Reframing careers: How career development works in tandem with career mobility

Careers are changing, and career mobility has never been more important. 60% of employees are considering a career change as a direct consequence of the pandemic. 32% of roles are predicted to see significant change due to digitisation. And almost 50% of organisations expect to alter the configuration of their workforce to address the changed way in which we now work.

With the global talent shortage at a 15-year high, organisations are increasingly looking to develop the skills of their existing workforce, whilst individuals are seeking greater opportunities for personal growth and career development. LinkedIn research found that employees within organisations that offer high internal mobility remain with the company 2x longer than those without.

So how can employers and employees support career mobility?

Firstly, career mobility has to be a focal point of the overarching organisational strategy. Employees need visibility of development opportunities within the business, and information on how to access them: these could take the shape of secondments, cross-functional team projects, redeployment opportunities or upskilling through learning and development. With the right processes in place, businesses must also encourage employees to take a proactive approach to development, to understand their skills and strengths and to drive their own career growth.

This cannot be achieved without buy-in at all levels of the organisation. Managers need to be trained to conduct effective career conversations with their direct reports, allowing team members to openly discuss and explore areas for career growth, skills development opportunities or alternative career options in a safe and confidential environment. Central to this is self-reflection and awareness, providing comprehensive career assessments to help individuals understand their strengths, transferable skills, and key areas for development – and to align these with the changing needs of the organisation.

With access to learning resources, tools and guided self-reflection, organisations can create the foundations of a culture whereby learning and development drives career mobility.

But what are the benefits of career mobility?

Creating this culture of career development and mobility benefits both employers and employees:

Motivated and up-skilled workforce: Employees feel empowered and motivated to develop new capabilities and knowledge that will allow them work towards their personal career goals and gain new experiences within the business. This helps to create a highly skilled and productive workforce, where the focus is on skills rather than specific jobs – with a bank of skills available to operate across different functions if needed. Adaptability and flexibility then become central to the workforce – enabling employees to drive organisational success in an ever-changing world of work.

Improved autonomy over career management: Once equipped with the necessary skills, employees can take a more proactive approach in overcoming personal development challenges. Greater independence and autonomy in managing their career can help to drive improved employee satisfaction; as each individual understands what it is they want from their career and can take the necessary steps to achieve their goals – whether that be changing roles or updating their skillset to match the transforming business landscape.

Talent retention and employee satisfaction: And it’s by creating a more satisfied workforce that employers can retain key talent, as greater satisfaction makes for improved loyalty. Employees are able look for and identify career development opportunities internally, as opposed to outside the business – helping to create a future-fit workforce that is both happy to remain with the company, and motivated to achieve key organisational goals.

By placing importance on career development in conjunction with mobility, organisations are better equipped to create a future-proofed workforce capable of making informed career decisions that align with the needs of the organisation.

For an in-depth insight into the value of career development and mobility, watch our latest free, on-demand webinar.