Talent management has become a top priority for organizations, highlighting that the optimization of talent in the workforce directly affects everyday operations and in turn drives the bottom line. The ASTD-i4cp Talent Management Practices and Opportunities Study found that 19.9% of organizations reported that they manage talent effectively to a high or very high degree, with an additional one fifth admitting that their companies were effective users of talent to only a small extent or not at all. Talent management is anticipated to grow: over 80% of participants predict a growth in the next three years. What does the talent management puzzle look like? With talent management expected to become more important in the near future, it is essential to have a clear understanding of what talent management comprises and how the pieces of the puzzle fit together. According to many study participants, talent management should be a holistic initiative made up of integrated parts that create a synergy amongst the components. Ideally, talent management comprises a whole that exceeds the sum of its parts. The more integration that occurs between the elements, the more cohesive and effective the talent management program becomes. This is what distinguishes talent management from an array of conventional HR programs that have less connectivity. Only 18.7% of the survey respondents indicated that their companies integrated talent management components to a high or very high extent, and only 19.7% said their firm had the technological capability to do so. The element that was most integrated into the talent management program was performance management, with 63.7% of respondents citing it as being integrated to a high or very high extent in their organization. Learning/training was a close second (61.7%), followed by leadership development (59.1%), high-potential employee development (52.8%), and individual professional development (44.4%). All the components showed positive correlations with talent management effectiveness, with employee engagement (r=0.56) having the strongest correlation. As a high level of integration is positively and significantly correlated with the ability to manage talent effectively, organizations that wish to further integrate their programs and approaches have significant opportunities to improve their talent management function. Source: Talent Management: Practices and Opportunities (ASTD/i4cp) Click here to learn more about ASTD Research.