A talent management strategy consists of a declaration of intent on how the processes described above should mesh together with an overall objective to acquire and nurture talent wherever it is and wherever it is needed by using a number of interdependent policies and practices. Talent management is the notion of ‘bundling’ in action.
Components of a talent management strategy
A talent management strategy involves:
- defining who the talent management programme should cover;
- defining what is meant by talent in terms of competencies and potential;
- defining the future talent requirements of the organization;
- developing the organization as an ‘employer of choice’ – a ‘great place to work’;
- using selection and recruitment procedures which ensure that good quality people are recruited who are likely to thrive in the organization and stay with it for a reasonable length of time (but not necessarily for life);
- introducing and managing processes – talent audits and performance management – for identifying talented people and their development needs and assessing potential;
- designing jobs and developing roles that give people opportunities to apply and grow their skills and provide them with autonomy, interest and challenge;
- providing talented staff with opportunities for career development and growth;
- creating a working environment in which work processes and facilities enable rewarding (in the broadest sense) jobs and roles to be designed and developed, providing scope for achieving a reasonable balance between working in the organization and life outside work;
- developing a positive psychological contract;
- developing the leadership qualities of line managers;
- recognizing those with talent by rewarding excellence, enterprise and achievement;
- introducing management succession planning procedures that identify the talent available to meet future requirements and indicate what management development activities are required.
The qualities required
The development and implementation of a talent management strategy requires high-quality management and leadership from the top and from senior managers and the HR function. As suggested by Younger et al (2007), the approaches required involve emphasizing ‘growth from within’, regarding talent development as a key element of the business strategy, being clear about the competencies and qualities that matter, maintaining well-defined career paths, taking management development, coaching and mentoring very seriously, and demanding high performance.