Career Development – Meaning, Definition and Stages

The concept of career development is of growing concern to organizations since it matches the needs of a business with the career goals of employees. Formulating a career development plan can help employees to do their jobs more efficiently. Additionally, these plans can be beneficial for employees who might want to move up in a company or look for other jobs in the future. Today, challenging organizations have developed new concerns for the career development of their employees. They put greater emphasis on ‘career’ with coherent induction, training and development, increased job security by the accrual of experience and qualifications valued in the labor market.

Since a high majority of workers change their careers at midlife, it becomes evident that career development programs are needed throughout the life cycle. Other major reasons for this concern are:

  • The growth and productivity of organizations depend on the effectiveness of employee performance.
  • A change in the social values where employees do not consider work as the most important thing in life but rather selecting occupations and careers that fit the individual.
Definition of Career Development

Career development is defined an organized, planned effort comprised of structured activities or processes that result in a mutual career plotting effort between employees and the organization. Career development is an ongoing process by which individuals progress through a series of stages, each of which is characterized by a relatively unique set of issues, themes and tasks. Career development involves two sets of activities: career planning and career management.… Read the rest

Career Management – Definition and Meaning

Career is a general course of action, an individual chooses to pursue, all through his or her employment life. It may be represented as occupational positions a person has hold over so many years. Many people feel satisfied by achieving their career goals. At the same time, others have a strong feeling that, their careers, their lives and their potential has undergone unfulfilled. Employers too have a profound effect on employees’ careers. Some organisations have very formal career management processes, while others are very little concern about it. Career management is defined as the ongoing process of preparing, implementing and monitoring career plans. It can be undertaken either by the individual alone or can be a concerted activity along with the organisation’s career systems.

Career management is a process that enables the employees to better understand their career skills, develop and give direction to it and to use those skills and interests most effectively both within and outside the organisation. Specific career management activities provide realistic career oriented appraisals, posting open jobs and offering formal career development activities. Career development involves the lifelong series of activities that contribute to a person’s career exploration, establishment, growth, success, and fulfillment. Career planning is the deliberate process by which an individual becomes aware of his or her personal skills, interests, motivations, knowledge and other such characteristics. He also seeks and acquires information about the opportunities and choices, identifies career-related goals and establishes action plans to attain specific goals. Career management and career planning activities are complementary and can reinforce each other.… Read the rest

The Concept of Career Planning – Definition, Objectives and Process

Career is viewed as a bunch or collection of jobs or positions. Generally, it describes an applicable career path within the structure of the organization. Basically, it shows the principal personnel development paths within the organization. The etymology of the term derived from the Latin word career, which means race. All the jobs, that are held together during one’s working life, constitute career. It is also viewed as the sequence of positions held by an individual during the course of his employment life. Edwin B. Flippo defined a career, as a sequence of separate but related work activities that provide continuity, order and meaning in a person’s life. A career may be viewed as amalgamation of the changes in values, attitudes and motivation an individual embrace, as he or she grows older. This constitute subjective element of the concept “career”.

Greenhaus and Schein described several themes underlying different definition of career as:

  • The property of an occupation or organisation: In this way the career describes the occupation itself or an employee’s tenure within an organisation.
  • Advancement: It denotes the progression and increase in success an individual receives within an occupation or organisation.
  • Status of a profession: In this sense, career is used to distinguish different profession. Such as engineering, medical profession is different from other occupation like plumbing carpentry etc. The former is said to have a career where the latter does not have.
  • Involvement in one’s work: Sometimes career is used in a negative sense to describe being extremely involved in the task or job one is doing.
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Career Planning Assistance by Human Resources Department

What is Career Planning ?

Career planning is the process of one’s life work and involves evaluating abilities and interests, considering alternative career opportunities, establishing career goals, and planning practical development. Career planning is a deliberate process through which a person becomes aware of personal career related attributes and the lifelong sense of stages that contribute to his or her career fulfillment.

The major focus of career planning is on assisting the employees achieve a better match between personal goals and the opportunities that are realistically available in the organization. Career programmers 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 a 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 organization may probably quit the job, if he has a choice. Organizations, therefore, should help employees in career planning so that both can satisfy each other’s needs.

Need for Career Planning

Every employee has a desire to grow and scale new heights in his workplace continuously. If there are enough opportunities, he can pursue his career goals and exploit his potential fully.… Read the rest

Career Development from the Perspective of an Individual Employee

Career development comprises those personal improvements one undertakes to achieve a career plan. The personnel department may sponsor these actions or they may be activities that employees undertake independent of the department. That is career development may be organizational and individual. From an organizational career standpoint, career development involves tracking career paths. In contrast, individual career development focuses on assisting individuals to identify their major career goals and to determine what they need to do to attain these goals. Each person must accept responsibility for his  own career; assess his own interests, skills and values and take the step required to ensure a happy and fulfilling career. It is unwise to leave these jobs to others. In the case of individual career development, the focus is entirely on the individual and includes his career outside the organization as well as inside. So while organizational career development looks at individuals filling the needs of the organization, individual career development addresses each individual’s personal work career irrespective of whether this work is performed.

Career development begins with the individual. Each person must accept his responsibility for career development, or career progress is likely to suffer. The primary responsibility for career planning and development rests with the individual employee. The responsibility for career development ultimately belongs to each individual. Once the personal commitment is made, several career development actions may prove useful. These actions involve:

  1. Job performance: Career progress rests largely upon performance. The most important action an individual can undertake to further his career is good job performance. 
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