Talent-powered organisations must build capabilities that multiply talent so they generate superior levels of innovation and results
Companies that hold HR people accountable for multiplying talent are much more likely to become high-performing organisations
The most significant driver of an organization’s success – and its key differentiator – is the contribution made by its people, from its senior leadership to its newest hire.
Today’s leaders understand the importance and value of that talent, but many lack answers to a variety of talent-related questions such as, whether an organization has a talent pool that is able to address current and future business needs; if the business is flexible and agile enough to deal with the constant inflow and outflow of employees; whether it keeps track of the changing nature of work and skill sets required to address that change; and where are the company’s new sources of talent and how it can make the most of them.
Addressing these issues has become increasingly important in the face of challenges such as globalization, recovering economies, change in talent demographics and even the nature of work itself. In fact, Accenture research confirms that the subject of attracting, engaging and retaining the right kind of people is now a matter for board rooms, and not solely a concern of human resources (HR) departments.
While some organizations still lack robust talent management systems, processes and practices, others have invested carefully in them and they have weathered the economic storms of the last few years. These organizations have seen their employee capabilities mature through the right kind of training and learning. At the same time, their understanding of market conditions has allowed them to keep their compensation competitive, and their scalable and resilient recruiting service delivery models have ensured continued focus on attracting and retaining the right people.
Now, as stability returns to the marketplace, these organizations are poised for growth. Yet, to compete on talent and create a talent-powered organization, they must do more than add people to their staff; they must build capabilities that multiply their talent so they generate superior levels of innovation and results. When these capabilities align with critical business requirements, organizations can create long-term competitive advantage.
In a talent-powered organization, the leadership provides vision and passion for talent multiplication, and communicates about its strategic importance to the organization and its future. Additionally, HR people and line leaders have a profound commitment to a holistic system of talent multiplication based on four capabilities: defining talent needs, discovering new sources of talent, developing employees’ potential and deploying them in the right place at the right cost at the right time. In fact, our research has revealed that those companies that invest in HR professionals and hold them accountable for multiplying talent are much more likely to become high performing organizations. In addition, companies deemed ‘human performance leaders’ are much more likely than ‘laggard’ companies to have functional leaders deeply engaged in talent management issues and initiatives.
It is imperative that organizations understand human resources’ new role. At the same time, HR professionals must move beyond employee relations and support business strategies, lead change aligned with business objectives, build HR practices that develop leadership, talent and culture, and help enable an effective operating model.
At Accenture, we are transforming HR to enhance its support of our business growth and talent management needs. As part of this effort, we have established a global network of Human Resources Centers of Expertise (HR CoE) comprising highly skilled HR professionals with deep functional expertise who will deliver predictable, measurable, consistent services shared internally across business units.
Involved in global strategic planning, these professionals will help shape processes and practices and collectively, develop high impact HR solutions and offerings. They will be required to understand and address our current and future talent requirements, and while working in teams across locations and functions, they will broaden their skills and gain new insights. Additionally, they will create compelling value propositions for our people and build differentiated HR talent at scale.
We have also built a competency model and a learning roadmap that personalizes the learning experience for our CoE people and helps them hone their leadership and management skills and in turn build their business acumen. We are designing these frameworks in collaboration with a leading professional association with extensive knowledge in these areas. Our goal is to build deep expertise in our professionals in their current spheres of work and create a map to help them achieve their career aspirations.
CoEs may not be the answer for every company. Clearly, different organizations have different strategies and management practices; this is one approach to differentiation and adding value for clients. But for all leading organizations, now is the time to invest in new approaches to human resources, to align operating models, cultures, leadership and talent, to focus on sustainable growth and to become a talent-powered organization.
Prithvi Shergill, Lead Human Resources, Accenture India