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Talent mapping & Talent Acquisition strategies

An overview of this little-known instrument


This little-known tool for the “general audience” often proves to be indispensable to a brand when it comes to reflecting or redefining its talent acquisition strategy or anticipating future movements within its teams.
It consists in mapping – in a more or less detailed manner depending on the context – the current position of the targeted talents, in order not only to identify them initially, but also to keep them on its “radar”.


Most of the time, the HR teams that call on us have well-defined expectations regarding a specific recruitment need; however, it turns out that these recruitments are generally part of complex, highly competitive, highly fluctuating and increasingly global contexts, which therefore forces brands to always be proactive in their human resources management.


Formerly limited to major reflections on the movements of Artistic Directors or CEOs, the use of this tool has developed considerably in a few years and is now part of our daily routine.
At UPWARD Creative it is really rare that we don’t have at least one of these tools permanently in use.


Indeed, today, whether we are a fashion, luxury, beauty or consumer goods brand, our employees are regularly approached not only for opportunities in France but also internationally and by headhunters as well as by the competition’s internal talent-acquisition teams. Anticipating turnover and remaining competitive to retain the best talent is beyond essential.

Much more detailed than simple screening, talent mapping is often the tool needed to develop this strategy because it allows brands to position themselves and answer the following questions :

/ 01
How are my teams positioned ?

Is my team sufficiently developed in terms of human capital? How are my competitors’ teams constituted, in terms of size, level of seniority, organisation, reporting, etc. These issues can indeed arise upstream of a reflection: sometimes to respond as best as possible to a situation of high turnover, a “drain” of talent or as part of a repositioning. When accompanied by a remuneration study (always anonymous in this case) it also enables HR teams to maintain competitive salary levels within their own teams.

/ 02
Where is the talent that could be decisive for my challenges ?

Which team is behind this product innovation ? This communication campaign, who has the strategy ?

/ 03
What career paths/training courses should we take
a closer look at ?

It is common for a company to have preferences, not to say recruiting habits, whether it be on the training of its employees (such school, such diploma) or sometimes even on the employer’s career path (many ex-employees of such brand within the teams of such competitor for example). Knowing these patterns can be strategic for HR teams, who can in fact get closer to training for their school relations or even target their future approaches to Candidates more precisely.

/ 04
Where are our ex-talents, are there any recurrences ?

It is not insignificant either, once the tool has been developed, to take an interest in the career paths of ex-employees, are they systematically approached by the same brand / the same group? both to prevent future departures and possible non-compete clauses for confidentiality issues in particular.

Mappings will last long...

Indeed, in the all-digital era, with the explosion of professional social networks and the immediacy of information (or even contact), it is still very obvious that this tool, which has been used for decades within large organisations, is more than ever a key strategic support for talent acquisition teams. Whether you are managing a repositioning strategy, having to react following a high turnover, developing new teams, new product categories, starting from scratch for the rebirth of a “sleeping beauty”, it is likely that these mappings will be used for many years to come.

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