Talent Pipelining, how important is it?

As an executive head hunter with many years’ experience in engineering and manufacturing recruitment, I’m pretty well placed to understand the intricacies of strategic hiring decisions within organisation, and the drivers for those hires.

So when it comes to talent pipelining in a climate like this, I know it’s a challenge to say the least.

These waters are largely unknown, but none the less, talent pipelining has to get back to the discussion table as the importance for a business, both short and long term, is vital in order to be able to look ahead and work out how to survive, adapt and overcome.

Starting with strategic workforce planning. This is traditionally supported by HR and carried out with the aim of typically a five year plan of talent requirements.

It maps the general direction of the organisation and the talent it needs to get there.

So, ‘talent pipelining’ is the equivalent of strategic business development.

Its aim is to build a pipeline of talent that will be recruited with a high success rate, with high value and where deeper relationships are formed even before any hire takes place.

Good talent pipelining also increases the retention of talent within an organisation.

When companies map out many roles at the beginning of a particular period of future planning (Strategic Workforce Planning), and consider known forced and unforced attrition, this can reveal hiring gaps that are short to medium term.

If you then map in the strategic hiring plan on top of this (your talent pipeline), you’ll be able to build pipelines of talent for both short term (the forced and unforced attrition) as well as the longer term, which is your future planning.

On top of this, when you mix talent pipelining and workforce planning the chances are that the talent you’re trying to attract is more likely to be engaged and sold on the business, it’s culture and employer brand. Which means they are more likely to convert into hires for you.

They’re also more likely to have a positive candidate experience, more likely to on-board successfully and invariably in a shorter time frame.

Of course talent pipelining can take time. However, when you look at recruitment as an investment and not a cost, the longer term gain will far outweigh any initial costs when pipelining talent.

And your return on investment will inevitably be; reduced overall spend, quicker time to hire when a role is signed off, better loss prevention due to poor hires or poor fit and your recruitment activities becoming more productive due to working with candidates that are matched well, engaged and have a warm relationship with your company.

Talent pipelining isn’t just what good agencies can do. Good businesses with in house teams can do it too.

When the market turns, and it will, the need to be at the fore with products and or services, along with the ability to capitalise on what growth opportunities are afoot, will be business critical.

Key strategic hires required pre-pandemic within a business are highly likely to still be required post-pandemic. Whilst the parameters may have changed, the longer term plan is very likely to still include what was needed in your business, pre-covid.

Now that we are several months into this new world, the odds are that there is a better understanding about the direction of key hires within a business and how they may now have morphed.

Like so many other businesses I’ve spoken to, driving business forward is front and centre of many boardroom agendas and that includes deciding on when to add to the leadership team.

There is still a high demand for talent that leads. This climate doesn’t make that go away, it heightens it.

The paradox is that top performers can be less willing to move due to uncertainty or can be too busy focusing on ensuring their own employer can pivot or survive, that they just aren’t actively looking at alternatives right now.

This limits choice and so the additional frustration of ‘not quite hitting the mark’ or starting again from scratch to regain some traction can be both timely and costly, no matter the size of a business.

This is compounded by economic factors, reduced output, dwindled profits, navigating change and an apprehensive workforce and/or customer base.

To avoid the pitfalls of poor or delayed hires, preparing your future talent pipelining can unquestionably add benefit and ease the burdens of current constraints coupled with future growth plans as detailed earlier in this post.

It allows the collaboration and collation of high level, warm talent that can be nurtured for when a business is ready to make a move, so that they are too. Thus alleviating the typical frustrations of time to hire.

At First Executive Recruitment we have created a talent mapping pipeline program that helps navigate the longer terms impact of stalled, executive level head-hunting. It’s a robust system that delivers a sustained group of high level, well targeted and skills specific individuals that can be called upon when the hiring requirement is agreed and signed off at board level.

It’s an investment programme that can either deliver desired results quickly, or be ready to utilise for anything up to 9-12 months, and can be hugely beneficial to understand availability of senior talent that would ultimately fit into a company’s culture, environment and strategic plans.

This talent mapping pipeline program gives all stakeholders a little more confidence, and a little more security that there’s a potential job, and a potential person to fill that job at the time it is needed.

If you’d like more information on our talent mapping pipeline service, please give us a call to find out more.

At the very least, this service gives you a benchmark for future leaders who could – and would want to – join your business and for that alone, is well worth considering.

Things ‘are’ changing, fast. The way we work together is changing. Staying ahead of the talent curve and understanding the key talent in the market place allows a certain level of operational efficiency for improved growth projection.

Now is a good time to plan beyond the now.

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