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Sr. Director Talent Management Design

At Northwestern Mutual, we are strong, innovative and growing. We invest in our people. We care and make a positive difference.


Develop and lead a comprehensive talent management needs process that considers broad enterprise requirements as well as initiatives within vertical function business groups. To be successful this individual will need to build solid relationships with HR leaders across the firm and work collaboratively with the HR embedded community. You will lead our design approach with business and HR leaders across the enterprise in the areas of talent management (succession, performance, and career management). In addition, strong capability in project planning, change management, root cause analysis, execution, timing, feasibility, quality, communication and cost management to design, direct, recommend and implement innovative talent management & development program solutions.

Role and Responsibilities:

Design, support, and measure impact of enterprise best-in-class talent management philosophy/process/policy for; succession management, performance management & professional career management, people management, leadership and executive development. Communicate proactively with respective client groups, Human Resources Partners, and other partners to design integrated solutions with employee experience, change management, talent acquisition and talent development groups. This input will be used by this person to design and deliver the Northwestern Mutual enterprise design Talent Management approach including but not limited to:

  • Serve as key embedded Talent Management Partner for the HR function.

  • Build a talent strategy for key employee segments (SLT/ELG/VP, & People Leaders) while understanding the present and future needs of our business.

  • Develop a career path strategy for all employees to impact employee engagement, retention, and career growth for the enterprise.

  • Articulate the key attributes, performance requirements and accountabilities for critical roles in Northwestern Mutual to be successful.

  • Influence and partner on design & execution of HiPo development to prepare new and experienced managers in Northwestern Mutual’ s approach to management and with a focus on building a pipeline of enterprise leadership talent aligned with our corporate philosophy.

  • Work with Sr. HR Leadership, HR Business Partners, HR Generalists, Managers, Talent Management partners to implement a consistent and continuous talent review process to provide a structure for ongoing management of our key talent, embedding a “talent lifecycle” culture into Northwestern Mutual.

  • Drive greater consistency, clarity, and differentiation of NM talent and the identification of capability strengths and gaps required to deliver on our business plan.

  • Develop and lead talent metrics that enable the organization to identify and provide solutions to key areas for improvement in how we’re handling, building, and retaining this key talent.

  • Partner on capability assessment tools and processes to identify capability gaps within the organization.

  • Identify and handle relationships with external partners and vendors that advance the capabilities and effectiveness of talent management objectives and programs

  • Create and implement methods to evaluate program effectiveness, and track results

  • Partner with business leaders and HR Business Partners to understand the organization’s strategic objectives

  • Create frameworks, toolkits, accountabilities, change and communications that support our talent processes and initiatives.

  • Promote an environment of metrics-driven decision making.

  • Work inclusively with all capacities of the HR function to be an active team member of the HR community

  • Design & Develop resources for HR and Talent Management Partners

  • Involved in Client Engagement & Delivery as necessary and Training as necessary

What You Will Bring:

  • 7+ years of progressive experience in designing and implementing Talent Management and Organization Development transformation in process and technology

  • Validated experience showing an accelerated career path, ideally to Sr. Director (or equivalent experience).

  • Strong, hands-on experience and in-depth knowledge base leading the full cycle of sophisticated talent management (Talent Review, Succession, HiPO IDP, Performance, Career) design projects, from needs analysis, design through implementation and evaluation

  • Expertise with application of talent management technologies to build management and professional development programs and curricula

  • Knowledge of learning technology using learning technology as a key component in overall development strategies

  • Strong interpersonal and collaboration skills, appropriate in a matrix organization; Ability to develop credibility and rapport and establish effective working relationships with all levels of leaders, business partners and HR colleagues

  • Solid analytical and problem-solving skills; strategic and innovative problem solver

  • Exceptional project management skills; ability to lead both the people and the details of the project through to successful implementation

  • Excellent organizational skills, ability to lead multiple projects simultaneously and prioritize work to meet deadlines

  • Validated ability to use influence skills to achieve results and effectively impact change

  • Outstanding verbal and written communication skills. Delivers clear, concise and influential messages, both verbally and in writing. Engaging and dynamic presentation and facilitation skills

  • Ability to take initiative and work independently on projects, as well as be an effective team leader or member

  • Strong change management skills, ability to handle ambiguity and enthusiasm for a constantly evolving environment

This job is not covered by the existing Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Required Certifications:

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We are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age or status as a protected veteran, or any other characteristic protected by law.


We’re excited about the potential people bring to Northwestern Mutual. You can grow your career here while enjoying first-class perks, benefits, and commitment to diversity and inclusion.