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Talent Management

What is Talent Management?

Talent management is an integral part of human resource management. Talent management can be defined as a deliberate approach implemented to recruit or hire, develop and retain people with the required aptitude or skills to meet the present and future goals or needs of the organization.

It is the creation and maintenance of a supportive and pro-people organizational culture. Talent management is, therefore, the commitment of an organization to recruit, develop, and retain the most talented and qualitative employees available in the job market.

Talent management has become almost an inevitable management process in modern days. Due to tough competition in every sphere of the business world today, organizations are vying for the best people from the job market.

However, attracting the best talent from the job market is not everyone’s cup of tea. It requires a lot of competence, expertise and experience on the part of the organization to recruit the best in the industry. The major part of the Human Resource Department is devoted to talent management, which is mostly dedicated to the purpose of recognizing, sourcing, and poaching the best talent.

Significance of Talent Management

The basic purpose of talent management is to recruit, develop, and retain best talent in the organization. The HR Department always endeavors to ensure that employees with the right skills and qualities stay with the organization for a long time.


The most important functions of Talent Management are as follows −

  • Establishing a high-performance workforce.
  • Attracting individuals with high potential and retaining them through proper training and refreshment.
  • Increasing the productivity of the organization.
  • Proper time management, as untrained and unskilled workforce lead to wastage of time and commitment of errors, which is not cost-effective.
  • Retain talented and high-performing employees.
  • Ensuring growth and innovation in the organization.
  • Developing skills and competencies in employees.

A requisite pool of qualified and talented employees can simplify the process of achieving the organizational goal and help focus on issues that really matters in the interest of the organization. Therefore, the overall purpose of talent management is to maintain a skilled and efficient workforce for the organization.

In modern-day organizations, the importance of talent management is second to none. Unless an organization has the required talented workforce, it cannot succeed in attaining its goal even if it possesses other factors such as natural resources, infrastructure, and technology. In fact, it is people who take an organization to its next levels of success.

Types of Talent Management

Talent management includes within its fold those individuals who can make a difference to the organization’s goals, either through their immediate contribution or in the long run.

Talent is a composite state made up of various elements. An Individual is said to be talented when he/she possesses or acquires the following elements.

  • Skills, knowledge, intelligence, and experience
  • Ability to learn and grow
  • Judgment, attitude, character
  • Perseverance and self-motivation

Talent is a set of unique abilities possessed by individuals. There are two types of talent found in an organization. They are unidimensional and multidimensional. Both types of talent have the same objective, however, with different perspectives.

Unidimensional Talent

In an organization, we observe that some employees are best in a particular skill and ability. For instance, some employees may be best in administration, some of the best in sales, while some employees may be best in their respective functions. When individuals possess a singular talent in any particular field, it is called unidimensional talent.

Multidimensional Talent

On the other hand, in an organization, we also observe that employees are adept at multiple skills and abilities. For example, one employee is best in administration sales, accounting, and production at a stretch. Such an employee is said to possess multi-dimensional talent.

Multi-dimensional talent is much sort after by organizations. Every organization seeks to retain employees with multidimensional talent as they prove highly beneficial in bridging the gap between organizational objectives and goals.

Skill and Knowledge as Defined in Talent Management

Skill and knowledge both are the abilities of individuals. Knowledge is information-based and skill is the ability to perform a particular task in the required time frame.

Knowledge − It is the theoretical and practical understanding of any subject. It provides the foundation to gain skills in any subject or action. For example, an employee having good knowledge of the English language and grammar may not be able to speak in good English, because communicating in English is a distinct skill.

Skill − One can develop skills through experience, training, and continuous effort. For example, an employee can develop communication skills while continuously practicing and communicating with colleagues or subordinates.

Benefits of Talent Management

Talent management is integral to modern businesses and is one of the crucial management functions in an organization. Here, we have listed down the major benefits that Talent Management has to offer −

  • It helps the organization fulfill its vision with the help of efficient and promising talented people.
  • Talent management also assists the organization to build a talent pool comprising a list of talented people to meet future exigencies.
  • It makes the organization more competitive and progressive.
  • It paves the way for future leadership.
  • It helps automate the core processes and helps capture data for making better decisions.
  • Automates repetitive tasks like creating salaries thereby releasing time and resources for making strategies and more critical decisions.

Benefit for Organization

The following points explain how talent management can be beneficial for organizations −

  • Enhances individual and group productivity and capacity to compete effectively in a complex and dynamic environment to achieve sustainable growth.
  • Assists in hiring quality workforce.
  • Establishes better match between jobs and skills.
  • Helps retain top talent thereby reducing the cost of hiring new recruits.
  • Helps in understanding the employees better.
  • Keeps employees engaged constructively.
  • Effective use of available man-hours.
  • Helps develop leaders for tomorrow within the organization.
  • Helps in evaluating employee’s readiness to take up new roles.

Benefit for Employees

The following points explain how Talent Management can be beneficial for employees −

  • Promotes long-term association with the organization.
  • Persistent and higher productivity of employees.
  • Keeps the employees motivated which helps in career development.
  • Helps the employees get job satisfaction from their work.

Thus, talent management can be beneficial for both organizations as well as individual employees.

Talent Management Process / Stages

The various stages of Talent Management are as follows −

  • Identifying the goals − This is the cardinal stage and pivotal to the success of the entire talent management process. The first step is to identify what the organization aims to achieve and what characteristic qualifications and skills the recruits should possess to realize the goals.
  • Attracting the talent − The main aim of talent management process is to hire the best talent for an organization. Organizations at this stage make effort to attract the best talented people from the job market.
  • Sourcing the talent − In this stage, the talent management personnel looks for appropriate sources in the job market or industries where the targeted people can be hired or recruited.
  • Recruitment − This is the first stage of hiring the best talented people for the organization. Skilled and qualified people are invited to join the organization.
  • Selection − This is the stage where the objective of talent management becomes a reality. It is when truly talented people are recruited or hired in various roles.
  • Training and development − At this stage, the selected recruits are provided with necessary training to make them productive and efficient to work towards the goals of the organization.
  • Retention − The notable objective of talent management is not only hiring talent but also ensuring their retention in the organization. Factors upon which the retention rate depends are attractive pay packages, job specifications, safety and security of the employees, personal development of an employee, recognition and culture of the organization, and the fit between the job and talent.
  • Assessment − Periodical assessment of employees’ skills, abilities, improvements and competencies enable the organization to know if they are fit for continuation and promotion.
  • Performance appraisal − It is a measurement of the actual performance of the employees in the job. It enables the organization to ascertain if the person can be loaded with extra responsibilities.
  • Promotion − It refers to job enrichment. It keeps the energy level high of the employees and they are inspired to continue to work for the organization.
  • Career planning − If an employee is found befitting to handle work pressure and extra responsibilities well, the management needs to plan his/her career so that he or she feels elevated and rewarded. Such recognition and rewards inspire the employees to remain with the organization for a long time.
  • Succession planning − This deals with the replacement of people within the organization. Employees who have given their best to the organization and have been serving for long deserve to hold higher positions.
  • Exit stage − This is the final stage of the talent management process that ends in the retirement of the employees and they are no more a part of the organization.

Talent Management Methodology

Every organization has a different methodology for talent management. The following diagram shows the complete cycle of talent management which involves Planning, Acquiring, Developing, and Retaining able and skilled personnel for the organization.


The steps are as follows −

  • Planning − It involves identifying, defining, and setting criteria for required capabilities as well as examining the current talent levels.
  • Acquiring − It utilizes a varied range of strategies to attract talent.
  • Developing − It involves providing opportunities for career development and training, managing employee performance, coaching, and mentoring.
  • Retaining − It involves providing long-term incentives, a flexible and positive work environment, and opportunities for advancement of good remuneration.

Let us now discuss each of the steps in detail.

Planning Talent

In this methodology, the organization establishes defined competencies and sets criteria to measure talent skills.

  • Focus on Talent − Once you know what your organization needs, you can start thinking about what type of talent potential to focus on.
  • Define Competence − Competencies are lasting individual attributes that cause high levels of performance. In this stage, the organization clearly defines the specific and usable skills and talents its employees need, so as to realize organizational goals and objectives.
Planning Talent
  • Measure Criteria − There should be a set of criteria to evaluate, measure, and develop specific competency. You need objective criteria to measure competencies effectively.
  • Talent Audit − An audit may include different types of activities designed to evaluate the level of competence. Methods include psychometric tests and questionnaires, in-depth interviews, case studies, and analysis of the most recent performance reviews.

Acquiring Talent

In this stage of methodology, the organization promotes its values to attract talented people to apply and join the organization. It includes interviewing, selecting, and onboarding employees.

  • Attracting − Organizations promote their culture and values to attract talented and skilled people from the industries to work with.
  • Recruiting − A recruiting brand reflects the core values of the organization and communicates the advantages of working for the organization.
Acquiring Talent
  • Selecting − This process involves multiple steps such as interviews, tests, and background checks.
  • Employing − It is the final stage of hiring skilled and talented people in the organization.

Developing Talent

It includes talent management readiness, career development and training, performance management, and coaching and mentoring. These are the core objectives of this phase.

  • Talent Readiness Training − These competencies help the organization attract, identify and develop talent.
  • Career Development & Training − The training program is useful for upgrading the talent and skills of the employees and preparing them for future challenges.
Developing Talent
  • Performance Management − Performance management incorporates setting goals, giving performance reviews, and providing feedback.
  • Coaching & Mentoring − Coaching and mentoring develops talent by encouraging people to excel at their work and to learn on the job. These techniques engage people on a more emotional level.

Retaining Talent

The longer you retain talented people in your organization, the greater the return on your investment. Retaining, the fourth phase of the methodology, is to define several strategies that can help retain talent.

  • Long-term Incentives − Long-term incentives such as stock options or paid vacation or other benefits increasing over time can encourage employees to couple their careers and personal goals with a long-term commitment or association with the organization.
  • Career Planning − This involves providing genuine opportunities for advancement to the employees to retain talent in the organization.
Retaining Talent
  • Flexible Working Arrangements − When working arrangements are inflexible and fixed, the options available to employees are limited – forcing them to choose between staying with or leaving an organization.
  • Talent Culture − Positive work environment is a key factor to retain talent. Management needs to monitor these levels of satisfaction so they can forestall problems before people leave an organization.

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