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Total Talent Solutions | 6 minute read

Why a holistic approach to talent management is essential

February 3, 2020


Today’s workforce is made up of a combination of both permanent and non-permanent employees. With contingent workers accounting for 36% of the workforce, temporary, contract and interim employees are now a constant fixture in most talent strategies because of the many benefits they bring. From helping companies to scale to providing skills on a project-basis, the value of the contingent workforce is untold, especially when you consider how important it is in helping to combat global skills shortages.

To secure the best talent for today and tomorrow, companies need to integrate permanent and contingent talent acquisition so that it operates like one. Procurement, IT and HR, too often, operate in a fragmented manner when hiring contingent workers but collaboration between departments is vital. The best-outsourced talent programs now blend recruitment resources and managed service provider (MSP) capabilities, providing a total talent approach.

Next-generation total talent solutions

When it comes to approaching talent strategically, MSP as a solution is often too transactional on its own to deal with the market’s expectations. Issues like a lack of an integrated workforce management strategy, technology, data management limitations and fastest-to-fill hiring models can be solved by infusing elements such as employment branding, strategic workforce planning, technology consulting and so on.

Blended resource models allow for true knowledge to be shared between the permanent and non-permanent talent acquisition teams as well as ensuring the right decisions are made to secure top talent for the future. Talent is talent regardless of whether it is permanent or contingent.

Managing talent as one

Next-generation total talent solutions deliver engaging, high-touch, and personalized candidate and hiring manager experiences. They are much more productive in this talent landscape than traditional models which fail to view talent as one.

Integrated workforce management strategies streamline internal operations between procurement, talent acquisition, and hiring managers. Cross-functional processes and policies, supported by unified data and business intelligence, provide a number of benefits including:

  • Improved insights into the total cost of hiring all talent
  • Continuous engagement with talent communities
  • A better employee value proposition
  • Improved compliance and reduction in third party risk
  • The ability to fill critical roles
  • Standardised analysis across all engagement platforms regardless of source
  • Greater talent acquisition agility and scalability
  • Improved candidate quality and hiring experience
  • Increase in hiring manager satisfaction
  • More access to talent through organisation-owned talent communities

Demand management

The ability to oversee and manage an entire workforce - both for the day-to-day needs and when forecasting future adjustments - is a true demand management model. But it only functions efficiently if permanent and contingent workforces are managed as one cohesive group that can be deployed as and when required.

A true demand management program allows talent acquisition teams to:

  • Hire the best type of worker for the project at hand as it gives talent teams the ability to source and procure contingent workforce talent that is high-quality, aligned to specific business needs, and available “on-demand” to meet immediate talent needs.
  • Support hiring manager needs while still maintaining headcount and budget control as talent teams can make improved talent decisions based on the projects at hand and associated deadlines. In addition, permanent employees will be able to move around to fill different needs within organisations without the expense or time required to hire or source new talent.
  • Protect organisational security and costs with better processes and systems to manage and mitigate the risk of contingent worker administration across the worker lifecycle. Furthermore, a cohesive demand management approach relies in unified data integration, enabling seamless collaboration between talent acquisition teams and efficient deployment of the workforce, regardless of their employment type.

Adoption is growing

Blended talent solutions are growing in popularity. Approximately 22% of the global RPO 2018 market was derived from blended MSP/RPO contracts, with another 16% of the market represented by RPO contracts where the provider also delivers MSP under a separate contract, according to research from the Staffing Industry Analysts.

How to ensure visibility across the entire workforce

Transparency and visibility across the entire workforce help to drive improved business decisions. To ensure continued access to top talent, many organisations are partnering with global talent providers that utilise client-branded recruitment teams that leverage the latest, best-in-class techniques and technologies.

Leading providers invest significant time and energy to understand their clients’ cultures, business needs, and employment brands. Using this insight, they guide individual clients through consulting sessions and workshops to ensure the right people (regardless of whether they are permanent or contingent), processes, and technologies are integrated for specific business cases. 

As a starter, organisations that want to adopt a total talent approach can take the following steps:

  • Establish the strategic goals of your organization. Although this sounds obvious, it is a much-needed step as you need to understand the wider business goals in order to know exactly what is required talent-wise.
  • Get an executive sponsor that will help you to define the proposition and show ROI.
  • Engage with the business. Break down the silos and work together.
  • Analyze your current talent program and perform a gap analysis to show what you have versus what you need.
  • Build your business case using data.
  • Consider using an external partner with the expertise and resources to help you hit the ground running.
  • Track and monitor your program and ensure you have suitable technology to do this.

Once you have shown it works, you can roll-out total talent across the rest of the business.

This blog first appeared on LinkedIn.

About WilsonHCG

WilsonHCG is an award-winning, global leader in total talent solutions. Operating as a strategic partner, it helps some of the world’s most admired brands build comprehensive talent functions. With a global presence spanning more than 65 countries and six continents, WilsonHCG provides a full suite of configurable talent services including recruitment process outsourcing (RPO), executive search, contingent workforce solutions, talent consulting and talent intelligence.