6 Tenets for Sustainable Talent Acquisition

Creating a sustainable talent acquisition pipeline doesn’t have to be a cumbersome task, but it needs to be well executed if it’s to be effective. As a talent acquisition professional, your job is to help create a sustainable pipeline within the organization and its future success has everything to do with its future leaders. However, you must ask how do we build a sustainable pipeline of internal talent so you don’t always have to hire from outside?

Creating a pipeline of promotable internal talent needs an integrated, systemic approach to talent management. Organizational leaders need to be held accountable for creating a talent management culture and for developing the company’s next wave of talent.

Here are 6 tenets that will help your company create a sustainable pipeline:

1. Have A Business Strategy

Start by looking at what drives your business – is it Sales? Research and development? Manufacturing? Whatever elements drive your business; your talent pipeline should support your strategy. Next you must identify specific roles in order to make sure you are developing talent to fulfill those roles -- that will eventually have a significant impact on the company’s ability to achieve both short and long-term goals.

Leaders should also find the right tools and methods necessary for the scaling of the growth management process. Implementing, checking and advancing pipeline strategies are essential business practices that help drive your business ends directly.

2. Hire For The Present and The Future

“What got you here, won’t get you there,” goes the adage. And it couldn’t be truer. Your business will change over time so your talent acquisition practices must reflect those changes, otherwise, you could be stunting your own company’s growth. Your company’s leadership needs will vary based on your strategic needs. If you’re looking at your current internal pool and don’t see enough people capable of taking the reigns, you need to revisit your hiring practices.

Talent should be assessed – not just on your current needs but on future potential and talent should be evaluated on a regular basis. When you have a sustainable system in place, you can proactively address the dynamic of change and the impact of your talent needs.

3. Talent Management As A Core Business Process

In order to have a fully functional and robust process in place, leadership must be actively engaged on a regular basis throughout the organization. They must also be held accountable for talent management, just as they are for the company’s operational and financial success. In order to create a successful talent management culture, it must be integrated with important processes like selection, performance management, rewards, and compensation.

4. Make It Measurable

Sustainability is created when leaders know what will create success, now and in the future, and are focusing their efforts to achieve this goal. By putting all the necessary performance measures in place, you can assess the return on all of the resources you are committing to developing.

Adding new technologies such as cloud, big data and analytics can also play a big role in redefining, and quantifying your strategy. It also helps deliver critical applications and expertise for building talent pipelines. Accessing this type of information helps deliver a better service to your employees while supporting talent retention.

5. Identify, Develop and Promote “High Potential” Talent

While some employees are high-level performers at their current role, it doesn’t mean it’ll automatically translate into success at the next level. However, these high potential employees are almost universally high performers in their current role. A solid talent management system can easily help determine who is capable of being successful at a higher level and who isn’t capable.

Your “high potential” employees should be the first place you look for when looking to promote from within. If every senior-level executive can’t name at least three capable candidates, your pipeline is close to crumbling. High potential employees are capable of taking on larger and more complex levels of responsibility and do so rather quickly. High potential employees are also more emotionally and rationally engaged at a higher level with the organization. They want to be leaders and aspire to rise and succeed in more critical positions.

6. Address Talent Gaps

If your company has an opening, looking for outside help should not be your first course of action. Sometimes, external hires can breathe new life to your company – someone with fresh ideas can most definitely be an asset to the company. However, developing your internal hires should take precedence. While it sometimes might be risky, I think the pros outweigh the cons when you promote from within. For example, internal hires have shorter learning curves than external hires. Internal candidates already know your business, your culture and your products and can fast track your company’s success.

Adapting to market dynamics may help your business retain a competitive advantage. Businesses that don’t hire the right candidate for a specific job open the door for lost revenue growth. Have you assessed your talent acquisition strategy?

About the Author

Anil Jwalanna is a Silicon Valley technology entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience building and managing software as a service and technology platforms. Over the span of his career, Anil has worked with dozens of internal and external recruiters to fill 100's of roles, for both technical and non-technical positions. Currently, Anil is the founder and CEO of WittyParrot, a content management and delivery platform that helps companies speak with one voice. Connect with Anil on Twitter @SmartStartupCEO or email him at anil@wittyparrot.com

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