IBM Buys Social HR And Talent Management Software Company Kenexa For $1.3B In Cash

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IBM has scooped up talent management and HR software maker Kenexa. The price? A hefty $1.3 billion, or $46.00 per share in cash.

The NASDAQ-listed Kenexa offers an HR, talent acquisition and talent management software. The product includes recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) that provides global recruitment services; recruitment technology solutions; onboarding solutions, which offer forms management for legal documents, workflow, and electronic signatures; employee assessments that help organizations to select and retain top performers; Kenexa Prove It, a skills test solution to identify and select the talented candidates;and Kenexa Interview Builder, which provides an online structured interview reference library of approximately 3,000 questions; and employment branding solutions.

The software also includes talent management functions including performance management, compensation management, career development, goal alignment, and succession planning; employee surveys; learning management solutions, which enable organizations to deliver and track employee learning; and leadership solutions comprising leadership audit, leadership assessments, and leadership development.

IBM says that that the acquisition will help its clients embrace social business capabilities. As IBm states in the release: Kenexa complements IBM’s strategy of bringing relevant data and expertise into the hands of business leaders within every functional department from HR, sales, marketing to product development. The combination of IBM and Kenexa will allow organizations to act on insights driven analytics to create a more intelligent and smarter workforce across every line of business.

Business across a number of industries, including financial services and banking, manufacturing, life sciences, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, retail, healthcare, hospitality, call centers, and education us Kenexa. Nearly 9000 companies are using Kenexa, including Starbucks, CVS, Boeing, GE, US Navy, Whirlpool, Ford and Corning. Kenexa also previously acquired e-learning solutions company Outstart and Salary.com.

Talent management is an interesting move for IBM, and clearly the company doesn’t mind paying the big price to gain a foothold in the space. SAP made a similar move with its acquisition of SuccessFactors and Salesforce also made a move into the human capital management space with the purchase of Rypple.