How to Create a Career Development Plan for Employees

The best investment you can make is in your own workforce, not in flashy new technology or high-profile acquisitions.

Your staff should develop together with your business as it expands. Reinvesting in the people who initially supported your success is more crucial than ever given how competitive the employment market is now. Making and implementing a career development plan for your staff members is one of the most well-liked strategies to achieve this.

If this is the first time you’ve employed a career development plan, you should familiarise yourself with what it involves and how it works with your overall people management strategy.

What is a Career Development Plan? 

A career development plan is a tailored strategy to help people reach their professional objectives. It includes both short- and long-term objectives that are relevant to the job of a person, taking into account both their current skills and desired future careers.

Through a self-evaluation or an employee satisfaction survey, you may quickly determine which of your employees desire to emphasise their career growth. When conducting a survey, including specific questions on career planning can give you crucial information about what your employees are looking for.

Why should you invest in your staff?

Around 26% of workers feel undervalued in their current roles. A sizable section of the workforce doesn’t feel like their opinions are being heard.

Having the impression that you are not valued might have negative effects. Lack of opportunity for professional advancement and progress is the second most common excuse given by employees for leaving their jobs.

It’s time for businesses to quit holding back their staff members out of concern that they’ll defect to a rival. Investing in your employees’ career development will not only aid your retention efforts and keep them around longer, but it will also improve their performance at work.

How to draft a plan for your employees’ career development?

Making a new business programme from scratch could seem overwhelming, especially if you’ve never done it before. The good news is that it’s not as difficult as you would believe to create a career development plan.

A career development plan can be implemented across all teams and departments as soon as management and the C-Suite agree on a system or a starting point!

Here is a simple five-step action plan to get you started.

1. Choose the workers you believe are prepared for career advancement 

Making a list of employees who are prepared for their next career move should be your first move. These are your top performers or staff members who have demonstrated a lot of promise. The managers of each department can assist you in identifying the employees who will gain the most from a career development plan. Not every employee you have will be prepared for a professional development strategy. Before going on to a career development plan, those who are underperforming or not reaching goals may benefit more from a performance improvement plan and a greater focus on their present competencies.

Create a customised career development plan to meet each employee’s needs once you have a list of the people you should be paying attention to.

2. Set up a meeting with your staff and discuss your expectations.

You should inform the employees on your list who are prepared for some individualised career planning. Send the employee an email or arrange a brief appointment with them for fifteen minutes to go over your plans for their employee development plan. This initial meeting shouldn’t involve going over everything in-depth with the employee. To give yourself and the employee time to prepare, schedule a more in-depth follow-up appointment for a week or two following your original contact.

You ought to make suggestions on how to get ready for your employees’ career development plan during this initial meeting.

You should ask your staff the following questions, for example:

  • a vision of their desired state in one, three, and five years
  • a copy of the job description for their ideal position
  • thoughts on what they feel will advance their careers
  • Any inquiries or worries they may have

Consider this initial meeting more as a pre-meeting to get them thinking about the issues they’d like to discuss regarding their professional path.

3. Personalize each plan according to the specific employee

Personalizing a career development plan for each individual is the most crucial consideration you should make. Decide what professional and personal objectives you believe will enable each individual to realise their full potential before moving on. These must be customised for their level of experience and present position.

You can highlight the following professional objectives for your staff:

  • Seminars that they can go to
  • Skills they can pick up
  • They can work on new projects and obtain certifications.
  • opportunity to speak in public

4. Be ready to be flexible 

There is no amount of planning that can prepare you for an employee to walk into your meeting and decide they want to pursue a different career path. Stay calm! You can still work with a worker who has done enough reflection to decide they wish to change the course of their career. You might need to consult management from the department the employee wants to go to if they wish to change career paths, teams, or departments.

You should be prepared with a list of concepts and professional development objectives that are suitable enough to be useful to everyone planning their career. For instance, writing seminars, leadership classes, etc. In this approach, you may continue planning your career while also reorganising it to accommodate the employee’s professional goals.

5. Produce a workable strategy and execute it

It’s time to get things going when you and the employee settle on their professional development plan. Offer and uphold a philosophy of open communication so that staff members may come to you with any ideas they may have for advancing their careers.

You serve as a resource for them while they pursue their interests and advance in their careers. Plan to meet with your staff members every three months to go over the status of their plan in addition to having an open-door policy.

Employees who take their professional development plan seriously should have their progress monitored, and the appropriate managers should be kept informed. The correct people can be told that they deserve a promotion or increase, even though you cannot guarantee it to an employee who participates in a professional development plan.

Common Mistakes to Avoid While Making a Career Development Plan

There are certain things you should stay away from doing, just as there are best practices for drafting a career development plan.

1. Don’t promise anything

Your employees need to understand that any professional development programmes or reimbursements are subject to the availability of funds. You don’t want to make any commitments you can’t follow since nine months from now you might be in a different situation.

Instead, concentrate on short-term objectives they may work toward to demonstrate their commitment to professional development. In addition to giving your employee something concrete to concentrate on, doing this allows you the flexibility to adjust your strategy if circumstances warrant.

2. Don’t complete their tasks for them

It is not your responsibility to carry out their work for them; rather, it is your duty as an HR professional to enable your staff to take control of their careers. Act as a resource for them and let them direct the course of their career plans.

Instead of finding seminars and workshops for the employee, it is your responsibility to ask their boss to approve their attendance. This is a useful way to determine which workers desire it. A worker that is motivated by career growth won’t require assistance to complete the task.

3. Be aware of the HR legislation in your area

Because you don’t want to unintentionally break any of your state’s HR rules, you don’t want to generate any official paperwork or contracts regarding career development.

Consider this process more like career counselling than a defined procedure. On behalf of your employees, you serve as their advisor and defender. When an employee is going through this process, you should be very careful not to promise them any promotions, raises, or career chances.

Career Development Plan
How to Create a Career Development Plan for Employees 3

Always keep in mind that change is beneficial!

A career development plan’s ultimate objective is to provide your employees with the environment and opportunities they need to succeed. Allow them to take the initiative and forge new roads on their own. What you discover along the road might surprise you!

Author: Admin

Careers, development, Work