Since The Great Resignation, businesses have been struggling to hire new employees. The job market’s competition for talent is fierce due to the need for more applicants. But you may be surprised to learn that the rockstar employee you’ve been looking for is already in your company. Over 4.5 million Americans quit their jobs during The Great Resignation’s peak due to the lack of feeling valued by their employers. These insights have led companies to focus on what they can do to retain employees, with internal mobility at the top of the list.

Internal mobility programs enable existing workers to move vertically or laterally and build their careers within an organization. They are designed to help employees create their own career routes based on the unique skills and abilities they have to offer a company. Organizations can also benefit from nourishing internal talent through increased job satisfaction and retention of workers. Let’s take a look at what an internal mobility program is and how it can help grow your organization.

What Is an Internal Mobility Program?

Before we dive into internal mobility programs, let’s take a moment to define internal mobility. Internal mobility is when companies offer workers the opportunity to move to different positions throughout an organization. Typically, when businesses need new talent, they start with a public job posting. Internal mobility gives employees the opportunity to change their position within the company, leading to better job satisfaction and better employee retention.

An internal mobility program might include:

  • eLearning courses.
  • Company-wide career development and upskilling programs.
  • New manager training.
  • Continuing education benefits.
  • Mentorship programs.

Internal mobility programs provide the structure for an organization to build a culture of hiring from within and help workers achieve their career goals. Partnering with human resources (HR) and management can be crucial to the success of an internal mobility program.

HR leaders can help learning and development (L&D) leaders by sharing current job postings, and positions the company is currently looking for. This can give L&D leaders an idea of how to shape their internal mobility program. And since managers work closely with their employees, they have better insight to who has potential to move up the ladder. Managers can help L&D spread the word of these programs by encouraging high potential employees to participate and communicating these learning opportunities to their team.

How Internal Mobility Programs Help Grow Organizations

In the wake of massive tech layoffs and company restructuring across industries in a changing economy, employers are in desperate need of internal mobility programs. Internal mobility programs can help companies grow by fostering their existing talent without having to hire, train and pay a team of new workers.

However, internal mobility is still highly important for job seekers as well. The Great Resignation represented a value shift toward better work-life balance over almost anything else. Instead of struggling to make house payments at a job they hate, workers would rather find a meaningful career that can grow with them as their skills evolve over time. Here are three key ways internal mobility programs can help grow your organization:

1.   Retention.

Internal mobility helps organizations retain their workforce better than recruiting outside the company. Plus, it costs considerably less to retain an existing employee comparing to hiring a new one. If companies want to retain top talent, then they need to provide value to workers with an internal mobility program that meets their needs.

2.   Engagement.

Employees are more likely to stay within a job that invests in their development. Today, employees expect to find a job that values them holistically and works to grow their skills. An internal mobility program can help increase employee engagement in the workplace by helping your people achieve their professional goals.

3.   Culture.

An internal mobility program can also demonstrate to employees how much a company values continuous growth and development. Promoting an effective learning culture can encourage innovation and strategic risk taking. Organizations with internal mobility programs value their workers’ varied talents and abilities by providing a structure to help them succeed. A company culture that values its workforce’s development will continue to attract a steady stream of qualified candidates and retain its existing employees.

How To Get Started

As you can see, internal mobility programs are highly valuable for organizations who want a cost-effective way to retain employees. Here are some ideas to help your organization create a successful internal mobility program:

1.   Look within before posting available positions online.

A recent survey revealed that it’s more difficult for employees to find a position outside of their current employer than inside it. The best way to fix this is for employers to offer open positions to existing workers before the job posting goes public.

One way to communicate about open jobs in the company is with a channel or company page. When job opportunities become available within the company, this will be the first place they’re posted. This can also give learning leaders a great idea of how to train high potential employees to assume these new roles in the company.

2.   Offer career development opportunities for workers.

Career development and upskilling can help companies mold workers to fit new roles that they might not be eligible for otherwise. Plus, career development programs like cross training and mentorship are great ways to spark engagement. But these programs also help companies retain top talent for the long term. About 58% of surveyed workers said they’re more likely to leave an employer that doesn’t help them learn new skills or advance their careers.

3.   Provide training to HR and management.

Management and HR teams must be included to execute a successful internal mobility program. Some managers hoard good employees, not giving them a chance to shine elsewhere. And HR may be accustomed to looking outside of the organization for positions rather inward. L&D leaders should educate other departments on how moving stellar employees laterally or vertically isn’t a loss for their department but a gain for the entire company.

Final Thoughts

Focusing on retaining the talent you already have can significantly impact business success. Instead of paying to hire new talent, the company can save time, money and resources by moving top talent internally. Lessons learned from The Great Resignation showed that employees are looking for more than an excellent compensation package. They want to develop their careers and learn new skills. As L&D leaders, you can demonstrate the company’s investment in their development with an internal mobility program.