Chapter 2: Talent for services: How gaining access to talent enables successful servitization
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Talent management has become a critical component of competitiveness and an important factor in an organization’s global business success. It has been traditionally deemed to be the sum of activities that specifically support a company’s strategic initiatives. However, most of the extant literature on the subject to date has been largely focused on methods for attracting talent and retaining it within an organization, failing to recognize the importance of ‘accessing’ talent. This is a barrier that can limit the supply of skills and competences demanded in the marketplace, and is a fundamental factor in a firm’s strategic performance. This chapter quantitatively tests a company’s ability to ‘access’ qualified talent and how this affects its strategic orientation. The study focuses on servitization in manufacturing industries, a process that creates organizational transformation and new roles with very specific skillsets. The study includes 285 servitized manufacturing multinational enterprises (MMNEs) from seven different industries, located in five different countries. The findings indicate that the ability to ‘access’ talent plays a key role in a firm`s strategic decisions. The evidence also suggests that companies that have ready access to qualified talent for servitization tend to servitize at higher levels.

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Edited by Yipeng Liu