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The 3 tools of talent mapping



Virginie Graziani

Talent Management & Synergologist

2 December 2021

Reading Time: 4 minutes



Most companies dream of recruiting talent. But what exactly are we talking about? This vision is sometimes a real nebula with a very particular vocabulary. As many of you have asked us, we propose to guide you. To do this, we review the most relevant tools for mapping your talent.

Detecting talent on an individual basis

1/ The Assessment Center or the Development Center

An approach discovered during the First World War, the Assessment Center is based on two fundamental principles: the use of professional situations and the observation of behaviour and personality. The Assessment Center offers an individual diagnosis of the skills and potential of an individual and/or a team.

In addition to simulation techniques, in-depth interviews and even personality tests are used. The interest of this method lies in its strong predictive validity.

The Development Centre is used to develop an employee’s talents. It can therefore be used in a recruitment process (internal or external), in the context of a mobility process as well as prior to a training action. Thus, it enables the company to enrich its decision-making.

On the employee side, this is the approach most recognised by those being assessed.

2/ 360° Evaluation or 360° Feedback

This approach comes directly from the United States and is a real feedback tool for a manager. This evaluation is carried out with the manager’s circular environment (supervisor, colleagues, subordinates, customers, suppliers).

The 360° is conducted individually for each manager, even when several managers at the same level are involved. The feedback provided by the professional environment is aimed at managerial development.

Difficult to set up and deliver, the 360° can be a perilous exercise in some corporate contexts.
N.B. When the circle is not complete, we speak of a 180° assessment.

3/ The Situational Judgement Test

For almost 50 years, this approach has been using situational testing in writing. Indeed, the Situational Judgement Test works in part like the Assessment Centre. The latter simulates real work situations, which are transposed into fictitious scenarios in the form of short statements.

These practical scenarios reflect work situations and deal with classic everyday dilemmas. Therefore, the candidate projects a specific work situation. A scoring system objectively measures the expected competences.

Particularly used by large institutions for pre-selection purposes, Situational Judgement Testing aims to predict an individual’s success. A relevant tool in the context of pre-selection to manage a large volume of applications, Situational Judgement Tests are not as sophisticated as the more global methods mentioned above.

Key concepts of Talent Mapping

Even if talent assessment is individual, most companies appreciate having a global view of skills and talent. Knowing the strengths of the workforce makes it easier to manage skills.

This strategic analysis allows the implementation of succession plans, internal promotions and training actions. This is why the various individual diagnoses will be analysed in the light of a group.

To do this, several matrices can be used. The best known is the one developed by McKinsey in 1970: the “9 Box”.

Among the essential criteria to consider when choosing your tools, we draw your attention to the predictive validity of the latter. This term used in the evaluation of individuals refers to the ability of a tool to correctly predict a future event. It is a psychometric quality.

The predictive value of each tool is studied and measured. This data is relatively accessible when you approach the publishers of personality, motivation, aptitude tests, etc.

However, when it comes to methodologies involving the way they are implemented, these data are more complex to unravel. In such cases, seek professional advice on the right approach for your situation.


About the Assessment Center


The Assessment or Development Center are methodologies that use a professional situation. The objective is to carry out a precise diagnosis of the strengths and areas for improvement of a candidate or employee. In the context of recruitment, this stage enables the company to advise on a suitable integration plan for the individual’s personality and skills. Also, having a global vision of talent is essential to prepare a new organisation within a company. In the case of internal mobility, the assessment includes specific recommendations on a development plan.


Whatever your objectives, we can help you attract, motivate and find the right talent. To contact us, use the contact form or write to us directly at contact@apostrof.fr



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RH Consulting – Talent Management
Scientific evaluation of skills and potential

Expert in the evaluation and development of resources, skills and potential, Apostrof helps you make the right decisions regarding recruitment, annual interviews, professional training, organisation of operational staff, career management and professional development, succession plans and high potential..

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