People are key to success, growth and overcoming any other business challenge. Talent is the only true source of competitive advantage in a business, and one of the first places to start when looking to unlock the full potential of your people is a talent framework.
Let’s start with the question, what is a ‘talent framework’? Put simply, it is a defined set of competencies or behaviours that have been identified as important for success, and broadly describes performance excellence for an organisation and the roles within.
Look at a talent framework as the foundation to other crucial talent management activities, for example 360-degree feedback, performance reviews, leadership development, succession planning, coaching and mentoring. Talent frameworks are also referred to as competency frameworks or behavioural frameworks in some organisations – essentially they are one and the same.
The (many) benefits of a talent framework
No more silos, no more ‘rubber stamp’ learning and development, no more ‘tick box’ performance reviews based on ill-defined performance expectations (or assumptions!). A talent framework provides the ability to take a holistic approach to talent and instead supports a talent strategy aligned to business objectives with all talent management activities aimed at increasing performance and realising the business strategy.
By defining and evidencing behaviours, it becomes possible to pursue a data-driven talent strategy. Think easily identifying and developing potential in your organisation, pinpointing skills gaps and development themes and in-depth insight for succession planning – across all levels.
Increased levels of engagement, fairness, and transparency. A talent framework clearly articulates to each individual what performance excellence looks like at their respective level, allowing people to take ownership of their performance and development. There are processes and/or tools that can be adopted to ensure consistency and elimination of bias.
Some organisations have complicated talent processes that have been built on over long periods of time. Others have multiple frameworks to do different things. Having one, modern talent framework keeps things simple, efficient and cost effective.
Designing and embedding a talent framework
Has the senior leadership team developed a solid understanding of your talent context? In other words, the talent to deliver the business strategy, locating development and skills gaps, where are you now vs. where you want to be. When you have this understanding, you can start designing a talent framework that will enable you to deliver talent management in the best way for your organisation.
Designing a talent framework can be done relatively quickly (if you understand your talent context). An experienced consultancy should be able to deliver a tailored framework for your organisation in a matter of weeks but this will depend on a number of factors. If designing in-house, it can take longer, as you need the right skillset available, a holistic overview of the organisation and its performance drivers and other competing priorities the team may have.
It’s important to remember that a talent framework will not circumvent the specific skills, qualifications, education and experience that are required for certain roles, but it will define how these skills and attributes should be used.
A talent framework certainly won’t fix all your talent related problems, but it provides the strong foundation which is needed to build efficient and effective performance management processes – enabling the strategic management of your talent.
Looking to boost the performance of your organisation? Talk to Morgan Philips’ Talent Consulting experts to discuss your requirements further.