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5 Reasons to Make Employee Career Development a Top Priority

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How much support does your company give to its employees' career development?

You might think it's an odd question to ask - especially given the widespread belief that 'jobs for life' are a thing of the past, and that traditional career paths no longer exist. However, a recent survey shows that almost one in three workplaces in the UK do not give their employees the opportunity to acquire new skills at all.

Although employers cannot provide long-term guarantees for their employees' career development or predict what skills they will need in the future, they still have a lot to gain by supporting their employees in their career development - and with good reason...

A shortage of talent and unfavorable economic conditions are neutralizing growth in the business world

The UK workforce is shrinking and talent is becoming increasingly scarce. By 2024, talent shortages are considered to be an even greater risk to businesses than devastating cyber attacks or data breaches.

In addition to the fact that the economy is still changing, many companies are limiting the recruitment of permanent and temporary employees. This means that even if they lack skills and experience in the workforce, the poor economic outlook holds them back from hiring new staff.

That means a labor market without in-demand skills and talents, and companies that are unable - or unwilling - to recruit the people they need to fill the gaps they have in order to grow. Not exactly an ideal situation, is it?

But luckily there is a solution...


A report by recruitment specialist Robert Walters, which focuses on attracting and retaining the millennial generation, shows that 68% of survey respondents cited a clear opportunity to develop on the job as the most important factor and motivation factor for retention.

They are also less likely to quit. Surveys have shown that there is a strong connection between how people perceive the opportunities for career development and the intention to stay with the employer. Employees may no longer expect the company to take care of their careers. But they would like to feel that the company is at least showing interest.

And when employees see that the organization is willing to invest in their development, they are much more likely to be engaged. They are also likely to be more enthusiastic about their work and willing to go the extra mile when needed.

Over two-thirds of those who work with skills development believe that training has a positive impact on the company's income, and supporting employees' career development can therefore help to increase the important productivity.

The HR teams must prioritize supporting learning and career development for the employees.

It is important that the HR teams prioritize learning and the employees' career development, because it has a multifaceted impact on the organisation's success. It not only solves the problem of talent shortages or expensive recruitment efforts... It also provides a number of other great benefits.

Here are five reasons why companies and their HR departments should take an active role in helping employees develop their careers:


Career interviews can often yield surprising results. If managers have an open and honest dialogue with their employees, they may discover that people have ambitions that they have not expressed in the past, or hidden skills and talents that they are not using in their current role.

Many companies are already struggling to fill key roles, and it is therefore a good time to find out what hidden talents exist in the business. It is also a perfect opportunity to find out how the individual's ambitions can best be matched with the company's priorities.


One of the biggest challenges organizations face is operating in an uncertain and unstable climate where the rules of the game can change overnight. New competitors may appear, technology develops and changes the way services are delivered, and customers demand new products.... This means that the competence the organization has today is not necessarily the same as it will need tomorrow.

The employees of the future must have highly developed generic skills - project management, problem solving, ability to analyze complex data and soft skills - which can be used in various situations. If organizations want their employees to be adaptable, they need to help them develop these skills.


Formal career plans no longer exist in the same way as they used to, and when the industry is changing so quickly, it can be difficult to plan for succession next year, let alone five years from now. However, this does not mean that HR teams should give up on succession planning altogether.

By having regular conversations about employees' aspirations and investing in their development, the organization at least has a chance of having the right people in the right place at the right time. In addition, today's HR software platforms - especially those with integrated performance management and career and succession planning modules - make it much easier to visualize and act on performance and potential data.

The most productive career conversations are those that revolve around what kind of work people find most stimulating, what skills they want to develop and what interests them in the future. With this knowledge in the bag, the business is "nimble" and ready to react to whatever may appear around the corner.


Finally, internal talent development can help reduce the costs of external recruitment. There is a greater likelihood that vacant positions will be filled by existing employees who already know the organization and its values. Sometimes it is of course necessary to recruit talent from outside, and then it is important to position yourself as an attractive employer.

IceHrm underscores the importance of prioritizing employee career development in today's competitive landscape. By investing in learning and career advancement, companies can foster engagement, uncover hidden talents, develop future skills, facilitate succession planning, and attract top talent.

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