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The heart of talent management

Deloitte’s Develop-Deploy-Connect model can help you attract and retain skilled

As critical talent becomes increasingly scarce, Canadian companies need to develop more effective talent management strategies.  Knowing how to attract and retain the talent that produces the most value can lead an organization to be the best in its class.

Whether your organization is a large public company or a private enterprise, you need to focus on understanding which skills will make or break your business, where those skilled individuals will come from, and how to keep those workers engaged and committed to the organization. Companies that respond swiftly and plan effectively will find themselves on top of these new challenges.

 "Proactive organizations can convert the talent management challenge into an opportunity by transforming their processes into a well-designed strategy that fully utilizes the critical workforce. Often, having the right team in place is all that differentiates a company from its competitors."  
— Heather Stockton

Getting to the heart of talent management
Smart companies can avoid sustaining a direct hit from the looming talent crisis. “In fact, proactive organizations can convert this challenge into opportunity by transforming their talent management processes into a well-designed talent strategy that fully utilizes the critical workforce,” says Heather Stockton, a partner with Deloitte’s Human Capital practice. “Often, having the right team in place is all that differentiates a company from its competitors.”

Traditional approaches to talent management frequently focus on acquisition and retention. When the talent pool tightened in the 1990s, companies responded by offering rich compensation packages and “hot skills” bonuses. But the end result was often disappointing: recruiting costs soared, while investments in training languished. In addition, such compensation packages were often matched by competitors, contributing to high attrition rates of talented personnel.

Acquisition and retention strategies remain important parts of talent management. Such strategies, however, focus more on the end points of the process and only offer a quick fix to new workforce challenges. To survive the changing labour landscape, companies must employ more comprehensive talent management strategies that reflect an understanding of critical workforce segments and satisfy the conditions those employees need to succeed.

A model for attracting and retaining talented employees
Talent-savvy organizations build strategies around what matters most to their critical talent — their personal growth or development, their need to be deployed in positions and assignments that engage their interests and curiosities, and their connection to others in ways that drive performance for the company as a whole. The Develop-Deploy-Connect model should be at the heart of every organization’s talent strategy. By focusing on these three elements, companies can generate capability, commitment and alignment in the key workforce segments that will most impact their business performance.

A closer look at Develop–Deploy–Connect:

Develop: Today’s organizations need a mix of highly analytic people with technological savvy, creativity and adaptability to solve complex and rapidly changing issues. Employees learn the most by tackling real-life issues and handling situations that stretch their capabilities. Mentoring and coaching are also important to developing employees’ skills.

Deploy: Since employees learn most when they are in positions that stretch them, it’s important to match the correct candidate to a critical role or skill. Organizations must focus on their critical talent to ensure that their skills, interests and capabilities evolve in line with strategic objectives. Deploying talent also involves helping those who are mismatched in a particular role — they may be very capable, just in the wrong position.

Connect: Three kinds of connections matter most when it comes to performance: connecting people to people in ways that promote personal and professional growth, connecting people to a sense of purpose, and connecting people to the resources they need to do great work.

Deloitte’s  Develop-Deploy-Connect model is a distinct departure from traditional talent management strategies in that it zeroes in on the heart of talent management — creating a meaningful work environment for employees. When this happens, attraction and retention largely take care of themselves.

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