What is Talent Mapping

Talent Mapping

 “a process that works to predict future talent needs based on company goals and the organization’s potential to reach those goals. From there, talent gaps can be identified in advance, and a strategic plan is created to source and recruit candidates for future roles.

Benefits of Talent Mapping

Improve Retention Rates

One major result of talent mapping is the fact that retention rates improve.


Because the first part of talent mapping is seeing how your existing employees can address future talent needs. In this case, employees can either be promoted or transitioned into a role that is better suited for their skill set. This opportunity for growth and development will increase employee loyalty and encourage engagement.

Fewer Talent Gap Surprises

The first part of talent mapping is identifying major changes and goals that are expected in the future. When you compare that to the talent you currently have, you can determine what skill gaps will be present.

Of course, your predictions may not be 100% right, but having this process down pact helps significantly reduce the prevalence of future talent gaps. No one wants to be in the situation of having to hire urgently for skills that help the business stay afloat.

Reduced Time to Hire

Talent mapping reduces the time to hire for two primary reasons. For one, you already know exactly who your ideal candidate is (skills, personae, etc.). Therefore, you don’t have to spend unnecessary time sifting through applications that don’t fit the mold.

Secondly, you’ve already got some candidates in mind, and you’ve planned where you can source additional candidates.

Questions to Ask Yourself Before Talent Mapping

Every planner and recruiter knows that each strategic process requires a pre-strategic process. This is usually just the pre-planning phase of your master plan. Because hiring and recruiting involves many aspects of business (budgets, time, employees, planning, etc.), it is important to ask yourself a few questions to evaluate what resources you have to fulfill your hiring needs. These questions include:

  • Types of training you’ll invest in (ex: budget for external training or education)
  • Can you afford to give raises for promotions?
  • If you can’t offer more money, what non-monetary incentives can you leverage?
  • Will mentorship play a huge role in filling future talent gaps?
  • Can you leverage your employee’s networks? Can you help make them more connected?
  • Do you have any current employees that can (or should) change job titles/tasks in the upcoming years due to talent and potential?
  • Do you have access to academic scholarships or grants for younger employees?

Talent Mapping in 5 Quick Steps


The first step of creating a talent map is analyzing the present and taking a look into the future. Here is where you create goals and expectations for where the company will be in 5-10 years. As you do this, keep in mind what roles, departments, and organizational structures will need to be adjusted in order to reach those goals and expectations. As you analyze, you’ll be able to identify key roles and skills that you will need to plan for.


Once you have an overview of what your future hiring objectives are, you’ll need to assess your current employees. While this seems similar to what you’ve done in the first step, this step requires a more in-depth thought process. Because you know what skills and roles you’ll need to fill, an evaluation of current employees will be a guide to internal hiring or external sourcing. As you analyze your current employees, you’ll be able to decipher whether

  1. your employees have the potential to fulfill future demands
  2. your employees may need to change roles to be at their best
  3. which employees may not be able to keep up with the pace of change


This step is important for two reasons. For one, your competitors have some of the same roles and jobs. This gives you an opportunity to take a look at what skills those roles are competent in so you can compare your current employees to the industry standard. Additionally competitors may have roles that you don’t have. So, researching those may give you some ideas for skills and talents that could help reach your organization’s future goals.

Secondly, taking a look at your competitors helps to reevaluate your employee value proposition. As you prepare to recruit, you should identify what makes working for you better than working for your competition. Taking the time to create a unique pitch while you work on your talent map will increase preparedness and help the recruiting process flow more smoothly.


Though promoting and hiring internally is the overall goal of most organizations, it is unrealistic to think that every talent gap can be addressed from within. Therefore, you should have a plan to source, recruit, and retain external candidates. Because you have a picture of your ideal candidate, you can likely predict what spaces these people hang out in and what would make them say yes to a job offer. Additionally, you should know the name of key players in your industry. You never know if (or when) they may decide to job search again.


A passive candidate database is a recruiter’s greatest asset; however, it does take some work. As you create your talent map and source candidates, it is important to prioritize relationships in order to keep quality candidates engaged. Even if your passive candidates have accepted a job offer elsewhere, you never know if the right job offer down the line will make them switch companies.

Start with a free job post today to get started on finding top-notch candidates in your industry.

Write A Comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.