The Journal

Managing Beyond Talent

Think about a company. Its purpose is to make money and help the owners and investors execute the vision. It is definitely not a company's purpose to employ people. People are a tool, not a goal. Just like company owners buy technology to perform certain tasks, they "buy" people to execute tasks technology can't.

Every department in the company is there to help the company achieve its financial goals. From sales to customer service, from delivery to accounting, every person counts. So while it's important to manage the data and the legal perspective of people, it's critical to figure out how the overall people process can be optimized to help the company make money.

So how do you design the most appropriate people process?

Let's start with the end goal. Your company is making money today and it surely wants to make money tomorrow and then six months and six or ten years from now. This means that your company should have competencies required to make it function today, tomorrow, and in the future. Some of these competencies are soft: your culture, the ability to lead, and the ability to communicate effectively may be required. Some competencies may be more functional: ability to develop software, design or manufacture great products, control costs, or simply hold intellectual property rights. These competencies may change from time to time. For example, you may have sufficient technical competencies today but the emergence of big data will require your organization to introduce data science as a competency in a year. If you don't foresee this competency far in advance, you may lose your ability to compete.

To develop the right people process, HR must work with various departments as well as product management and strategy experts to identify competencies that make the company competitive today and will keep it that way in the future. HR should then develop a competency library and perform a gap analysis to identify which competencies need to be developed in both short and long term. It's important to remember that not all competencies are achieved through training. Some are built through hiring or acquisitions while others are established through various organizational development exercises, such as coaching.

Once the competency library is developed and a gap analysis is performed, HR should develop a plan for achieving the required competencies. It should then modify its people process to assist with the plan. This may involve training, leadership development, and hiring, among other organizational development activities.

Of course HR can't do it alone. It needs the right tools. And if HR wants to manage competencies required in the future, it needs tools designed for the future. It needs tools that know how to manage beyond talent. After all, the key to any company's success is its ability to predict the future and be ready when it comes.

About Workuments
Workuments is a highly distinctive portfolio of HR, talent management, and rapid application development software focused on technological excellence and innovation. The Workuments Performance and Competency Management is a key building block in the Workuments suite designed specifically to assist HR with aligning its people process with organizational strategy. For more information, contact Workuments sales.