Australia lags in providing key development opportunities: Study

Opportunity and career street signs crossing

Australian employers are lagging behind the rest of the world when it comes to providing development opportunities such as formal mentoring programs and access to a coach. enter an image description.

Australian employers are lagging behind the rest of the world when it comes to providing development opportunities such as formal mentoring programs and access to a coach.

In particular, Australian organisations need to create a culture that encourages ‘career conversations’ in order to attract, engage and retain the brightest talent, while fostering innovation, according to the report released by Right Management, the global career experts within ManpowerGroup

Indeed, the report titled ‘ ‘Talk the Talk: How Ongoing Career Conversations Drive Business Success,’ found that two-thirds of individual performance drivers can be tied to effective, ongoing career conversations.

If these conversations were more common in the workplace, employees would be more likely to engage with their work (75%), share ideas (75%), and look for career growth (72%) and longevity (71%) in their current organisation.

The report found 88% of Australian employees believe they are responsible for their own career development, however only 26% feel confident to have a conversation about their career with their manager.

It also found that Australia is behind the global average when it comes to providing technical skills development programs, new work experiences, access to a coach and formal mentoring programs.

‘The idea of a ‘job for life’ is a thing of the past. In the Human Age 2.0, individuals consistently report that they expect to move to other companies for growth and advancement opportunities to increase their employability,’ said Bridget Beattie, Executive Vice President of Asia Pacific Middle East for Right Management.

‘Therefore, the role of employers today is not to control the employee’s career journey, but to participate in, influence and gain value from it. To be able to attract, engage and retain talent, organisations need to urgently put in place a modern, structured approach to create a career-focused culture.’

The top three things employees do not receive but would like to speak to their managers about are:

1. Opportunities for career growth (28%)

2. Career goals (27%)

3. How my skills and contributions are recognised (25%)

The report also posed the following question: To help with development, does your employer provider the following?

Global Australia
Australia performs well
A career development plan 37% 46%
A career path or map which outlines alternatives career alternatives 30% 34%
Australia lags behind
Project based work assignments 47% 33%
New work experiences 38% 33%
Technical skills development programs 38% 36%
Access to a coach 29% 19%
Formal mentoring programs 29% 20%
Formal mentoring programs with peers 27% 24%
Australia is comparable
A formal assessment of my strengths and development needs 55% 54%
Contact with senior leaders in the organisation 37% 37%
Networking opportunities 34% 33%

Right Management has provided a framework for ‘career conversations’ to help organisations engage employees while meeting business goals.

1.    Who am I? An assessment to look at what the individual wants to achieve and where they currently fit in an organisation

What is expected of me? Planning a development path, ensuring goals are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound

What and how should I develop? Looking at specific areas for individual development

How am I doing? Providing ongoing assessment and engagement with the employee’s manager

How will my talents and contributions be recognised? Development of a motivation and reward program specifically suited to personal motivations

What’s next? Looking at next steps in an individual’s career and how to work towards it.

If you are looking for career guidance click here to find out how MPi can help.