New talent management technologies to aid HRs

New talent management technologies to aid HRs

The economic challenges and competitive business environment is forcing organisations to have better visibility of the talent pool and effectively leverage their critical competencies for business success.

In order to have an edge over the war for talent and create a talent pool for business success, organisations are compelled to create a structured process to identify high potential resources, plan their development and build a robust succession pipeline.

It is a requisite to ensure business continuity in key roles, for common understanding and assessment of potential internal talent which also facilitates in build and buy decisions.

McKinsey quarterly reports indicate that demographics, globalisation and characteristics of knowledge work present long term challenges that reinforce the argument for putting workforce planning and talent management at the heart of business strategy and for giving those issues a bigger share of management time.

Too many organisations still dismiss talent management as a short term, tactical problem rather than an integral part of a long term business strategy, requiring the attention of top level management.

Fortunately, organisations are beginning to realise the tremendous potential of a fully evolved talent management system driven by business plan.

Infosys unveiled talent Edge as a comprehensive and cloud based technology driven talent management platform.

If we can step back a couple of decades, we can see how HR has transitioned from a business function to a business partner to now into a business integration role.

Always connected

The Millennials and Gen Y employees have access to Internet at their homes, possess cell phones, they are well connected on the social media platforms, and hence have the ability to quickly and easily access and share information.

Hence organisations have to adequately respond to the workforce needs by investing into something like an integrated talent management system to achieve better workforce planning, expectation management and optimise engagement, attract and retain talent to meet organic and inorganic growth, create a value proposition that appeals to multiple generations, develop a robust leadership pipeline, build and leverage a global and diverse talent base, embed a performance culture, and accelerate career for high potential talent.

Talent management technology has evolved from single isolated and automated process to become a more seamless integration of HR processes linked to business strategies and goals. Technology can either automate our current ways of working or change the way we work. In most cases, we have used it for automation rather than transformation.

 Technology can be a big enabler in the way we create an integrated talent management system, which can transform the organisation and help achieve significant business impact.

  HR has the opportunity to leverage new technologies in the enterprise to truly optimise talent engagement and meet the needs of a changing workforce. It is indeed heartening to find many global organizations across US, Europe and emerging markets have already recognised the criticality of an integrated talent management system.

Office Depot, a global enterprise of more than two decades old, strongly believes in HR technology to support its aggressive growth trajectory. Unisys Corporation, a global IT consulting, servicing and outsourcing company, prides itself on the way it leverages HR technology to drive the best balance of cost and service. Its globally integrated talent management platform has one instance or database , which feeds 90 other internal and external databases across geographies.

Aditya Birla group, an Indian conglomerate with diverse businesses at far flung global geographies, have evolved beyond legacy HR systems and embraced comprehensive technology enabled HR package to drastically cut cost, improve effectiveness and quality of talent related decision making.

However, we need to ask some strategic questions before organisations decide to venture into an integrated talent management system.

Is the technology solution modular, flexible and scalable to allow full and seamless integration of people processes like resourcing and workforce planning, onboarding and orientation, performance management, compensation and benefits?

Does the talent management system move beyond automated transactions & fully integrated with business strategy with tangible impact on business?

Is it holistic, transformational, collaborative & drives learning, talent engagement and expectation alignment of all stakeholders?

 Does the talent management system move beyond automated transactions and fully integrated with business strategy with tangible impact on business? Is it holistic, transformational, collaborative and drives learning, talent engagement and expectation alignment of all stakeholders?

Better technology

The technological tools that cut across HR silos, can provide meaningful information and new insights, for better real time decision making, in addition to creation of a collaborative environment, where people can work together in a connected manner.
An analogy can be drawn from customer relationship management tool through which we manage customer lifecycle. Similarly, we need to leverage an integrated talent management system to manage end to end lifecycle of our employees.

The tangible benefits from an Integrated talent Management system will be experienced when it truly integrates all HR processes like resourcing , workforce planning, learning and development, compensation and benefits, performance management, career management and succession planning, provides user friendly interface, which is simple, robust, quick, and provides convenience to employees and managers, supports better analytics and business decision making, easier to calibrate and differentiate performance, takes less time to complete talent reviews and succession plans, supports improved understanding of top talent and bench strength.

However, technology cannot replace the personal aspects of talent management.  
For example, recruiting function is based on personal relationship, or the performance management process is based on meaningful conversations, which cannot be taken care by technology. But technology can definitely enhance the experience our people processes.

(The author is Senior Vice-President and Head – Group Human Resources, RPG Enterprises)

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