Jenn ThomasJune 5, 2023
Topics: Customer Stories

You Can’t Grow What You Don’t Know: Cigna, ChenMed & Jackson Health Talk Talent Management

How can talent managers empower employees to grow if their workforce’s skills and career aspirations remain a mystery? They can’t — at least not at scale.

Understanding employee skills is a biggie. But so is the ability to illuminate and easily connect workers with relevant open roles and opportunities based on those skills, the business’s needs, and the employee’s goals.

It sparks a lot of important follow-up questions we wanted answers to:

  • How can skills intelligence help?

  • What’s automation’s role for managers and employees?

  • What’s the overlapping tech that can be used by both TM and TA teams?

We asked some of the most high-performing talent management teams for answers, and they gave us answers. Get first-hand insight from Amanda Day, VP Talent Acquisition at Cigna, Glen Goodman, Chief Talent Officer at ChenMed, and Michelle Kligman, Senior VP of HR and Chief Experience Officer at Jackson Health System, who shared their success advancing internal mobility, referrals, retention, and more during IAMPHENOM 2023.

Meeting Key Challenges

For many companies, internal mobility still takes a backseat to external TA efforts. "So often we spend so much time thinking about how we get people in the door that we forget to think about a ‘leaky bucket’ on the other side,” Phenom CHRO and panel moderator Jess Elmquist pointed out.

Fixing that leaky bucket of employee attrition, however, is critical to the bottom line. A big piece of the puzzle? Showing workers you're committed to helping them grow and develop with action instead of words. “We know that this is an empowered workforce with very strong opinions about what they want to do, not what we want them to do,” said Elmquist. “We need to give employees the ability to actually create a ‘spider web’ type of network, to be able to connect with people as well as different jobs.”

In other words, to thrive in today’s talent economy, organizations need to provide the tools to shift beyond the traditional concept of linear career pathing.

Cigna: Bringing Transparency to the Employee Experience

At Cigna, the challenge was clear. According to Day, it was easier for employees to use LinkedIn to find a new position at Cigna than to use the company’s job board. They wanted to reduce employee frustration and show their workforce they had a path forward without having to find another employer.

Instead of slapping on a point solution, they’re leveraging the same holistic Intelligent Talent Experience platform they use for external hiring to unite efficiency through AI and automation with an unrivaled experience.

Referencing their Phenom Talent Marketplace, Day had this to say: “Phenom helped us build a tool that created an ecosystem for us, not just for people to find their next jobs, but to actually grow within the company, build a network, and build mentorships. We’ve retained employees that would have left for something different because they got frustrated with the archaic tools that we had.”

Giving internal applicants the same experience as external applicants is made possible with Phenom AI, which is constantly at work mining data from employees’ profiles to surface internal job openings tailored to their skills, experience and aspirations.

AI also identifies skills gaps for Cigna employees and development opportunities to bridge those gaps. This not only helps employees take control of their career path, it also prevents them from applying to positions they’re not yet ready for.

“Gone are the days of employees posting for a role they’ll never get because they’re just trying to fish and find anything,” Day said. “The AI behind it helps employees find jobs they never would have found before. It's giving them suggestions on jobs that they may not have all the skills for, but can definitely start the conversations to grow and develop those skills.”

Increasing internal mobility has benefited Cigna as a whole by strengthening its skills base and retention. “Combining those skills keeps employees engaged, invigorated, and continuing to grow within the company [rather than] looking outside,” she added.

So far, 60% of Cigna employees have completed a profile. Day has set a goal of 100% adoption by year’s end. That’s ambitious but achievable, she said, especially considering the success stories they’re generating and the ongoing global customer care they receive. “I’ve never worked with a vendor more accessible than Phenom.”

ChenMed: Becoming a Talent Magnet

When fast-growing primary care provider ChenMed first partnered with Phenom, they faced a different challenge. The company was in hypergrowth mode, but lack of employer brand recognition held them back from attracting the quality candidates they needed to meet staffing demands.

“Our challenges weren’t as much about retention. We needed to build a brand,” said Glen Goodman, ChenMed’s Chief Talent Officer. “We didn't have a process. We didn't have the tools, the people. Phenom has given us the ability to have that external brand.”

With a new Phenom Career Site and Talent CRM, ChenMed was able to streamline employer branding efforts and build an engaged talent community of marketable candidates — cutting through market noise to make an hyper-personalized impression. The CRM was critical, giving recruiters a centralized point of access for data on candidate interactions, and the ability to nurture ongoing relationships with contacts.

To scale, talent mobility also became a critical component to their strategy, and they rolled out a Talent Marketplace through Phenom as well. According to Goodman, it’s helped ChenMed maintain stability during a fluctuating labor market. Now that employees have visibility and control regarding how to forge a career path with the company, ChenMed is not only attracting top talent, they’re reducing turnover as well.

“Workers have choices,” Goodman asserted. And creating career ladders isn’t necessarily the answer any more. “It's not a ladder — it’s a lattice…you can go in whatever direction you want,” Goodman said.

Happier, more satisfied employees are also more likely to refer quality candidates from their networks. And when you have an integrated referrals tool to encourage and track them, you can build talent pipelines faster while saving on hiring costs. For ChenMed, referrals played a major role in driving growth, as well as executive buy-in.

“We're getting more and more people through internal mobility, more and more people through referrals,” shared Goodman. “And CEOs love the numbers. We are very proud. We did not have any significant challenges in finding talent or having applications during these really tough times.”

The bottom line on ChenMed’s growth? The company’s workforce has soared from 1,500 to 6,000 employees in three years with just five recruiters.

Jackson Health: Turning Staffing Shortages Around

For Michelle Klingman, Chief Experience Officer and Senior Vice President of HR at Jackson Health — the largest Medicare provider in Florida — nurse staffing shortages were a key challenge, even before the pandemic. “We realized we needed a multipronged strategy to get up on our feet quickly to respond to the demand, knowing that there's a huge supply and demand issue in the market,” she shared.

Internal mobility was a key piece of the TA strategy. Jackson Health has long prioritized employee growth, according to Kligman. “We always were looking at growth and our pathways, and making sure that our employees — in order to ensure we’d retain them — could have a clear line of sight in terms of their career path with us.”

Partnering with Phenom, they not only overhauled their external career site, they implemented other far-reaching foundational technology including an internal talent marketplace and talent CRM to augment their internal sourcing and mobility strategy. By bringing career path visibility directly to employees with automated job recommendations and personalized updates on development opportunities, Kligman’s group set — and met — their target for promoting or developing 50% of Jackson Health’s workforce during the pandemic.

“I'm very proud of the fact that we were able to open up two hospitals and fully staff them with no contingency and no agency. That was a huge win for us,” Kligman said.

Jackson Health leverages Phenom to optimize efficiency and experience not only for employees and candidates, but for recruiters, too. “It was really key for us to focus on our recruiters and make sure that we take the pebbles out of the shoe for them,” Kligman explained. The combination of an AI-powered career site and Phenom’s Recruiter Experience tools helps recruiters work more efficiently and seamlessly matches both active and passive candidates with existing opportunities.

Kligman credits the platform’s data and talent analytics capabilities as a major driver of end user adoption at Jackson Health. Demonstrating gains through data helped quell doubts that this was just another tech “flavor of the month.” “The ability to put data and analytics in front of our people to show our journey was key to securing full adoption,” Kligman said.

Speed also helped. Jackson Health’s new career site launched within three months, and adoption was secured over the following eight months.

Looking Ahead

All three leaders are happy with their results, but look forward to even more progress in the coming years.

“The question is, what’s next?” Day said. “The world is changing… I think we’re on the horizon of not being able to continue unless we’re willing to implement new tools. Phenom will hold our hands through that.”

Explore case studies of leading organizations who are using Phenom with amazing results!

Want more content on skills? Check out our on-demand webinar with Josh Bersin and Cigna here.

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