7 Ways to Support Employees' Career Advancement

For many companies, employee retention is one of the biggest concerns for the coming year. The pandemic has changed the way workers view employment. Even as the Great Resignation reaches the two-year mark, employees are still changing jobs in record numbers. When a Pew Research Center survey revealed the top 10 reasons employees quit in 2021, two reasons tied at number one. The majority of workers who quit in 2021 did so because of low pay (63%) and no opportunities for advancement (63%). This is a significant revelation for employers hoping to win employees by wage increases alone. Promoting career development and internal employee advancement offers benefits for both employees and employers. Workers with growth opportunities are more likely to be aligned with company goals and engaged in the workplace. In a tight talent market, organizations can plan ahead to keep top roles filled with qualified employees. Finding ways to support employees' career advancement will be a vital task in 2022. Consider how these actions can help you invest in employee development and advancement opportunities.

1. Understand the Personal Goals of Your Employees

Organizational goals are an important part of keeping your company on track. Yet, your employees' personal goals are equally as important. Workers who feel like a cog in the machine that can be replaced are more likely to treat a company position as a stepping stone. By taking an interest in your employees' personal goals, you can get to know them as individuals. As a result, employees feel valued and are more likely to be engaged. Getting a clear understanding of employee goals can also help you highlight ways those goals can help them advance within the organization. Subsequently, the personal goals of your employees will be better aligned with company goals to promote greater success for both parties.

2. Invest in Employee Development

As technology continues to evolve at a rapid rate across all industries, learned skills will only be valuable for short periods of time. When loyal employees have opportunities to learn new skills and develop skills that benefit the company, they are more secure about the future your organization provides. Simply encouraging employees to pursue relevant business courses and workshops can be a catalyst for employee development. Many organizations pay for relevant training or implement online training opportunities within the workplace.

3. Identify and Develop Transferable Skills

Working through a pandemic taught many organizations the importance of agility and the ability to adapt to continually changing circumstances. Soft skills or transferable skills are qualifications that help employees excel in a variety of roles. They help employees transition seamlessly from one position to another. Organizations that offer training and educational resources for honing soft skills reap the benefits of productive teams and employees who are engaged with new opportunities.

4. Encourage Mentoring and Job Shadowing

Mentoring programs provide a transfer of knowledge from one employee to another. Although the traditional view of mentorship leans toward seasoned workers assisting onboarding employees, the model can work across different departments. Mentorship programs provide a collaborative learning environment that allows employees to interact with new situations. This interactive relationship clarifies where vital information can fall through the cracks. By addressing these areas, employees are better equipped to perform their job.

5. Support Work/Life Balance

New research shows that both full-time and self-employed knowledge workers say that work-life balance is more important to them in 2022 than compensation. A healthy work/life balance improves how employees view the future and helps prevent burnout. Emotional and mental health hinge on a lifestyle that is satisfying on all fronts. By offering flexibility to support your team's mental health, you can boost employee morale and improve organizational performance. With improved work/life balance, employees can engage in professional development opportunities and align their personal career goals with those of the company.

6. Provide Frequent Feedback

Annual reviews often fail to provide an accurate description of an employee's overall performance. It's easy to assume employees have a firm understanding of how they contribute to the organization. Yet, without feedback, most employees suspect their efforts are overlooked. By offering regular insight into how the day-to-day actions of your employees contribute to organizational success, high performers will be inspired to work toward higher-level positions within the company and continue to work toward company goals.

7. Help Employees Define a Career Path

It's not uncommon for employees to apply for a position simply because it's in a convenient location or offers a higher salary. These logical reasons for taking a job can actually go hand-in-hand with long-term career goals that will benefit the employee and the organization. There's no doubt that most adults need a paying job to survive and support their families. However, a career with a purpose can offer a more fulfilling role than a job that is just a job. By working with your employees one-on-one, you can learn about their hopes and goals for their future. With this information in hand, you can help employees develop a career path that will help them advance their careers within the organization. Creating a work environment that naturally promotes the career advancement of your employees can help you maintain an engaged staff. By taking steps that organically offer new and exciting opportunities for employees, you can generate a positive work culture that improves performance and helps your company succeed. Working with the right recruiting firm goes hand-in-hand with helping employees develop successful careers. At Career Group Companies, we develop long-term relationships with top companies and talent in every industry. Learn more about how we can help you provide the resources you need to support employee career advancement in a way that helps you meet your organizational goals.

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Founded in 1981 by Susan Levine, Career Group Companies was created to set a higher standard for recruiting. For over four decades, we’ve partnered with our valued candidates and clients to cultivate perfect career matches for administrative, creative, fashion, events, and executive professionals at top companies nationwide.

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