Talent management practices should be more transparent, according to a new study by Kallidus, a leading provider of learning and talent management solutions. In a survey of 518 directors, managers and employees, 71% of respondents said their organisation should be more open about which employees are in their company’s talent pool.

Nearly three-quarters (73%) of respondents said it is apparent that some individuals get treated differently in terms of career development and progression opportunities within their organisation.

More than half (54%) of all workers surveyed said that their organisation doesn’t recognise their full potential, and even 38% of those who are in a talent pool said their full potential is not recognised. More than a third (36%) of all respondents said their company does not track or manage their personal or career development.

“Given that most people want talent pools to be more transparent and are aware that some individuals are being treated differently when it comes to career development opportunities, our survey suggests that talent pools are a secret society in today’s organisations, risking a divide in the workforce between the haves and have-nots,” said Carole Laithwaite, Chief Operations Officer at Kallidus.

Of the 23% of respondents surveyed who are currently in a talent pool, the majority (81%) said this motivates them to perform their job better. Meanwhile, around one-third (35%) of those who are not in a talent pool feel demotivated as a result, reinforcing the need for clearer communications and enterprise-wide career and personal development strategies so that everybody feels supported and valued, regardless of whether they are in a talent pool or not.

Without doubt, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages of transparent talent pools. Those who know they are in a talent pool are more motivated and committed because they  are being actively developed for future opportunities, and this is key to boosting performance and retention. Greater transparency also gives all managers more insight into emerging talent which is critical for succession planning as well as helping to ensure L&D resources are directed to where they will make the greatest impact in the business.

“All too often the talent pool debate focuses on how best to define those talent pools rather than on what communication strategies should be deployed at an individual and company level. HR and managers have a key role to play in ensuring that everybody has their personal development tracked and managed so that they are motivated and engaged to reach their full potential,” added Carole Laithwaite.

Philip Pyle, Sales and Marketing Director at Kallidus commented:“In today’s workplace, bold changes are needed to current talent practices to prevent them potentially having a devastating impact on employee engagement, retention, performance and long-term business success. Technology is enabling the integration of learning and talent systems making it easier to track and manage career development, but ultimately an open and supportive culture is the most important factor for making talent management more transparent and effective.”

The full report, “Talent Pools: Banishing the Secret Society” is available to download at www2.kallidus.com/Talent-SecretSociety-SM and includes a five point action plan for making talent management more transparent.

For further information about Kallidus visit www.kallidus.com or follow @Kallidus on Twitter.