Total Workforce Management or Total Talent Management, is an emerging workforce strategy that gives employers a better understanding of how work gets done across their organization, taking into consideration all resources available to fulfill a business objective. This involves an in-depth assessment of the project or job role and the identification of the appropriate resource - including traditional employees, contingent workers and technology.
As the contingent workforce continues to rise, organizations can no longer afford to manage their workforces in silos. If your organization is operating a blended workforce or is considering engaging contingent workers, the information below will help you gain insight into how a total workforce management strategy will help your organization align current and future needs with the right resource- ultimately achieving better results and your overall business goals.
The key to Total Workforce Management
Total Workforce Management brings together Human Resources, typically tasked with traditional employment engagements, and Procurement, which is typically tasked with engaging contingent workers. Together, and with the right technologies, these departments can work to ensure a standardized approach to talent acquisition and management across the entire organization.
How can HR and Procurement work together to achieve total workforce management?
To achieve a successful and cost-effective workforce, HR and Procurement must foster collaboration and communication to promote the types of cross-functional strategies that create greater visibility, access to data and enhanced control.
Breaking down the silos
While HR will track metrics like engagement and retention and Procurement KPIs will focus on cost and risk, it’s critical for each function to identify and embrace a shared goal. This means breaking down the silos between departments to understand what drives the other and what objectives they must meet. Understanding the needs of both departments and connecting priorities encourages each one to work towards their common goal: filling skills gaps with high-quality workers in the most cost effective manner.
Identifying, defining and exchanging total knowledge
A respectful and mutually beneficial relationship won’t be successful without communication. As HR’s expertise is talent and policy and Procurement’s is contracts and suppliers, each department will not only have its own motivators and objectives – but unique processes and terms that will be unfamiliar to the other as well.
Embracing a shared language
HR teams may not be familiar with industry lingo like “spend under management,” and terms like “peripheral labour force” may fall flat with Procurement. To effectively communicate, each function must take the step to define their language/jargon and share with the other department to better understand terms and best practices.
Communication is key to achieving total workforce management
If an organization needs to hire a highly-skilled specialist, for example, Human Resources may enlist an outside recruiting firm to help source the talent. The HR team spends time working with the firm from sourcing to onboarding without consulting Procurement. Had the two functions collaborated from the beginning, HR would be aware that the organization already had a relationship with a preferred vendor and could have acquired a highly skilled worker at a much lower cost— leaving room in the budget for future strategic hires.
Invest in the right tech!
Often, employers will also invest in a Total Workforce Management System, a software solution that integrates both an organization's full-time and contingent workforce, breaking the traditional barriers between permanent and non-permanent workers. A Total Workforce Management solution should drive visibility over talent and projects on an enterprise-wide level.
How are you currently managing your contingent workforce?