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10 key points to digitalise your talent

On the way of the digital transformation of our organisations we who are dedicated to Human Resources are aware of the importance of developing a digital culture based on innovation and which is customer-oriented. We also know that for doing this we need the best digital professionals; their capabilities are not only essential for carrying out the tasks of the new jobs we are going to incorporate, but they will also help us to extend the new vision throughout the whole organisation. Therefore, we are concerned especially with the state of the talent of our companies... how can we guide all employees towards digital transformation?, i.e. how to digitalise our talent?

We are going to find "Digital talent" both within the organisation and outside, so our task will consist in enhancing the talent which already exists in our organisation and recruiting that talent which we want and which is not yet among us. However, the starting point for both ways is the same: to define what profile we need to achieve the objectives we have set, what functions it will develop, what skills and attitudes are needed to do so.

So, based on achieving the business objectives inside the digital environment the first challenge we will face will be determining what new jobs we will have to create, and we will have to redefine the existing jobs to accommodate digital competences. Thus, we will be able to find in our catalogue of jobs profiles that can range from the more generic like Digital Manager, through the experts in communication like the Digital Marketing Manager or the Branded Content Specialist to more analytical positions and developing positions like the Big Data Analyst or the Open Data Specialist, for example.

On the other hand, we can find that positions already existing inside the company have to take on some new skills such as digital knowledge, networking, leadership network, client orientation, communication network, or data analysis. To accommodate both new jobs and new skills added to the already existing jobs, we have to transform the plans of career, succession, evaluation, development, compensation, etc.. Given that this new digital environment is still changing, we will need these processes of Human Resources to be flexible and adaptive. For example, in the case of evaluation, we will have to make systems of continuous feedback and multi-source of information that allow the objectives  to be adjusted as often as it will be required and where the employee can perform self–assessment actively even with the possibility of setting their own objectives. In this process the manager will become a coach. In addition, the liquid careers will be imposed in front of the linear ones: stewardship in development, training, flexibility and localisation

However, before being able to begin developing these new or redefined positions, we will have to carry out a deep audit of our digital talent and to see what capabilities - of those defined - need to be developed and what kinds of professionals we need to recruit or train for our organisation. We have already talked about the handicap which assumes the widespread shortage of digital capabilities in the labour market. If we link to this the ambiguity in the definition of new functions that arise and the complexity involved in the new working activities, which are bound by the knowledge, this task seems to be less complicated, but not impossible.

As it was mentioned above, we will cover these jobs with internal as well as external talent. With regard to internal talent, it is very important to support a collaborative working environment that allows us to find the people who are more open to digital change and those who could potentially take the new digital jobs, if we train them.

With regard to the training efforts, it is important to have a vision of "lifelong learning", with personal learning spaces, empirical training (action learning) and e-learning, in a process of reflection and constant refreshing of competences. We have to make special emphasis on the collaborative training, including learning communities and MOOCs.

On the other hand, our strategy of selection will be wide, multi-channel and strongly supported on the social network. It is necessary to develop a strong employer branding strategy and to change the concept of "candidate" and extend it to the care of employees.

While developing our change management departments, some of these digital professionals will become our "digital leaders" that will help different segments of the organisation to head towards the way of digital cultural transformation. These profiles will be open especially to the change and the innovation, and to our partners throughout the process.

Apart from the structural changes, changes of capabilities, jobs changes and departmental transformation carried out by the digital leaders, we will have to set the entire executive body of RR. HH working available to support cultural change. In this sense, we can let our imagination run riot and carry out a lot of different kinds of strategies. The key point in this strategy is to support a collaborative culture via social networks, to develop the transparency and the collaboration completely. These networks also allow the employees to participate in the processes of collaborative innovation. Another of our partners will be the "gamification", using a mechanism of a game to adjust new tools and digital competences.

The retention of the "know-how" will be also important in this whole process. Taking into account that the new professionals are "knowledge professionals" and that one of the greatest values of our employees will be the ability to learn and share what they have learned on the network, we need to develop comprehensive strategies for the management of the knowledge.

Once this process of cultural change starts up and is advanced, it will be important to do the same periodical evaluations of the performance of our leaders as well as of our employees. This will allow us to evaluate the work which has been done and to make some necessary modifications. We have to forget the annual assessments and realise some less frequent evaluations, according to the flexibility of the organisation that we want to convert to.

On top of that, it should not be forgotten that we will not realise this whole process alone. In the digital transformation of the organization the Director of HR will play a fundamental role, but the CIO will play it too. CIO is the person who introduces the technology closer to the members of the organisation and who will help us to identify some gaps in the digital competences of our organiation as well as to define some necessary and specific profiles, with which we are possibly not familiar. And do not forget the Marketing Department; together, we will develop different strategies, including those of employer branding to get these few, so far, professionals, specialised in new digital environments. Thus, what we have to try hard to achieve is that forming a part of our company becomes the objective of the best talent. Marketing experts will give us also valuable help in extending the principles of this new digital culture that we want to establish. Do not forget that in the world of transparency and communication our own Human Resources department has to be "marketised".

However, we do not find our partners only at home. Union makes strength, and in the context of this collaboration it is essential. In this sense, strategic partners will be a great help for us, with common sense; being aware of our shortcomings and without losing the vision of the objectives we can achieve a 'win-win' that is beneficial and that, above all, give us the support in those areas in which we are not experts or even not mastered. Within the entire process of digital transformation, transparency with our clients and strategic partners is crucial.

Finally, we summarise the ten milestones that we have mentioned in this article:

1/ Perform an audit of digital talent

2/ Define new digital jobs

3/ Define new digital skills

4/ Develop advanced strategies  of selection with social media and Big Data

5/ Find the hidden talent of the organisation

6/ Develop digital skills of all employees via advanced training plans

7/ Designate "digital leaders"

8/ Renew plans of career, succession, assessment and the whole lifecycle of the employee in accordance with the new digital needs.

9/ Realize the corporate strategies of the cultural transformation digitally: social networks, gamification, compensation, team building, etc.

10/ Carry out periodical plans of evaluation of our strategy

After this brief analysis and drawing conclusions from these data and examples, do you have courage to lead the digitalisation of the talent in your organisation?

José Maria Fraile, Corporate Director of RR. Meta4 HH.

Meta4 PeopleNet is completely flexible for companies who want to design their own organization model with the tools provided and view the organization based on the way their work is structured. The solution offers total flexibility for designing the organizational model, setting up hierarchical and functional relationships between different members of work groups and dynamically reflecting changes in the way the organization evolves. The solution also enables access to service providers who maintain business activity with the organization. It allows you to enter information on external entities.

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