Career programs should not concentrate only on career growth opportunities. Practically speaking there may not be enough high level positions to make upward mobility a reality for large number of employees. Hence, career planning efforts need to pin point and highlight those areas that offer psychological success instead of vertical growth.
Career planning is not an event or end in itself, but a continuous process of developing human resources for achieving optimum results. It must however, be noted that individual and organizational careers are not separate and distinct. A person who is not able to translate his career plan into action within the organizations may probably quit the job, if he has a choice. Organizations therefore should help employees planning so that both can satisfy each other’s needs.
Career planning versus Human resources planning:
Human Resource planning is the process of analyzing and estimating the need for and availability of employees. Through Human Resource planning, the Personnel department is able to prepare a summary of skills and potentials available within the organization. Career planning assists in finding those employees that could be groomed for higher level positions on the strength of their performance.
Human Resource planning gives valuable information about the availability of human resources for expansion, growth etc (expansion of facilities, construction of new plant opening a new branch launching a new product, etc) On the other hand career planning only gives us a picture of who could succeed in case any major developments leading to retirement death, resignation of existing employees.
Human Resource planning is tied to the overall strategic planning efforts of the organization. There cannot be an effective manpower planning is not carried out properly.
Need for Career planning:
Every employee has a desire to grow and scale new heights in his workplace continuously. If there are enough opportunities one can pursue his career goals and exploit his potential fully. He feels highly motivated when the organization shows him a clear path as to how he can meet his personal ambitions while trying to realize corporate goals. Unfortunately as pointed out by John Leach, organizations do not pay adequate attention to this aspect in actual practice for variety of reasons. The demands of employees are not matched with organizational needs, no effort is made to show how the employees can grow within certain limits, what happens to an employees five years down the line if he does well, whether the organization is trying to offer mere jobs or long lasting careers etc. When recognition does not come in time for meritorious performance and a certain amount of confusion prevails in the minds of employees whether they are in with a chance to grow or not they look for greener pastures outside. Key executives leave in frustration and the organization suffers badly when turnover figures rise. Any recruitment effort made in panic to fill the vacancies is not going to be effective. So, the absence of a career plan is going to make a big difference to both the employees and the organization. Employees do not get right breaks at the right time their morale will be low and they are always on their toes trying to find escape routes.
Organizations are not going to benefit from high employee turnover. New employees mean additional selection and training costs. Bridging the gaps through short term replacements is not going to pay in terms of productivity. Organizations therefore try to put their career plans in place and educate employees about the opportunities that exist internally for talented people. Without such a progressive outlook organizations cannot prosper.