The Talent Management Lifecycle: what you need to know

Let's explore each of the key stages in the talent management lifecycle. Neobrain focuses on the quality of the talent experience, from a high-level HR service perspective.
The Talent Management Lifecycle: the essentials
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Successfully managing a talent pool is the cornerstone of any successful organization. The primary role of HR teams is not simply to recruit new talent, but to strategically align talent management with overall corporate objectives. An organization's true power lies not in its technologies or tools, but in its people - the driving force behind sustainable success and competitive advantage.

Why focus on the "talent management lifecycle"?

We are seeing a move towards the merge of HR specialties, to better support and integrate the talent journey within the company. To achieve this overall view, HR teams need to isolate each of these components, monitor their evolution through key indicators and thus link each aspect of talent management in a so-called "systemic" approach. 

What is the Talent Management Life Cycle?

The Talent Management Lifecycle is the operational expression of HR policy, providing a precise framework for action at key moments in the employee experience within the company. This operational lever, guided by HR and business objectives, is based on behavioral data and employee expectations. It represents the fusion between the company's performance policy and its culture, while offering development prospects to employees.

Identifying, Attracting and Recruiting Talent:

This first stage focuses on recognizing the company's talent needs, attracting high-caliber candidates and recruiting them effectively. It involves understanding current and future skills needs, sourcing candidates and implementing effective recruitment strategies.

Talent growth : 

Once talent has been integrated, the focus is on their growth and development. This includes comprehensive onboarding, orientation and ongoing development programs. The aim is to integrate new recruits into the company culture, provide the necessary training and lay the foundations for ongoing professional growth.

Opportunity Matching and Talent Succession Planning: 

The final step is to align employees with appropriate opportunities within the organization and to plan for succession. This includes internal mobility, suggesting projects suited to individual aspirations and preparing for future leadership roles. The aim is to ensure that employees occupy roles that maximize their strengths and contribute to their career progression.

Unlike traditional models that treat retention and performance as separate stages, this approach integrates them throughout the entire talent cycle. 

By focusing effectively on each stage, organizations naturally boost employee engagement and performance, creating a more cohesive and productive workforce.

In short, the Employee Lifecycle is a holistic approach that begins with the identification and recruitment of talent, and evolves towards their development and strategic positioning within the organization.

Talent Management Cycle : Detailed view

The talent management cycle consists of a number of stages, which together make up the entire process. What are the key stages in an effective talent management cycle?

Identifying, Attracting and Recruiting Talent:

  • Identification and Attraction: Beyond social media presence, it's crucial to focus on an authentic employer brand and adopt a "talent intelligence" approach. This includes mapping skills external talent and engaging them regularly with company messages to build a strong employer brand.
  • Recruitment: Striking a balance between selectivity and fluidity is essential. Responding to every application is important to the candidate experience. According to Stepstone 2018, 84% of candidates do not receive a response 45 days after their application. Of the 16% contacted, only 5% are invited for interviews and 1.5% land the job. Clear communication and feedback are essential to maintaining a positive brand image and effective recruitment.

Talent Growth (Integration, Orientation and Development) :

  • Onboarding and Orientation: Effective onboarding is crucial to integrating new recruits into the company's culture and mission. Over 66% of organizations offer formal induction programs, preparing new employees for success (source enboarder).
  • skills development: Employee development is often considered the fifth most important motivating factor after salary, work environment, work/life balance and individualized career opportunities. In an ever-changing job market, continuous updating of skills is a necessity. Investing in employee development is a decisive factor in aligning employee fulfillment with organizational objectives.

Opportunities and Succession Planning:

Employees are not necessarily looking for additional responsibilities, but rather the opportunity to work on various projects with other professionals, offering short-term commitments and new contexts.
  • Succession Planning: With an estimated cost of $11,000 per departing employee (according to The Predictive Index), focusing on effective succession planning is imperative. This not only prepares for leadership transitions, but also maintains a strong leadership pipeline. To find out more, here's how to build a succession plan.

To conclude on the details of each of these stages, we reiterate our recommendation to move to a systemic approach to Talent Management.

In a dynamic environment, waiting for an annual interview to identify an employee's training needs or career aspirations is obsolete. This reactive approach, which is rejected by 70% of HR managers, explains the current low level of talent retention within the company. Effective talent management requires continuous listening and interaction between the recruitment, development and succession planning phases. 81% of management teams have reportedly invested in overhauling their performance reviews- a move we applaud!

Performance Review Guide

Illustration of the systemic talent management approach: 

For example, right from the recruitment stage, incorporating a new employee's skills into a repository dedicated to his or her profile enables better anticipation of his or her development and training needs. This proactive practice avoids waiting for an assessment at the end of the probationary period or an initial performance review to recognize and value their aptitudes and aspirations.

By seamlessly linking these different phases, we create a rewarding path for talent that is in line with the organization's strategic objectives and culture.

How to adopt a talent management lifecycle in your company?

Even with a well-honed recruitment process, companies can find themselves faced with the challenge of retaining their most talented and essential employees. Could there be a "secret" to meeting this challenge? It would seem that the continuous development of employees throughout their careers and their meaningful engagement from the moment they join the company are avenues to explore. In this context, the lifecycle model of talent management could offer some interesting answers.

This approach enables HR professionals to better understand how employees evolve and engage with the company. As such, this model could ensure better employee engagement and a more meaningful contribution to the company's success. Here's our advice: 

Recruiting for Potential while Training for Skills 

Many companies tend to recruit candidates for certain positions primarily on the basis of their past experience, with the aim of minimizing risk. However, this method does not always allow for in-depth exploration of real skills skills, which are often only revealed in real work situations. That's why more and more companies are turning to real-life situations when recruiting, to observe how candidates think and act.

In addition, the increasing use of video interviews in recruitment tends to limit candidates' ability to experience the real working atmosphere, behaviors and cultural characteristics of the company. This missing dimension is crucial for an optimal match between candidate and company.

It is therefore advisable to focus on the candidate's potential and ability to learn, rather than exclusively on past experience. Select individuals by assessing their aspirations and ability to learn and adapt. Make sure your organization's long-term objectives align with this approach. As the new employee moves through your company's lifecycle, offer development opportunities, such as mentoring programs, to nurture their skills and enable them to reach their full potential.

Match skills to performance targets

Companies should work to identify skills gaps within the organization in the same way they put more effort into recruiting and training employees. Conducting an annual skills audit can help identify gaps between the organization's objectives and the employee's current skills set. This can then effectively help to create a roadmap for employee development and ensure that they receive the right training to acquire the right skills for the job.

Improving internal mobility

This can be achieved through internal hiring. Recruiting internally is just as important as hiring externally. It fosters a culture of growth and development and strengthens employee loyalty within the organization. Provide your employees with internal mobility resources and opportunities, and encourage them to explore different roles within the company. These resources can include mentoring opportunities, training programs and personalized career paths. 

Benefits of the talent management cycle for an organization

The people you recruit into your organization are critical to its success. Adopting a strategic approach to the cycle detailed above can bring substantial benefits.

Enlightened use of the various components is the source of commitment and a positive corporate culture. The cost of a departure is between 1.5 and 2 times the employee's salary. It's not easy for an organization to have an engaged workforce without a proper strategy and talent development processes that communicate seamlessly with each other.

Other benefits associated with the talent management lifecycle include :

  • Adapting to changes in business and industry skills
  • Improving people's skills development
  • Cost reduction
  • Enhanced corporate reputation
  • Acquiring critical resources

Talent Management Lifecycle FAQs

How can culture affect the effectiveness of your talent management?

Organizational culture has a direct influence on how employees are valued. A positive culture attracts and retains top talent, stimulates commitment and aligns employees with the company's values. Conversely, a negative atmosphere can lead to high turnover and low morale. Cultivating values that value learning, achievement and teamwork is essential for effective talent management.

What KPIs should be used to evaluate a company's talent management process?

Key KPIs for assessing talent management include time to fill vacancies, employee turnover rate, satisfaction scores, rate of internal promotions versus external hires, and impact of training programs. These indicators help assess the effectiveness of recruitment, employee development and retention, guiding improvements in talent strategies.

How do information systems improve the talent management lifecycle?

Information systems streamline talent management by automating processes, providing analytics and supporting decision-making. They range from candidate tracking for recruitment to performance and learning management systems, improving efficiency and providing insights for forecasting, gap analysis at skills and succession planning. These systems also enhance the employee experience through the "self-service" model for development and feedback.

In a nutshell

A talent management cycle is essential for any company wishing to remain competitive and attractive. The entire process involves recruiting and hiring the right candidate, as well as supporting them at every stage of their organizational journey. Take advantage of the mentoring tools available to build a solid talent management strategy that will attract, engage, retain and develop the best talent throughout the employee lifecycle.

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