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How to Make Talent Management a Business Priority

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Allison Snow
on April 24, 2015
It’s a fact. Organizations with effective talent management practices get better business results.

Yet, even with the measurable correlation between the people we hire and our business performance, most businesses don’t have a talent management strategy – a critical finding in Brandon Hall Group’s 2014 Talent Management Benchmarking Survey

That research also revealed that more than one-third (37%) of organizations attributed the “dismal results” of their business performance to ineffective talent management practices. On the other hand, 94% of business leaders cited a talent strategy as their single most critical strategy – behind only operational strategy. 

Confusing? Yes. Conflicting? Yes. Unsolvable? No.

Laci Loew, VP of Brandon Hall Group’s Talent Management Practice and principal analyst puts some perspective on the “sharp contrast between urgency and readiness” in her recent report, Building the Business Case for Investing in a Talent Management Strategy. Her report not only spotlights the need for organizations to re-invent their talent practices, it also provides the statistics – and the critical proactive steps – that organizations need to incorporate to build the case for making talent management a business priority. According to Loew, talent management includes all talent processes within each employee lifecycle phase: planning, acquisition, development, management, engagement, and retention. While talent priorities vary across industries, says Loew, the common thread of non-implementation of these processes clearly is limiting business performance:

  • Workforce Planning: Only 4% of organizations can quantify required headcount in “what if” business planning scenarios.

  • Succession Management: Less than 1% of organizations have internal candidates ready to fill key positions as they become vacant.

  • Talent Acquisition: Only 3% of organizations rated their ability to recruit top flight talent as excellent.

  • Leadership Development: Almost half of all organizations (48%) do not yet have a plan for developing their leaders.

  • Performance Management: 64% of organizations indicated that their managers were fair or poor at providing regular, timely, and in-the-moment feedback to their employees regarding performance.

In the report, Loew says that forward-thinking organizations are stepping up to these talent concerns, beginning with increased investment: 23% plan to increase their talent management budget over the next 12 months. 

It isn’t that the majority of the remaining organizations are questioning that an effective talent management would improve their business performance. They know it will

These organizations, instead, are struggling to elevate talent management as a priority over other pressing business demands. 

And for them, Loew has an invaluable solution. In her report, she provides a well-defined stepped approach to: 

  • Diagnosing the current state of both people processes and organizational elements 

  • Identifying the action items to move current state to higher impact

  • Gaining commitment for executing on an action plan to implement a high-impact talent strategy

Our advice? Take the first step to better business performance right now. 

Download the Analyst Report 

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