Organizational Wellness

What is Talent Management? Best Practices to Get Started

Oct 22, 2022
Last Updated May 21, 2024

Talent management has become all the more important for organizations over the last several years. Worker expectations are high when it comes to salary, benefits, and workplace culture – 93% of US employees believe their wellbeing at work is just as important as their salary, according to Wellhub’s latest State of Work-Life Wellness report. So it’s hard to attract and keep good talent.

According to a 2022 report by Work Institute, 69% of employee turnover is for more preventable reasons like job stress, compensation, work-life balance, and a lack of growth opportunities. And if you don’t have a plan to manage your workforce, you could be caught off guard when an employee leaves, or you’re ready to hire someone new.

So to manage your organization’s workforce needs and attract and retain skilled workers, every company benefits from a sound talent management strategy.

What is talent management?

Talent management is the system of attracting, hiring, developing, and retaining employees with the required skills and abilities to meet organizational goals and objectives. In other words, it’s all about ensuring that your organization has the right people in the right roles at the right time.

It differs from talent acquisition in that it’s a long-term strategy that encompasses the entire employee lifecycle, from recruitment to retirement. That means it’s not just about attracting and hiring the best and brightest. It’s also about developing and retaining existing employees for the long haul.

Work-Life Wellness 2024.png

What are the benefits of talent management?

At a baseline, talent management is an essential human resources function for businesses because it ensures they have the workforce needed to meet their business goals and objectives.

When attracting new hires, talent management ensures you have the right benefits in place to attract workers. This might include competitive salaries, flexible work arrangements, generous vacation time and access to a selection of gyms, studios and apps through a wellbeing solution. And by considering the entire employee life cycle, you can improve employee engagement and retention rates. Engaged workers are more likely to stay with an organization. This reduces the cost of recruitment and training and increases profitability.

How does talent management work?

There are many different talent management models, but most include these key components:.

  • Planning: Identify workforce needs based on business strategy and goals. It also involves defining roles so that you can determine the skills and experience required for each position. These job descriptions and role profiles form the basis for talent acquisition.
  • Recruitment and selection: This involves attracting the best candidates for open positions through job postings and active outreach and developing a clear application process to hire the best person for the role.
  • Training and development: Invest in employee onboarding, so new employees feel prepared for their roles. Offer training opportunities so that employees can acquire new skill sets or build on existing ones. This might include formal learning opportunities such as certification programs and informal ones such as mentorship programs.
  • Performance management: Monitor and manage employee performance to keep them accountable and on track with company objectives. Goal setting and regular performance reviews can help employees improve skills or progress in their careers.
  • Compensation and benefits: Ensure you’re offering competitive compensation and benefits packages to retain high-performing employees. Regular salary reviews also help employees feel valued and motivated in their roles.
  • Succession planning: Plan for the next stage of an employee’s journey, including promotions, role changes, resignation, and retirement. This includes creating a plan for who will take over key roles when an employee leaves or is promoted. This helps to avoid disruptions to business operations and maintain continuity within the organization.

Talent management strategies and best practices

For your talent management system to be successful, you need to develop a comprehensive strategy that aligns with your organization’s goals. Consider these strategies and best practices when building your talent management plan.

  1. Align with your business goals

The first step is to define what success looks like for your organization. What are your business goals and objectives? For example, it could be to increase your company’s share in the market or develop and launch new products. How can your workforce help you achieve these goals? And what metrics can you use to determine if your strategy is working?

Align talent management with your business goals to ensure that you’re attracting and developing employees with the right skills and competencies for your organization.

  1. Build a data-driven approach

Your talent management process should be driven by data, not gut instinct. Use data to inform your talent decisions, from recruiting to retention. This includes things like determining the best recruitment channels based on the number and quality of applicants, using engagement surveys to track employee happiness over time, using performance data to identify top performers, and tracking employee churn rate.

  1. Prioritize diversity and inclusion

A diverse workforce is critical for any organization. It brings different perspectives, ideas, and skills to the table. So when building your talent management strategy, make sure that you’re prioritizing diversity and inclusion.

This includes developing targeted recruitment programs for underrepresented groups, analyzing job descriptions for bias, evaluating the diversity of talent pipelines, offering unconscious bias training for managers, and ensuring that your compensation and benefits packages are equitable.

  1. Provide generous and fair compensation

Generous compensation will help you compete in the job market and make your employees feel valued. Evaluate current salaries for each role in your industry and geographic region to ensure they’re competitive. Offer bonuses, stock options, and other incentives to attract and retain top talent as well.

Consider a salary formula to reduce bias in pay and ensure everyone is treated fairly.

  1. Foster a healthy workplace culture

A healthy workplace culture will help employees feel valued, respected, and engaged. Cultivating a culture of open communication, trust, and collaboration is key. This might include regular check-ins with employees and encouraging employees to give feedback. It also means showing your employees that you care about their wellbeing. For example, you can promote reasonable work hours and encourage employees to unplug at the end of the day by providing access to virtual and in-person network of gyms, classes and wellbeing services to improve work-life wellness.

Offer generous PTO policies that include the ability to take time off for physical and mental health reasons. Help employees take the time they need by checking in with workers who seem to be struggling. Leadership can set a good example by taking time off as well.

  1. Promote from within

Whenever possible, promote from within. This shows employees that there are opportunities for advancement and helps to retain the best talent. Companies with sufficient opportunities for internal mobility retain employees for twice as long as companies that don’t.

Plus, by promoting workers you’re already familiar with, you can be confident that they have the skills and qualifications needed for the role.

  1. Invest in employee development

Investing in talent development is crucial for employee engagement and retention. Employees with professional development opportunities are 15% more engaged and 34% more likely to stay with your organization.

You can develop employee skills through organization-run certification programs, mentoring, and e-learning courses. And you can establish a budget for employees to take charge of their own development and attend industry events or purchase books relevant to their roles and interests.

  1. Encourage feedback

Gather feedback from employees regularly to establish engagement and identify areas for improvement. This can be done through pulse surveys, 1:1 meetings, or an anonymous feedback tool.

To help employees feel heard, be transparent about your plan to address any feedback you receive. Then, take action.

This might include changes to your benefits package based on employee feedback, instituting new policies based on suggestions from employees, apologizing for mistakes, or changing the behavior of leadership and management, so employees feel like their voices are being heard.

Support your talent management goals with a wellness program

As you build out your talent management strategy, you may find areas of your employee experience that you want to improve on to increase retention. For example, offering a wellness program is one key to keeping employees satisfied and feeling supported. According to Gallup, employees experience 38% less stress and 50% fewer health problems when they’re thriving and engaged, but only 9% of global employees are thriving and engaged.

Investing in wellness initiatives is a great way to show employees that you care about their wellbeing while improving productivity and engagement, decreasing absenteeism, and reducing health care costs. By offering a variety of wellness activities, you can help employees find ways to improve their physical, mental, and emotional health.

Wellhub gives your employees access to more than 50,000 gyms, studios, and wellness apps. Talk with a Wellbeing Specialist today to get started with a great wellness program.

Company healthcare costs drop by up to 35% with Wellhub! (* Based on proprietary research comparing healthcare costs of active Wellhub users to non-users.) Talk to a Wellbeing Specialist to see how we can help reduce your healthcare spending!



Wellhub Editorial Team

The Wellhub Editorial Team empowers HR leaders to support worker wellbeing. Our original research, trend analyses, and helpful how-tos provide the tools they need to improve workforce wellness in today's fast-shifting professional landscape.


Our weekly newsletter is your source of education and inspiration to help you create a corporate wellness program that actually matters.

By subscribing you agree Wellhub may use the information to contact you regarding relevant products and services. Questions? See our Privacy Policy.