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creating total workforce agility.

the growing need for total talent strategies

| 4 min read |

In this volatile, competitive market, it’s critical for organizations to successfully develop total talent strategies so they can achieve total workforce agility. Also referred to as an integrated talent strategy, a total talent approach enables you to align your human capital strategy with your business objectives, while ensuring the flexibility to adapt to the organization’s changing needs. But what exactly does developing this kind of strategy entail?

To appreciate the importance of developing a total talent strategy, consider the following statistics from our 2018 Talent Trends research:

  • 78% of respondents state that the objective of their talent strategy is to have measurable impact on business performance.
  • 76% agree that the right person for a job could be any type of worker located anywhere in the world.
  • 72% are likely to introduce a data-driven, technology-enabled total talent acquisition this year.

Our survey also revealed that HR and procurement are increasingly aware of the need to align on their talent acquisition strategy in order to achieve a first mover advantage.

achieving a total workforce advantage

Ultimately, the objective of a total talent strategy is to choose the most cost-effective and efficient source for completing a job. This involves identifying the job that needs to be done, analyzing workforce data, determining the time span within which the job must be completed, evaluating the cost of the job remaining unfilled and assessing feedback on previously-completed work. Successfully achieving a total talent advantage requires a distinct choice when selecting resources and full visibility of your internal workforce. You’ll also need full visibility of your external market — including the supply and demand factors that impact availability, cost and quality — and clear feedback loops regarding the performance of the chosen source.

To ensure full visibility, you also need a strong HR tech strategy. Integrating data from multiple sources — including your applicant tracking system (ATS), vendor management system (VMS), candidate relationship management (CRM), service level agreements (SLAs), candidate sourcing, external benchmarks and on future supply and demand — in one central data lake is critical to delivering the statistically significant insights hiring managers need to make hiring decisions. This enables you to not only set the right talent strategy, but also execute it at the most granular level. For example, you could examine the percentage of roles that will be impacted by AI and inform hiring managers accordingly about looking for adaptable skill sets in future hires.

collaboration is key to total talent success

Michael Smith shares total talent insights at ProcureCon 2018.When you work with a talent solutions provider on your total talent acquisition model, this strategic partner should help procurement and HR better collaborate. This includes providing each function with data that is relevant to their respective spheres of operation in order to facilitate meaningful dialogue and workforce planning. You’ll also need to involve your chief people officer and/or CHRO when setting the program key performance indicators (KPIs), such as labor cost savings, talent quality and engagement.

use case: bringing total talent acquisition to life

One of our clients, a leading managed care organization, is already benefiting from a total talent acquisition model. Its talent program, which is run by a single program team that drives direct delivery, includes all forms of talent and offers advice on which types to use in specific cases.

Their strategy includes TalentRadar, Randstad Sourceright’s proprietary talent analytics platform, which draws upon data from the company’s VMS, ATS, Monster and other external sources, and brings focus to the talent, hiring manager and candidate experiences. With this approach, along with technology-powered insights, the client is taking a more proactive approach to workforce planning and engagement with the business. As a result, the company’s talent leaders are seeing improved talent fill rates, as well as enhanced branding across the entire workforce.

total talent tips

The road to a total talent strategy can be long, but you can make it less challenging by setting your organization up for success at the start. Here are a few tips, based on our team’s global experience:

  1. Don’t focus on job titles alone — instead, be flexible based on factors such as skills, future supply and demand, and competition.
  2. Know the cost of not filling the role, and be consistent in how you measure the value a new hire brings to the organization.
  3. Get HR and procurement working together early on in the process, preferably starting with a one- to two-day workshop with your total talent solutions provider to work backwards from the end goals.
  4. Be selective in your choice of HR tech and data sources; look for the best solutions to bring together unstructured data into a structured model. Your talent solutions provider can also help you determine which tech makes the most sense for your organization and goals. Be sure to tap their expertise.
  5. And finally, since considerable change management is required for this process, engage your hiring community from day one. Regular communication and feedback mechanisms can help you ensure buy-in and adoption.