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Is Total Talent Acquisition Right for Your Company?

Is Total Talent Acquisition Right for Your Company?

Hiring is changing at a dizzying pace and gathering the necessary pieces of the recruiting puzzle is a challenge. Would a blend of contingent and permanent employees offer the best ROI for your business? Which job boards and social networks most effectively attract talent in your industry? How do you leverage emerging technologies, such as recruiting chatbots and analytics, for improved hiring? Depending on your organization, total talent acquisition can put the pieces of the talent puzzle together.

What Is Total Talent Acquisition?

Total talent acquisition is a hiring and employee management approach that aligns workforce and business strategies to improve outcomes now and in the future. Total talent acquisition zooms out for a big picture view of an organization’s hiring needs and processes, and then zooms in to address geographic talent shortages, increases in product demand that are likely temporary, or employer branding needs.

How Does Total Talent Acquisition Work?

The traditional approach to talent management remains highly siloed, with permanent hiring, contingent hiring, sourcing, employer branding, and analytics often managed separately. Total talent acquisition takes a holistic approach where the need for contingent workers is considered in tandem with permanent workforce needs and industry projections. It also factors in the rising use of robots and artificial intelligence in industries, with an understanding that these technologies are shifting the roles critical to achieving business goals.

With this approach, cycles of hiring and layoffs are replaced by the expansion and reduction of contingent worker contracts. Folding in contingent workers is helpful to cope with market fluctuations, but also for specific expertise that isn’t permanently required. For instance, a logistics company may bring on temporary data specialists to pinpoint emerging markets only when the business is heading into an expansion phase.

The Benefits of Total Talent Acquisition

The workforce is changing, with the number of people filling contingent roles rising fast. By 2020, the number of U.S. workers freelancing part time or full time is expected to top 50 percent. The traditional approach no longer aligns with this fast-evolving hiring landscape, leaving gaps and inefficiencies that total talent tactics can correct. Some of the benefits of total talent acquisition include:

  • Lower hiring and recruitment costs through centralized management of sourcing, interviewing, applicant tracking systems, candidate management, onboarding, and employee engagement and retention.
  • Optimizing the balance between permanent and contingent hires in your workforce.
  • Increased internal hiring by shifting proven contingent hires to open permanent roles.
  • Improved productivity because this strategy takes a more qualitative approach to contingent hires.
  • Placing accountability on service providers for permanent and contingent roles, recruiting technology, employer branding, as well as for regulatory compliance issues.
  • Providing flexibility for shifting forces within your industry and the broader economy.


In the new business landscape, it isn’t just workers who must be agile and adaptive to stay competitive. Companies must also adapt to the new and still evolving hiring environment so their workforce composition spurs business in boom times and helps them weather downturns.

The shift to a total talent acquisition model is challenging but in no way insurmountable. It requires understanding and buy-in from decision makers from the CEO to human resources leaders to procurement managers. Step one? Getting the topic on the conference table.


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Hudson is a global talent solutions company. We help transform the workplace and unleash the full potential of organizations and individuals. Our expert team and proprietary tools provide you with unique insights and services that help you maximize your success. Operating around the globe, we deliver a range of recruitment, talent management and recruitment outsourcing solutions to get you and your business where you want to be.