The Open and Closed Styles of Talent Acquisition and Management: Which takes an edge where

TitleThe Open and Closed Styles of Talent Acquisition and Management: Which takes an edge where
Publication TypeMiscellaneous
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsKala, R

The phenomenal success of Free/Open Source Software during the recent years has led researchers in all related fields to re-think and re-evaluate the studies and concepts, especially those which the open source violates. Talent management and talent acquisition is no exception to this. The sudden rise in open source projects and their success is a cause of motivation for all of us to evaluate their philosophy and implement the same. Proper talent management and acquisition of talent can play a key role in strengthening the industry. Traditional closed management with their classic way of functioning may still look at the open source model as a big mystery. Open source has violated many of the theories of Software Engineering like limited team size, decentralized project management, etc. The concepts of self-motivated individuals, adaptive division of labor, informal or indirect leadership, etc. are the contributions of the open source to the world.

In this paper we discuss these concepts and state their differences with the way of working of closed talent management. Even though open source has various benefits in working, but requirement of a good coordination process, redundancy of development, versioning problems, etc. pose a limitation. We present an analogy of the talent management in the two concepts with that of the natural ecosystem. Talent in open source works in a manner similar to the ant colonies. Here the process is more community oriented and there is no single dictator power. The proprietary, on the other hand, works on talent as the lions ruling the den. There is a hierarchy and that needs to be respected. Only the leader has the right to make final decision, and that is binding. We also take a look into the present conditions of meltdown and show how the open source way is better suited for this scenario. Even though the present firms may be seeing a setback at this time of recession, the impact on firms with an open source way of working is much lighter or none at all. We also discuss the interactions between the two styles of talent management and present a model that can be adopted by the proprietary companies to benefit from open model. Our arguments of the paper not only deal with software, but also on content that comes under the domain of Creative Commons. We have taken the examples of Wikipedia,, Linux etc. for the various issues we discuss.

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