A Detailed Guide to Talent Management: Process, Model and Strategy

Effective talent management is directly proportional to the overall growth of the organization. After all, how well you manage your employees, reflects the core values and culture of your organization. Employees are your true assets, therefore you must always strive to provide them with the best opportunities.

What is talent management?

It is the continuous process of attracting, hiring and retaining top-quality employees, providing training to develop their skills, while continuously inspiring them to enhance performance.

The main purpose of HR talent management is to build a highly motivated and engaged workforce, which stays with the company for the long term. The core objective of talent management remains the same across different sectors, however, the methods of achieving this objective differ as per the industry.

In general, talent management in HRM encompasses most of the HR responsibilities. At the same time, most companies create an in-house HR team and think that they are, in fact, managing talent effectively. But these are mere expectations with no proper groundwork. For effective talent management, you would need to formulate and implement effective talent management strategies. Only then can you gain optimum results.

Talent management model

This model identifies the core aspects of effective talent management. While there is no such standard talent management model, HR professionals in different industries adopt different models that suit their industry. An ideal talent management model should include the following primary components:

Acquire: The acquisition model includes employer branding, hiring or recruitment, and onboarding.
Assess: The model of assessment includes talent analytics, assessment and succession planning.
Develop: The development model includes workforce planning, company work culture, employee engagement and employee retention.
Deploy: The deployment model includes career planning, goal alignment, learning & development and performance management.

These components of the talent management model follow a cyclical structure that works in a self-sustaining loop by considering the external job environment as well as the internal climate of the organization.

Also, note that no talent management model is rigid in nature. Rather, it has to adapt efficiently to the growing talent expectations and the ever-changing demands of the company.

Talent management process

Talent management is a cyclic process and not a linear one as many perceive it to be. The talent management process begins with you first acknowledging that your company needs the right talent. This leads to attracting and hiring talent, developing and optimizing their skills, and, then, ensuring a smooth employee transition to a higher position within the company.

An effective talent management process is made up of six important stages:

     

  1. Planning

It’s the first and most important stage of the talent management process. This is what will determine your overall outcome. If you have effectively planned your talent management, then it will show favourable results in the future. But if you haven’t planned it properly, everything you do will crumble, resulting in a loss of resources without any favourable outcomes.

The planning stage covers the following aspects:
Identifying the gaps,
Formulating a detailed job description
Human resource requirement
Availability of funds.

These aspects help you create an effective working plan and will guide you through all the recruiting activities, such as candidate sourcing, recruitment and selection.

Attracting
The next stage of the talent management process is to determine if the talent requirement can be fulfilled through internal recruiting activity; from the company itself or via an external recruiting activity. Either way, this process would require you to attract a healthy stream of job applications. In general, the external sourcing channels include soil network, job portals, and referrals.

Moreover, the talent pool you want to tap into has to be identified well in advance in order to make sure the process runs smoothly and efficiently. This is when the employer brand will play a key role, as it will decide the outcome of the sourcing process by determining the quality of job applications received for the job vacancies.

Selection
The selection process involves subjecting the candidates through a number of checks and tests to find the most suitable candidate for the position. The right candidate should not just be well-qualified but also equally skilled and cultured for the role. The different kinds of tests include a written test, group discussion, interview and psychometric test.

The selection process also involves a detailed analysis of the information provided by the candidate, including the information available on different social media platforms. This information helps to determine the overall persona of the candidate. Nowadays, recruiters can make use of the latest technology such as AI and recruiting software to screen through a large number of job applications and shortlist the most eligible candidates and then find the top matches from the skimmed lot.

Development
Few companies today work on the concept of “hire for the attitude and train for the skills”. This ideology can be effective, as while you may still give preference to particular skills, it is the individual that you hire and not his/her CV. Therefore, skills can be learned and acquired through education and training but attitude is inbound; it is what comes from within. No one can teach or train a good attitude.

Providing employees with the right training and development would empower them with the right expertise, which will contribute greatly to the overall success of the business and would help employees grow within the organization. This would help build employee loyalty towards the company and increase employee engagement.

Employee development should start with an efficient onboarding process. Follow it up by providing adequate opportunities to enhance their skills, proficiency and aptitude. Finally, enable growth through coaching, job rotation, counselling and mentoring schemes.

Retention
The true success and sustainable development of an organization lie in the effective retention of existing talent. Retaining existing talent is as important as recruiting new talent. After all, you have invested resources in their training and development. They hold the expertise, and if they leave, it will be a loss of skilled manpower. Additionally, their positions will be hard to fill and an extra cost to the company.

Therefore, companies should focus on retaining their existing talent through increments and promotions, encouraging them to involve in active decision making and special projects, offering ample growth opportunities, provide training for evolved responsibilities and roles, and implement effective rewards and recognition programmes.

Transition
Effective transition is the essence of an efficient talent management process. It mainly focuses on the evolution and transformation of individual employees, which collectively leads to the overall growth of the organization. This process involves creating a feeling among the employees that they are an integral part of the company and that they hold far bigger purposes in the organization. Effective transition plans usually involve the promotion and transfer of the employee. It also involves retirement benefits, succession planning as well as exit interviews to ensure that you and the employee share a common journey.

Talent management strategy
Effective talent management is much more than just a list of requirements which need fulfilment. It is, in fact, a strategy which requires effective implementation, frequent checks and continuous improvement. Therefore, the five main talent management strategies that every company should implement are as follows:

Detailed job description
A well-written and comprehensive job description helps with effective sourcing. Moreover, it will allow the candidates to better understand the vacant job position. A generic job description does not serve any purpose, rather, it confuses one and all, including your recruiting and talent acquisition team, resulting in more irrelevant job applications and an inefficient recruitment and selection process. The job description is the first introduction to your vacant job positions. So, ensure that it is as detailed and as comprehensive as possible.

This will help you attract the right applications for the job. The main information, which should be covered in the job description, include:
Job title
Job location
Duties and responsibilities
Required skills
Hierarchy structure
Equipment and tools used if any
Salary and other benefits

When you provide these details, you allow the candidate to make a well-informed choice of whether or not to apply for the job position. As a result, you will receive only the best suitable applications.

Culture fit
The candidate should possess the required qualities to fit into the working culture of the organization. If you hire an employee who is not quite a fit for the company culture, neither will the employee be happy nor will he/she be very productive. While it is difficult to thoroughly define a company culture in words, it’s commonly identified through actions. The actions of the candidate and their personality will provide an understanding of whether the candidate will be suitable for the job or not.

Organizational, as well as personal values, should overlap for the employee to feel comfortable working in an organization. If the candidate is not fit for the culture of the company, then a lot of time and effort will go in only trying to adjust to the company culture, which would deviate the focus from one’s actual goal. Recruiting candidates who are a better culture fit enhances employee engagement and leads to higher levels of employee satisfaction, which usually results in better performance.

Collaborate-coach-evolve
A vital strategy for effective talent management should involve the creation of a work culture that encourages coaching, mentoring, collaboration and reverse mentoring. Constructive feedback is always helpful as it enables the employees to develop and enhance their expertise and skills. Therefore, managing talent effectively also involves preparing your employees for the future so that they grow and expand with the organization. This way both the employee and the employer can depend on the other for overall growth and development.

Reward and recognition
The rewards and recognition process forms a critical aspect of the talent management strategy. Rewards and recognition help to manage, motivate and engage employees in a better way. Sometimes recognition and rewards go beyond the bonus packages or financial rewards offered to employees. Studies have always reflected a fact that the employees often seek R&R programs that inspire them and motivate them to do better, and prizes that highlight their achievements.

Continuous improvement opportunities
The talent management strategy should be developed keeping in mind the future goals and expansion plans of the organization. This is why employers should be provided with the appropriate tools that will help them maximize their potential. To ensure the continuous growth of the organization, you need to first provide ample scope and opportunity for the continual development of employees. Moreover, such a strategy ensures that cumulative skills of the organization are upgraded, updated and upscaled.

Effective talent management is directly proportional to the overall growth of the organization. After all, how well you manage your employees, reflects the core values and culture of your organization. Employees are your true assets, therefore you must always strive to provide them with the best learning, training and development opportunities to ensure the holistic growth of your organization.

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