About Integrated Talent Management Strategy

Talent Management involves several practices linked together and propelled by organizational infrastructure. It begins by having a firm written understanding of the core capabilities needed to perform tasks meshed with the actual business intelligence for the industry. For this article’s example we will be using the financial services industry, but we must remember that support functions like IT, Human Resource, Accounting, and Purchasing have unique business intelligence issues that need to be included any industry strategy.

While banking business intelligence is similar from one institution to another, your market, choice of products and services and unique culture make for a different plan and approach. The clarity of goal for talent management is essential before assembling the pieces.

One of the most complete models for a Talent Management Strategy I have found includes the following nine practices:

  1. Recruiting & Staffing
  2. Performance Management
  3. Rewards & Recognition
  4. Workforce Planning
  5. Talent Review
  6. Succession Management
  7. High Potential Development
  8. Leadership Development
  9. Employee Development

These practices are not in any particular order or priority because they all must be in place, and integrated for the strategy to be effective. Rolling out one at a time is a waste of energy and leads to minimal impact. This is probably the main reason many companies have hired a Director of Talent Management to design, implement and monitor the strategy. To be effective, no other function can add all this to their existing workload.

Now while it is more effective to put talent management under the responsibility of a single leader, the practice responsibilities are spread throughout human resources, training, and selected management sponsors. This initiative may begin with the Board of Directors and/or Senior Management; but it eventually is a process that involves every single employee if it is to be successful in achieving a lasting effect.

As you review the list of practices, it becomes clear that the focus is on your employees (the talent) and the conscience attention to setting and achieving desired outcomes to function in today’s economy as well as being prepared for changes in your workforce and working environment. Banks often promote their technologies to clients, and yet it is our human capital that makes the bank possible. Let’s face it, years ago we did it without as much technology, but we still need the human factor to make it happen today.

Now while you might hire someone to management this whole process for you, by the very nature of this much change all at once you would be wise to bring in an external consultant to guide the creation of the strategy. Someone who fully understands what integration means and how it is applied to each of the practices. This consultant acts in many ways as someone who can act without emotional attachment to ancient practices, and is skilled in bringing consensus between processes and people. Yet consensus is not everything. The consultant is not going to be with you forever, so part of their job is to make sure your management team comprehends what integration means, and a year later can identify issues in your strategy, and how to make tweaks to close the loop holes.

Better Execution Management System

When you implement an execution management system, there are certain things you need to do simultaneously. Taking the following steps will improve the efficacy of the Execution Management System.

  • To begin with, it is necessary that you make short-term plans instead of long-term ones. Meet up on a quarterly basis; decide on the next set of actions and also the way to go about them. When you meet once in a year, the discussions get longer and the strategies more complicated. Consequently, sound executive management automatically becomes least feasible. Short-term plans, on the other hand, are better executed and the entire scenario looks better at the end of the year.
  • Cost reduction exercises are common in every enterprise or market. But more often than not, costs reductions lead to negative impacts on the business model. This is not desirable. So, it is necessary that you review your plan of cost reduction before implementing it. It is found that cost restructuring instead of cost reduction actually helps in better execution of business strategies.
  • When it comes to strategizing and executing of these strategies, business enterprises consider certain Key Performance Indicators, also known as KPIs. But the KPIs determined long back lose significance over the time and hence, bring no real value for the organization. So, the best thing to do is to select indicators that are relevant and matter the most. These can be related to cash position, exposure to short or long-term risks and access to capital.
  • It is not enough to define an objective but you need to implement it. People in the organization have to take ownership and work towards achieving the pre-determined goals. Let people debate, raise issues, suggest modifications and only then accept the objective. Even if this means investing few weeks of time, never stop yourself as the end result will be satisfactory.
  • It is easy to implement strategies and execute them when things go as planned. But it is extremely difficult to even think rationally in times of crisis. Performance coaching, quite popular these days, helps managers keep their calm and stay focused in difficult times. It ensures that plans get executed even with the obstacles.