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The Telecom Industry is Dying! Solving Telecom’s Talent Crunch through TM Forum’s Digital Talent Maturity Model

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11 September, 2023

Amidst the ongoing deployment and expansion of 5G, alongside breakthroughs like Edge Computing and AI, the Telecom sector finds itself in a thrilling phase of advancement. However, it's important to address the fallacious claims of the industry's demise found in sensational headlines.

While the Telecom sector does confront challenges, such as a rapid transition from Telcos to Techcos, a shortage of skilled professionals, and widening skills gaps, its untapped potential lies within its existing as well as upcoming talent. These resources can be transformed to meet the current market demands and technological advancements through strategic upskilling and reskilling.

In this blog, we shall dispel the misconceptions that surround the Telecom industry's alleged decline and unveil the role of the TM Forum in mitigating these issues. We'll also explore the transformative potential of internal mobility and the benefits of a centralized talent pool—a catalyst that can breathe new life into the industry and usher in an era of unprecedented growth.


Table Of Content


The Misconception

Presently, the telecom sector confronts a set of significant hurdles, including:

  • Lack of awareness among young talent regarding the industry's potential for technical growth and rewarding career paths.
  • Shrinking talent pools leading to challenges in retaining skilled professionals.
  • Shortcomings in talent acquisition teams' ability to align candidates' skills with the intricate demands of specific roles, given the increasing complexity of the telecom skills framework.
  • Similar predicaments faced by talent development teams in designing effective upskilling and reskilling initiatives, stemming from the aforementioned escalating complexity.
  • The proliferation of diverse tools and technologies in the HR tech landscape contributes to confusion, as a single source of truth remains elusive.

However, sensational declarations proclaiming the Telecom industry's demise neglect its inherent resilience and adaptability. While the sector undergoes a digital transformative phase and grapples with a scarcity of fresh talent, this should not be misconstrued as a fatal blow. The remedy lies in strategic Talent Acquisition and Talent Management by adopting a Digital Talent Maturity Model. Let's delve into what the TM Forum’s Digital Talent Maturity Model entails.

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What is TM Forum’s Digital Talent Maturity Model?

In the era of digital transformation, every organization has its own unique missions and values, while the individuals working within the organization hold their own beliefs. Therefore, it is crucial for the organization and its people to share the same purpose, which forms the organizational culture and the way of working and norms within the organization.

This shared culture ensures that the organization's people have clarity in the transformation direction and drive the digital transformation work towards achieving the organization's goals, implementing the necessary changes, and ensuring their success. A precise alignment between organization, people, and culture is critical to digital transformation success and should be a top priority for any digital operator.

Consequently, Organization, People, and Culture form the three pillars of the Digital Talent Maturity Model. These pillars are segmented into six interrelated dimensions and 24 key transformation factors, as shown below. This model establishes a baseline for the pertinent topics that need to be addressed in the context of digital-era organizational transformation.

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iMocha’s Role in Empowering TM Forum’s Digital Talent Maturity Model

Talent readiness and mobility

iMocha has taken ownership of the ‘Talent Readiness & Mobility’ pillar of the Digital Maturity Model, which assures the smooth acquisition of talent and encourages their mobility within the organization to help ensure that the operator has the right people with the right skills, knowledge, and mindset to support its digital goals and objectives. This channel comprises the following fundamentals:

  1. Strategic Workforce Planning: This involves identifying the skills and capabilities required to achieve the operator's digital objectives and assessing the current workforce's readiness to deliver those capabilities. To support this, a digital HR platform can be built to connect business and HR systems, serving as the foundation for skills identification and workforce planning strategy development.
  2. Networked-talent Supply Readiness: This involves developing a network of external talent sources, such as freelancers, contractors, and gig workers, to supplement the operator's internal workforce. The digital HR platform can serve as a centralized talent pool to connect with external sources to offer automated candidate profiling, screening, and matching services.
  3. Talent Marketplace: It is an internal platform that connects talent owners with business units within the organization, enabling employees to showcase their skills and matching them with opportunities. It offers new challenges to employees, helps with long-term talent retention and grooming, and allows the operator to make better use of its human resources.
  4. Digital Repositories: These repositories of talent and competencies help manage and track the operator's talent pool and available skill sets. By integrating a digital HR platform with these repositories, the operator can have up-to-date information management and identify potential skills gaps that need to be addressed through training and development programs.
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How iMocha’s Skills Intelligence Cloud Supports The Talent Readiness & Talent Mobility Fundamentals

iMocha’s AI-driven Skills Intelligence Cloud aims to deliver its values across the organization, be it talent acquisition, learning and development, workforce planning, or at an employee level:

1. Talent Acquisition: iMocha’s Talent Flow revolutionizes the hiring process through automation, starting from engaging candidates through a dedicated Microsite and extending all the way to effortlessly issuing Letters of Intent. Some of its benefits include:

  • Consolidated hiring process by replacing disparate systems with a single, integrated solution
  • Reduced time to hire
  • Seamless progression for candidates from L1 (Assessment round) to L2 (Interview round) 
  • Centralized candidate data in a unified platform 
  • Seamless and user-friendly experience for candidate

Talent Flow

2. Learning & Development: To simplify the L&D efforts, iMocha’s Skills Intelligence Cloud allows you to:

  • Execute upskilling & reskilling programs
  • Measure the ROI of your learning programs
  • Benchmark skill proficiency with skill mix & proficiency level across your organization

3. Workforce Planning: Proper Internal Mobility, Workforce Planning, and Succession Planning demand you to have a clear idea of skills that are there in your organization and ones you’ll need moving forward. iMocha simplifies this by the creation of detailed Skills Ontologies and Taxonomies. It helps operators:

  • Validate skills in the system using a Multi-channel validation approach
  • Match the validated skills with business demands
  • Understand their workforce to make better decisions for their customers, partners, and employees

Skills Intelligence Cloud

4. Employee: In the light of ongoing digital transformation in the telecom industry, employee retention is an issue that can be resolved under the Talent Readiness and Mobility’s ‘Digital Repository’ fundamental. iMocha’s AI-driven Skills Intelligence Cloud improves the overall visibility of skills that each employee has and the skills that are needed for the required new job role or project. It also offers:

  • Qualitative insights to enhance employee career paths
  • Effective participation in compensations, benefits, and rewards
  • Democratized learning through its world’s largest skills library and self-validation using assessment
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In conclusion, the Telecom sector is far from its demise, instead, it is on the brink of a transformative phase. The TMForum’s Digital Talent Maturity Model, coupled with iMocha's innovative AI-driven Skills Intelligence Cloud, offers a robust framework to unlock the industry's full potential.

By addressing challenges, aligning with the digital age, and empowering the workforce through seamless talent acquisition, and upskilling and reskilling programs, the Telecom sector can embrace the transition from Telcos to Techcos with confidence. With strategic workforce planning, networked-talent readiness, talent marketplaces, and digital repositories, the sector is poised for a resurgence. This collaborative effort promises to dispel misconceptions and pave the way for a thriving, dynamic Telecom industry in the digital era.Skills Intelligence


Vishal Madan
Vishal Madan
Head of Engineering, iMocha, Vishal is a senior techno-functional leader, who takes pride in being fearless, decisive and works only with one motto in mind – 'Value Addition' in any task at hand, be it the primary portfolio in Delivery, Managed Services or Program Management or proactively taken secondary portfolio(s) which helps the organization succeed.
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Topics: Tech Recruitment, Skills Assessment, L&D, Skills gap analysis

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