Selecting a talent management system is one of the highest profile technology choices HR leaders will ever make. Earlier this month, human capital analyst David Creelman shared insights on key considerations in the selection process from 12 leading HR technology experts and experienced HR professionals.
Creelman's detailed step-by-step talent management buyer's guide gives HR professionals a great starting point to align their selection strategy, build their selection team, develop the business case, and choose the most effective solution to meet their organization's needs.
We sat down with one of the report's participants and Halogen customer, Alicia Hannah, for a Q&A to expand on her experience during the talent management vendor selection process.
Alicia is a Senior Technical Analyst at Hospital
Sisters Health System (HSHS), a healthcare organization with 15,000
full-time employees spread out across 200 locations in Wisconsin and Illinois.
These healthcare facilities include academic hospitals, critical access
facilities and small clinics.
Q) What was one of the key considerations HSHS had before selecting a talent management vendor?
A) Our CIO leaned towards buying talent management modules from our existing HRIS vendor because we were familiar with that platform. However, HR noted that an absolutely crucial business goal was developing and retaining leaders and that the HRIS vendor could not deliver on that. As a result, we went with a best-in-class talent management system. It shows how important it is to be clear about the business reasons for selecting the talent management system and to have all the stakeholders around the table.
Q) What benefit does a best-in-class vendor bring to the table that others might not?
A) A best-in-class talent management vendor provides you with all of the
tools - in one place - to effectively
manage your workforce in all stages of its lifecycle. In addition, a
best-in-class solution integrates and syncs information so it's easily
available in one place.
Q) What were some of the talent management challenges HSHS faced?
A) For years, many locations had their own talent management
systems and policies in place, so there were challenges for HR leaders to collect
or analyze data across the board. We knew that to achieve the
organization's values, the HR department needed a better way to track
performance and engage employees.
Q) Who was part of your selection team at HSHS?
A) It started out being the executive team at the system
level and our chief people officer. He brought together all the director of people
services across the system. So, it was really at that level that they were
starting to have a conversation and to start taking look at vendors.
Second, we recognized the need to have an integrated system where all the information would be at our fingertips - Performance evaluations, identifying top performers, making note of learning opportunities. We knew this feature would be helpful for HR, especially when we get surveyed by accreditation bodies. For example, accreditation can be built into certain job descriptions, helping give HR easy visibility into where they need to boost training for proactive succession planning.
Q) When you started this journey a couple of years ago, what did you hope to achieve?
A) One of the key outcomes we wanted to achieve was to make the evaluation process consistent across all HSHS facilities. Now, goals are made clear, specific and aligned to the organization's objectives. Managers and employees are held accountable to and receive regular feedback on their work. We now have a very rich and effective way of evaluating our employees. Their scores have meaning.
Q) How much was the vendor-customer relationship stressed during the selection process?
A) Customer service was always a main topic of conversation. I would encourage potential buyers to consider the role and reputation of a vendor's customer service beyond implementation. Being in IT, I have worked with a lot of software vendors. With other vendors, I never met with them or spoke with the account manager. If there was a problem, I would put in a ticket and might get an email back with a suggestion. As a customer, it's important that your vendor is available at the other end to answers your questions in a timely manner.
Are you considering selecting a talent management system? Download David Creelman's report and learn directly from the experts!