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Talent Governance

5.1 The Talent Council

A Talent Council or equivalent works to ensure the talent strategy connects with the business strategy. The benefits of holding Talent Council discussions regularly include:

  • Involvement of business leaders in talent and succession management strategy and decisions, ensuring connection with business strategy.
  • Development plans are regularly reviewed to ensure relevance to a future critical role.
  • Career movement of talent can be mapped to potential for future critical roles.
  • Leaders are held accountable for follow through.

Talent Councils usually have a strong focus on succession to ensure that the development planned for each individual meets a specific business need.

5.1.1 Council membership

The size of a Talent Council will vary depending on the size of an agency. A typical Talent Council would usually comprise 4-6 senior executives who:

  • are more senior (by one or two levels) than the cohort under discussion
  • represent a range of functions across the agency
  • bring varied skills and experience.

A senior HR representative would usually be a council member. The Talent Co-ordinator attends to record the discussion and provide Secretariat functions.

5.1.2 Meeting frequency and agendas

Typically, Talent Councils meet on a biannual or quarterly basis. Large agencies managing bigger talent pools may meet more frequently.

The Council's agenda will vary depending on current priorities and the maturity of agency talent management processes. When a Talent Council is established, early Council meetings should be used to discuss all high potential staff in the talent pool. As the council transitions to routine operations,
its agenda may focus on a specific role with succession concerns or on a review of select staff in the high potential pool. The structure of a talent council discussion usually includes:

  • Review of select high potential staff
  • Potential future role fit
  • Required and planned development
  • Possible role moves / secondments
  • Potential projects meeting agency need and individual development plan
  • Plan for monitoring development outcomes
  • Agency succession planning

Council members should be provided with Career Profiles and Development Plans for the high potential employees under discussion. They should also be provided with any Talent Assessments or other data such as 360° feedback.

Last reviewed: 
29 March 2018