Organizations resort to another type of mobility of employees in order to place the right employee in the right job. The type of mobility is restricted to movement of an employee from one job to another in the same level of organizational hierarchy is termed as transfer.

Transfer is defined as “a lateral shift causing movement of individuals from one position to another usually without involving any marked change in duties, responsibilities, skills needed or compensation.

Transfer is also defined as “… the moving of an employee from one job to another. It may involve a promotion, demotion or no change in job status other than moving from one job to another. However, transfer is viewed as change in assignment in which employee moves from one job to another in the same level of hierarchy requiring similar skill involving approximately same level of responsibility, same status and same level of pay. Thus promotion is upward reassignment of a job; demotion is a downward job whereas transfer is a lateral or horizontal job reassignment.

Purpose of Transfer:

Organizations resort to transfers with a view to attain the following purposes:

(a) To meet the organizational requirements:
Organizations may have to resort to transfer of employees due to changes in technology, change in volume of production, production schedule, product line, quality of products, change in the job pattern caused by the change in organizational structure, fluctuations in the market conditions like demand fluctuations, introduction of new lines and or dropping of existing lines. All these changes demand the shift in job assignment with a view to place the right man in the right job.

(b) To satisfy the employee needs: Employees do need transfer in order to satisfy their desire to work under a friendly superior, in a department/region where opportunities for advancement are bright, in or near their native place or place of interest doing a job where the work itself is challenging etc.

(c) To utilize employee’s skill, knowledge etc where they are more suitable or badly needed;

(d) To improve employee’s background by placing him, in different jobs of various departments, units, regions etc.. This develops the employee and enables him to accept any job without any hesitation

(e) To correct inter-personal conflicts;

(f) To adjust the workforce of one section/plant in other section/plant during layoff or closure or adverse business conditions or technological change.

(g) To give the relief to the employees who are overburdened or doing complicated or risky work for long period;

(h) To punish the employees who violate the disciplinary rules;

(i) To help employees whose working hours or place of work is inconvenient to them.

(j) To minimize fraud, bribe etc which result due to permanent stay and contact of an employee with customers, dealers, suppliers etc.

Types of Transfers:

Ø Transfer can be classified into the following types,

Ø Production transfer: transfers caused due to changes in production.

Ø Replacement transfer: transfers caused due to initiation or replacement of a longstanding employee in the same job.

Ø Rotation transfer: transfers initiated to increase the versatility of employees.

Ø Shift transfers: transfer of an employee from one shift to another.

Ø Remedial transfer: transfers initiated to correct the wrong placements.

Ø Penal transfer: transfers initiated as a punishment for in disciplinary action of employees.

Reasons for Transfer:

Transfers are basically of three categories, viz., employee-initiated transfer, company initiated transfer and public initiated transfers. The last one is when the employee is working in a Government service and influenced for his good or bad by public elected members to the ruling body of the country or state say a senate or a parliament. Employee initiated is for the convenience of the employee and he or she is in the good books of the employer. The other one is normally initiated by the management for the requirement of the organization. This takes place mostly in the areas of marketing and may or may not be associated with a promotion.

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