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Utilizing a Best-of-Breed Approach for Talent Development

By Carole Watkins, CHRO, Cardinal Health


Carole Watkins, CHRO, Cardinal Health

As we transformed our HR operating model into a shared service, technology played a key role in promoting self service and liberating our HR Business partners to focus on business strategies including talent development and movement, driving culture change and employee engagement.

Cardinal Health is a global healthcare company and we use a SAAS tool as our Human Capital Management (HCM) foundation, which allows us to integrate all of our international locations onto one HCM platform. Utilizing a best-of-breed approach for service delivery, we chose to use local country payroll technology solutions. This helps facilitate talent development and movement across the world. It also gives managers and employees access to data they have historically had to wait for HR to generate manually like real time turnover, overtime and diversity trends.

Easy access to Talent Database with HCM
As a healthcare services company, our industry is very regulated and compliance driven.  Using a Learning Management System technology that already had validation built-in allowed us to have a consolidated view of our workforce, training assignments and monitor compliance.

We have also recently deployed online performance and talent management on our Human Capital Management system, which has significantly improved administration, visibility and reporting of talent.  The simplest example is being able to share a picture of the employee with an executive during talent discussions. Now it’s also much easier to search our talent database for particular skills and experiences as we slate open positions or build teams for strategic projects.

In 2013 we also rolled out a pilot recognition platform (powered by Globoforce technology) that allows employees to recognize others through an online portal, or through mobile technology. We’ve had more than 8,500 moments recognized, 24 percent of which have been peer-to-peer. 

 Finally, we’ll soon be launching Taleo mobile capability, allowing internal and external candidates access to search posted positions and apply online. This is critical in a world where easy access to data and information is expected and communications are digital.  

Areas with Greatest Need for Technology Innovations

Solutions that simplify the “BIG DATA” into insights. 

More applications that have dashboards built in, to help turn data into insights. 

More interactive, “question/answer” technologies that promote employee self-service in an intuitive way, incorporating interactive chat.

Tools that make it easier to leverage social media to drive innovation and engagement.

Easy-to-use mobile technology for benefits that facilitates open enrollment, procedural cost analysis, making appointments online and paying/managing claims.

Leverage Visual Elements that Engage User
HR needs easy, quick social media tools that can assist with talent acquisition, management, feedback and general administration. Today’s workforce expects HR tools to be as intuitive and mobile as consumer apps.

With more options available to deliver virtual, connected training and to leverage mobile devices, training increasingly needs to be developed to be in smaller bites, leveraging gaming concepts and more visual elements that engage the user. More companies will be exploring ways to use mobile technology to interact directly with employees or potential employees using voice/video technology.

Agile Approach to Develop Performance ProcessSome of the unique lessons learned with HR Solutions are Don’t over think it— technology that offers simple, intuitive customer interactions is the ticket to entry. 

Solutions that provide insights to managers on talent, overtime and performance are the value-add features most needed in the future. We use an agile, interactive approach to developing talent and performance processes.  It’s helpful to get immediate feedback on functionality as it’s built, to ensure it meets customer needs.

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