Employee-organisation relationships were redefined during the pandemic as empathy, care, and development took on new significance. The future of work is about carving a new way of partnering that is more relatable, sustainable and attuned to the new shape of work.
As organisations tackled the Great Resignation, they felt compelled to listen and be more receptive to employees’ needs. The changing nature of the workforce, i.e. a more diverse, aware, and purpose-driven talent pool, contributed to this shift. Today’s generation demands an employee experience that unlocks their potential through values, partnership, wellness, agility and energy. Research shows that they wish to own their learning and growth, compelling organisations to rethink their talent processes to help attract, engage, and retain talent.
The need for career pathing is two-fold, both at the talent and organisational end. Organisations try to strike a balance between the build-versus-buy model to hire talent. The build approach has gained unprecedented focus during the pandemic, calling for virtual learning and realigning of job architectures.
To meet current and future business needs, organisations must build people capabilities in alignment with employees’ growth aspirations. Even before they join an organisation, employees want clarity and involvement; candidates want to know what the next roles are, how to reach them, and what alternate growth paths are available.
The fast-changing tech and business landscapes require them to remain relevant and associate with employers who will provide them with opportunities to reskill, re-career, and grow.
Career pathing is, therefore, an important input both to engage existing talent and to attract prospective candidates to the organisation. A well-designed career pathing program can lead to greater stickiness by building employer-employee trust. Career pathing is thus essential to empower people with the visibility, access, and tools to build a career on their terms so that they can push both themselves and the business forward.
What makes a great career path?
A well-designed career pathing process puts employees in the driver’s seat while enabling and empowering them with the right tools and avenues to succeed. Accendo’s Career Pathing module treats employees as owners and provides career transparency and visibility of internal opportunities, enabling internal career growth.
By offering employees tailored winning career paths with insightful gap analysis and development plans, the AI-led tool offers smart and diversified career options. Some key features:
- Builds employee awareness: The AI-based tool helps them understand current strengths and weaknesses and fit for various roles at a quick glance. This allows people to gauge where they stand today so that instead of looking outside the organisation, they can find their ideal next step.
- Offers clarity on role expectations: The tool helps explore detailed competencies and skills required for each role and build ‘dream careers. Functionalities to view role incumbents, connect with them and understand the suggested development areas are built in.
- Chart a career roadmap: The tool helps explore multiple career paths based on employee aspirations. It allows them to discover the path of least resistance through recommendations on the shortest route to their ‘dream destination’.
- Drive a personalised development plan: AI-led recommendations help tie each skill and competency to relevant development programs and are linked to the learning platform for both digital classroom and virtual training. It also enables employees to track their progress anytime, anywhere, easily and through any device.
Due to the proliferation of myriad employment models like gig, part-time, full-time, etc., remote career paths needed to be designed with an open mind for the future of work. For example, organisations need to embrace the rise of the ‘portfolio career’ wherein organisations are looking at hiring a diverse mix of people on an affordable, ad hoc basis. Companies will have to prioritise workers’ career development through upskilling and reskilling, allowing flexible schedules and hybrid working models while constantly listening in to the changing aspirations and desires of the workforce.
But merely designing and deploying a career path program is not enough; it must align with the HR and business processes and involve all stakeholders. Integrating talent acquisition, learning and development, talent mobility, performance management, total rewards, wellness and wellbeing, and all people touchpoints is a must to create a wow employee experience.
This demands ongoing leadership buy-in and open communication. Making leaders the icons of career success can help enthuse candidates, employees and managers. Managers and employees must take on the ownership to drive career pathing within their spans. This will help develop an ongoing sense of belonging and connection to the organisation. It is the way ahead to attract, engage and retain top talent, and create a long-term talent advantage.