Talent Management: It’s Not Just HR’s Game

Talent management, in a nutshell, is an organization’s commitment to recruiting, retaining and developing the most talented individuals available. It includes everything along the continuum of the employee life cycle and ensures continuity and connectivity amongst talent acquisition, on boarding, cultural socialization, performance management, staff development, succession planning and off boarding.

Every single aspect. Every single day. And all of these factors that impact an employee’s successful tenure operate in neither isolation nor solitude.

Traditionally, of course, the components of talent management have been owned and managed by HR departments; they’re often the folks who have oversight of recruiting processes, manage employee on boarding, and develop and roll-out performance appraisal systems. And while it makes sense for one organizational function to have primary responsibility, the efforts to attract, select, develop, retain and promote valuable employees must be shared across the organization with all leaders and managers having an investment in success.

Just as with any desired business outcome – i.e. increased revenue, improved customer satisfaction, or higher productivity – effective hiring and ensuring job performance is optimized can only be achieved when there is mutual responsibility. Sadly there are numerous organizations where talent and people initiatives remain firmly – and solely – in the domain of HR.

But all is not lost; instilling a talent mindset in managers and leaders can begin fairly easily when you:

  • Empower managers to take an ongoing role in building candidate pipelines and encourage them to be active participants in candidate networks and communities. You can reward and recognize them, as you would any employee, when they tap into their own professional network or source and attract referrals.
  • Fully involve managers and supervisors in the onboarding of their new employees. Make sure they’re reaching out to new hires during the critical time between “offer accepted” and “start date.” Encourage them to make phone calls, send welcome emails, or sign the gift card that accompanies the shipped box-of-swag.
  • Ensure managers provide clarity around job role and performance expectations not just for new employees but for all staff members on a continuous basis. This is pretty basic performance management but is so often a point-of-failure in many organizations. The annual check-in/check-box review is not sufficient (of course); make sure your managers are continuously verifying that employees understand the alignment between their individual objectives and organizational goals and strategies.

Effective talent management is inclusive and not just something on the HR agenda; allowing leaders and managers to be active participants in the recruitment, retention and development of employees is crucial for the success of any talent management strategy.

It’s not just for HR anymore.

author: Robin Schooling

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