Managing people: Talent Management

In the increasingly competitive marketplace, hiring, developing and actually retaining talented people is proving more and more difficult. Talent is a scarce resource that has to be managed well in order to maximize returns as well as retain it. When a firm can hire, retain and engage its talent well, it has a competitive edge that can scarcely be replicated.

Talent management regards an employee’s selection, development, appraisal, performance management and succession. Industry best practices would have a company align talent management with the larger organizational strategy; and the Human Resource department own/control the talent strategy.

Recruitment and hiring involves seeking applications from potential employees, then identifying those with the required skills. Hiring of talent should be done for compatibility of the employee and their skills to the company’s needs rather than for general skills.

In training and development, where the hired employees are familiarized with their work environment, equipping them with skills to meet the job’s evolving needs is vital. Employers often look for; interpersonal skills, effective communication, loyalty/honesty, work ethic and initiative/flexibility on the part of the employee.

During appraisal (or, performance management); consideration are made to find out whether employees are meeting objectives set out in their job descriptions and to gauge the value of their contributions to the firm’s goals. The culture of meritocracy becomes paramount here; those doing well are rewarded. Benefits may include bonuses, raises, promotions or leave of absence. Rewarding the best encourages those not fairing well to do so.

Remuneration and benefits are surely the backbone of talent management. To provide exceptionally better service, a company may offer higher pay to attract the best talent, as well as bonuses and such other benefits that are designed to retain this talent.

As far as succession is concerned, firms need to constantly prepare for when their current talent retires, resigns or becomes incapacitated. This is done by training new talent or lower level employees in the necessary skills. Rising executives should have full exposure to the firm’s operations. Successors are selected based on their leadership abilities to ensure competency. It should be noted that succession strategies have been found to drastically reduce the cost of talent turnover as well as avoid lag in operations.

An effective talent management system must be flexible, integrated, scalable, future-proof and easy to implement. Most employees depend on HR for communication on company policy, but it would be more effective if the management maintained close and involving employee relations. Finally, it is advisable for talent managers to ensure everything is done within the law. This will save the firm time and money in unnecessary


Additional information from;

” Nine Best Practices for Effective Talent Management”



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