Gaining a competitive advantage in DIY


Home Depot can support a talent management strategy by building, staffing, maintaining, and upgrading an in-house system. Or they can choose a service provider partner that can offer technology and services in a model that reduces IT costs, while increasing administrative effectiveness. The decision to go one way or the other depends on hard-dollar factors that may range from headcount to total cost of ownership, as well as preferences based firmly in an organization's business culture. While a business leader or manager may place high value on these beneficial factors, it also comes with a price.

But advantages that home depot gain by raising the productivity of their most valuable workers may well be more enduring, for their rivals will find these improvements much harder to copy. This kind of work is undertaken by, for example, managers, salespeople, and customer service reps, whose tasks are anything but routine. Such employees interact with other employees, customers, and suppliers and make complex decisions based on knowledge, judgment, experience, and instinct.

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But to improve these employees' labor performance, leaders must put aside much of what they know about reengineering and about managing technology, organizations, and talent to boost productivity. Aryee (1999) As a result, it won't be easy for home depot to identify and develop distinctive new capabilities that make the best use of tacit interactions new ways to speed innovations to market, to make sales channels more effective, or to divine customer needs, for instance. But at least such capabilities will also be difficult for competitors to duplicate. Best practices will be hard to transplant from one company to another if they are based on talented people supported by unique organizational and leadership models and armed with panoply of complementary technologies. Technology can replace a checkout clerk at a supermarket but not a marketing manager. Machines can log deposits and dispense cash, but they can't choose an advertising campaign. Process cookbooks can show how to operate a modern warehouse but not what happens when managers band together to solve a crisis.

2.      Discuss the key channels that Home Depot developed for recruiting talent. 

Talent has been in the news lately as employers in the developed economies face a shortage of skilled workers, a problem that will only grow as the Baby Boomers retire from the workforce. In this environment, attracting and retaining top talent has become a fundamental key to remaining or becoming a competitive business.

Recruiting offshore can be made more difficult by a local unfamiliarity with the company brand. So when entering offshore markets to recruit talent, home depot need to develop an employment brand and advertise it to potential recruits. Robert Heckman (2006) as businesses come to have more problem solvers and fewer doers in their ranks, the way they organize for business changes. So does the economics of labour: workers who undertake complex, interactive jobs typically command higher salaries, and their actions have a disproportionate impact on the ability of home depot to woo customers, to compete, and to earn profits. Thus, the potential gains to be realized by making these employees more effective at what they do and by helping them to do it more cost effectively are huge as is the downside of ignoring this trend. Once considered the purview of home depot that wanted to reduce costs or leverage growth opportunities, services globalization now counts among its drivers the need to get talent where it lives which is increasingly offshore. Global sourcing requires home depot to develop a global recruiting model; home depot that successfully do that might be able to stay ahead of looming talent wars.

3.      Discuss the critical programs used by Home Depot to keep talent in their pipeline. 

 Home depot that invests in building internal bench strength, many home depot don't deal with succession management seriously because they are confident about sourcing external talent when they face a talent crisis. Home Depot is committed to building its internal talent bench. At every step of an employee's career, structured assessment and development programs ensure that the best talent is recognized and developed. Many new hires enter a series of rotational leadership programs--including store leadership, merchandising, business leadership, and internal audit roles. Individuals are invited to participate in the development programs after a rigorous process involving interviews, behavioural assessments, role-plays, and other exercises. There are no promotions at Home Depot without an objective assessment.

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The most senior-level employees--the top 100 or so high-potentials--have intensive leadership development programs throughout the year. Aryee (1999) the Executive Leadership Program, for example, is designed for a group of 30 at Home Depot offices. During the year, members enroll in a three-week program focused on leadership, management issues, and enterprise-wide business challenges. Well-known faculty from across the globe are invited to help facilitate. These various programs are focused on broad leadership development and are designed to encourage cross-function, cross-business interaction among the company's most promising leaders.

Long-term bench development and advancement is essential for the success of succession management. Best-in-class home depot adapts to develop as a strategic priority and provide a range of targeted development experiences to enhance the capabilities of their future leaders for their destination jobs. They report offering stretch assignments, internal or external training, nomination to executive programs or MBAs, mentoring, coaching, action learning, and special, enterprise-wide rotational projects.

4.      Discuss three lessons learned by Home Depot related to talent management.

Tracking and measuring the progress and development of individuals targeted for succession is equally important. It is often said that high performance is not just about reaching the pinnacle but staying there. When Home depot fails to review and measure their high-potentials at regular intervals they do not realize that designated top talents may be underachieving in their new role and may have fallen out of the high-potential status. Robert Lewis (2006) an individual's performance could be falling either because of failing to achieve expectations in the new role or because of wrong assessment by the employee's manager. Home depot recognizes the benefit of having a carefully designed and well-executed system for passing the leadership mantle. However, they are reluctant to plan for unpleasant scenarios such as an incumbent's exit and often procrastinate and put off the process for the future.