Recruiting

What Is Talent Relationship Management

We’re always looking for ways to hire more effectively and efficiently, and to keep a strong pipeline of resources and potential places to find new talent. As the unemployment rate shrinks, the pool of available talent does the same and makes our efforts to find and cultivate top talent even more critical.


Many of us are familiar with customer relationship management (CRM) systems as a way to enhance, streamline, and improve the consistency of customer relationships. In a similar way, talent relationship management (TRM) systems are a means to enhance the relationship with potential talent.
TRM is a means to create, develop, and enhance relationships with potential talent. It acts as a means to stay in contact with candidates before, during, and even after the hiring process. TRM is not only the idea behind the process but also typically refers to any software and systems in place to facilitate the process. TRM can be the software that allows interactions with candidates, and it can also act as a database containing candidate information.
If you’ve ever used an applicant tracking system (ATS), the idea is similar. The main difference is that an ATS is usually focused on the specifics of the hiring process—posting jobs, screening résumés, and communicating with selected applicants. A TRM system, on the other hand, typically takes the process a step further, with better tools for integration with various means of candidate outreach (such as social media interactions) and more sophisticated databases and outreach options. TRM is also more commonly used to follow up with candidates outside the hiring process. TRM is better suited for long-term relationship building and pipeline management, as it’s better suited to maintain relationships even after the hiring process ends. Generally speaking, TRM can do what an ATS does, and then takes it further.

TRM is a way to:

  • Perform many of the same functions of an ATS, such as job posting, résumé screening, candidate contact, skills testing, and interview scheduling—much of which can be automated if you choose, or done in batches to save time.
  • Be more efficient throughout the recruitment process.
  • Stay engaged online with potential new talent (including both active and passive candidates) either through direct communications or via candidate marketing campaigns.
  • Reinforce and/or improve the organization’s employment brand via the messaging that potential talent receives over these interactions.
  • Collaborate internally by using one system to manage the whole process and all interactions, keeping everyone on the same page.
  • Source top talent before you need it, which can mean you can hire more quickly when the time comes.
  • Create relationships with future job applicants in advance.
  • Better understand the talent pipeline and see where you have gaps, allowing you to be more proactive about future hiring needs sooner.
  • Have tools to predict future talent shortages, and take proactive steps to combat these before they’re critical.
  • Segment the talent pool to better understand what skill sets are available and where there are gaps; these segmented groups can be individually targeted for specific communications.

This list is just getting started. In tomorrow’s Advisor, we’ll look at even more functions of TRM and then outline some ways TRM can also be used to retain the internal talent you already have.