Talent Management FAQ

Updated: April 30, 2009

What is talent management?

Talent management is a process that emerged in the 1990s and continues to be adopted, as more companies come to realize that their employees' talents and skills drive their business success. These companies develop plans and processes to track and manage their employee talent, including the following:

  • Attracting and recruiting qualified candidates with competitive backgrounds
  • Managing and defining competitive salaries
  • Training and development opportunities
  • Performance management processes
  • Retention programs
  • Promotion and transitioning

Talent management is also known as HCM (Human Capital Management), HRIS (HR Information Systems) or HRMS (HR Management Systems), and HR Modules.

However, talent management is usually a set of processes and does not always rely on a computer system, as do HRIS and HRMS.

What are the benefits of implementing a talent-management program?

Providing these resources helps your employees achieve their best individual potential, and it helps your business respond to challenges, enter new markets and move ahead of the competition.

A company with a talented and successful work force can develop a public reputation for being a great place to work, which fosters loyalty among current employees . Talented candidates will also be more interested in working for a company that values its employees and gives them opportunities for continued success.

How do I get started with talent management?

There are a few ways to begin managing your employee talent. First, you can bring in a consultant to review your internal processes and evaluate the areas that are critical to your organization, as well as areas that are weak and in need of improvement.

Another way is to use a computer system to help your organization track and manage its processes. There are many hosted, Web-based solutions available that can be integrated into a total ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system along with accounting, payroll and other systems to simplify HR processes for the HR generalist or specialist.

In addition to payroll or other basic HR functions, HRIS systems can help organizations by providing the following talent-management capabilities:

  • Insight into recruitment processes such as hiring requirements, job descriptions , feedback from applicants and future hiring needs
  • Developing and tracking incentive programs that attract and retain top talent
  • Metrics that measure current talent and industry trends, as well as forecast future needs
  • Integration with employee ERP and self-service systems that help employees research company benefits such as medical coverage
  • Access to real-time salary information to standardize employee compensation and offer employees competitive compensation rates and raises
  • Onboarding and performance-management services to develop and foster new workers, retain seasoned employees and attract employees from competitors
  • Employee-tracking systems to identify training and promotion opportunities and help employees transition to other suitable positions within the organization

Talent-management and HRIS systems are available from big players such as Oracle Corp ., Sage Software Inc . and SAP Aktiengesellschaft, as well as a multitude of smaller vendors . Finding the right provider depends on what functions you want to track and what other features your company wants to integrate. You can start with dedicated talent-management and HRIS systems, or you can look for ERP solutions incorporating the functions you need.

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