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Talent management: context matters

There is little doubt that the attraction, development, and retention of talent are nowadays one of the most critical challenges faced by companies worldwide. Despite the increasing scholarly attention during the last years many questions remain, particularly, those related to how (and why) talent management (TM) is conceived, implemented and developed within organizations, not to mention about its outcomes or effectiveness. We argue that organizational context has been underappreciated in TM research, which is an omission since context affects the occurrence, meaning and implementation of TM. Therefore, we edited a special issue which seeks to contribute to advance our knowledge of how contextual factors affect the conceptualization, implementation and effectiveness of TM. In this opening article, we offer a brief overview of how context is integrated in previous TM research. We then introduce the four articles in this special issue and their contributions which addresses gap in TM research and, finally, we offer some suggestions on how to improve contextualized TM research.