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Designing an effective talent management strategy



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The corporate landscape is shifting at an alarming pace, and in order to keep up, it is important organisations ensure their talent management strategies are strongly aligned to today’s business environment.

Increased competition, new technologies and ways of working are a few of the pressing challenges faced by companies today, as highlighted during Human Resources’ Talent Management’s 2014 opening panel discussion on navigating the Asian talent landscape.

“Different countries are moving at different speeds in different environments,” Syed Ali Abbas, chief human resources officer of Pacnet, said.

“These things put different pressures on your companies, and navigating through these differences from a people perspective and a talent perspective is very challenging.”

Providing a structure to organisations’ development strategies then becomes necessary to ensure these strategies work effectively.

“That is why there is a need for us to become more systematic, more research driven, more design-focussed rather than just have individual programmes lumped together to be known as talent management,” he added.

Abbas also said HR practitioners should focus more on designing a process specific talent strategy which asks questions such as “How am I going to manage my talent supply chain, what will be my failure points, and will there be any shocks or shortages to my policies in the future”.

Shahrukh Marfatia, vice president of HR global commercial downstream of Shell agreed, adding having a proper vision will help organisations in formalising one’s talent management process.

“At Shell, what we have is a short and long term view of our talent and the kind of needs our talent have in order to grow the business.

“What we look at is what exactly are the needs that we have in the short-term,  which is typically 12-18 months, and what are the needs we will have five years on, in terms of growth resources,” he said.

At the end of the day, the panellists, which also included Cliff Taylor, vice president of HR APAC at Mead Johnson Nutrition and Lennard Boogaard, vice president of HR SEAA at Unilever, agreed it’s not just about attracting the right talent, but also about knowing what companies can develop from within.

“Talent management plays a key role in terms of development. There’s no point in getting the best people in the world, but not getting their full value proposition which ensures their long term development and career growth,” Marfatia said.

To keep up with the conversation happening at Talent Management 2014, follow us on Twitter #TM2014.



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