Over the past 24 months, we have seen many organizations implement internal talent marketplaces: dynamic digital environments that facilitate the movement of talent toward pressing business needs, including gigs, projects, and internal roles.
But moving to an internal talent marketplace requires a complete mindset shift from how most companies approach talent mobility today. When people move around for internal projects and opportunities, everything gets disrupted — rewards, benefits, career pathing, and succession planning. But when done right, with managers supported by change management and coaching, the internal talent marketplace can deliver a broad range of benefits for talent acquisition, development, engagement, and retention.
Here are five tips for making a talent marketplace a success.
Audit the company’s readiness. Start with an audit of the organization’s readiness for moving toward a skills-based talent marketplace. Evaluate HR processes, skills taxonomies, and employee and manager attitudes toward adopting a new approach.
Ensure the culture is primed for skills development. It can’t simply be a culture of collaboration and sharing. The essence of what drives the organization must center on work as the currency of value versus the jobs people have. Employees at all levels need to understand why the organization is focused on developing skills to future-proof its performance.
Establish a robust internal skills data set. A skills taxonomy is needed at every level of the organization to map skills to jobs or tasks. Strong data on internal skills fuels the modern talent marketplace. The good news is that much of this can be automated.
Empower the business to drive it. Although HR may provide strategic input and support to enable execution, the business must see the value of continuous skills development. This effort can’t be led by HR.
Don’t let perfection get in the way of progress. Companies will be waiting forever if they don’t take action until they have a perfect internal skills data set or full employee engagement in a talent marketplace tool. A primary benefit of an internal talent marketplace is building flexibility for the unexpected. You may not have all the answers before you get started, but you should have thought through the critical questions.
With the support of expert consulting and an AI-based talent platform, an internal talent marketplace delivers broad ranging tangible benefits. It can also foster increased transparency, diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Authored by Ravin Jesuthasan, Kate Bravery, and Brian Fisher of Mercer. To learn more, read, “Unlock skills and build future capacity.” In addition, Jean Martin spoke about “Skills and Capabilities Are the New Currency of the Workforce” at the Cultivate Europe event.