Developing talents is recognised as one of the most significant drivers of employee engagement, which in turn is the key to critical outcomes, including revenue, profitability, innovation, productivity, customer loyalty, etc. In fact, Randstad survey revealed that 2 in 5 employees are thirsty for career development, meaning that having a limited career path could lead employees to seek better opportunities somewhere else. In addition, 1 in 3 millennials would apply for jobs in companies that provide robust training programmes to ensure continued career and skills development, while Generation Z prefers interesting jobs that they can feel excited about.
These findings emphasised career development as one of the most needed strategies in ensuring employee experience and loyalty. As important as it means for both employers and employees, however, managers often struggle in developing a career path for employees.
Julie Giulioni stated that the big barrier in developing employees’ career path is that managers often think it is an employee’s job to find the opportunities, engineer the development activities, and scour for the classes. Owing to this belief, managers choose to leave employees to figure out their career path themselves.
EdAssist and the University of Phoenix revealed that most employees believe that it is an employer’s responsibility to provide a development plan. More than 70 percent of employees told EdAssist that employers should provide professional development training. Another 71 percent said that employers should identify employees’ job opportunities and career paths.
On the other hand, most managers believed that employees must take responsibility for their own career development, with 98 percent of managers said that workers should continually update and improve their skills. Another 85 percent of managers cited that employees should identify job opportunities and career paths by themselves, meaning most managers believed that developing employees is not among their job roles.
If both parties want a successful career development which would increase both employees’ professional and drive business victory, there should be cooperation and stop pointing finger at each other, advised Jay Titus, Senior Director of Academic Services at EdAssist. Needless to say, there needs to be a more honest conversation between the two sides. For example, employees should have an honest conversation about career progression/goals they want to achieve. On the other hand, employers should provide assistance in creating specific career plans, including timelines with milestones for achieving career goals.
HR managers, in this regard, can give a helping hand to employees to decide their career paths that align with the business’s goals. Here is what HR could do to help employees find their true purposes.
When HR leaders are able to identify employee development’s needs and wants, they should share their plan with managers. Managers are essential in employees’ career development because they serve as a mentor for a company’s employees and future leaders. Besides, managers are also the one who works closely with employees, thus, they are responsible for creating a highly motivated learning development within the workforce.