This is the time for an Agile approach to the Mobility of Talent

In our featured blog this week, Kevin Lyons shares his views on the Mobility of Talent and having an agile approach..Kevin is a senior HR professional at FTSE learning business Pearson, he has a career spanning Human Resources in leading companies and is a regular voice in media communicating his views regarding Human Resources trends and topics.


A fast changing and rapidly altering business reality and global economy, with shorter term challenges added to the mix, and a landscape of digital transformation, mean that all organisations must face the requirement for a workforce that is both agile and flexible. In addition, this requirement encompasses a workforce with the ability to mobilise to quickly meet business and marketplace needs, while also being able to develop the skills and capabilities that will future proof the organisation.

Talent mobility enables a business to rapidly meet requirements, and move key skills across areas and provide the routes for the talent to develop  So more than ever organisations will need to blend talent mobility with an agile approach. But how can they best do that?

At Pearson, where I work, the world’s learning company, we have developed a highly successful talent mobility programme. Based on short term secondments, we can move employees quickly across teams and divisions to meet resourcing needs, but also provide a key opportunity to develop talent, and break down silos by the sharing of knowledge and skills across the company

The programme is called Wave, and every employee that goes on a short term secondment, called a Wave, is a surfer, and joins the ranks of Wave surfers. This combination of achievement and recognition, blended with the experience of working in the new role, is developmental, and motivational and engaging. The Wave programme is also light on administration and highly agile and flexible.

This programme indicates a key direction of travel in the way that organisations meet the challenges of the evolving society and marketplace.

Traditional structures of talent acquisition and workforce planning are not rapid or nimble enough to meet today’s rapidly evolving business needs and the changing requirement for skills and capabilities. Equally traditional forms of development must be replaced by a greater emphasis towards learning through experience instead of seeing learning purely through the lens of training.

We are moving to an agile mobile approach to Talent that is fast and highly flexible, and so be prepared and ready!


Kevin Lyons is a Senior HR Manager for Pearson PLC. Kevin’s passion is Talent, and what he sees as the key pillars of inclusive Talent Management, Diversity & Inclusion combined with Learning & Development and Wellbeing. Kevin is also fascinated by the impact of technology on HR, organisations and wider society, and believes strongly in evidence based management. 


James Cumming is our MD, Interim and Transformation Search specialist. Please get in contact with him directly to discuss any of these topics further.