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Understanding the core of Talent Management 

Talent management comprises several different elements that largely can be placed into 3 key pillars:

1) Data and document management
2) Appraisals
3) Competency management

But what do they entail? And what does it take to work successfully with them?
In this article, we will take a closer look at each pillar, what they involve, and how HR professionals can achieve success within each one.

1) Data and document management

The cornerstone of talent management is the documentation and personal data related to your employees. Data and documents can be anything from name, address, social security number, bank account information, age, gender, job title, salary, courses, certificates, competencies, etc. For many companies, it is a challenge to manage and use data efficiently and in ways that are in line with GDPR.

Why is it important?
Data and documentation covers everything you need to manage to ensure organizational structure and give a good overview of your staff. Data on qualifications, competencies, courses, etc. is also part of this pillar and can be used analytically and for employee development.

Good talent management means collecting the right employee data and documents within a systemized management set-up. This allows HR to build structure & overview and empowers them to make qualitative analyses that can show where the company is heading AND drive talent management in the desired direction. Through this, organizations can make qualified business decisions. 

We have gathered some of the fundamentals of efficient, value-adding, and GDPR-compliant data and document management:

User roles In short, you must be able to control data access levels so only the right people can access the right data.
Self-service To work efficiently and reduce the administrative workload you should enable some level of self-service so that important data can be delivered, updated, and accessed by the right people correctly, efficiently and when needed.
Deleting policies To comply with GDPR you must make sure to have the right deleting policies in place.
Statistics and reports To make data useful, it is important to be able to leverage statistics and reporting from your data. This way you can gain valuable insights and make qualified decisions.
Organizational development With valuable data on your company and its employees, HR can gain insight into how the organization is developing over time.
Work history Knowing how your employees have progressed over time as well as having information on past work history will enlighten HR and allow them to place and use talents & competencies in the most logical places.


2) Appraisals

Processes that help shed light on the need for, and progress of, development are equally important when it comes to talent management.
Appraisals are essentially a dialogue between leaders and their employees. Some organizations have appraisals once or twice a year, while others have them more frequently.

Most often, appraisals revolve around competencies, development, and the well-being and satisfaction of employees. Because of this, it is crucial to be able to manage them on an ongoing basis with a streamlined approach to ensure quality and equal treatment of all employees.

Why is it important?

When done right (and when followed-up with concrete development plans), appraisals can improve retention and heighten employee satisfaction. Appraisals are also a strong tool for leaders to manage and develop their workforce. Leaders can better spot potential misalignments of needs and goals between the company, departments, and employees.

Collectively, this can help leaders manage employees and talents in the most advantageous direction that will help reach company targets.

To ensure efficient administration, GDPR-compliance, and value-adding processes for appraisals it is important to:

  • Ensure you collect appraisal processes and related activities in one central location.
  • Allow digital questionnaires to be filled out directly.
  • Enable administration and appraisal invites directly and from one place.
  • Keep track of appraisal invites, filled out questionnaires, complete and incomplete appraisals.
  • Make sure to follow up with development plans that can be approved directly.
  • Ensure accurate user roles, top-down control, and timely deletion of data.


If you do not have an HR-system
While the above in large requires a system that supports the management of appraisals, here is some advice for those of you without a system:

  • Make sure to have good data discipline and clear rules on correct and timely data management and deletion. This is important to prevent data floating around.
  • If possible, keep and share all appraisal data in the cloud and within the same folder to prevent data spreading across systems, mailboxes, etc.
  • Be sure to educate employees thoroughly on how you work with appraisals in your company. For example, what is expected, how to follow up and plan for development, etc.

With an HR system, HR professionals can manage and secure appraisal data and processes in line with GDPR as well as encourage progress. From the system, both leaders and employees can upload appraisal information and control data access, facilitate company processes, and auto-prompt leaders to manage their own appraisals. HR can also centrally send out invitations for the leaders with timeslots for employees.

3) Competency management

A company’s most important assets are its employees and their competencies. They are an essential ingredient to ensure you stay ahead of the competition. An important part of talent management is to make sure that the company has, and constantly develops, the right competencies amongst its employees.

This includes overseeing processes and tools that help streamline individual employees and their talent development.

Why is it important?
A professional competency management strategy will let HR build a workforce that supports your organization’s goals. It will allow HR to set competency levels for your teams, distribute competencies optimally throughout the organization, and help spot up-and-coming talents to ensure their development and succession.

To work efficiently with competency management and development, you will need to:

  • Clearly define competencies to make it clear which ones are required in the wider organization and in specific departments and roles.
  • Set goals for competencies on a company level as well as job title level. This allows you to focus on the progress and development of individual competencies.
  • Enable the option to rank and align expectations of competencies between leader and employee.
  • Make it easy to search and identify existing and missing competencies.
  • Be able to perform competency gap-analyses that can direct the development and position of missing or newly-required competencies.

Are you familiar with the 5 reasons to work systematically with competence management? Get to know them here.

Now it’s your turn

Would you like to experience these 3 elements of talent management in action?
And would you like to see how they can help your company structure employee data and documents, streamline the appraisal process, and manage & develop competencies in line with company goals?

Don’t miss out. BOOK YOUR DEMO to see it all play out.