Businesses and human resources departments have been heavily focused on building talent management strategies. Originally they were conceived as programs to help manage people from “pre-hire to retire,” and they gave birth to a profitable software industry that helped refocus HR departments, and have educated CEOs and business leaders about the importance of talent.
As the scarcity of talent gets worse, as the world of work becomes more contingent and the disparity between highly skilled and others grew, the need to attract top people is bigger. An organization’s ability to attract talent (the right people, not just anyone) is now one of the biggest differentiating factors in business.
There is a fast-growing new marketplace for tools and vendors which help you assess your culture and find people who “fit” – fit with your strategy, your culture, your team, as well as the job. New talent analytics tools and strategies now help you figure out who fits, find people who fit, and make sure you know how to keep people who fit.
With all these changes, and an accelerating need for new young leaders, is “talent management” as we define it working? As I go around and talk with business and HR leaders, I am left with a big question:
Do today’s “talent management” programs, as defined, work? Have all the companies who purchased and implemented talent management software truly transformed themselves? Have we really built the “talent-centric” organizations we talked about over the last decade?
My answer is simple: the world of “talent management” shifted under our feet. “Talent management” strategies we conceived in the last ten years are rapidly becoming out of date. A focus on “pre-hire to retire” is becoming less relevant, stack ranking and performance management is being totally revamped, corporate training is undergoing a total transformation, and the concepts of “staffing and assessment” are being replaced by a focus on corporate culture, engagement, work environment, and empowerment.
As I look back to when I started working in the field full time, sometime in 2004, I realize that while most of it was important and fundamental, almost all of it has changed today.
What are the opportunities the next decade will bring?