Talent Management Strategy


Talent management and Individual growth in organizations is one of the most critical challenges for HR today. The huge demand and shortage of talent pool leads to some uncomfortable situations for many of us in HR .One of the most preferred and successful means for developing and retaining talent is providing ample opportunities to organizations present pool of resources for performing the next level of role.

It’s always easier said than done and Lowell L. Bryan, Claudia I. Joyce, and Leigh M. Weiss have a step by step guide for 21st-century companies, which should put as much effort into developing its talented employees as it puts into recruiting them. Here’s a brief of the study which appeared in Mckinsey Quarterly latest edition.

Most companies have traditionally spent most of their energy improving the quantity and quality of their line-management talent as opposed to other types of professional employees.

Companies focus the greater part of their efforts on helping managers move up the line-management hierarchy and become better general managers. They usually spend less time developing the people who have the talent required to cultivate distinctive client relationships, to tailor products for distribution channels, or to negotiate superior contracts with suppliers. The rewards of line management motivate talented people to seek line opportunities over professional ones.

A formal talent marketplace doesn't come into existence naturally; a company must invest in it to ensure that it makes a fair exchange of value to both parties in a transaction—otherwise, it will fail. Formal talent marketplaces can develop around functional areas or managerial roles. Large companies with a formal talent marketplace include American Express and IBM.

Talent markets in action

How might talent market transactions work?

First of all, any marketplace must define what is being traded, how it is priced, and the operating protocols and standards. To facilitate exchanges, a formal talent marketplace also needs "market makers": usually central human-resources staff in the case of managers or staff assigned to help a formal network executive (who might head, say, a center for software design) in the case of specialized professional talent.

Market makers must be allowed to show each party confidential information (such as performance reviews) related to an assignment. This requirement protects the interests of both job seeker and would-be employer, facilitates "contracting" for assignments by the parties involved, and ensures that the terms of the "contracts" are honored after the fact.

Employees who have fulfilled the time commitment in their current job contracts can apply for a new job by using the online system to submit an application that responds to the requirements in the job description. The manager of the employment opportunity can also search an electronic database for candidates who haven't applied.

Three important design features further support this talent marketplace. First, performance evaluations, which are conducted across the company, have several standardized components that promote comparisons among candidates. To help the market function smoothly, jobs have minimum time commitments (usually one year for lower-level managers and three for vice presidents) to ensure that managers don't have to scramble to fill positions before the people who hold them have finished the job. Finally, enterprise-wide standards (such as salary bands) are defined for all levels, from entry through senior leadership, thus facilitating comparisons across the company.

Breaking with tradition

A formal talent marketplace makes employees (rather than line managers or HR professionals) responsible for managing the greater part of their careers. Second, it explodes the idea that senior managers "own" talent. In a talent marketplace, employees are "restricted free agents" (the restrictions define, for example, pay grades and terms of service). They are expected to find the best opportunities for themselves, and the market opens up a nonprice-based competition across a range of candidates and job alternatives.

Furthermore, a talent marketplace formalizes the terms of employment—that is, the role, its duration, the place of work, travel, job options available upon successful completion, and so forth. It does so by making the terms more formal than a mere handshake and by making the protocols around the contract formal and explicit. Finally, it dispenses with two-party contract negotiations and instead uses the HR "broker" to protect confidences, promote the interests of both parties, and ensure compliance with the terms of the contract.