Your Talent in the Workforce: How Companies View You

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Whether you are in the workforce, or looking to get back in to the workforce; employers are watching, measuring, assessing, and strategizing about the talents that you bring or may soon bring to their businesses.

If you have not heard of the term, ”Talent Management,” I urge you to Google, Yahoo, or Bing it. If you choose to “wiki” the term, you will find that Talent Management is described as,

“…the process of developing and integrating new workers, developing and retaining current workers, and attracting highly skilled workers to work for your company. Talent management[1] in this context does not refer to the management of entertainers. The term was coined by David Watkins of Softscape[2] published in an article in 1998[3]. The process of attracting and retaining profitable employees, as it is increasingly more competitive between firms and of strategic importance, has come to be known as “the war for talent.”

Now, we all know that the the “war for talent” has turned into a “war for jobs” since the collapse of the economy. It is now up to the worker (that is you and me) to become more aware of how the employers’ perspective has changed drastically in how we are perceived. Employers are now using new processes, methodologies, and technology to automate the way in which they identify, promote, and hire talent within their organizations.

We are all being tracked, measured, qualified, and quantified as soon as we post a resume, list our credentials, or fill out an application (whether in person or online). That’s right, most companies now have some sort of talent management system they use to screen and recruit employment candidates. They also use these same systems to track, manage, and measure the performance of their current workforce.

Since so much talent management process automation is happening around us, we need to make a conscious effort to project a professional, targeted image that employers will pick up on in order to separate ourselves from the pack. One of the best ways I have found to do this is to target specific industries and businesses where you want to work. If you research these industries, you will find that there are some very specific attributes they are looking for in their talent pool. Make sure that your credentials mirror these attributes. You will also notice that there are key terms, strategies, and business objectives within certain business sectors. Be sure that your credentials use similar terminology and address the strategies that will resonate within these business sectors. Oh, and find a real person within your target organization who can become your advocate. At the end of the day, you will be hired and end up working for real people.

Nothing of what I am saying is new, except for this; the speed and depth by which your personal and professional data will be sliced, diced, and slap-chopped by prospective employers have never been this comprehensive and expedient. The implications are that you could be aced out for a job because your credentials did not match the talent management database criteria — and no one would ever tell you.

Talent Management and the technology that goes along with it are here to stay. We might as well use it to our advantage.

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