Published: Mar 9, 2020
Time to read: 6mins
Category: Insights

Drive Your Talent Strategy, Not Your System

Developing an efficient and successful workforce begins with the complex process of managing your organization’s talent strategy. From determining the necessary skill set required for certain positions to offering competitive compensation and incentive packages, having the right systems and workflows in place can help drive an efficient talent process. In this article from Lori Smith, Director of Global Solution Consulting, we examine how HR leaders can deploy a talent strategy that will allow them to focus on building and maintaining a productive workforce.

Guiding your team to success means having the right data to support every function of your talent strategy. Whether the function is your compensation and rewards program or finding the best way to build a culture of support, it all comes down to having the right tools in place. In this article, we examine how strategic business partners can utilize performance management software and individualized processes to drive an efficient and impactful talent strategy in their organizations.

Considering the complex nature of work, it’s critical for HR and business leaders to understand that a ‘universal talent strategy’ doesn’t exist. What might work for one organization won’t work for yours—and it shouldn’t. Finding a strategic plan that anticipates and addresses your company’s individual talent needs should also tie back to the business’ needs. In order to continue being a strategic partner, HR leaders must have a strong understanding of the overall executive strategy and a holistic approach to align their efforts to business results.

Are Your Talent Strategy Efforts Making an Impact?

The title is a nod to a common question HR often receives from executives. One that has more than a simple yes or no answer. Justifying your position as an HR business partner begins with asking a few essential questions of your own. Asking yourself these questions can help you set expectations with leaders and better understand your role:

  1. Aside from utilizing talent management solutions, how can I elevate my teams to be an impactful part of the organization?
  2. How can I design talent processes that are going to support the greater business needs?
  3. How can I ensure that our organization has the right people in the right role, at the right time?

While these questions can make a good starting point for auditing your existing processes, there’s not a ‘catch all’ approach. Each one should be considered from an individual perspective with the organization’s immediate and future needs as an overarching goal.

Keep reading: ‘4 Innovative Tactics Your Talent Management Strategy Needs’

The Intersection of Performance and Recruitment Management

Although talent acquisition requires a different strategy altogether, it presents a great opportunity to audit your organization’s existing performance processes. For example, when it comes to sourcing talent, there should be solutions in place that allow you to assess talent internally. Before an existing employee is passed over for a position, HR business partners and hiring managers should identify and clearly communicate the necessary skills for a role to their recruiters. And, if necessary, there must be a process for developing internal candidates for such a position.

According to data from a 2019 research report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics,11.7% of employees who are unhappy report it’s due to a lack of career growth and advancement opportunities in their current company. Understanding not only what an internal candidate has accomplished but what they are capable of accomplishing is critical. For this to be efficient and successful, there must be data to support recruitment professionals before they look for external candidates.

From a performance management standpoint, the message here is clear. Considering the technology boom and the generational shift in our workplaces, leaders must match pace with their dynamic and expansive workforces. While reskilling is a trendy buzzword in the HR space, it’s not all for naught. A considerable concern exists around how HR leaders and business executives are going to address current skill gaps for their current and future positions. As the rapid innovation continues, those gaps could prove to be detrimental to a company’s future success—especially within tech roles.

Related content: ‘How to Create the Right Talent Personas for Your Recruiting Strategy’

Developing a Balanced Talent Strategy

Addressing the concerns around reskilling goes back to how HR business partners must design processes that provide an optimal user experience across all generations. Creating a culture of learning can also help HR professionals meet the individual needs of your workers—regardless of how they prefer to work and learn. The latter is a big piece of the puzzle when you consider the many differing opinions and learning styles within a workforce. This is where HR business partners can lean on performance management software to ensure their efforts are impactful and easy, yet still compliant across a multigenerational workforce.

Finally, this interconnectivity between performance management and talent acquisition leads to an emerging—and welcome—theme in the HR space: truly making the time for human connections and transparent communication. There must be a give and take which includes anecdotal data that is not traditionally stored in a repository with other performance metrics, such as feedback from leadership and/or team members. HR practitioners should not be solely reliant on their processes or talent management tools to drive their talent strategies. Instead, a strategic business partner can be most successful by fostering the connections within an organization and leveraging talent management software to track and report on how their efforts are making an impact on the business goals.

More from the blog: ‘How to Get Greater Value from Your Talent Review Meetings’

It’s All About Finding a Strategic Plan

Having a technology solution in place that offers visibility to your data and empowers the talent process can help you support employee growth and drive a more productive workforce. For organizations who don’t take advantage of software systems to manage their workforce, establishing a holistic and strategic plan is a business case in and of itself. Utilizing a feature-rich talent management solution can help minimize the risk for employee turnover and allow HR leaders to efficiently develop their people.

If an HR business partner is successful from an executive’s standpoint, they’ll be able to answer the perennial question of “how is this making a difference?” Similarly, executives and HR practitioners should be able to answer their employees’ common, albeit more singular, question of: what’s in it for me?

Read what other HR professionals are saying about talent management. Continue the conversation on our social page to find out how PeopleFluent can help your organization develop an effective talent strategy.

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