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The success formula for effective Talent Management

Endast 19 % är nöjda med hur Talent Management fungerar i organisationen idag.
63% anser att de behöver lägga mer resurser på TM och 81% säger vidare att det blir allt viktigare med fokus på Talent Management framöver.

The success formula for effective Talent Management

7 tips for successful talent management!

Is there a success formula for effective talent management? If so, does it mean achieving solid, reliable results without effort or cost? No, unfortunately. But solid craftsmanship combined with smart and effective solutions will pay dividends. Having said that – it is precisely smart initiatives and effective solutions that this article is all about.

In September, 2015 Stardust Consulting and CatalystOne Solutions presented the results of the ‘Talent Barometer’ – a survey conducted among HR managers in the spring of 2015. The results show that much remains to be done before Norwegian organisations can puff out their chests with pride. Here is one example:

Only 21% of respondents consider themselves to be good at talent management. Which means that a whopping 79% don’t think they are. In other words, it should be fairly easy to stand out as an employer, simply by being good in this area.

BUT, since 82% of respondents feel the need to devote more resources to this area, and will probably do so, this window of opportunity, in which to stand out from the crowd, will remain open for only a short time. If, on the other hand, management and HR in Norwegian companies do not focus on improving their ability to attract, develop and retain staff – they risk being left with the wrong kinds of people – or find that there are a lot of empty desks in the office.

You can download the survey here.

At the breakfast seminar for specially invited HR and senior executives, it was not only the ‘Talent Barometer 2015’ that was presented. The participants had also come to get answers to the following questions:

– How to create a successful talent management strategy?

– How to successfully implement it?

Henrik Martin, CEO of Stardust Consulting, and Avtar S. Jasser, CEO of CatalystOne Solutions, who have both assisted Scandinavian businesses in the field of talent management for many years, shared their insights. The following is a summary of their talks.

But first: what is talent? It is a term that means different things to different people. In this context, we have taken the following definition as our starting point:

How to attract, develop and retain the right staff. Everyone has a talent, and talent management is about all the processes and initiatives intended to get the right person in the right place at the right time to meet the organisation’s business goals. Talent in this context is another word for “right employee”.

7 important areas!

1. Raise awareness. Show that the work being done produces financial results

Draw up a business case for the areas where it is necessary to see the impact. These may be increased efficiency, cost savings, staff turnover, employee satisfaction, systematic competence development or productivity.The business case is used as a guide through the entire initiative.

2. Take the business strategy as your starting point

It is important to create a clear link between the business’s strategy and the individual employee’s goals and priorities. Where should the organisation be in three years’ time? This goal demands that questions like these are asked: What competences and resources do we have today, and what competences must we have to reach our future goals? Where are we now and what is required to reach our goals? And finally, what happens if we don’t do anything?

3. Support from top management, engage and enlist the collaboration of line managers

There are still far too many senior executives who say that talent management is a matter for HR, while in reality it is one of the business’s most important strategic areas. In fact, according to a report by Hays, a shortage of the right competence in knowledge companies is a threat to economic growth. The third annual Hays Global Skills Index is this year entitled ‘The Perfect Talent Storm’, and is based on employee data from 31 countries. Having the “right employee” with the right competence is vital, irrespective of the economic cycle. When the economy is looking up, we need correct and adequate competence. When the economy is sliding, it is crucial to have the right resources – when there are fewer people to do the job. So bring senior management on board. Use the business case, backed up by research if necessary, and ask the CEO to act as project sponsor for the initiative.

4. Make sure the processes are simple and supported by IT

Many HR managers are over-ambitious. As a result, the processes become too extensive and therefore too complex for the workforce. The result? Frustration, demotivation and low take-up rates. Make it simple. Focus on the most important things first, then expand and become more advanced as the organisation itself develops. IT support is vital to achieve efficient and effective talent management. Make sure that the solutions are also intuitive and simple. Having process-driven software, rooted in the day-to-day activities of managers and staff, is hugely important.

Ten tips for selecting a talent management software vendor

5. Communicate how useful it will be for the individual business, HR, manager, staff member

Never underestimate the need to communicate with and “sell” the solution to the organisation. It is often a good idea to ask the Marketing and Sales departments for help and advice, here. The question “What’s in it for me?” must be answered for the business, HR, manager and staff member – with the focus on the manager. They are the ones who hold the key. Middle managers have a strong impact on the performance of their staff, and should therefore be paid special attention, through information, support and skills development.

6. Drive implementation – through motivation and action

To ensure good results, the process of implementation is crucial. Make sure the project is constantly followed up and review the progress being made towards the stated goal. Give plenty of recognition to individuals or groups who act as ambassadors or role models along the way. At the same time, be quick to handle opposition and people who are unable to follow up.

7. Measure, report and highlight the effect

Don’t wait to start measuring until the very end. Check the project’s pulse along the way, and communicate the results immediately. Many people wait until they can make a splash with some really big benefits, and pay no attention to the small, incremental gains. Small steps along the way are important for motivation and satisfaction over advances made by the individual employee or the organisation as a whole – even the small steps are important. Recognition and celebration are part of a true talent and performance culture.

These seven points underpinned the speakers’ formula for success in driving this important work forward. It costs both money and effort, but by working in a systematic, structured, tactical and proactive manner, you will get value for your money and are guaranteed to see results.


Only 21% say they are happy with how their talent management works today. 82% say it will become more and more important in the future.


Do you need help? – Don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Berit Bjerknes

Berit Bjerknes, 22 October 2015