Talent management involves recruiting the right candidates and helping them advance in their careers. It’s a part of the human resources (HR) process and can define an organisation’s commitment to hiring the top talent in its field. If you have an interest in becoming an HR professional and want to use HR resources to reach a business goal, understanding everything about talent management can help you excel in your work. In this article, we discuss what talent management is, explore its importance and learn about its key components, strategy and process.
What is talent management?
Talent management refers to attracting, motivating and retaining top-performing employees or the workforce. It’s an ongoing process that helps identify a vacant position, brings new talent onboard, develops their skills and motivates them constantly to improve their performance. It encompasses all key HR areas, including hiring, onboarding, performance management and retention. HR professionals build a comprehensive workforce by investing in quality training and learning, managing workplace performance and sourcing in-demand skills to departments where the talent requirement is urgent.
Importance of talent management
For a rewarding career in HR, in-depth knowledge of talent management is essential to help your company retain their skilled and talented employees. Here are some other reasons why talent management is important:
- Enhances your company’s performance: When you retain top-performing professionals, you can easily achieve any organisational goal.
- Drives innovation: Talent and top-performing employees can solve complex business problems using innovative tools and ideas.
- Ensures team productivity: With talent management, you can form a highly productive team because every team member does everything possible to achieve a common organisational goal.
- Motivates others to grow: Having talented individuals in a team motivates other employees to excel at their work.
- Helps fill company roles: Using the hiring process, you can help uncover potentially vacant roles in the company and ensure that there are highly qualified employees to achieve business goals. Talent management also ensures that your employees have a workload they can easily manage.
Purpose of talent management
The purpose of talent management in an organisation is finding and retaining employees who can drive a company to success. It’s a key function of the HR department because HR professionals are responsible for hiring, nurturing and developing talent that powers the growth and effectiveness of a company. Some other purposes of talent management are:
- Ensuring innovation in a company
- Increasing productivity of employees
- Developing competencies and skills in employees
- Establishing a high-performing workforce
A talented pool of candidates can help achieve the company’s goal and focus on issues that matter to a company.
Key components of talent management
Talent management includes six key components that can help your organisation hire and retain the right workforce. These components are:
Planning is the first component of talent management and helps you seek talent with the right skills and experience. In the planning phase, you assess your current employees to see what works well with your company. For example, if employees with a certain skill set and characteristics perform better than others, you can plan to hire more such employees. In the planning phase, you are responsible for the following:
- Identifying human capital requirements
- Developing job descriptions for vacant roles
- Proposing a recruitment plan
The second phase involves attracting the right talent to your vacant positions and deciding whether the source of recruitment is internal or external. For external sources of recruitment, you can post job descriptions on different job boards and websites. You may use the following sources for hiring the right talent:
- Online job portals like Indeed
- Social networks
Selecting can refer to the process of finding the best candidate who can help your company achieve its goals. This phase involves evaluating, interviewing and selecting the candidate based on job requirements and the candidate’s skills, experience and qualifications. It involves the following steps:
- Scheduling written tests, group discussions and interviews
- Assessing the candidate’s skills and abilities based on their CV and interview answers
The developing phase involves helping employees grow within a company. During this phase, you identify roles where your employees can advance to in the future and work on ways to expand the skill set of your employees. The development phase prepares your employees to fulfil new challenges facing your organisation. During this phase, you can perform the following tasks:
- Carrying out employee onboarding programmes
- Counselling and mentoring employees
- Enhancing the skill set of employees to match your job role
Another purpose that talent management serves is retaining existing employees at your company for a long time. You can retain employees in the following ways:
- Offering promotions, appraisals and incentives
- Recognising the efforts and contribution of an employee
- Rewarding employees
- Providing growth opportunities
This is the phase where your company focuses on the growth of individual employees. During a transition, you can make your employees feel like they’re an important part of your organisation. Some tasks you might complete during transitioning can include:
- Conducting exit interviews
- Offering retirement benefits to employees
- Ensuring succession planning
5 Talent management strategies
Implement the following talent management strategies in your company:
1. Create a concise job description
Creating a clear and concise job description can help candidates understand the job role better. It also helps managers to find and hire the best talent. Generic job descriptions may create confusion for both employees and hiring managers. Here are the key details that an effective job description can include:
- Responsibilities of the job role
- Necessary skills
- Qualifications and experience the role requires
- Salary information
- Special requirements, such as knowledge of using job-specific tools or technical expertise
2. Evaluate candidates for organisational fit
Typically, employees who fit in your organisation’s culture can be productive and perform to the best of their capabilities. In many cases, you can use your judgement to decide whether a candidate is a good fit for your organisation.
Related: What Is Organisational Culture?
3. Provide coaching and mentoring
Employees who constantly undergo coaching, training and mentoring are often more productive at work. To motivate your team, you can frequently provide constructive feedback while praising their efforts. Constructive feedback helps your employees strengthen and develop skills, so fostering a culture of trust can encourage employees to reach out to their managers for honest feedback and encouragement.
4. Offer rewards
For motivating and managing employees, you can focus on providing rewards and recognition. When employees surpass the expectations for their role, engage your employees by offering rewards beyond financial compensation and bonus packages. When your employees deliver exceptional quality work, you can also consider offering a reward to recognise their efforts.
5. Ensure professional development
Encouraging your team to identify areas they might want to improve can be an effective talent management strategy. To ensure your employees’ personal development, you can use external opportunities to enhance their skill sets. When your team grows professionally, it can positively affect an employee’s potential and ensure maximum productivity.
Process of talent management
Here are some common steps in a talent management process:
- Identifying key skills: The first step of the talent management process is to identify what type of employees you need. Based on your vacant positions, determine what skills you require for completing your company’s job-specific duties.
- Sourcing and attracting the right candidate: From creating targeted advertisements to using personality assessment, there can be many ways to find the right candidate. In this step, you can search for a pool of talented people who can positively affect your company.
- Recruiting candidates: In this stage, you can plan and schedule interviews to hire the top talent. You can create interview tests for identifying the right person for a vacant position.
- Retaining employees: After recruiting the best employee, you can explore ways for ensuring higher employee retention. Apart from offering promotions and incentives, you can provide your employees with an opportunity for growth and let them get creative. Better engagement practices can also keep a work environment positive and increase the employee retention rate.
- Performance management: Measuring the performance of your employees can help identify their true potential.
- Succession planning: This step aims to develop and nurture the continuous development of employees. In this step, you ca nencourage employees to perform to their best potential through continuous learning opportunities. For example, you may conduct exit interviews to know why employees leave your company and take steps to prevent similar instances in the future.