Learn how to provide inclusive career support to retain your employees and attract top candidates.
Education and training cannot independently pave the road for building a career. There are essential building blocks that rely on the support and guidance of others such as internships, mentorships, recommendations, connections to first full-time jobs, and sponsorship for career advancement. 70% of jobs are not published publicly and up to 80% of posts are filled through networking. The informal networks, unwritten rules and social dynamics within an organization play a huge role in career advancement; when there is not equal access to these networks and resources, exclusion and barriers develop. Informal career advancement depends a lot on who you know, the guidance they give, and the advocacy they provide. These relationships are often impacted by affinity bias.
93% of employees who are planning to quit their job cite lack of professional growth opportunities as a top reason for their departure and 94% of employees say they’d stay at a job longer if they were offered career development. Career support also benefits the company by ensuring increased motivation, productivity, retention & profitability and by attracting top candidates.
Advancement reflects not only competency but opportunity, visibility and access to influential networks. We may believe that career support is equitable but data show that only 23% of talent from underrepresented groups receive feedback on career development, and only 7% have clarity on their career path.
To see who is benefiting from the current system, look at the patterns of who is advancing. The only demographic that consistently grows with seniority is white men: they occupy nearly double as many C-Suite positions as entry level spaces. Any other group drops as the pipeline goes up and women of color are strongly filtered out at senior levels. For every 100 men promoted to manager, only 87 women are promoted and 82 women of color.
Provide equitable access to training, developmental projects, and other resources to build skill sets required to advance. Connect historically underrepresented groups (HUGs) with capable managers, mentors, and sponsors that can advocate for their advancement. Implement a structured approach to career paths and promotions: set policies and practices that ensure equity in opportunity and promotions.
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HBR: Don’t Just Pay Interns, Help Them Build Networks
BuiltIn: Career Growth and Career Development
McKinsey: Repairing the broken rung on the career ladder for women in technical roles
Catalyst: Good Intentions, Imperfect Execution?
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