Want to align stakeholders efficiently around your executive talent strategy?
It’s something we hear from community members often, and it’s especially challenging in a newly created role. Luckily, the research and sourcing work your team is already doing in the course of regular market mapping can help. However, not everyone approaches market mapping as an alignment opportunity.
How market mapping helps align stakeholders
- It provides transparency. Transparency across teams is essential to ensure that different stakeholders involved have a shared understanding of elements such as competitive landscape, candidate availability, current and desired organization structure, and expected compensation that are grounded in data.
- It allows you to identify proactive tasks for internal teams. Once goals and expectations are aligned, teams can effectively take the next steps, whether it is reaching out to new candidates with a different set of skills, or adjusting hiring on the volume side to accommodate a larger offer for a new executive team member.
- It validates your talent strategy against competitor approaches. Researching company data in the course of market mapping can help teams surface talent gaps and present a plan to fill them. This increases confidence in the overall executive talent strategy, which positions your organization for long-term success.
By the way, what is a market map?
Talent leaders’ definitions and approaches to market mapping may differ. At its most basic level, a market map is a compilation of research that arms internal teams with information about the executive talent landscape in a particular location, industry, or sector. Its content varies and can include company overviews, job market and hiring trends, competitive intelligence, desired skills and experience, and actual candidate lists.
What are the steps for building effective market maps?
With so many options and preferences, how are executive talent leaders approaching market mapping at their organizations?
Here’s what they shared:
- Set Goals–Are you searching proactively to anticipate a future need, or is there a specific role to be filled? Some teams build market maps for every function across their company so they are always ready to fill talent gaps. Others do so when entering a new sector for the first time and need a better understanding of the talent landscape. In this planning phase, it’s also important to figure out the best place to store your research. If you’re already leveraging a CRM or ATS, does it support market mapping work? Does everyone have access to collaborate? Find a system that will work for your entire organization.
- Conduct Market Research–Our community leverages tools like Pitchbook, Crunchbase, and LinkedIn to research relevant companies and new industries. Often, reviewing competitors is a good place to start. For example, you can look into competitor hiring practices to see who has come on board recently and how teams are structured (if your CRM has a connections feature like Thrive, you can easily store this information for reference later). This will help you determine whether your organization could benefit from similar open roles to address any talent gaps.
- Analyze the Data–Identify hiring trends or themes from the market research data to shed light on skills and available candidates. Who is available? How many people out there have the skills you’re looking for? How does your internal talent stack up? Thrive users can keep track of this by opening a search for a future role, grouping candidates into networks, or creating custom tags with the desired skills or attributes. You may also find you need additional tools like Thrive, Pave, Carta, or Radford to gauge general executive compensation benchmarks so you can give internal teams a complete picture of what it will take to secure top talent.
- Present Findings on the Talent Landscape–Market maps take many different forms and vary depending on the expectations and goals. Some teams prefer visual elements such as graphs or plots to provide a more holistic understanding of the competitive landscape, whereas others only want to see prioritized lists of candidates, and information about research sources and methodology. Find a format that contains the critical information for your team and try to automate reporting as much as possible.
Market mapping empowers teams to gain a comprehensive understanding of the talent landscape so they can set benchmarks, accurately anticipate future talent needs, and feel confident in their long-term talent strategy. It’s also a crucial step towards building trust with executives, founders, or deal team members to provide a single source of truth that aligns multiple stakeholders. Involving everyone in the executive talent process allows talent leaders to achieve strategic outcomes collaboratively–with a market map as your most effective tool.