What Exactly Is a Talent Factory?

There has been a lot of talk throughout OpenView Labs’ halls about the virtues of a talent factory lately. Whether it be implementing one within a portfolio company or writing an eBook about the process of building a talent factory (stay tuned!), it’s certainly a hot topic.

Not sure what a talent factory is? Let’s start from the beginning so that all of our followers can get up to speed.

The most obvious place to start is, of course, with a proper definition of a talent factory. Once you know what it is, deciding whether or not you need one will be much easier. Furthermore, you may already have one and just don’t know it!

A talent factory consists of one or more employees whose sole responsibility is to recruit, hire, and retain strong talent within your company. Essentially, it is a strong, well-functioning recruiting team. We call it a talent factory because we are creating a “factory-like” feel as we continue to provide strong talent and grow the company.

The roles of a talent factory will vary slightly depending on your company’s needs, but the general responsibilities related specifically to hiring include the following:

  • Meeting with hiring managers and discussing needs for their teams: When a manager is in need of a new employee, talent team should meet with the hiring manager to uncover specifics about what they are looking for, and potentially offer suggestions based on past experiences hiring a similar role.
  • Job descriptions and salary information: The talent team is a resource that can help write job descriptions for any openings within the company, while also aiding hiring managers in determining a competitive salary package for the role.
  • Sourcing/recruiting: The talent team should then go back and begin the recruiting efforts to fill the position. This includes posting the agreed upon job description, fielding all inbound resumes, outbound sourcing, and speaking to referrals.
  • Initial phone screens to determine fit: Members of the talent team are generally responsible for the first conversation with the potential candidate. This would include going through their past experience, ensuring they are a fit for the requirements of the role, and reviewing their salary requirements. If they are a strong fit, the candidate can be passed through to the hiring manager.
  • Moving the candidates through the process: Per the point above, a talent specialist can pass a candidate though to the next step after speaking with them. Beyond that, they are also responsible for setting up further interviews throughout the process.
  • Implementing interviewing best practices throughout the company: The talent team should share interview best practices throughout the organization so that the candidate experience flows smoothly, resulting in the best candidate being hired for the job.
  • Extending offers: The talent team is often responsible for extending offers to candidates. If the hiring manager extends the offer, the talent team will advise on the best way to go about extending an offer.
  • Onboarding new employees: Once a candidate has been chosen and an offer has been accepted, the talent team may be responsible for ensuring that the new employee is properly onboarded.

The responsibilities laid out above are related specifically to the talent factory’s role in hiring, but a talent factory can — and will — do so much more within your company. Whether it’s employee retention or creative recruiting methods, the opportunities a talent factory can present are endless!

Senior Talent Manager, Engineering
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