• Talent on demand? Talent Management in the German and Irish Subsidiaries of a US Multinational Corporation

      Burbach, R.; Royle, Tony (2010)
      As the interest in talent management (TM) gathers momentum, this paper aims to unravel how talent is managed in multinational corporations, what factors mediate the talent management process and what computerised systems may contribute to the management of talent. The study employs a single case study but multiple units of analysis approach to elucidate the factors pertaining to the transmission and use of talent management practices across the German and Irish subsidiaries of a US multinational corporation. Primary data for this study derive from a series of in-depth interviews with key decision makers, which include managers at various levels in Germany, Ireland and The Netherlands. The findings suggest that the diffusion of, and success of, talent management practices is contingent on a combination of factors, including stakeholder involvement and top level support, micro-political exchanges, and the integration of talent management with a global human resource information system. Furthermore, the discussion illuminates the utility and limitations of Cappelli's “talent on demand” framework. The main limitation of this research is the adoption of a single case study method. As a result, the findings may not be applicable to a wider population of organisations and subsidiaries. Additional research will be required to substantiate the relevance of these findings in the context of other subsidiaries of the same and other corporations. This paper accentuates a number of practical implications. Inter alia, it highlights the complex nature of institutional factors affecting the talent management process and the potential efficacy of a human resource information system in managing talent globally.The paper extends the body of knowledge on the transfer of talent management practices in the subsidiaries of multinational corporations. The discussion presented herein may engender further academic debate on the talent management process in the academic and practitioner communities. The link between talent management and the use of human resource information systems established by this research may be of particular interest to human resource practitioners.