Report: Human resources assumes a more strategic role
By | 2008-12-18
By tracking performance in retention, recruitment, training and development, companies said they engage their workforce and enhance performance.
Executives are beginning to appreciate the importance of a more deliberate approach to the management of people and talent, according to "Building An Integrated Talent Management Strategy," a new briefing paper from the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Oracle.
Based on a set of in-depth case studies of global organizations in technology, consulting, banking, retailing and government, the study describes some of the best practices in attracting, retaining and developing employees who can make a positive impact on an organization.
"Businesses are developing enterprise-wide processes to ensure that the right employees and the right performance incentives are in place to execute strategy," said Dan Armstrong, the editor of the report.
Consequently, companies are asking for their HR departments to contribute more to the running of the company.
"Firms can outsource those parts of HR dealing with administration and support. What remains is more strategic," Armstrong said.
The research unveils a handful of recurring strategies, which appear to be the cornerstones of a successful approach to talent and workforce management, including alignment with overall business objectives, strategic workforce planning, performance planning and evaluation, and talent mapping.
One firm that strives to be a top employer and hirer of top talent is Korea's SK Telecom (SKT). It places significant importance in creating what it calls a unique employee value proposition (EVP) to attract key people. This proposition includes the company's position in Businessweek's Global Top 100 innovative companies, being one of the largest IT companies in the world plus creating a foeigner-friendly work environment.. Other areas are obvious factors that workers look for in quality firms such as: work-life balance policy, flat organization, benefits, compensation.
"To retain top talent however, a global organization is not sufficient," said an SKT spokesperson. SKT is also putting a lot of emphasis into developing customized and transparent career growth opportunities and is running numerous training programs in both technical and leadership skills. "Two essential aspects are also needed for top students: challenging tasks and emotional bond," said the spokesperson. "SKT under the SK Group umbrella is more human-oriented, committed to social and economic development. We call it 'pursuing happiness'."
One key challenge is extending the talent search across regions and geographies as the talent war becomes global. SKT's sourcing channels currently cover most of the globe: Europe, Asia and US. SKT also run a global internship program with a long-term perspective on recruitment. "This year we targeted top MBA schools to find our future global talent. Through this internship, we can assess the candidates’ adaptability skills and cultural fit before offering full time positions."
According to SKT, finding new recruits, even from top schools in the US, is easier than it was due to the US strict visa regulation and unemployment rate. The general economic slowdown has also made it easier in many areas. However, the war for talents still exist, and SKT tries to stay ahead of its competitors by better communicating, networking, building strategic alliances with majors schools and keeping an attractive working environment.