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Transforming the Organization with Talent Activation

Monday, September 19, 2016
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Today's incredibly complex talent landscape will have a substantial impact on organizational success in 2016 and beyond. As HR leaders look ahead, a key question has emerged. Have HR teams and their organizations set up a successful environment where employees become a competitive advantage?

Many look to technology to provide that advantage. However, traditional talent management technologies focus on automating HR functions, often ignoring business goals and the most important consumer, employees. To engage, today's self-service and mobile employees need more than an automated process to align with and further overall business goals.

To achieve successful employee engagement, experiences need to take place throughout the entire employee lifecycle as opposed to disparate and disconnected activities. Forward-thinking HR leaders who leverage technology knows that their organizations must adapt to workplace preferences and the needs of new generations. They also understand that applying the right HR technology offers major strategic advantages. But has it worked so far?

The Engagement and Technology Gap

Combined, nearly three-quarters of today's workers aren't engaged in their jobs, according to a 2015 Gallup poll, which finds 50.8 percent of employees describing themselves as "not engaged," while 17.2 percent reported being "actively disengaged." Even when organizations hire top talent, if that talent disengages from their jobs, company culture or mission, productivity, quality and customer satisfaction trend downward unless something stops the fall.

With the increased availability of sophisticated HR technology solutions for key talent functions such as recruiting, onboarding, learning and performance management, one would think that HR professionals have the necessary tools to engage and rally employees around business goals. Despite all of this automation and progress, HR technology has fallen short of its potential to be transformative for most businesses.

Key Challenges Create Disconnect

Why the disconnect? One reason is that the process is not sustained or continuous. For example, significant savings can come from automating a paper process for new hires, which might involve 20 different forms and a series of on-site orientation sessions. But once the process is completed and the new hires move on, ties to and engagement with those onboarding processes dissipates and fades. The HR team has saved a considerable sum for the organization in time and materials. However, the goodwill benefits of that experience often fail to translate as the employee moves on in his or her career.

So a gap opens between what HR technology has accomplished and what the organization needs to succeed. To close that gap, HR technology must overcome three key challenges:

* It doesn't engage all stakeholders.

* There are too many siloed applications.

* It remains disconnected from business outcomes.

To address these problems, organizations must take traditional talent management to a new level: talent activation.

The Talent Activation Continuum

Talent activation can overcome the challenges of old-school HR technology and provide solutions that truly serve business goals in three ways:

* Providing apps for everyone;

* Continuously connecting experiences; and

* Leveraging actionable analytics.

Why is Talent Activation Different?

Talent activation is for the entire business. Talent activation engages employees first, empowers HR teams and informs C-level stakeholders with necessary insights to drive better decisions that accomplish organizational goals.

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What are the Imperatives of Talent Activation?

 Talent activation differs in five ways from traditional solutions:

* Adapts to your business: Configurable to your processes -- specific to your business.

* Works where you work: Flexible to where, when and how you work, including your favorite mobile devices.

* Continuous engagement: Activities and interactions facilitate great, ongoing experiences -- they aren't one and done.

* Works with what you have: Open and connected apps allow you to connect with other solutions, including open APIs that make it easy to plug and play with what you own today.

* Measurable and actionable: Insights that allow your business to make more informed decisions and take prescriptive action, causing the business to be more competitive and productive.

By focusing first on the employee experience, talent activation consumerizes HR tech with flexible engagement apps on the front end, while opening them up to connect and work with existing technologies for payroll, benefits, time and attendance, as well as workhorse systems like Microsoft Office 365.

When HR departments put employees at the center of the business, employees don't just meet expectations; they excel. They become competitive differentiators.

Better Outcomes through Talent Activation

Talent activation helps businesses source, retain and maximize the contributions of top talent to boost the bottom line. HR leaders and executives can leverage talent activation to connect the dots between employee engagement and business outcomes in a measurable way for ongoing success.

See also:

Top Three Concerns Most Often Cited by HR Leaders

 

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