Career Planning - What to Do-What to Do

Posted by Marilyn Hoare on August 31, 2015

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So you’d like to do career planning, but aren’t sure what kind of activities to include. If your organization has any talent management tools, it’s a great place to start. This doesn’t just mean career development software and programs either: learning solutions, performance management tools, and succession planning software can all be leveraged. While the following suggested activities can certainly be accomplished without the use of such tools, they certainly make the job easier.

  1. Bridge Skill & Competency Gaps
    Either manually, or through the use of talent management tools for gap analysis, identify skill and competency gaps between the employee and the current/desired position. Once they are identified, you can then easily determine the areas in which the employee needs to improve in order to further develop on their career path.

  2. Inform Employees
    After identifying areas in which an employee needs to improve, share this information with the employee. This may seem obvious, but it’s not always done. However, if the employee is aware of these needs they can be proactive and seek out improvement activities themselves. This further keeps employees more engaged and motivated: so it’s a win-win! If you have a learning management system, this would be a good opportunity to pinpoint which classes are the most appropriate and be sure to allow employees to self-enroll.

  3. Measure Growth Against Goals
    Identifying areas for improvement and working towards closing gaps in skills and competencies is all well and good. Nevertheless, if the employee has no way of measuring their progress towards these goals they may become disheartened and lose interest and motivation. Here is a good occasion to use performance management software. Include the employee’s goals as part of a formal appraisal and then help the employee to gauge their success. This not only assists the employee with staying on track, but it also supports the employee’s sense of accountability.

  4. Future Role
    Be sure the employee not only understands their current role in the organization and how they are contributing to the overall goal, but also that they know what may potentially be their future role. If an employee can see how they are valuable to the success of the company, they are more inspired to continue ensuring positive results on a personal level. Furthermore, if they know there is a place for them within the organization in the future, their chance of retention is much greater. This is where you can employ succession planning tools. Use these tools to help you not only identify your best potential successors, but to also keep your top performers up-to-date on the company’s plans for them: let them know you are invested in their future with you.