, Five Building Blocks of an Integrated Talent Management System, Building Wrestling

What is an integrated talent management?

Integrated talent management (ITM) refers to the management of traditional HR sub- functions (recruitment and selection, workforce planning, performance management, learning and development, reward and recognition and succession planning) in an integrated fashion to strategically leverage talent. An integrated talent management strategy must be aligned with the business strategy of the organisation otherwise it will add no value to the business, regardless of how good the strategy is. The cornerstone of an integrated Talent Management (ITM) System is a robust competency model that guides talent management strategy and tactics.

There are five building blocks that make up an ITM system, i.e. Philosophy of Talent Management, Talent Management Processes, Integrated Talent Management Information System, Governance Structure, and Talent Management Metrics.

1. Talent Management Philosophy

Talent Management Philosophy refers to a collective understanding of what is “talent management” and also the school of thought (pertaining to talent management) the management team has adopted. We learn from organisational psychology that for any organisational change effort to be successful, it must be supported by the top management of the organization. It is therefore important that an acknowledgement of the challenges faced by the organisation from a talent perspective, and how the organization intends to respond to the challenges is expressed in a policy statement of the organisation. The leadership of the organisation must agree on the guiding principles that will be applied to manage talent in the organisation.

2. Talent Management Processes

Processes are used as vehicles to transform something from one form to another form. HR Practitioners should shift their mindsets from a silo based mentality of managing HR sub-functions to a mindset of using these functions as a vehicle to build an organisational capability to attract, engage, and retain competent and committed employees. Each process functions as a means to an end and not an end in itself. It is critical for owners of each process to understand the outputs of these collective processes, otherwise the benefits of an integrated system will not be realised. The following is a brief discussion of how each process contributes to building this organisational capability (strategically leveraging talent).

2.1 Talent acquisition

The Talent Acquisition Process serves as a lever to pull talent from the external and the internal talent pool, but it does not lose sight of the over-arching objectives of the collective processes (talent acquisition, talent engagement, talent development and talent retention). First and foremost, the Talent Acquisition Specialist (TAS) must understand the business strategy and translate it into talent outcomes (the quality and quantity of talent) for the short term (1 year) and the long term (3-5 years). The next step will entail establishing if the required talent will be available (internally or externally) when it is needed. Decisions will be made as to which talent to buy (attract and source externally) and which one to build (develop). The TAS will not be able to make these decisions (buy or build) if he/she does not understand the depth and breadth of internal talent and also what talent is available in the labour market.

If the organisation has the luxury of time and has identified potential talent to be developed, the Training and Development Lever will be engaged to start the process of preparing the identified talent for the future roles. In a case where a decision is made to buy talent for current and future roles, the TAS will embark on a recruitment drive to fill current vacant positions and identify talent earmarked for future roles in the organisation. A talent bank will be established where potential external candidates’ names to fill these future roles are recorded.

The TAS will not be able to discharge their duties if they don’t have a “Workforce Plan” and don’t know what the organisation’s Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is. These two documents will guide the Talent Acquisition Strategy and the tactics to implement the strategy. The outputs from this process (Talent Acquisition) will flow into the On-boarding, learning and development, and talent engagement processes. The EVP commits the organisation on what value employees will gain from working for the organisation, hence it is incumbent on the TAS and other role players like HR Business Partners, HR administrators, Line Management, Learning and Development Practioners, and Compensation and Benefits Practitioners to make this proposition a reality.

2.2 Talent engagement

Talent engagement is the extent to which employees commit to something or someone in their organisation and how hard they work and how long they stay as a result of that commitment (Corporate Executive Board, 2005). Employee engagement comes into effect from the point when an employee is on-boarded. The purpose of an on-boarding process is not just about an employee understanding the policies of the organisation and preparing their workstations before they join. The purpose of the onboarding process is to enable the new recruit to add value to the company in a short space of time by coaching and providing them with all the resources they need to feel engaged and valued in the organisation.

Talent Acquisition Specialists have a responsibility to ensure that they recruit the right person for the right job. If the new recruit does not fit the job profile and the culture of the organisation, the talent engagement efforts will not positively influence the new recruit’s engagement level. Learning and Development as a function must also understand the competency gaps identified from the new recruits during the selection process so that opportunities for competency development are immediately created and actioned. Other levers that are used to engage employees include Performance Management, Succession Planning, Recognition and Reward and Leadership Quality.

2.3 Talent development

The talent development strategy must be aligned with the business strategy. The Training and Development Practitioner (TDP) must translate the business strategy into Talent Development outcomes. The TDP should understand what organisational capabilities related to competencies (knowledge, skills, behavioural) must be developed to enable the organisation to execute its strategy. This does not mean that employees who have competency gaps related to their current positions are ignored, they too must be developed. Another source that feeds into the talent development space is the career development needs of employees, which must also be factored into the training and development strategy. The career aspirations of employees must be aligned with the long term plans of the organisation which are reflected in the career paths and the organisational structures of the organisation. You would not want to spend resources developing employees in a particular direction knowing that in the medium/long term, such skills will not be needed in the organisation.

What are the inputs and outputs of this process?

There are three inputs (HR functions) that feed into the Talent Development Process, i.e. performance management, succession planning and workforce planning. At the end of the performance appraisal period, the competency gaps of the relevant employees are collated and fed into the Learning and Development platform. The potential successors’ development needs are also transferred to the Learning and Development platform. The LDP is a critical role player in ensuring that talent is developed for future positions. It is needless to say that the LDP should understand the organisation’s workforce plan so that he/she, in conjunction with line management sets a strategy in place to develop future talent.

2.4 Talent retention

The employee engagement index (a measure of employee engagement levels) serves as a leading indicator for retention. There seems to be an inverse relationship between employee engagement and labour turn over. A decrease in employee engagement scores, results in an increase in labour turnover rate if no action is taken to improve the employee engagement scores. It is important that your employee engagement initiatives are targeting what is most important for the employees you want to retain. Retention risk assessments must be conducted with all employees (those you want to keep) in critical positions and the High Potential Employees (HIPO). If you know what risk you have of losing them, you will develop a strategy to keep them and those that you can’t keep, a backup plan must be put in place so that you have cover when they leave. Talent retention is not a once off intervention; it is an ongoing process that aims to influence how employees feel about their jobs, managers, colleagues, and the organisation. The quality of leadership has the most influence on the commitment level of employees in the organisation, hence, organisations must invest resources to constantly improve the quality of their leaders.

To retain talent, an employer must understand what employees value, and align its practices with the EVP. A culture of “Employee Value ” where everyone in the organisation, from an employee on the shop floor (quality of team members) to the Chief Executive Officer understands and contributes to an environment where the organisation’s EVP becomes a reality.

3. Integrated Talent Management Information System

Different HR sub-functions (recruitment and selection, performance management, succession planning, training and development, reward and recognition) are applied in various processes of talent management and each HR sub-function generates data that are used for managing talent. An integrated Talent Management System enables users to pull all this information (from different HR sub-functions) together to assist decision makers to understand the depth and breadth of talent at their disposal and talent risks that they should mitigate. There are various talent management information systems available in the market. Some are offered as part of the Enterprise Resource Planning, and some are standalone systems.

4. Talent Review Committees

Talent management is the responsibility of line management and HR supports line by making the tools available and also giving them training and guidance on how to apply the tools. Talent management should be a standard agenda item in the Board and Executive Committee (EXCO) meetings. Talent Review Committee’s (TRC) function is to keep the focus on talent management alive, and to understand the talent risks the organisation is facing and develop and implement a risk mitigation strategy. Governance structures take different forms depending on the size and complexity of the organisation. For an example, a global organisation will have a TRC at a corporate level focusing on the senior executive bench strength, a number of TRCs per division, another TRC which comprises divisional representatives that focuses across divisions and functional TRCs. These committees will focus on different levels and different types of critical positions talent pools.

5. Talent Management Metrics

The old management adage popularised by Professor Deming that says “you can’t manage what you don’t measure” also applies to managing talent in organisations. There are a myriad of measures that one can use to measure the impact of talent management initiatives, but before deciding on measures to use, you need to establish from your clients (line management) which measures matter most for them. Internally, you will also want to measure the outputs per process so that you can determine if all the processes are adding value to the ultimate outcome (business performance). There are two types of indicators that must be used when measuring the outcomes of talent management initiatives, i.e. lagging and leading indicators. Leading indicators (e.g. Employee engagement scores) predict the outcome, while lagging indicators are historical in nature (e.g. labour turnover rate). As far as talent management is concerned, the measures must help you answer the following questions:

1. What is the breadth of our talent ( Bench strength/succession cover for critical positions)?

2. What is the depth of our talent ( Readiness levels/ percentage of employees who are ready now, ready in the next year, ready between 1 and 3 years)?

3. What are the retention risks (Percentage of employees in critical positions who may leave in the next year, 2 years, or 3 years; Labour turnover rate of critical talent; employee engagement scores; leadership quality)?

4. Do we attract the right talent (Number of potential candidates per critical vacancy)?

5. Are we developing our own talent (Number of employees with development plans, cross functional moves)?

There are different role players in the whole process of managing talent (from talent acquisition to talent retention) and to make sure that they all function as one team with the same objectives, they must all be measured against the same set of measures.

Conclusion

A framework was presented in this article on how to apply an integrated approach to talent management. There are a lot of frameworks available in literature with varying degrees of complexities. What is important is how you adapt these frameworks to your unique environment.

, 5 Steps To Building A Profitable Home Internet Business In 2017, Building Wrestling

Building as profitable home internet business is not as complicated as you may think. You may be nervous about getting caught up with technical issues that seem impossible to understand. Or you might feel that you’re too old, too young or too inexperienced. Or you may just not know where to start.

As long as you know what you want to sell and who you want to sell it to, you’re ready to get started. Let’s take a look at the 5 steps to building a profitable home internet business.

1. Get Your Website Online

With modern software and technology, building a website is not that difficult. You definitely don’t have to start learning website coding or e-commerce programs. There are many online business systems that can be installed with a few clicks following step-by-step instructions. You can even outsource the whole set up if you feel that it’s too much for you.

2. Get People To Visit Your Website

Your home internet businesses will only make money if you get traffic to your website. Traffic is basically the number of people who visit your website. There are two ways to generate website traffic. You can buy website traffic or you can generate free website traffic. When you buy website traffic, it’s essentially paid advertising. It delivers instant results but the traffic stops as soon as you stop paying for it. So you have to ensure that you spend your money wisely. Free website traffic takes a little longer to generate, but once it starts, it can provide a regular flow of visitor traffic.

3. Provide Valuable Content For Free

It’s highly unlikely that somebody will buy from you the first time that they visit your website. You have gone to a lot of effort to get them to visit your website in the first place and you don’t want that work to go to waste. So, if you can obtain their email address, you can remain in contact with them. To encourage a website visitor to provide you with their email address, offer them something of value for free such a report, a discount or special offer. As long as it is relevant to your business and provides value.

4. Use Emails To Build A Relationship With Your Prospect

Email marketing is considered to be one of the most effective marketing strategies and you will need an email autoresponder. An autoresponder will automatically email your freebie when somebody requests it. It can then continue to send a pre-written series of emails to develop a relationship with your potential buyer.

5. Make Offers Or Recommendations

Email marketing is effective because you are providing regular and meaningful communications. The more value you provide, the more you will be seen as a trusted source of information. Then, when you make offers and recommendations about products and services to buy, your prospects are far more likely to buy from you because they trust your judgement.

, Building Types and Styles of Kenya, Building Wrestling

As the construction industry embraces modern architecture and builders experiment with new styles and plans, there is a growing difference between building types and styles used today than those built even a few decades ago.

Certain styles of buildings are widespread in Kenya and seen as the de facto standard. As a result, most buildings have similar designs and forms that contribute to building limitations in terms of flexibility and ease of use.

Traditional styles of building in Kenya

Until recently, buildings in Kenya have had common characteristics in their construction that are determined by

  • Skills of the labor force
  • Accessibility and affordability of building materials

Developers are beginning to work outside their comfort zones to use varied building plans and construction materials resulting in innovative architectural looks and forms.

Buildings in rural Kenya

Temporary and semi-permanent structures

The building types and styles in rural Kenya are significantly influenced by the region and traditional culture of the people living in a specific rural area. For instance:

  • The Maasai and Samburu tribes construct temporary huts called ‘Manyattas’ to match their pastoralist lifestyle. These are made from twigs tied together by dried tree-bark or strings to make walls with thatched roofs.
  • The Kalenjin tribe construct semi-permanent huts using twigs and posts joined together using nails. Mud or clay is plastered on the twigs to make walls and the floor while the roof is made of long grass or reeds.
  • Coastal people such as the Mijikenda make houses from coconut leaves popularly known as Makuti houses
  • The Kikuyu, on the other hand, use timber for the walls and iron sheets for the roof.

Permanent structures

Temporary structures are dying off and being replaced by permanent houses made of stones and mortar.

For those who cannot afford stones and mortar, bricks are made by mixing clay with sand, straw, stone, concrete and lime, and then shaped into blocks that are either air-dried with fire or dried in a kiln. The bricks are used for walls and pavements.

Interestingly, bricks are finding their way into urban areas as developers seek to construct affordable housing for urban dwellers.

The few permanent buildings in rural areas have similar styles owing to the construction materials used and lack of sufficient skills by local workforce. Most of these homes have:

  • L, T, U and I shaped designs
  • Several bedrooms and a living room (sitting room)
  • Bathrooms and kitchen often built in separate locations from the main house

Commercial buildings are simply built as plain empty halls with no design and style taken into account.

Customary styles and types of building in urban Kenya

The styles, designs, architecture and types of buildings in urban Kenya are more expressive with most built using stones and mortar for walls, cemented or tiled floors and iron sheets or roofing tiles for roof covering.

1. Flats and apartments

They are the most common building type among urban dwellers.

  • Accommodate high numbers of tenants and are relatively affordable
  • Less sophisticated in terms of design and style
  • Range from single rooms, bedsitters and self-contained one-bed houses to self-contained two and three-bed houses.

It is rare to find apartments and flats with more than 3 bedrooms.

2. Maisonettes

More sophisticated in design and based on the personal style of the owner, there is growing demand for maisonettes in Kenya to accommodate the increasing middle class. As a result, companies are developing large-scale projects of maisonettes in a bid to capitalize on the new housing market.

3. Bungalows

  • Mostly built by upper middle class and class A and AB
  • Highly sophisticated in terms of design, style and type

Commercial complexes

They are the most versatile in terms of design, type and space, and materials used range from glass and metal to stones and mortar, plastic, bricks and combination of timber and stones, etc.

  • They include sky scrapers and storied buildings
  • Their designs and use of space is determined by the function of the building with shopping malls and entertainment spots being more open in terms of architecture and design.