Talent management strategy is often seen as an HR responsibility but it should be seen as a business process not just an HR process. After all, it’s often not just HR who makes the hiring, firing and promotion decisions. 

Talent management strategy is a continuous process, focused on attracting and retaining the best talent in order to achieve organizational goals, remain competitive and create a sustainable business.

There are a number of challenges involved in attracting and retaining talent, such as:

  • Adaptability: Companies can no longer operate solely on the principle of “command and control”, but must focus on the principle of “sense and respond”. According to HR Executive, companies will need to focus on employees’ AQ (adaptability quotient), which focuses on resilience and flexibility, to ensure they’re ready and able to evolve no matter the conditions.
  • Rapid innovation & digitization: Strategic workforce planning to establish a so-called “future resilience”, leading to a broader skill universe and skill-based talent management.
  • Lack of qualified talent: The “war of talents”, managing to attract top talent and re-skill existing workforce.

58% of organizations are redesigning their organization to become more people-centric. (Mercer Global Talent Trends 2020)

We summarized major future skills required for effective talent managment strategy by analyzing a variety of resources:

Talent Management Strategy Skills required - infographic

Is your talent management strategy built for future resilience by focusing on the broader skill universe? In this post, we provide 3 core steps to effective talent management:

1. Establishing talent needs:

This is derived from business goals. Business leaders should be involved in this process, after all they have all planned the business direction and future goals. Since employees are the ones executing the “strategy”, “processes” and use the “tools”, they should also be involved in establishing talent needs.

How to do it:

  • Do scenario planning by considering various possible futures: The talent required in the future can change depending on different scenarios. To plan for various scenarios, many people/perspectives should be involved. The main questions to answer: 

How will our company look in 1 year, 3 years, and 5 years from now? 

What kinds of knowledge, skills, and abilities will we need?

  • Analyzing the environment: It is important to include external forces in your planning. Groups of different departments could be set up to meet regularly and discuss external changes. The main questions to answer:

What new industry shifts, regulations, consumer behavior, societal changes, technologies or resources are evolving? 

How do these changes affect our employees ability to achieve the strategic objectives/goals?

How might talent supply and demand outside the labor market affect our business growth?

  • Forecasting skill demand and supply: To discover further risks, it is important to analyze the talent market and include a prioritization. This helps identify what skills should be hired or trained. Questions to ask:

What skills will affect/impact our bottom-line and revenue? 

2. Tracking Talent inventory:

Of course, it is important to track the talent inventory for a variety of reasons: identifying skill gaps, promotions, career/succession planning,  workforce diversity and more. This database should include skills/experience, career interests, and training opportunities. 

How to do it:

  • Decide on key information to track: This depends on the business, and can include: current/previous positions, educational background, skills and more.
  • Develop processes to track the information: Whether this starts from the beginning of the recruiting process in ATS or includes a briefing during the onboarding session, this process should be clearly outlined in order to track relevant information. It is also important to keep the information up-to-date, whether through 360 assessments internally, skills assessment during recruitment or performance management reviews. Assessments should provide you with the data to make the right hiring and promotion decisions. 
  • Integrate forecasts: Include processes to forecast talent management. What career paths exist in your organization that you can plan and forecast? How do you keep up-to-date with required skills? Do you have enough qualified talent so you can develop your existing workforce? Are you planning to change the company’s direction? How long will you need the talent?

3. Developing the talent pool:

This involves both recruiting new talent and developing existing employees to meet the talent needs established. It is important to build a strong talent pool to depend upon for any existing or future needs. It’s about workforce readiness.

How to do it:

  • Recruiting talent to meet your needs: This process involves optimizing your candidate journey from start to finish, including the employer branding and ending at the actual onboarding process. We have a great post analyzing the hiring analytics and candidate journey. It is vital to keep track of relevant data to take informed decision making. Which platforms/sources provide the best performing talent? At what part of the candidate journey do you lose potential talent? You need to decide where to focus on and these analytics help identify the answer. There is also an increasing need to include “passive candidates”, into the talent pool, as companies can no longer just wait for candidates to apply to them. Especially in highly skilled roles, passive candidates are desirable as they often already are a valuable asset to current employers. The processes to build a passive candidate pool are complex. Services like Lionstep, can support companies by sourcing passive candidates in recruiting. Our post in how to identify the best service might be helpful.
  • Developing internal talent to meet your needs: You will require talent reviews and succession planning processes in order to establish what development is required and who can work in new roles. A great way is to create career paths for various roles and analyze what skills are required step by step. If you have your talent inventory, you will see where the gaps are and what skills exactly should be included in the development programs. This will support your internal development by helping employees learn skills the business needs strategically. If you have the right people to meet business goals, they will in turn feel motivated and to do their best work – establishing a win-win for both you and your employees. 
  • Development of the talentpool: Demonstrate how your talent management plan will improve KPIs and OKRs. How can you continuously improve your talent management to save company capital while increasing productivity? You should track various insights, including: hiring and recruiting costs, internal promotion rates, turnover rates and employment engagement. Talent management should be at the core of your organization.

Interested to find out more? Lionstep can help you optimize your recruiting and source the best talent: Connect with us.