Talent Management

by Rachel Brushfield

Common questions

  1. Who are talent?
  2. What is talent management?
  3. Why is talent management important?
  4. Who is responsible for talent in a company?
  5. Who defines talent criteria?
  6. Why is the phrase ‘talent war’ often used?
  7. What is a talent pool?
  8. What are talent competencies?

 

1. Who are talent?

Talent is defined differently by different companies. Some companies define all employees as talent, while others define them as people with rare technical skills or as high potentials (in other words, employees capable of developing fast). Some companies choose criteria such as the ability to generate sales and build relationships. It’s essential that you find out how your company defines talent.

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2. What is talent management?

Talent management is the phrase used by HR professionals to refer to attracting, recruiting, engaging, motivating, developing and retaining the key employees necessary to your company’s success.

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3. Why is talent management important?

Talent management is important because these people are crucial to the success of your company. They are the 20 per cent of the employees who will provide 80 per cent of the value to your company, through areas such as knowledge, the ability to engage others or business generation.

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4. Who is responsible for talent in a company?

The responsibility for talent is different in different companies. In some companies it is the CEO and Board, in others Human Resources, in others line management and in others a combination. Find out how your company sets responsibility for talent management and your specific role within that framework.

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5. Who defines talent criteria?

Different companies define talent criteria differently. Larger and more sophisticated companies tend to have clearly-defined criteria against which they recruit, appraise and develop talent. These measures can be tracked using software that can get extremely sophisticated in large multinational companies. The criteria are a combination of behavioural and technical attributes and may be developed by Human Resources and/or an external specialist consultancy.

What is important is that the criteria are informed, objective and unbiased, not subjective and down to one individual’s point of view. Avoidance of favouritism and politics is crucial in successful talent management.

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6. Why is the phrase ‘talent war’ often used?

The phrase ‘talent war’ is used because there is a shortage of talent around the world and therefore the different companies competing in a sector and profession are all after the same people. As we live in a knowledge economy, winning the war of attracting and keeping the best people is essential if a company is to be successful and have a competitive advantage.

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7. What is a talent pool?

A talent pool is the group of people available to fill positions. They are a combination of internal and external candidates, people in your country and people in other countries. They are also people who work in lateral sectors but who have the same or similar attributes to the ones required to do the job.

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8. What are talent competencies?

Talent competencies are the skills, knowledge and personality traits required for your business to succeed. This is sometimes called a competency framework. It is a checklist of specific skills, behaviours and attitudes believed to be crucial to excellence in the area that a company defines as talent. It can be a particular job, training, management and leadership skill or a specialist technical skill.

Competencies are used to recruit, appraise and evaluate learning and development needs and then create personal development plans to address any development areas.

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