The APQC Blog

10 Talent Management Best Practices

A number of talent management best practices have been revealed again and again in APQC’s human capital management research studies. Five of these tried-and-true talent management best practices include:

  1. defining talent management broadly, yet integrating the many elements of talent management into one comprehensive system;
  2. using a competency model to connect different talent processes;
  3. assessing and developing leadership capabilities;
  4. monitoring talent and measuring talent management; and
  5. having leaders who are committed to talent management.

These enduring best practices are complemented by five emerging talent management best practices, which include:

  1. talent management is tightly linked with business strategy;
  2. recruiting sets the stage for talent management outcomes;
  3. talent is empowered to develop;
  4. focus is on retaining both talent and knowledge; and
  5. technology enables customization and precision.

These best practices may be useful for strengthening or improving established talent management programs. For example, increasingly in APQC’s human capital management best practices studies, we see work force planning as a primary way that organizations link their talent management programs with business strategy. At these organizations, work force plans ensure that talent processes are relevant to business needs. Work force plans help secure buy-in for talent management investments, conveying talent requirements in the language of the business. And, work force plans guide the customization of talent management practices to the unique needs of critical-skill, short-supply talent populations.

Interested in our latest talent management research? APQC’s supply chain management group recently completed a study examining what talent management in the supply chain looks like. This research included in-depth descriptions of what talent management in the supply chain looks like within organizations today. We learned that half of organizations surveyed have a formal supply chain talent management program. Eighty-one percent of respondents from organizations with a formal supply chain talent management program agreed or strongly agreed that formal talent management is a top priority, as opposed to only half of the organizations without a formal supply chain talent management program. or more of these findings, visit:

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