TTL LookBack V2: Jacob Morgan’s 5 Talent Management Trends

Welcome to Talent Tech Labs Lookback. We spend a lot of time exploring the Talent Acquisition Ecosystem and Marketplace and while every TTL Trends Report focuses on a different theme, we occasionally like to look back at some of our greatest hits.

Five Talent Management Trends that Should Be on Your Radar

Jacob Morgan is an author, speaker and futurist. His most recent book is The Future of Work published by Wiley. You can subscribe to his weekly newsletter on the future of work or get access to his blog, podcast, video series, and social channels by visiting

The talent acquisition industry is going through a very exciting evolution and there are new trends popping up just about every day. It can be hard to keep up, so here’s a list of the five most exciting and impactful trends right now.

There are always new forces shaking up the Talent Acquisition industry. See @jacobm's top picks. Click To Tweet

1. The Freelancer Economy

The general assumption for many years was that people needed to work for organizations. In other words, employment at a large organization was the only way to live since we all have bills to pay and families to support. Today’s professionals have a number of self-employment options that would have been inconceivable even a decade ago. Whether it’s driving for Uber or Lyft, becoming a freelancer on Upwork (formerly Elance-Odesk), raising money on Indiegogo or Kickstarter or selling products directly to consumers through Etsy, today’s professionals can choose their own paths. As Daniel Pink said, “Talented people need organizations less than organizations need talented people.”

Combined with new technologies and sites such as LinkedIn, the freelancer economy is making it easy for employers to find and recruit candidates from competitors. The freelancer economy is helping to create a war for talent unlike any talent war we’ve seen. Organizations must learn to embrace the freelancer economy by tapping into the on-demand workforce. The idea of long-term employment is dead.

2. Collaboration Technologies

Today’s employees want and need to connect with information (and each other) anywhere, anytime and on any device. Internal social networks have become a necessity for organizations that want to connect its employees. I like to think of these platforms as a “central nervous system” of the organization. As organizations become more distributed around the world, it becomes even more crucial to make sure everyone can stay on the same page. Organizations are recruiting from all corners of the earth, regardless of where the company itself might be headquartered. Without collaboration technologies, this type of organization could not survive. In fact, many important organizational themes such as flexible work, transparency, improving communication and collaboration are not possible without technologies that enable these behaviors. Collaboration technologies are an absolute must.

3. Creating Employee Experiences

Office conversations are getting personal—moving from questions such as “what do you do” to “how do you feel?” and “how do you do it?” Organizations are no longer in the business of providing jobs, they are in the business of providing experiences to employees. These experiences are not only shaped by the physical environment, but also by technologies that employees use, the rules or processes they must follow, the managers they report to and how they feel after interacting with your brand.

Creating a desirable employee experience is a critical task for every organization today. This might include allowing for flexible work programs, creating open office environments, getting rid of annual employee reviews in favor of shorter and more frequent check-ins or opening up and sharing information—these are just a few suggestions. The key here is to prioritize employee experience just as much as customer experience. Ultimately, you want to create an environment that invites your employees and provides them with the support, flexibility and opportunity they need.

4. Big Data And Analytics For Hiring

The hiring and talent management process used to be completely dependent on people and their opinions or biases. Today’s process includes the integration of technology that reveals a wealth of knowledge and insights about candidates and employees. From soft skill-revealing games (similar to Angry Birds) to ranges of data that project potential employee engagement or job satisfaction, data and analytics are integral to a sound hiring strategy.

The big challenge for organizations is not how to create or aggregate this data, but how to analyze and use it. Organizations must hire or partner with the right people who understand data and how to extrapolate key insights. This trend is only going to increase as we start to see other devices, such as wearables, make their way inside organizations, creating an emerging trend known as the “quantified workplace.”

5. Democratized Education And Training

Ever sit through one of those training programs? The ones where you sit in a room and listen to someone give a lecture or present a 200-slide PowerPoint? Chances are this course had to be booked weeks in advance, was mandatory and you had to travel to attend it.

Not Anymore.

Employees aren’t relying solely on their employers to provide them with the knowledge and training needed to reach their goals. Through sites like Udemy and Coursera, employees can learn about any topic, at their own pace, and can leverage this knowledge to find new work opportunities. In this emerging context where every employee is both a teacher and a student, recruitment and training processes are going to become increasingly linked to help companies find and develop the right talent.

As technology continues to create an enlightened and empowered workforce, it’s up to hiring organizations to leverage those technologies and create stronger, more engaged teams.

The industry is constantly in flux. Many forces are here to help Talent Acquisition and some require more work from the employer. Either way, it is important to be aware of what is directly effective your process and your numbers. Inspired yet? Want to discover more about investments, HR and talent acquisition? Head over to Talent Tech Labs website to get more industry insight and sign up for our blog. Want to explore more into TTL’s Think Tank and industry research? Download our latest trends reports and while you’re there jump into our series of trends reports covering topics from Real AI, Vendor Marketplace, Employer Branding and more!

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