In today scenario, the concept of Human Resource which was primarily responsible for the administrative function has been replaced by “Human Capital Management” concept. The HR has widened its horizon and has conveyed in the idea of becoming a “business partner”. Many organizations are struggling to change the HR processes and technologies. New thinking and a new vision and mission are required to achieve business success.  All competitive business factors have become commoditized and talent is the ultimate driving factor for business success. The communities of the HR professionals are looking forward to “Talent Acquisition & Retention”. Talent acquisition is being viewed as selecting and nurturing the talent. The best talent within an organization should be made insular to the external world so that the loyalty or productive employee is ensured on a continuous basis to an organization.

The article emphasizes on the strategic human resource initiatives needed by the organization that can help the organization realize the institutional talent goals and help to contribute to the higher performance and build future institutional capacity.

Key Words: Business success, employee engagement, strategy, talent acquisition.



Talent management refers to the identification, development, engagement, retention and development of those employees who are particularly valuable to an organization in terms of their potentialities for the future or because they are fulfilling business/operation critical roles. Talent management is the process of ensuring that the organization attracts, retains, motivates and develops the talented people it needs.

Managing Organization’s Intelligence requires importance of skilled workforce, employee engagement, managing demands of global workforces, succession planning, outsourcing and off shoring trends. “If organizations believe that it is their people that will win them greats in the market place, it stands to reason that they attract the right people, keep them, and grow them”.“Talent Acquisition” forms a part of much broader strategic approach in corporate quest to gain and sustain a competitive advantage. Strategies are to be formulated keeping in view the strategy of the organization and objectives to be achieved. Talent management is depicted as a circular, not linear set of activities.

As Larry Bossidy put it: “To put it simply and starkly: If you don’t get the people process right, you will never fulfill the potential of your business.”

The McKinsey organization in its report “War of Talent” suggests six action steps i.e.-

  1. Establish a gold standard for talent.
  2. Get actively involved with people deep within the organization.
  3. Drive a simple, probing talent review process.
  4. Instill a talent mindset in all managers through out the organization.
  5. Invest real money on talent.
  6. Hold leaders accountable for the strength of the talent pools they build.

Talent management requires strong support with the systems and processes for utilizing the right talent for the right work at the right time. This is how talent drives higher business performance. According to, John Gibbons, the program director for employee engagement research and services at the Conference Board 2010 (the survey done on job satisfaction) “widespread job dissatisfaction negatively affects employee behaviour and retention, which can impact enterprise –level success. The organizations have to invest in talent acquisition programs –skills. According to survey done by Aberdeen Group in 2008 top pressures are in all Organizations. Competition is for skilled labour 88%, shortage of desired skills 83%, Globalization 14%, compliance requirements (11%)

To achieve the corporate goals by enhancing the Organizational Intelligence there is need for initiative and combination of strategic actions technologies and organizational capabilities required .Some of the HR initiatives strategy that can be formulated by an organization can be;

Enhancing Strategy for Workforce planning

There are internal struggles and pressures which the organizations should address to. For this, a proper strategy should be formulated by the organization which is the long-term strategy before searching for acquisition of the workforce. Organizations need to formulate the long term strategy and define the goals. They need to assess the objectives and means to achieve it. While formulating the strategies to acquire talent one should be clear about the goals and roles. Talent acquisition and retention strategy will be decided by the objective of the organization whether long term and short term, how far the required talent can help us to grow. While planning we need to understand that every non conventional idea will become conventional and obsolete one day.

In the absence of clear goals support, trust can erode quickly and even talented people who are good fit can fail or decide to leave.

A.     Talent Sourcing: Aligning the individual goal’s with the Organization’s goal

An organization should plan the workforce by addressing the needs of the skills required for the organization as per the short term and the long term future as well as the present. An effective method of estimating the industry and the market conditions should be looked into with the business and the staff needs. Talents are in abundance in organizations, the need is to tap for the right source, to get the right people at right time. To meet the situation with ease, organizations need to develop a talent source, which can assure the pipeline of qualified talent at the time of need. A proactive search for the potential candidate, hiring cycle needs to be redesigned .Strong relationship building or networking skills are important to identify “star players”.

A “Talent Pool” to tap the internal talent and external talent can be clubbed and assessed, to be utilized effectively in situation of any eventuality.

Need is to focus on defining managing and establishing a system on innovation focused -talent management system. Companies need to create an environment to generate new, good ideas, foster ideation and take risk taking initiative. Creativity is the ability to produce new and original ideas and things. Innovation makes the idea practical and usable. The innovative activity in any business enterprise depends upon the creative contributions of its members. It also depends upon how the organization taps the creativity of its talented members. Provide new managers with an internal mentor and an external coach to insure support during the transition process. This support should be for at least six months to one year. This process is referred to as: transition integration”.

B.     Knowledge Management.

Knowledge Management is the management of knowledge within organizations. It requires collecting and organizing the data, summarizing and analyzing the information and synthesizing and deciding the knowledge to be provided. The value of Knowledge Management enables the members of the organization to deal with today’s situations and effectively visualize and create their future, this it relates directly to the effectiveness. Organizations need to identify orderly means to transfer knowledge to new employees in case of succession and career path advancement. Steps and process seeks to expand the organization’s knowledge among the employees looking into their background, abilities and motivation. An integrated system with right process, people tools and due diligence steps is to be established to acquire the right talent. Effective knowledge management payoff in fewer mistakes, less redundancy, quicker problem solving, better decision- making, increased worker independence, enhanced customer relations and improved service.

A knowledge management system uses its knowledge about the specific, complex application area to act as an expert consultant to end users. For organization to manage their knowledge effectively and efficiently, acquisition, storage, analysis, sharing and application of knowledge for the management of corporate knowledge through technological support.

C.     Succession Planning

Succession planning helps in alignment of development processes and strategic priorities to ensure that right people are at the right job at the right time. It helps to identify future leaders in an organization and develop them to take the next leadership roles. The individuals identified in the plan will eventually be responsible for ensuring that the company is able to tackle future challenges. Establishing the strategic direction, succession planning helps to identify high potential individuals in the organization which is vital to the success of the organization.

For succession development certain steps need to be taken:

  1. The organization needs to analyze key roles and duties of the employees, identify the business critical tasks and the skill set one has.
  2. Identifying the potential leader from an existing Talent Pool.
  3. Mentor the potential Leader by defining roles, responsibilities and expectations.
  4. Empower the successor to make management decisions, and learn from their mistakes while you are still there to coach them through the transition.

D.      Human Capital Audit

HR audit helps to assess the effectiveness of HR functions of an organization and is to achieve the organizational goal. Audit of managerial compliance of personnel policies, procedures and legal provisions, corporate strategy regarding HR planning, staffing, IRs, remuneration, employee motivation, morale and job satisfaction needs to be done. HR Audit helps to find out the proper contribution of the HR department towards the organization and develop the professional image of the organization. Need of audit is to visualize human capital as a top corporate priority. Companies need to assess these questions. How competitive is the organization in talent acquisition and talent management capabilities?  How prepared is the organization to compete for and retain “A Players” for the need to succeed?

Organizations need to build the infrastructure for talent value chain to successfully compete for the “A players”. Expertise in talent management strategies process and systems are to be developed for human capital acquisition, integration and retention. Tools and trainings are required to develop the available resource.

E.     Activate workgroup commitment: Assimilation & Alignment

HR needs to encourage task forces, committees, team based on competencies required for the task. Diversity can help to yield high quality outputs and thus contributing to high performance teams.  Organizations need to develop the assimilation and alignment process to accelerate teamwork and productivity. Whether the person is new to the organization or new to the job the alignment process should condense the learning curve and support retention. Organizational culture developed over the period will decide the flexibility and ability to act as recipient, which can accept the acquired talent as an augmentation to the talent pool and give a conducive environment for talent retention, accelerate team work and productivity in short time.

Creativity and innovation are required from every employee from the president to the front-line workers. Successful supervisors and managers know how to activate their employees’ energy and dedication. Creating commitment begins with helping employees see the connection between their daily activities and the organization’s goals.

F.     Internally driven for Performance:

Organizations need an infrastructure in place to build the culture of performance and accountability. Average employee at every level cannot articulate how they contribute to meet the organizational goals or how they are measured.  Management need to formulate the measuring tools so that the clear picture of the contribution by an employee can be given to them so that the talent or the performers can be assessed separately and he can enjoy the feel of achievement and success. HR can encourage and enable appointments to task forces, committees or teams based on competencies required by the task.  Diversity yields high –quality outcomes, therefore contributing to high –performing teams.

“Performance is linked to the well-being of the individual that he is professionally well taken care of by the organization”.

G.     Retention Practices:

“Good Players” do not leave for money they leave for Leadership & Opportunities. Once the talent has been identified, the next stage is to start building on going relationships and look for that all ‘elusive trigger’ in some ones career that would get them to change jobs. Retained talent is more like a stock listed in the market more it performs more the demand and value it gets.  Good retention practices focus not only on what the employee is contributing to the company, but also focus on how the manager can create a climate so that the employee is retained and committed on a long term basis. There are a number of organizational systems and processes that influence retention. Some of them are evident, such as the equity of pay scales. . Closely linked to the other components, Measurement and Accountability ensures that retention as an on-going priority.

H.     Create meaningful rewards & Recognition:

Focus on material rewards such as money or extra vacation days drive motivation. Certainly, people want to be paid what they’re worth, but motivation is much more than money. Employees want to grow, develop, be valued and be in control of their careers. Organization should design a reward and recognition strategy to recognize performers and the Top management should be equipped with the knowledge and tools to drive higher levels of performance and productivity.

Vince Lombardi is reputed to have said, “There is nothing more unequal that the equal treatment of unequal.” Treat people on the basis of merit, not seniority or position.

I.     Development

What is your ROI (return on investments) on human capital development? No stocks can pay back the same dividends continuously unless they are manipulated and combined with other stocks. Similarly the talent acquired today cannot keep a pace with payback capacity unless it is being retrained & developed to face new challenges. The set of skills for which the talent is being retained today will become obsolete tomorrow. A process in place to acquire skills and competencies is to be developed. Provide all candidates with self-assessment tools and learning opportunities. This can be done in organization in the form of added responsibilities through outside learning opportunities such as conferences and executive education programs, professional memberships.

II.     Conclusion:

Talent is to be developed. Talent Management is a strategic, proactive initiative to sustain the organization’s current and future success. The need is for Innovative HR leaders to understand and play a key to enabling a strategy for enhancing the knowledge with innovative and creative strategy. Talent Management process helps to develop the strategies that will enable those individuals to assume new roles and/or replace identified players who are making changes or leaving the organization.

Acquisition of the talent in a rigorous exercise, which includes the identification of talent, required in line with the organizational goals and objectives. Once the talent is identified the more intricate phase of retaining and assimilating of the talent starts. This phase decides that how long organizations can retain the inducted talent. The flexibility of organizational structure and acceptance of an alien in the organization will decide on the dividends we may reap

“Internal development of talent, amplified by strategic recruitment, provides ample approach to create an innovative organization.”

Expansion, diversification, mergers and acquisitions are order of the day and are here to stay. The core concept of talent acquisition is to get away from the “fill in the box” thinking to one that is more pro-active and much closer to building the skill set required to achieve organization success. In emerging knowledge economy value is increasingly driven by talent and other non-tangible capital. The competitive strength of organizations, regions and countries are no longer strictly tied to physical assets or resources, but to the intellectual attributes of their knowledge workers.

The average cost of replacing a professional is 1.5 to 3 times salary, cost of working around an under performer can run as high as six figures. The cost of consistently failing to attract and retain good talent-including declining productivity, morale, culture and reputation is inestimable. Investing in talent, acquisition, retention and development infrastructure yield’s tremendous returns. The top management needs to be more sensitive towards acquiring talent and develop leadership skills at multiple levels so as to manage the talent pool to sail the organizations smoothly in the turbulence.


[1]   Bilingual, Gene: The Effective Organization
[2]   CUPAHR. Journal 2008
[3]   Engagement thru’ empowerment- Vinay Kamath – Business line October 2005 Vol 6 Issue 3
[4]   Employee Retention toolkit. Retrieved august 22, 2008, from society for human Resource Management. Website www.shrm.org.
[5]   Human Capital. Com
[6]   HRD Newsletter 2004
[7]   Ismael D. Tabije:Talent Management 2010
[8]   Talent Value Chain.Com
[9]   Talent acquisition – Executive Issue –  management centre Europe -September 2005


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