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The Rise of Talent Management Suites

By Michael Meyer, Chief Risk Officer & Chief Security Officer, MRS BPO, LLC

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Michael Meyer, Chief Risk Officer & Chief Security Officer, MRS BPO, LLC

Talent Management Suites (TMS), aka Talent Management Systems, are becoming the most important part of Human Resources Technology. Their value to the organizations increases everyday as talent wars escalate. TMS were created and made possible by Software as a Service (SaaS), acquisition roll ups and API technology which allows and enables the integration of previously siloed strategic or departmental HR systems. TMS are defined by Gartner as “an integrated set of applications that support an organization’s need to plan, attract, develop, reward, engage and retain talent”. These applications may encompass some or all of the following application suites depending on the vendor’s offerings: talent, performance and goal management, compensation and competency management along with learning, leadership and succession management.

Earlier organizations separately purchased each type of application from different vendors and worked with unwieldy systems that required laborious manual steps and ad-hoc processes to fill gaps in the various processes. The decision regarding which application to purchase had to be prioritized because the individual cost of the applications was quite high, taking system and support costs into account. The current TMS systems are no longer the old-style HR one-size-fits-all types of applications. They can be connected, integrated and meshed together to solve a unique unified business need, irrespective of the industry vertical.

As organizations grow and explore new markets, they face unfamiliar, increasingly complex and difficult-to-manage challenges. The integration of these talent management applications into suites becomes especially critical to help navigate these multifaceted businesses and tangled regulatory environments. TMS enables fast, flexible and nimble HR responses to market forces for mid-size and large companies that previously were not able to react quickly. This means that for the first time mid-size and large companies can predict and see the real-time holistic impact of proposed or real strategic shifts or changes in their operations, such as entering or exiting a new or proposed market. They can now asses what is required, not only in staffing, but in the entire supply chain of events along the HR decision pathway.

These new integrated TMS applications allow both the organization and existing employees to see position openings as soon as they are created, the required skills and available learning tools to support the position. The organization can also quickly determine whether it is easier and more cost-effective to train an existing employee for a vacant position or competitively hire someone from outside the company, along with how long each process will take. In addition, TMS now provide all the tools at a lower cost encompassing the entire organization instead of a single department. This allows the organization to see, measure and analyze trends in positions, employees, costs and time to learn new skills that was previously beyond the capabilities of reporting or analytics.

In the not-too-distant past, the HR department was often the last department in any company to be considered for and receive any kind of new technology. In today’s competitive skills-based and rapidly changing business environment this view is changing. The previously neglected HR department is being thrust head first into a position in which it must adapt, automate and assimilate new technology and technology processes in a way it never has before.

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