Talent Acquisition

Demystifying Digital Transformation, Part 1

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In the context of talent acquisition, Digital Transformation involves rethinking what talent and skills your enterprise needs and how technology and enhanced experiences can be used to find, engage, attract and onboard the right talent to drive your business success.

This transformation is challenging business leaders from all industries to adopt technologies that will support TA in becoming strategic business enablers. HR and TA leaders are expected to know and explain:

  • How to use technology and data to achieve better outcomes
  • How to leverage their tech ecosystem to help lead business transformation
  • Which new technologies will support their talent agenda in the future

We’ve seen a huge increase in the development of tools and technologies for every stage of the TA process, from demand planning to onboarding. Unfortunately, businesses don’t always know how to use these tools to their fullest benefit. For example, according to an internal IBM benchmark study, 53.7% of businesses surveyed said their biggest obstacle to using analytics in making talent decisions is an inability to extract information from their systems. Almost 50% also cited poor integration of HR systems.

Understandably, there’s confusion about which technology to invest in, when to invest and why. Throw robotic process automation (RPA), cognitive and AI with the differences between Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing and Neural Networks into the mix, and it’s easy to see why talent leaders consider Digital Transformation one of their biggest challenges.


The first step in transformation

Recently I’ve had discussions with TA leaders of global enterprises in the distribution and communications sectors. They seek guidance on technology decisions against the backdrop of both optimism and pressure from senior leadership, barriers to technology selection based on security concerns from their risk and compliance teams, and tech vendors marketing an ever increasing set of solutions to problems.

However, understanding all these technologies and learning the differences between them is not their—nor your—most critical imperative in embracing Digital Transformation in talent acquisition.

Before you can determine which technologies you need to adopt, it’s essential to identify the specific business challenges your organization has, such as evolving business models, heightened customer and consumer experience expectations, and shifting skills in the workforce, and then determine how these relate to key talent imperatives, like what type of talent you require and how do you source, attract, develop and retain them. Through identifying the outcomes that will drive real bottom-line business value, you can create a business case for technology investments with increased executive and business-wide sponsorship. This leads to adoption, success and the TA function becoming a strategic business enabler.


Start the conversation

So, establishing the outcomes that matter is the first step. Next, it’s time to investigate which technology and tools best address those challenges and support your overall TA strategy.

With the goal of demystifying Digital Transformation for TA leaders, IBM Talent Acquisition Optimization is engaging with them to understand how their companies are investing in technology, which AI and robotics tools they’re augmenting their investment with, and—most important—why.

Once we have conducted this research, we will benchmark technology adoption and ROI, and identify best practices, new thinking and case studies before bringing together talent leaders to discuss aggregated findings.

If your organization would like to participate in this research, or if you want to speak with me to learn more about IBM solutions and services within Talent and HR, please connect with me.

POV report


Demystifying Digital Transformation is a three-part blog series about emerging technologies disrupting the talent landscape. In part two, we’ll explain how IBM is transforming talent acquisition and how we’re achieving desired outcomes through augmenting technology.

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