fbpx

9 Box grid for talent mapping – HR for Excel – Template & Explanation

Share

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn

I learned about a new HR technique for talent mapping during a recent consulting project . It is called 9 box grid. In this page, let me explain what it is and how you can create 9 box grid using Excel.

What is 9 Box Grid?

9 Box grid is a talent mapping tool for Human Resources. This is used to map your staff on two scales – performance and potential. All staff are plotted on 3×3 grid with one side showing performance (from low to high) and another side with potential (low to high). 

Here is a sample 9 Box Grid.

9 box grid explained

How to create 9 box grid in Excel?

If you have just a handful of staff then it is easier to create 9 box grid by typing the data in 3×3 range in Excel. But if you have a lot of people, then creating a dynamic 9 box grid is helpful. Something like below:

Interactive 9 Box Grid in Excel - Demo

9 box grid - interactive demo

Step by step instructions - Making 9 Box Grid template in Excel

I made a short video explaining the process for creating 9 box grid for talent mapping in excel. Watch it below (or on my YouTube channel) or read on for text instructions.

Step 1: Gather data about performance and potential of your staff

In a blank spreadsheet, gather the data about your staff. At the very least, you want staff name, performance and potential. Feel free to add things like department or team names.

This is how I structured my data:

It is all in a table named talent. 

data for 9 box grid - staff performance & potential

Step 2: Create the talent map 9 box grid visual

You can do it in two ways. If you have Excel 365 and access to dynamic array functions like FILTER(), you can use formulas to generate the 3×3 talent map grid.

Else, you can use Pivot Tables to generate the talent map grid.

Formula approach for Talent Map

Note: this method requires Excel 365 with dynamic array functions.

Set up a 3×3 grid in a blank sheet. 

In the top left cell, use the below formula.

=IFERROR(TEXTJOIN(“,”&CHAR(10),TRUE, SORT(FILTER(talent[Candidate],(talent[Performance]=E$8)*(talent[Potential]=$D5)))),””)

The above formula assumes E$8 has the performance rating value and $D5 has potential.

How does this formula work?

We are using FILTER() function to filter down the talent table to all candidates who have given performance (E8) and potential (D5) values

SORT() function sorts these names in alphabetical order.

Finally TEXTJOIN() is used to combine all names to one big text with comma & new line character between names. 

Pivot Table approach for Talent Map

Note: this method requires Excel 2013 or above versions

Here is a quick demo of the Pivot Table based 9 box talent map grid.

9 box grid - pivot table demo

To create this,

  • Insert a pivot table from your talent data. During the insert pivot step, enable “add this to data model” option, as depicted below.

data model option in pivot tables

Read more about data model based pivot tables.

  • Now add “performance” to column labels and “potential” to row labels area of the pivot.
  • We need to show the names of people instead of count in the values area. This can be done by using measures. 
  • Right click on the table in fields list area and select “Add measure” option.
    • Name of the measure: List of names
    • Definition: =CONCATENATEX(‘talent mapping’, [Candidate],”, “,[Candidate],asc)

Add this measure to values area of the pivot and your 9 box talent map will be ready.

What is this measure doing?

This measure is concatenating all the staff names that have given performance and potential levels. It is also sorting such names in ascending order. 

9 box grid for talent mapping - FREE Excel Template

Click here to download my free 9 box grid talent mapping template.  It has sample data of 100 employees and two different talent maps (one with formulas and another with pivot tables). Experiment with it to understand the process or use it for your work.

Work in HR and use Excel? More resources for you...

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn

Share this tip with your colleagues

Excel and Power BI tips - Chandoo.org Newsletter

Get FREE Excel + Power BI Tips

Simple, fun and useful emails, once per week.

Learn & be awesome.

Welcome to Chandoo.org

Thank you so much for visiting. My aim is to make you awesome in Excel & Power BI. I do this by sharing videos, tips, examples and downloads on this website. There are more than 1,000 pages with all things Excel, Power BI, Dashboards & VBA here. Go ahead and spend few minutes to be AWESOME.

Read my storyFREE Excel tips book

Excel School made me great at work.
5/5

– Brenda

Excel formula list - 100+ examples and howto guide for you

From simple to complex, there is a formula for every occasion. Check out the list now.

Calendars, invoices, trackers and much more. All free, fun and fantastic.

Advanced Pivot Table tricks

Power Query, Data model, DAX, Filters, Slicers, Conditional formats and beautiful charts. It's all here.

Still on fence about Power BI? In this getting started guide, learn what is Power BI, how to get it and how to create your first report from scratch.

5 Responses to “9 Box grid for talent mapping – HR for Excel – Template & Explanation”

  1. Robert Clark says:

    Great stuff! I can understand how to add a slicer to the pivot table, but how do you implement the departmental selector on the 'Filter' formula scheme?

  2. Claus Andersen says:

    Just saw this on your Youtube channel, and it’s areat idea...!

    An easy way to overcome the "ugliness" of pivot tables and get it to look nice (in the format of the Output sheet), would be to simply build a sheet with the nice map at the top, a pivot underneath it and a slicer next to formatted map and then reference each of the 9 cells in the formatted map to the “related” cell in the Pivot.

    Keep up the good work!

    /Claus

  3. Madison Fry says:

    Hi Chandoo,

    This is great! Curious how to make additional columns operate the same as the Department column (ex. have a "manager column") that would allow you to sort a 9 box by manager, area, or team in addition to department?

    Feel free to email me if needed! mfry01@minnetronixmedical.com

    Happy New Year

    Madison Fry

  4. Matt says:

    This is great, thank you!

Leave a Reply