Steps to Create a Career Development Plan


Employee Engagement is a key HR metric and a practice that cannot be overlooked by a human resource department. How engaged a workforce is towards a job or in the present work environment is detrimental to the profits and work they will yield. For this, plans for growth and development are necessary to be in place. The employees vouch for the same, and a must-have is that a career development plan should be talked matter of importance.
An insight into what the workplace has to offer career-wise and if their aspirations are being fulfilled is a priority of employees. Here is where an HR brings about the prospects of career development into the scene. Not only for the employees but a career development plan is significant for the employers too. Such is the impact and influence that a career development plan has if looking for the employee engagement point of view. But what is the need of discussing to explore such a plan and why a career development plan is needed, requires a better understanding of what it entails in the first place.
What is a Career Development plan?
As easily comprehended from the name itself, a career development plan chalks out all that an employee needs to amplify his growth and development. To this growth and development, an HR can contribute by opening possible venues (within the organization) that cater to the employees’ career-related aspirations. This way all the employees get equal opportunities to spread their wings and fly over the town of growth and prosperity. This growth and development that a career development plan is made up of, does not only strictly stick to professional aspects only. It has personal growth too, which is equally demanded by employees in high regards.
Hence, by breaking down all those elements that good career development takes into consideration, as listed above, there are ways that outline how to create it.
Creating a Career Development Plan
In order to create a career development plan, all efforts that an HR Department ought to put should be broad. Both internal and external plans that can aid the employees to latch on to growth should be in the charts. A major highlighted portion should be that growth, should be looked on as personal and professional. Not only this, but both long term and short term goals should also be well aligned.
A meeting should be hosted in this regard where there is a proper discussion about the career development plan. All HRs must necessarily carry out this practice as a major HR Metric and take initiative to uphold it. The following wind up the ways in which an employee can be induced to come up with career development.
Career Development Plan Meeting Key pointers
When you as an HR are going to hold a meeting with your workforce concerning career development plans, the following should be executed prior to it.
Throw around the idea about a career development meeting about to host. Give your employees ample time to think about any possible prospects or questions they have regarding the growth or career.
Advice each employee to reflect upon any and all questions about their career growth. Also the expectations they have from their current firm in this respect.
Discussion of the long and short term goals both of the employees and the company should be a matter of importance.
Have room for recommendations whatsoever concerning, any possible career growth and developmental plans.
Now that you as an HR has thought about the key pointers of how a career development meeting should go about, the final step is to hold the meeting. Roughly the above-mentioned pointers should be the agenda, while the ones down below is the blueprint for the plan further.
The final and most significant step is to hold the meeting in the first place. The meeting shouldn’t be a one-sided elocution. Think of all possible means by which there can be an increased employee engagement in the meeting.
Keep the discussion as flexible and open as it can be and have the employees speak their mind out on anything they feel like.
Consider and review each employee’s point of view and try to answer in a satisfactory manner any questions they might have.
As a host of the meeting, be transparent about your answers to the extent feasible and discuss the aid that the company can provide as per career and development is concerned.
Make those present at the meeting, fill out a form which would keep a record of the employees’ career development plans. This form could turn out to be a resource that the Human Resource Department can make use of to devise policies.
All that was discussed in the career and development meeting must be taken and considered as the backdrop against which a well-rounded career development plan should be built.
A good career development plan is one that throws light on all the work to be done, keeping both the goals of the departmental and of the employees’ insight. Not only this, after creating a working plan, but it should also become a living, breathing element and not just another thing to be recorded in papers.
Such a plan should be thorough, well rounded, unbiased and well-thought-of.  A brief overview of what all makes a good career development plan is discussed below.
Keep Eyes on Business Goals
A complete career development plan is one that works in favour of both the company and its workers. A career development plan aloof of either the company goals or employee aspiration will be lopsided. It is necessary to collaborate all that employee’s demand for their personal and professional growth with the company objectives. See all the areas of business where there is a lack of skill, leadership or expertise, while also coming up with the necessary training programs to polish any talent. Project all promotional and advancement aspects to the workforce, to lure in and retain any talent.
Converse with Your Employees 
Holding a career development meeting will only be concluded as successful if an HR has knowledge of each and every employee’s future prospects and aspirations. Get talking to know all that the employees look up to and what according to them is an ideal development. Talking and discussing will also bring forth any inhibitions that an employee might have or areas he/she may want to improve upon. Any discussion you hold with an employee in this respect will serve to give an acumen of how current business or work can positively help them to achieve their goals.
Assess Talent and Potential
An employee’s performance and contribution will show all the capabilities, the roles he/she can handle and the future responsibilities that can be allotted to him/her. This way, by knowing about individual career development plans, plus performance data, conclusions can be made pertaining to an employee’s talent and the polishing needed in terms of training. Also, see any employees who are ready to work towards improving their skill set. These employees can be given a chance to amplify their skills by proper training. Retaining talent and employees by the human resource department with potential is a great asset to any business
Give Training and Development Opportunities
After going through all that the employees need and lack should be conclusive to build training programs. Both in house training and skill development programs can be conducted with outside expertise. This can become an expensive affair if not handled with caution. Look to the funds at hand and then proceed to any coaching or mentoring. Classroom training is one such weapon that every company can easily make use of.
Execute a Career Development Plan
Following up a career development plan should be the goal. Not only in papers but as a guiding principle, for both the employees and the company a career development plan, should steer the entire workplace. It is a joint effort of the Human Resource Department and the managers to provide equal opportunities for development to all employees as per their discussion on career development.
However, a career development plan should not be a formal contract, guaranteeing high promises and benefits to one and all. Efforts should be made to carry out the career development plan in a serious manner nonetheless. Proper facilitation and opportunities for each employee should be the goal. A major issue to avoid is overcommitment. As an HR or a manager, you should be aware of all that your company can provide and to what extent it can go to to. Overcommitment to growth can render counterproductive.
A good career development plan as an HR metric must be diligently carried out and round up some very important information regarding employees. This information about career growth and employee aspirations, segregating talent and the potential ones from the crowd, that an HR collects can be of utter importance to the Human Resource Department. Especially, when preparing company strategies and future growth prospects. Therefore, all workplaces must take the initiative to prepare a career development plan.


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