Why Talent Activation Transcends Talent Management

Alexandra Levit, Managing Partner, PeopleResults
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People are your organization’s greatest asset and most expensive resource. We recognize the importance of employee engagement and do our best to measure and boost it, and yet engagement is not always in a company’s control. Why not instead consider talent activation?

Talent activation focuses on the experiences, processes, and metrics that create an aligned and equipped workforce in the best position to realize its true potential. Talent activation connects all stakeholders and their goals, elevates the employee experience, transcends traditional HR disciplines, and integrates day-to-day work into big picture strategy.

How is talent activation different from talent management, you ask? Here are some specifics.

  • Talent management is about one size fits all. Talent activation means adapting in real-time to business and employee preferences.
  • Talent management works within departmental silos. Talent activation provides a bigger picture view of the entire talent ecosystem.
  • Talent management involves HR paperwork or transactions. Talent activation is about understanding your leadership’s business goals as well as how to get there.
  • Talent management focuses on full-time employees (FTEs). Talent activation takes into account everyone in today’s talent economy, including FTEs, contractors, freelancers, vendors, partners, interns, site visitors, and seasonal workers.
  • Talent management mandates the collection data and generation of historical reports. Talent activation leverages analytics for meaningful business decisions.
  • Talent management involves managing the hire-to-payroll-to-benefits funnel. Talent activation is about aligning individual goals with business goals, motivating them, keeping them engaged, moving them up, providing meaningful ongoing feedback and appraisals – and the learning to keep them going.
  • Talent management is concerned with cost and time savings. Talent activation delivers new key performance indicators about the ongoing post-hire journeys employees take.

Sounds good, right? But exactly how do we activate talent? It starts and ends with providing a strong, rewarding, employee experience at all stages of the employment lifecycle. Kaiser Associates research shows that organizations with high employee satisfaction outperform peer organizations over time by approximately two to four percent annually and 89 to 184 percent cumulatively – even controlling for other factors that drive returns.

Additionally, the cost to replace experienced and executive-level employees is 75 percent and 200 percent of their full salaries respectively. New hires require investment via recruiting, onboarding, training and development, and organizations will never realize the full return on that investment if they do not evaluate and design a powerful employee experience.

Want to learn more? Register here to watch Alexandra Levit discuss how you can take employee engagement a step further with talent activation. 

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