challenges for business in the next ten years. Recruiting and retaining top talent is already a top priority for most businesses.  The major challenge will be in adjusting your talent management strategy to accommodate changes in the workforce while addressing all the new demands of the business world.  Talent management encompasses the changing relationship between the employee and his/her employer.  Expectations of employees and employers are constantly changing.  Businesses need to develop innovative talent management strategies that will attract and retain the best talent available in the marketplace.

There are a wide variety of definitions of talent management.  We define talent management as the science of using strategic human resource planning to facilitate attainment of company goals and to increase business value. Everything done to attract, recruit, onboard, engage, retain, develop, deploy, reward and motivate people to perform up to their potential is a part of talent management.   For us it includes:

Strategic Employee Management

Developing your short-term and long-term organizational goals into a strategic plan is the first step. Next you need to think about how you will reach the goals and implement the plan. You will need to identify the key roles and personnel who will implement the plan and accomplish the goals. You may already have the positions and people in place, or you may need to change your current workforce to fill the gaps.

Talent Recruitment, Hiring, Promotion and Retention

Bringing new talent into your organization is vitally important. However, developing and promoting current employees to positions of greater responsibility and impact is also important.  Promoting from within your organization is more cost-effective and it will improve your retention of high potentials.  When hiring you can look internally as well as externally.

Performance Management

The purpose of performance management is to ensure that roles align with business strategy in order to achieve goals. Aligning the right person with the right role and the right goals is at the heart of performance management.  If you align a talented employee with a role that suits them, give them SMART goals, and support their development, your organization will move forward.  SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound.

Self-Directed Learning

Self-directed learning is more than coaching or training programs. Learning is the acquisition of information and skills, yielding knowledge and experience. Implement self-directed learning programs that include opportunities for growth that support the organization’s core values and goals. Offer compelling and dynamic learning experiences that put employees in charge of their own learning experiences. Shift from internal programs aimed at developing people to innovative platforms that enable people to develop themselves.  When employees can see how their growth impacts the organization, they’ll see just how valuable their role is.

Incentives and Rewards

Aligning your strategic goals with incentives means recognizing employees, rewarding their contributions, and acknowledging their value to the organization. Incentives are in a transition from standardized to personalized.  Today companies understand that effective rewards programs need to match the needs and preferences of each employee. Done correctly, this new approach to incentives and rewards can become a huge competitive advantage.

Career Development

Career needs, goals and preferences evolve and change continuously throughout life. At the same time, the world of work is continuously evolving and adapting to economic, political and social changes. Career development focuses on planning and enabling people to understand and develop their skills, competencies and preferences to manage these challenges.  Employees want to make good decisions about their careers and they also want to maximize their contributions to the organization.

Succession Planning

Mapping the competencies and talents within your organization is just the beginning. Which roles are critical to success? Who currently fills those roles and what happens when those people leave or become ill?  What happens when those positions become open? Having a succession plan in place means that these decisions have already been made.  Succession planning ensures that the organization will continue to run smoothly even if a key position must be filled quickly.

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