2010 has started fast for us, with a key focus on redeveloping our career centre and creating in-house career development programmes for our clients.
We hope the new year has been productive for your team also and look forward to talking with you about your plans for the coming year.
Contact us to leverage our experience and knowledge in the area of career development, engagement and successful career transition.
This Issue Contains:
Individual Career Empowerment
By Jo Mills
The online career centre provides easy and quick access to career analysis and planning resources.
These tools are designed to enable your organisation to run a flexible career development solution that is comprehensive, up-to-date with latest thinking in career practice, and is effective and motivating. Suitable for entry level staff or your talent pool, the online career centre contributes to career self-sufficiency, strategic career management and great career decisions.
The online career centre includes:
- careerMOTIVATORS – a motivational indicator identifying preferred pathway to career development e.g. expert, management, or contributor
- careerVALUES – a simple but powerful career and personal Values inventory
- careerTALENTS – a Skills and Competency tool, profiling talents and development areas
- careerPREFERENCES – an interest inventory which profiles areas for further exploration within their current role or organisaiton, or taps into hidden interests to maximise career satisfaction
- Career planning process to foster ongoing career development and success and inspire action
- Resources which are updated regularly to support career growth and self-learning
Making the online CareerCENTRE unique to your business:
- Add your own banner, colours and fonts
- Create a unique email welcome message
- Add organisational career messages to various areas of the site, promoting your internal career programmes, highlighting staff success or linking to job descriptions, business unit information or coaches
- Edit your messages as frequently as you like, keeping the site live and interesting
- Add your own resources (coming soon!) to the resource hub, providing vital career information to your people
- Report on usage, career drivers across business units to support internal HR initiatives
To organise a demonstration today, call 09 523 0000 or email email@example.com
Research Snapshot: CIPD Research Report January 2010: Creating An Engaged Workforce
By Jo Mills
Alfes, K., Truss, C., Soane, E.C., Rees, C. and Gatenby, M. (2010) Creating An Engaged Workforce, findings from the Kingston Employee Engagement Consortium Project. CIPD Research Report January 2010, London
Many of the conversations we have been having with our clients have focused on engaging staff in 2010. After 18 months of employment and market challenges organizations are anticipating that talent will be looking for strategic career growth in the coming months, analysing their current situation as to whether it can provide this.
In this article we talk through some key findings from the CIPD research report and our interpretation of this report (click here for the full report: Creating An Engaged Workforce.). With data gathered from over 5200 employees, this report provides valuable evidence on the business outcomes of engaged employees.
How do you improve engagement?
This report highlights key factors contributing to employee engagement. Two top factors influencing engagement are meaningfulness of work and employee voice.
Meaningfulness refers to how aligned people feel to the organisational goals and the link they can see between what they do on a day to day basis and the direction the organisation is going. Understanding the vision of the organisation helps us all to understand our contribution, and the impact we have on business success.
We (Career Analysts) have seen the ‘spark’ that happens when people can make this link. Discovering meaning can be gained through great management and HR discussions with their people, or external career coaching to shine a light on the meaning that is already present in their current role. We also believe deeper meaning can be unveiled when people can see how their current job contributes to their personal career success. The meaningfulness of the learning and experience they are gaining right now, and how it supports their career goals can create increased engagement (ask us about our ROI).
Career Analysts ideas to introduce meaning:
- Clearly articulated business vision and values
- A clear link between my role and the success of the business
- Manager understanding of the above, and ability to discuss and review
- An understanding of individual motivators to show where people find meaning in their work
- Career development conversations to show link/ between my goals and those of the organisation
Employee voice refers to the opportunity to share views, ideas or experiences with the knowledge that you will be heard. Engaged employees are ones who feel comfortable voicing their opinions, secure that they will be taken seriously and understood.
Managers play a key role in facilitating this, through developing transparent and robust conversations where they talk and listen with their people, and provide forums for this to happen.
Career Analysts ideas to facilitate Employee Voice:
- Regular manager/employee meetings with ‘free space’ to discuss and brainstorm other ideas/issues
- Staff forums to collect innovative ideas, feedback or highlight issues
- Manager / staff discussions about career goals and development, to encourage transparency and feedback
- Manager development in coaching (including listening and communication)
- Staff development in communication, making recommendations or giving feedback
- Many different forms of communication throughout the organisations e.g. newsletters, emails, posters, presentations
- The gift of ‘time’ – in this busy working world, it is easy to run from meeting to meeting. As a manager, having time to give to each employee creates more ‘space’ to listen and understand.
- Business commitment to taking ideas/feedback and doing something with them (we have seen great examples of this from our clients who create working groups to address or improve areas highlighted in culture surveys, and communication strategies to share these with everyone in the organisation)
See the full report for full information on these factors. Creating An Engaged Workforce.
Outcomes of engagement
Increased productivity: Engaged employees provide value to organisations in various ways. Increased performance levels are an obvious result (and are supported by much empirical evidence including this report) as individuals are more positive about their work and as a result are more willing to invest additional effort.
The CIPD report shows that 59% were willing to take on extra work on a regular basis. Our (Career Analysts) ROI shows even higher impact after career coaching which helps individuals to highlight meaning in their current role (85% felt more motivated to take on additional challenges in their role).
Innovative work behaviour: Engaged employees also demonstrate increased creativity in their work – the willingness to seek out new ways to do things or new tools. We (Career Analysts) see this as an obvious advantage during business change and increasingly competitive environments, providing increased skill and career resilience to the individual as they continue to learn and grow.
Intention to stay: Retention of staff is probably the easiest way to measure the success of engagement initiatives. This study shows that engaged employees are more likely to remain with their current employer. Once again this is supported by our (Career Analysts) findings after career coaching conversation that encourage people to use their ‘voice’ to articulate career goals to management, and also find meaning in their work. In one case study we found that after a career intervention 63% reported feeling more committed to the organisation for the next 12 months.
We have only touched on the findings of the CIPD research report, and encourage you to read the publically available report to draw your own conclusions. It provides food for thought in how to tackle engagement issues, and some great case studies of how other organisations have done this. In addition, the outcomes of engagement piece demonstrate the benefits of investing in this area, and can support buy-in to your own HR initiatives.
If you would like to talk with us about the work we have done in this space, or how you can use career coaching as a vehicle for the above, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We love talking about this topic and are always willing to share our knowledge, experience and ideas.
To find out more about creating an engaged workforce, please call Jo Mills, General Manager on 09 523 0000 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Becoming A Preferred Employer
The best business idea in the world is worthless without the right people to help us create, improve, protect and deliver the services and products we want to provide. And to attract and retain high calibre staff, you need to be viewed as an employer of choice.
So what distinguishes a company as an employer of choice, and how does an organisation earn that label?
One definition is that preferred employers are companies where people are so engaged in their jobs that they're not interested in pursuing other opportunities. Being such a destination workplace changes the success equation for businesses because a company is better able to uncover and capitalise on more opportunities when it's strategic and systematic in the role its employees play in the business.
Becoming a preferred employer involves more than learning the characteristics of such an organisation however—it also requires that you understand what top performers want and value in a relationship with an employer.
To begin with, top-tier employers offer more than competitive pay and benefits. In fact, the word "competitive" implies that you're simply matching what many other businesses are providing. Even important additional elements, such as a good environment and open communication, won't necessarily make the difference.
Studies show that the most important factor is how people feel about their role in the business. Employees perform at different levels based on how they're engaged in the lifeblood activities of the company. When an employer has people who are talented, engaged, aligned with the company's values and focused on its goals, the results can be tremendous.
Want to set your company apart from your competitors? Here are some steps that can help you draw, retain and engage the best people for your business:
- Make sure your employees know they're important. Your staff need to know they play a vital role in your company's success. Remind them that your business couldn't achieve its goals without them doing what they do every day. Show them how important they are to the business by communicating exactly that to them. Let them know how they can develop their career within your organisation and give them opportunities to develop within their role, such as new challenges or projects, as well as equipping them with skills they need for the future.
- Make people feel rewarded in a way that goes beyond compensation and benefits. Top performers look forward to being given challenging, significant assignments. It's essential if you're going to keep them motivated and on board. Giving them access to career planning tools so they can assess where they are now and how they can maximise their success in their current role, whilst preparing for the future gives a new motivation to those performers who are looking for something to keep them challenged right now.
- Provide your staff with the support and resources they need to achieve their goals. Ask your employees, "Do you have what you need to get the job done? What else can we do to make your job better?" An employers role is to provide support by bringing people together and supplying them with the tools and resources to get their jobs done well.
- Help your employees achieve a sense of accomplishment. Communicate the importance of what your workers have achieved so they know they're making a difference. Often people can't see the direct results of their daily efforts but you can let people know what their efforts mean to the success of your company.
The past 18 months has been a challenging time. But hurdles such as the latest recession have served to highlight how vital it is to ensure your people are engaged. And now with the upturn looming, this is even more relevant as external opportunities begin to emerge for them.
Why not communicate to them how they can be satisfied right now, within your organisation? Through providing your staff with the opportunity to take stock of their career, to develop and grow their skills within your business and by communicating how important they are to the business, you are essentially creating a strong workforce, who are more likely to view your organisation as a preferred employer - and therefore more likely to stay.
If you would like assistance in how to best provide your people with the tools and resources to maximise their success and satisfaction in your business right now, give us a call today at Career Analysts 09 523 0000.