Talent Management for me is an ‘organizational capability to attract, recruit, develop and retain talent in order to gain a sustainable competitive advantage’. The term ‘Talent Management’, ‘Human Resources Management’, ‘Human Capital Management’ and ‘Human Resource Planning’ are often used interchangeably, but ‘Talent Management’ is considered to be something different and relatively a new concept.
Why ‘Talent management’? You may ask 'isn’t talent management same as traditional human resource and isn't it another flashy terminology coined by consultants'? I would say it is different from a tradition human resource management. Traditional HR model relies on Human Resource professional managing recruitment, development and retention of employees and this leaves a gap between the actual talent needs and the perceived need by HR as HR is not closely associated with the business. In an organization with ‘Talent Management’ focus, managers are given significant role in recruitment, development and retention of employees and hence leave HR department to focus more on the strategic human resource related issues. So, I consider ‘Strategic Human Capital Management’ as a term closer to Talent Management than most of the terms used before. Talent management is considered as a business strategy for a sustainable competitive advantage in this extremely complex market place where there is a definite scarcity for talent.
The demand for a diverse workforce, mobility of resources, collaboration between workforce and virtual work relationship are becoming an increasing concern and hence, developing a world class global talent management capability has become one of the top priorities for executives today. Talent management strategy focuses on attracting, developing and retaining the right talent with the right skills at the right location.
In the past decade Human Resource function has reinvented itself to move from efficiency to effectiveness, cost to value-add, data collection to analysis and linking data to operational performance and this shift is what is called as ‘Talent Management’. Traditional employee life cycle is still valid in a Talent Management Organization, but there are additional components included and a clear focus on HR involving in strategic human resource related issues. The inner circle shows a traditional employee life cycle and in talent management organization HR focuses mainly on the outer circle shown in the below diagram and the responsibility of employee life cycle is slowly transitioned to the Line managers.
An effective management of human capital is critical to organization’s success today and we will see more organizations focusing on a 'Talent Management' Strategy for sustainable competitive advantage.