Career Management: Meaning, Elements, Goals And Benefits

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 28 September 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

To effectively advance in a career, it is important to set goals and strategically pursue opportunities. Understanding how to manage a career can help you plan professional goals better and enhance growth prospects. If you work in human resources, learning more about career management can help you make an informed decision when implementing occupational programmes in your workplace. In this article, we define career management, share its elements, discuss its objectives and list the benefits to help you plan better.

What Is Career Management?

Career management is the process of thoughtfully planning occupational progress to maximise professional growth and stability in an individual's career. Doing this requires identifying one's own goals and objectives. These goals may be SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based) to ensure a strategic approach. This process usually begins with designing short-term goals in the initial stages of one's career, which focus on taking action to meet the set objectives. You can then follow with planning long-term goals. When managing a career, certain adjustments in planning are sometimes necessary to accommodate changes in industry requirements or preferences.

Related: Step-By-Step Guide For How To Make A Career Plan Effectively

Elements Of Career Management

Below are the three elements of occupational management programmes:

Career planning

Career planning is an intentional process involving determining career goals, understanding the opportunities and potential constraints and making decisions, while also considering their consequences and taking active steps to achieve those goals. Typically, the employee and their supervisor do this together. The employee usually requires assessing their skills and experience to better understand their strengths and areas to improve to become more proficient as a professional. They may then discuss with their supervisors about the opportunities in those areas or fields.

Related: Steps Involved In A Successful Career Planning Process

Career pathing

A career path is similar to a roadmap that lets employees know their progress opportunities within an organisation in the long term. By looking at the career expectations that are set during the planning process, employees and their supervisors can monitor and consider potential paths for the employee. As an employee may likely have several career path options available to them, companies often try to have a clear career development structure in place to encourage employees to join their organisation.

An organisation's career development system ideally establishes these paths so that employees have specific objectives to strive for and potential role models to consult and follow. It is best to remain practical while identifying career paths in relation to the time frame required to achieve mutually set goals.

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Career development

Career development is a process that helps individuals plan careers that match the company's requirements and help them meet their objectives. It is an ongoing process for each employee where the organisation's duty is to share training and development programmes that may help employees progress along their career paths. Besides helping the individual upskill, it also helps ensure the company benefits from the acquired skills and proficiencies. It is also a strategic approach to retaining quality employees and reducing talent acquisition costs in the future.

Related: Top 11 Useful Skills To Learn For Career Development

Objectives Of Occupational Programmes

Programmes aimed at occupational management have the following objectives:

Improving performance

Employees may work hard at their jobs but may not always achieve their desired goals per the set expectations. This makes it important that they identify the skills or technical proficiencies necessary to progress in the career in the organisation and achieve growth. By actively participating in programmes aimed at managing one's career and following the guidelines, employees can improve the quality of their work and become more valuable team members.

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Simplifying career prospects

Conducting such programmes can help the employees understand how they can advance into leadership or more advanced roles within the company. It gives employees and employers an opportunity to explore the employment relationship, discuss performance and set goals for the future. Career development programmes and opportunities can be a great way to keep the workforce engaged and motivated.

Related: Guide: How To Create An Individual Development Plan

Aligning individual and company goals

Occupational management programmes can help align employee and company goals. It encourages the employees to develop skills that help their individual growth and the company in the future. They also help improve the employees' performance and increase output. If there is a strategic and planned approach to work, it may help ensure meeting certain standards set by the company. The occupational management process gives the management an opportunity to modify workplace structures and processes so the employees can work better and achieve mutual goals better.

What Are The Benefits?

There are various benefits that come with occupation management. These include:

Increases employee motivation

Occupational management programmes often enable senior managers to recognise and reward the efforts of their team members. This approach can give employees a sense of belonging and they may feel more engaged and motivated in the workplace as the company is investing in their individual growth. It is also important to ensure that supervisors are communicating the company's vision and proactively preparing employees for the roles they may undertake in the future.

Managers can also support their employees with tools like webinars, skill development programmes and performance reviews, which can make the employees feel valued and increase the chances of convincing employees to continue in the company longer.

Related: Motivation At Work: How To Motivate Employees In Their Jobs

Betters employee commitment

If employees feel they get fair treatment and opportunities, they might respond with commitment and loyalty to the company. Because of this, effective occupational management programmes can also increase the productivity of the employees. By ensuring that the employees are happy, they may provide the best services to the clients. Having strong management support also helps employees to overcome the difficulties they face in their day-to-day jobs.

Increase morale

Increasing morale can be an effective strategy to enhance productivity and provide job satisfaction. Because of this, it may be helpful to have robust occupational management programmes that give employees the opportunity to understand their growth opportunities in their fields and within the company. This can also enable better employee commitment to meet their professional and business goals.

Improves organisational support

The primary aim of occupational management is to improve organisational support. Organisations can use occupational management systems to ensure monitoring of employee performances and assist them in improving them. It is helpful for the system to promote effective allocation and utilisation of workforce resources through the coordination of labour, capital and materials for mutual growth. The framework facilitates a successful, adaptable and productive organisation that promotes employee growth.

Related: What Is Training And Development? (With Benefits And Steps)

Helps in identifying employee skills and interests

Occupational management programmes help in identifying employee skills and interests. The main objective of these programmes is to discover and improve employees' skill sets to link them to corporate objectives. In a corporate environment, employers usually expect their employees to be committed, loyal and responsible. They can learn new skills and develop existing skills to help the company achieve its goals and improve its future prospects within and outside the organisation. These programmes help to improve employee performance by identifying the skills required and areas to improve to help them advance within the organisation.

Related: The Functions And Departments Of HR: A Complete Guide

Reduces turnover

Retaining employees successfully can facilitate cohesiveness and consistency in the workplace. When employees feel valued, they are often happier and more productive, which usually leads to better quality work. Occupational management programmes are a great way to help retain an organisation's employees and reduce turnover. You can incorporate the occupational management programme as a mandatory process in the company to ensure catering to employee requirements and assess how to improve the workplace.

Related: What Is Labour Turnover? (With Meaning, Causes And Effects)

Reduces recruitment costs

Finding, training and onboarding new employees can be complex and expensive. Companies can use occupational management programmes to find the right employees within the organisation for open positions. This can save additional expenses and time that may be necessary to hire and train new candidates. Promoting in-house employees also minimises redundancies in the transition process that may be unavoidable when hiring new recruitments.

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