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International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management Managing the talent management pipeline: Towards a greater

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management Managing the talent management pipeline: Towards a greater

Managing the talent management pipeline: Towards a greater understanding of senior managers' perspectives in the hospitality and tourism sector Norma D'Annunzio-Green

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Managing the talent management pipeline

Towards a greater understanding of senior managers’ perspectives in the hospitality and tourism sector

Norma D’Annunzio-Green

School of Management and Law, Napier University, Edinburgh, UK

The talent

management

pipeline

807

Abstract

Purpose – This paper aims to explore managers’ views on the challenges and opportunities around the talent management (TM) pipeline in a range of hospitality and tourism organisations. The paper seeks to focus on drawing out key issues and suggesting practical actions arising from these. Design/methodology/approach – The paper draws primarily on a number of in-depth interviews with senior managers representing a wide range of sectors in the industry. Managers’ views are summarised and quotes used to illustrate key themes. Findings – Each stage of the TM pipeline is explored and the findings reveal a number of contextual, strategic and operational concerns around the implementation of TM policy and processes. Findings indicated clear commitment towards the value of TM, but revealed that some policy areas were felt to be underdeveloped. Approaches to TM were organisation specific, and driven by internal expertise and available resources. Organisations would fit and tailor their TM approach to their own context. Practical implications – A number of practical implications emerge from this paper specifically relating to defining, attracting, retaining developing and transitioning talent. Originality/value – The paper provides a senior management perspective on TM and allows the reader a unique insight into the complexities of managing talent in the hospitality and tourism sector, highlighting the issues that organisations are facing.

Keywords Hospitality services, Tourism, Senior managers

Paper type Viewpoint

Introduction Talent management (TM) can be defined as a holistic approach to human resource planning aimed at strengthening organisational capability and driving business priorities using a range of HR interventions. These include a focus on performance enhancement, career development and succession planning (Iles, 2007). The concept of TM has evolved into common management practice and while originally focused on recruitment (Michaels et al., 2001), it is now recognised as a much broader concept aimed at attracting, retaining, developing and transitioning talented employees. This paper presents the views of a number of senior managers in the hospitality and tourism sector, and develops a deeper understanding of their perceptions around the value of TM, the approaches they adopt, and the issues and challenges they face in the process. The objectives of the discussion were as follows:

. To examine senior managers views on TM in terms of its definition and meaning and its contribution to business success.

and meaning and its contribution to business success. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management Vol. 20 No. 7, 2008 pp. 807-819 q Emerald Group Publishing Limited

0959-6119

DOI 10.1108/09596110810897628

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To explore current practice in a range of hospitality and tourism organisations at each stage of the TM pipeline, specifically attraction, retention, development and transitioning of talent.

To uncover managers views on challenges and issues at each stage and provide practical suggestions for process improvement.

This discussion was specifically focused around senior managers in hospitality and tourism operations representing a variety of sub-sectors (hotels, bars, restaurants, contract catering and events management) and a range of SMEs, large MNCs, charities and government funded bodies responsible for hospitality and tourism development. The contributors were given the following definition of TM and were asked to discuss a series of questions around the area of TM with the aim of learning more about the challenges and key issues that they are dealing with and how they are responding to these. The definition was drawn from CIPD (2006a) and is illustrative of a holistic approach to TM:

Talent consist of those individuals who can make a difference to organisational performance, either through their immediate contribution or in the longer term by demonstrating the highest levels of potential. Talent management is the systematic attraction, identification, development, engagement retention and deployment of those individuals with high potential who are of particular value to an organisation (CIPD, 2006a).

The discussion highlighted a range of views and suggestions as to how TM strategies can be improved. These are presented in Tables I-V which draw out the implications of the discussions for key stakeholders in order to assist them in operationalising their TM strategies.

.

.

Table I. Talent management strategy – issues and implications for stakeholders

Area of talent management strategy

 

Implications for

Implications for

hospitality

Implications for

talented

Key issues

organisations

managers

employees

Defining talent

Low awareness of talent management terminology Need for more specific definition of talent and more discussion of what constitutes talent in organisations

Collaborate with educators and allocate a member of the management team to keep up to date with current thinking in talent management Consider ways to encourage managers to take responsibility for talent management

Take responsibility for talent management Include talent management as an item on the agenda for management meetings

Get to know the language of talent in the organisation. Look for role models and learn from them and their behaviour

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Area of talent management strategy

 

Implications for

Implications for

hospitality

Implications for

talented

Key issues

organisations

managers

employees

Attraction

Acute awareness of the benefits of selling their employer brand to future talent and each organisation clearly understood their unique selling points but often this was not validated from the employee perspective General agreement that a more formal attraction plan was needed at local level More understanding and discussion required of common problems and possible solutions to problems of attracting talent

Continue to

Differentiate brand from competition – consider unique selling points Survey employees to develop better understanding of their views on employer brand Develop recruitment plan for each job family

Offer feedback to managers as to whether the suggested unique selling points are the reality of working life in the organisation Ask to meet members of the team as part of the recruitment process to help set your expectations Act as ambassadors for new talent into your organisation

define employer

brand,

communicate

widely through

recruitment

channels

Develop strategy

to encourage

current

employees as

ambassadors

The talent

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Table II. Attraction of talented employees – issues and implications for stakeholders

There follows a brief review of literature in the four areas of defining, attracting, retaining developing and transitioning talent, followed by the key themes arising from the discussion and illustrative quotes.

Defining talent In defining talent, it is worthwhile referring back to Michaels et al. (2001) who first coined the phrase “the war for talent”. They define talent in a general sense as the sum of a person’s ability, to include their skills, knowledge and potential for development. They argue that a certain part of talent eludes description “you simply know it when you see it”. Many companies today invest resources in describing the behaviours that they would like to encourage in talented employees and these will vary from organisation to organisation. There is therefore likely to be no universal description of talent and each company will work towards understanding the specific talent profile that fits best with their culture and structure. Achieving a comprehensive approach to TM involves organisations in a journey, focused on

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Table III. Retention of talent – issues and implications for stakeholders

Area of talent management strategy

 

Implications for

Implications for

hospitality

Implications for

talented

Key issues

organisations

managers

employees

Retention

Need to develop better understanding of motivations behind employee’s decisions to stay or go Need to keep up to date with emerging social trends influencing different staff motivations Need to develop structured retention plan Loss of talent due to poor communication between managers and staff

Develop managers communication skills and measure the results Define good and poor communication and measure as part of the appraisal system

Use hard data to gain management commitment towards developing retention plan Develop coaching skills for all managers Understand the hard and soft costs of employee turnover for your business and communicate this to all involved Consider whether talented employees know they are valued

Communicate your concerns to managers – as often problems and concerns can be solved

firstly establishing a strong business case for talent and understanding the direction and needs of the business and secondly aligning this with a range of HR systems and processes. While this makes good business sense and there are many well-documented and compelling arguments for developing a TM strategy, a recent CIPD (2006a) survey reported that 60 per cent of organisations had no formal TM strategy and 80 per cent had no formal definition of talent. The aim of this discussion with hospitality and tourism managers, was to present a snapshot of views on the value of TM and current practice but at the same time highlight the problems that exist in developing a formal strategy and go some way towards understanding why TM is such a compelling yet elusive concept. Recent research in the UK has pointed to practitioner confusion around definitions and focus of TM and often when managers talk about talent there is lack of clarity regarding exactly whom they are referring to (CIPD, 2006a; Schweyer, 2004; Tansley et al., 2007). Talent strategies can focus on a number of groups of employees. For example, the high potential, high performers (commonly referred to as HiPos) who are identified as promotable; or key talent, defined as people with talent that the organisation values at all levels. They may have business specific skills or knowledge or possess special know-how, which differentiates them from other employees and makes them hard to replace. They may not be on a particularly structured career path but they are just as important to organisational success. The choice here is between an inclusive or exclusive approach to TM. Most respondents to the CIPD (2006a) learning

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Area of talent management strategy

 

Implications for

hospitality

Implications for

Implications for

Key issues

organisations

managers

talented employees

Development

Role of line manager as critical

Free up time in management role

Encourage talented employees to

Take responsibility for your own development Communicate your

to

development

for talent development

discuss their development needs

process

A

trend towards

Allocate resource to identifying internal talent and increase awareness of the skills profile of your employees Consider development of all levels of talent including executive/director level

and aspirations with you Try to look for potential in your employee pool on a continual basis

 

encouraging employees to take more responsibility for their own development Other pressures, priorities and resource constraints provide barriers to more sophisticated approaches to talent development

aspirations to your line manager

The talent

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Table IV. Development of talent – issues and implications for stakeholders

and development survey believed TM should be inclusive and applicable to all (CIPD, 2006a). Almost two-thirds of respondents believed that an exclusive focus would have strong de-motivating effects on those not included.

Interest in TM

A range of factors have fuelled interest in TM. With a growing global labour market

making competition for labour increasingly internationalised, employers are looking to other countries to attract talent, therefore companies are experiencing more competition for talent in their domestic labour markets and have to compete internationally themselves. An increasingly virtual workplace has made the boundaries between organisations more permeable, enabling collaboration and intensifying competition for staff at all levels (Reed, 2001). The diversity of the workforce in terms of age race and culture has put pressure on employers to embrace and embed concepts of fairness and diversity in any TM approach. Many of today’s employees have independent views about their own lifestyles and access to information about career opportunities. The growing focus on

work life balance issues is driving TM policies to shift the focus from measuring hours

at work towards the quality of contribution made while at work. In addition, a mobile

workforce, tight labour markets and the end of the concept of a job for life have made

workers with highly transferable skills a much sought after commodity (Reed, 2001). “An organisations key assets are also its most mobile assets with job moves undertaken to increase and enhance knowledge bases, employability and earning potential” (Iles, 2007, p. 107).

Discussion and results The results of the discussions with senior managers are now presented, drawing on key themes and using illustrative quotes to amplify managers views on the challenges that they are facing.

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Table V. Transitioning talent – issues and implications for stakeholders

Area of talent management strategy

 

Implications for

hospitality

Implications for

Implications for

Key issues

organisations

managers

talented employees

Transitioning

Reactive approach driven by pressure to fill vacancies Fast internal promotion process can pose problems if talent has not yet acquired all the necessary skills At senior levels a more bespoke and individualised approach to transitioning talent was adopted Transition from middle to senior managers deemed problematic

Need to develop structured transition paths and communicate these clearly to future talent Fast internal promotion system, while advantageous, requires coaching and mentoring support system

Coaching and mentoring training for managers and talent Need to develop skills in identifying potential talent

Have realistic expectations Learn the skills and experience necessary to move from one level to another. Be proactive about seeking out these training opportunities Listen to feedback on

Use of the term TM and TM strategies There was generally low awareness and low usage of the term TM. It was described by one respondent as:

creeping more into the conversation now but not part of common language here and another we never use it. It is not a word I had come across until now.

Quite a high percentage of the respondents involved in the discussion were representative of SMEs and they discussed the challenges around having no formal HR function to coordinate TM activity. One manager suggested that:

[

]

this puts a lot of responsibility and pressure on managers to take the lead in talent management and it is difficult to know where to start.

Part of the discussion involved asking the respondents to describe a highly talented person in their organisation. Interestingly many found this hard to articulate and for some it was not a profile that had been clearly defined. One manager commented:

I think we would benefit from being able to come to a common understanding of this and encourage people to talk about it.

When prompted, many common behaviours and competencies were cited across the respondents for example a passion for the job, leading by example and ability to motivate their team. Many of the respondents already measured many of these skills and competencies but suggested that some, particularly the softer skills, could be both measured and communicated to staff more rigorously using competency descriptors:

[

]

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at management level we talk about passion for the job a lot – and we know what we

mean – but we need to write this down in terms of behaviours that staff can identify and replicate, otherwise it becomes a cliche´.

These views suggested the importance of developing a common language of talent in each organisation, which is unique to that organisation and developing competency descriptors which articulate clearly to all stakeholders what talent looks like and what behaviours could be identified and developed in talented employees. The word “talent” was defined by respondents in a number of ways:

people with potential, employees we value, employees with skills and abilities that we really need and as our future.

There was generally positive feedback regarding increased use of the term TM with one respondent commenting:

sometimes when I talk about appraisal it all sounds quite dull and not particularly

engaging for managers but when you talk about talent management, all of a sudden it sounds

[ ]

[

]

[ ]

much more dynamic [

]

it might help generate some new life back into our process.

The talent

management

pipeline

813

Many of the respondents felt that they needed a conscious strategy for TM activity but were extremely aware of resource constraints and the multi faceted nature of TM. There was a strong realisation that they needed to focus on key areas of the business, and key people:

we are a relatively small business and cannot resource all areas of talent management

interventions but some would work better for us than others and we need to spend some time developing the areas that fit with our culture yet are not overly resource intensive or difficult for managers to engage in on a day to day basis.

In most of the SME’s, it was clear that resource constraints appeared to be driving them to consider a more exclusive approach to managing and developing talent, which focused on key people. There was also a strong notion, however, of the need for TM strategies to be directed at all those employees with potential, rather than an exclusive focus on managers. This was indicative of a much more inclusive approach to TM. There was a great deal of motivation and commitment towards identifying talent across the business and the potential benefits this could bring. Respondents articulated a range of micro and macro level concerns regarding developing TM strategies. One high-growth company had an issue in knowing and understanding what talent they needed in the future:

it is about having that strategic view – where will we be in the next 2 years, what talent do

what additional skills do we need to enable the organisation to grow.

[ ]

[ ]

we need to get there? [

]

For them, TM was about having a more strategic perspective towards talent in terms of matching business growth with manpower supply and demand. For another TM was about:

[ ]

people who fit our culture and business needs, people with the right competencies and then

how do we measure these competencies as they progress their career?

For this organisation, TM was about trying to ensure some element of vertical

ensuring that we are promoting the right people with the right skills. How do we attract

integration

of employees skills

with the needs

of the business and horizontal

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integration in terms of measuring the skills using a range of HR interventions such as performance management, communication and reward systems:

We spend a lot of time looking at our teams and looking at people coming through the ranks and identifying people who are ripe for promotion. Having said that we don’t have a strategy for doing this. I mean it comes out of constant communication just being tuned into what’s going on. We can do this because we are still relatively small but as we grow our approach

will need to be more systematic.

This organisation understood that at present their relatively informal approach worked well and was effective but were well aware that as they grew this area would require a more systematic approach. It was clear from this discussion that while extremely committed to notions of TM the respondents were grappling with a range of concerns and complexities around defining the boundaries of TM strategies and prioritising different groups of employees.

Issues in attracting talent Respondents articulated the need to sell their employee brand or unique selling point to a wider audience and discussed the range of benefits that can be used to attract talent:

we may not pay hugely well at entry level but employees do progress up the ladder

quickly and experience many unique benefits such as free hotel accommodation around the

[ ]

world [

]

they join a culture where teamwork and camaraderie are key to success.

We attract staff by telling them about the potential for progressions. When I interview one of the things I always tell new staff is that all of our general managers have come up through the ranks – it is one of our unique selling points.

Respondents generally agreed that there needed to be a more proactive approach to attracting talent and that a more focused approach to TM could in itself be used as a unique selling point to be communicated to prospective employees through the website and recruitment process:

We are not so good at attraction – we need to develop a talent attraction plan in the same way as we would do a marketing plan. For example, what can we do to compensate for the high cost of living in the local area and levels of pay which are at some levels less competitive that they could earn elsewhere? We set new recruit expectations clearly early on and tell them that we may not pay the highest salaries but we will offer them other benefits and development opportunities – we want people to come to us because they are attracted by these opportunities, not just by the bottom line.

There was a general consensus amongst respondents that more dialogue and discussion needed to take place within organisations and across organisational sectors regarding common areas of difficulty and which kind of staff they find hardest to attract and recruit, in order to identify reasons for these difficulties and solutions in the form of clear employee attraction strategies. Respondents discussed the need to come to a better understanding of their employees’ motivations. There was recognition that the financial benefits were not necessarily the strongest part of their offer so developing a better understanding of other factors that motivate their people to stay was seen as crucial.

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Issues in retaining talent

A discussion around the changing attitudes of individuals demonstrated how TM

strategies needed to flex according to different types and categories of employee and take account of emerging social trends. One respondent’s account described the challenges and

expectations of “generation Y” (those employees born since 1980), and their propensity towards changing their jobs regularly. These employees were seen to place more emphasis

on employability rather than employment, which in turn put pressure on organisations to

offer them continuous development of their own careers. One respondent described these

employees as:

a new younger group of people coming through who want everything and who want it now and are quite happy to demand it!

This company had realised that the key to keeping hold of this group of employees lay in developing a better understanding of their expectations and focused on developing a more meritocratic approach that valued talent. As a result it was felt important to find ways of working with the expectations of these employees that make the most of them and their enthusiasm, ensuring at the same time that that they fitted in with the company culture and other employees who may have quite different mindsets. It did, however, prove difficult as a culture was seen to be developing whereby employees were motivated to acquire the skills they needed in order to make themselves more marketable to other companies. Retaining these individuals was proving to be a great challenge. It was suggested that employers needed to focus equally on both recruitment and retention:

we are quite happy to spend many thousands on recruitment plans, projects and

initiatives but when we look at what we do around retention specifically it is often underdeveloped and we risk seeing our investment walk out of the door into the hands of our

[

]

[ ]

competition.

We perhaps shoot ourselves in the foot a bit in terms of raining expectations for quick progression. Many very good people move around after 2/3 years as they don’t get the speedy promotion opportunities they were promised. We need to manage their expectations more effectively.

Developing a deeper understanding of why good talent may leave was a strong and recurring theme throughout the discussions with respondents. One organisation had recently done some work in this area and were frustrated to find that the reasons many

of the most recent leavers had given for leaving could have been easily changed had

the managers known about them. There needed to be more ongoing communication and dialogue between employer and employee. The view was expressed that often the employee feels that the manager is not interested and would not make the changes even if they were small. Respondents discussed the need to involve and gain commitment from all managers to treat this issue as a priority. One respondent discussed how they viewed this area as a team problem requiring team effort:

a couple of months ago we pulled together all the turnover statistics and costs over the

last year, we broke it down department by department and presented these to management and supervisors. We said this is the current picture and this is what it is costing us. We tried

[ ]

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to assess both hard quantitative costs and softer less tangible but equally important costs. The challenge was how we as a team would deal with this information and develop a plan to improve it. We were conscious to avoid dwelling on the past and rather focused on engaging the team and pulling a plan together to ensure we were all accountable and so we could come back a few months later and evaluate the results.

This narrative provided an interesting example which illustrated how the hard, quantitative labour turnover figures and their impact on the bottom line could be used to engage managers and convince them to buy-in to developing a retention plan which would focus on softer elements of HR such as communication, coaching and personal development.

Developing employee talent Much discussion took place over the crucial role of the line managers in developing talent and creating more space to understand what make each employee tick. There was a shared understanding of the management time and effort this took and a concern that often there is not enough time to devote to this ongoing communication. One respondent described ways of freeing up managers time by devolving some managerial responsibility to small groups of employees (for example, this organisation gave staff the rota to organise). This was seen to provide employees with valuable development opportunities and increased feelings of autonomy and responsibility while releasing the manager from a job that she disliked and allowing her more time to focus on the leadership and communication part of her job. Another organisation discussed how they encouraged employees to take more responsibility for their own development:

tell us what your development needs are; tell us about the skills that you have and how

we can develop them to the mutual benefit of the business and yourselves and we will do our best to support you.

To illustrate how unaware managers are of the latent talent in employees, they cited the example of an employee who was working as a porter but who had previously been a qualified interior designer in Poland. Nobody realised this until the department was being refurbished and the employee started to offer valuable advice. This organisation had recently implemented regular job chats and continuing professional development activity planning for all levels of staff to assist with communication and highlight employee aspirations as part of the TM process. The problems of administering the development process were discussed by a number of respondents and this emerged as an area of concern. Respondents understood that administration of training needs analysis was necessary underpinning for TM strategies to work. One manager discussed the challenge of translating the development needs identified in the twice-yearly appraisal into a training plan. Twice yearly appraisals generated over 400 training needs proformas, each with a number of possible training and development interventions:

I could spend 3 months compiling a full training plan, discussing each individuals needs with the manager, organising the training and planning the training and communicating it to the individuals but I have to be realistic. I don’t have time for this and other areas take priority so I operate a system whereby I read each form, summarise the most commonly mentioned training needs arising and plan these into next quarters training plan. I know I will not be

[ ]

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able to satisfy all individuals’ aspirations. The rest of the development we offer is demand led, whereby a member of staff identifies a development opportunity, presents a good business case and with manager authorisation it will be arranged. It needs to be more formal but this is the best we can do with the resources we have.

This example clearly demonstrates the tension between the rhetoric and reality of TM where good practice gives way to organisational pressures and resource constraints. There were also concerns around senior management and managing director level regarding knowing what an appropriate training intervention would be at this level to keep their skills current and developed.

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Transitioning talent Transitioning talent was described to the respondents as the point at which an employee or leaders responsibilities and skills change as a result of promotion from one level to another. These transitions require significant effort and personal transformation from employees if they are to be competent at their new level. The CIPD (2006b) describe the main principles of transition as focusing on ensuring that:

.

one level of development feeds smoothly into the next;

leaders learn the skills they will always need as early as possible and have access to those skills needed for the next level before they get to it; and

leaders know what the unique contribution of each stage of leadership must be to the business and are driven towards and supported in making this shift.

There were some excellent examples of structured transition paths, for example, one respondent described:

.

.

we have clearly defined 3 grades of management and associated levels of responsibility.

For each we have a web based training programme so we have a clearly defined pathway for our staff who want to move from supervisor to deputy unit manager.

There was also a view that while some organisations had clearly defined generic

transition processes defining what skills and training each level required, there needed

to be a more individualised approach for some categories of talent:

We need to tailor transition programmes to individuals rather than a one size fits all approach.

Once you get to general manager level the training is more bespoke and informal – driven more by the individual.

There were also a number of concerns raised by respondents, the most challenging area appeared to be the transition from middle to senior management, for example, from bar or restaurant manager to food and beverage manager or deputy general manager.

We have a bit of stagnation at this level and a bit of a glass ceiling and as a result we loose good people.

A strong theme centred around whether the sector might promote individuals too soon

without giving enough attention to whether the promoted employee has the necessary skills to be able to cope at the new level. As a result of high turnover rates, some

[ ]

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organisations felt that their guidelines for transition were not always followed due to recruitment pressures and the need to fill vacancies within a certain timescale. This was driving organisations to reactive approaches with subsequent problems as illustrated by the following quotes:

We have a reactive approach to transitioning talent – we react to vacancies when they arise and fill them with good internal people.

We offer excellent internal promotion opportunities but sometimes we are too reactive. We need a person in post now so we have a tendency to promote too soon. This fast track approach requites a lot of development in the first few months and sometimes we just don’t have the management time to support and coach these individuals – we are setting them up to fail.

I feel we promote people too soon into first line manager positions – we underestimate the demands on people with no managerial or supervisory experience – they may have lots of talent but they don’t have the right amount of experience or confidence to manage teams of people. This is symptomatic of our sector.

The role of a performance appraisal in preparing employees for transition and promotion was seen to be important. Most organisations had sophisticated systems in operation but many were under review and it was felt that the appraisal itself and the training, development and commitment of managers towards this process would benefit from further development in order to strengthen the TM system:

Our appraisal process is a bit outdated and laborious We have got a very lengthy appraisal that takes about two days to complete.

Managers tick the boxes but I am not convinced that the process is as rewarding as it could be for employees.

Conclusions The discussions highlighted much enthusiasm around the concept of TM and uncovered some excellent practice but there were clearly a number of challenges facing managers around the area of TM and these are summarised below. Practical implications arising from these are discussed in Tables I-V:

There was a clear commitment towards and enthusiasm for all elements of TM but many organisations were aware that their approach would benefit from further development.

No shortage of talent mentioned as a real concern but retention and development issues were significant for all contributors.

Retention centred around meeting employees expectations and holding on to them until a suitable promoted position arose – this sometimes proved problematic and resulted in talent being promoted too early.

Approaches to TM were organisation specific, and driven by internal expertise and available resources – organisations would fit and tailor their TM approach to their own context.

Managers were acutely aware of the dynamic nature of TM strategies and tried to adapt their approaches to emerging social, professional and industry trends.

.

.

.

.

.

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A range of approaches were adopted towards TM to include a number of informal but effective approaches.

Organisations acknowledged the need to offer good performance management systems to draw together elements of TM.

Respondents emphasised the necessity for talented employees to take some responsibility for their own development, be self-motivated and build their self-belief and confidence.

Senior managers development appeared to be subordinated to the development of supervisors and middle managers.

Managers need to take responsibility for TM particularly the motivation, coaching, mentoring and ongoing communication.

Resource constraints, particularly in the form of management time to engage fully with TM was seen as a key concern.

Senior managers from the following companies took part in this discussion. Their contribution and participation is gratefully acknowledged. Scottish Enterprise Edinburgh and Lothian; Hilton Hotels, Edinburgh; The Town House Company, Edinburgh; Sheraton Hotel, Edinburgh; Karen Calvert, Montpelier’s Partnership, Edinburgh; Hospitality Industry Trust, Scotland; Heritage Portfolio Ltd Edinburgh.

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References CIPD (2006a), Reflections on Talent Management: Change Agenda, CIPD, London. CIPD (2006b), Talent Management, Understanding the Dimensions , CIPD, London. Iles, P. (2007), “Employee resourcing and talent management”, in Storey, J. (Ed.), Human Resource Management, A Critical Text, Thomson, London, Ch.6. Michaels, E., Handfield-Jones, H. and Axelrod, B. (2001), The War for Talent , Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA. Reed, A. (2001), Innovation in Human Resource Management: Tooling up for the Talent Wars , CIPD, London. Schweyer, A. (2004), Talent Management Systems, Best Practices in Solutions for Recruitment, Retention and Workforce Planning , Wiley, New York, NY. Tansley, C., Turner, P., Foster, C., Harris, L., Stewert, J. and Sempik, A. (2007), Talent Strategy, Management and Measurement , CIPD, London.

Further reading Weddle, P. (2006), “Manage talent needs with a sound strategy”, available at: www.careerjournal.com

Corresponding author Norma D’Annunzio-Green can be contacted at: n.dannunzio-green@napier.ac.uk

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