Creating a Career Pathing Program
Employees with career path plans are more motivated to succeed and better prepared to do so. They’re also more likely to stay with their current employer, which improves retention and thus company performance overall. Implementing the tools and program to help them create and stick to those plans, however, takes a concentrated effort from managers and top-level executives.
Thankfully, developing an effective career pathing program isn’t difficult. It simply requires sufficient data on job competencies and a cohesive framework including career roadmaps, position profiles, and training resources.
Diagram-style career roadmaps assist employees in visualizing the multiple avenues for career advancement arising from specific entry positions, whether those avenues are upward moves in a single department or horizontal moves across a number of departments. These maps are most useful to employees when built upon an existing competency framework, and may include statistics on average number of employees in each department or role and estimated need growth. Roadmaps that take company needs and overall business objectives into consideration (e.g., by featuring multiple career paths that lead to an area of high need) are particularly beneficial for the organizational whole.
Position profiles help employees dig deeper into the specific requirements and activities of each position on their career roadmaps. These profiles are built on general and functional competencies, which enable employees to understand the attributes and behaviors needed for success in each role. Training resources should bring together an employee’s goals and aspirations – often inspired by the career roadmaps – and the acquirement of the competencies needed for each position in the employee’s path. Such resources may include stretch assignments, leadership training courses, team-building exercises, and/or a mentoring program.
Companies who include these three key features in their career pathing programs can improve the odds that their process will be effective at both engaging employees and preparing them for inner-company growth.
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