Talent pool management and the development of talent communities

With the challenges and pressing issues facing today’s boardroom the words on the lips of every HR director for 2012 are ‘talent communities’. These communities are fast becoming a way to push growth using the talent you already have in your organisations.


The entire notion of ‘talent communities’ is becoming more and more powerful for employers. In the past, the pre-joining stage in the recruitment process was a pressure point and it used to be difficult to engage ‘employees-to-be’ and start inspiring individuals ready for their new roles. Today, talent communities fill this gap, and are a way to engage and connect people of similar backgrounds, skills and experiences into groups where they can share, grow and interact. Research shows 42 percent of job seekers are more likely to apply for a job at a company after they’ve interacted with a brand’s career presence online.

Such communities become especially attractive when identifying talent. Once a candidate is interested in working with a brand, this is a way to engage that individual, educate them on the latest business developments, and introduce the future specialists they will be working with. Once motivated through the community, as soon as the right opportunity is introduced, they are more likely to apply to the role. What’s more, they’ll be more engaged until their official start date and beyond. Investing in talent communities helps employers to be seen and be influential in the talent segments they are targeting. It is then possible to create a stimulated and engaged candidate community that will stand your company in good ground when an individual decides to consider different career opportunities.

Take note, we are embracing the talent community trend! There’s a race for brands to ‘own’ subject matter groups on sites like LinkedIn and Xing, even Facebook, so that candidates, when they are looking at opportunities, will consider that company as front of mind. Social networking technology is moving into professional environments as a form of official networking that allows the company to control the message.

This is because candidates are increasingly interested in people not just company information – i.e. companies will need to make themselves engaging on a personal level if they want them to survive and flourish. For example, graduates will bounce from a corporate website, to the careers site and then if interested monitor the conversation via employees on social media. If a brand has no presence, that’s not much of a conversation. Another example of this is news feeds versus LinkedIn – newsfeeds are becoming less common as people prefer to get their information from other people that they know and trust – there is information overload and people are looking for trusted ways of receiving information. Of course, it’s not just online engagements that create this buzz but also the interaction from brands that is making people take note.

We think 2012 and beyond will see the creation of more professional talent communities in addition to a presence on existing social media platforms, as brands look to engage above and beyond the limitations presented by those sites. Employers will also beable to quantify and measure the impact of the talent in the group at any one time, further enhancing their presence and impact on community members and ultimately, new hires.

Neil Griffiths
Global Practice Leader – Talent Communications & Employer Brand

About the author

Neil Griffiths

Neil Griffiths is the global practice leader for Futurestep’s Talent Communications and Employer branding practice. In this role, he is responsible for working with clients to enhance their reputation as an employer and create inspiring communications across the employee lifecycle. In addition, he works with organizations to develop, attract, and manage talent communities in an engaging and effective way. He has over 15 years’ experience in the communications industry.

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