IntroductionIn the current competitive, fast paced world wherepeople are hungry looking for new opportunities to fill in their own talent-gapand to equipped themselves with new experiences, there will be two options inorder to fulfill those dreams – either to leave the company or to request for achange in function or department.
Taking the first step is a risky move, althougha bold one, since not everyone is willing to tender a resignation beforesecuring a job elsewhere. The latter on the other hand, is a less risky movebut can be rather tricky if the company has inflexible mobility practices. Nonetheless, “inflexible” is usually a genericperception coined by employees themselves as mobility is customarily beingevaluated on case-by-case basis. Considering not all requests for mobility willbe approved, the term “inflexible” comes in. Furthermore, each company has aplus and minus point in their mobility practices. In certain companies, despitethe rigid mobility practices, employees are given many technical and softskills trainings to improve their capabilities as well as to compensate therigidity. Meanwhile, other companies may have more flexible mobility practicesbut in consequence suffer loss due to lack of accountability (Nalbantian &Guzzo, 2009). In this paper, I will discuss on the need of mobilitywithin organization and I will then frame out the criteria that determines theflexibility of the company’s mobility practices.
Subsequently, I will go intodetails on how inherent mobility practices in each company could impactemployee’s behavior and performance. To conclude the report, I will point outsome recommendations for Human Resource Management (HRM) in terms of managingmobility in organization. 1.
Mobility Workforce is the most valuable asset in anorganization as they are the synapses that operationalize an organization’s”brain”. In order to thrive in the competitive world of global business,companies have to critically strategize their plan to continuously develop,acquire and retain their employees. This strategy is called as talentmanagement plan. According to Orlova et. al.
(2015), talent management can beviewed as a cycle (Figure 1). In their word, “The concept of talent managementis grounded on developing an employee in order to find and reveal his or herpotential. Talent management is a way to make work interesting for youremployees.
” (Orlova et.al.,2015). Part of talent development way of making work”interesting” is the opportunity for employees of all levels, from lowerexecutives to higher level managers to be mobilized laterally in order to equipthemselves with necessary skills and experience that would contribute to theproductivity of a business.
Lateral mobilization in this context ismobilization either to a different unit, section, function or geographicalmobilization within an organization itself. This also includes international orglobal assignments. Figure 1Talent Management Cycle (Orlova et.al.,2015)Over years, mobility practices have evolved following thedynamic cognitive acceptance and behavioral demand from employees. Asgeneration changes from the traditionalist, to generation X to Z and to now thefamous “millennial”, employees’ career values and goals have changed dramatically.
Ellie Sullivan in her paper “Optimizing Workforce Mobility: Aligning talentmobility to drive business results” made an interesting comparison betweenemployees around 20 years back with the current eager millennial. Previously,relocation or mobility practices are more directive as the nature of employeesfrom earlier generations is more accepting and less rebellious. Direction to bemobilized was dutifully followed with very little input from employees(Sullivan, 2015).
In contrast, as employees’ right and freedom of speechprogress, there are more input and demand from employees themselves when itcomes to internal mobility. Decades ago, loyalty was the theme for many employeesas they would spend if not half, almost all their career years in one company.Loyalty also comes hand in hand with dedication as well as patience. Youngergenerations, however, does not put loyalty as a priority. The nature of millennialnowadays is that they are more aggressive and would like to have everything inan instant. Should the company they are working in cannot provide necessaryopportunities they are seeking for, younger generations have greaterinclination to leave the company. The U.S Chairman and a senior partner of PwC,Bob Moritz in his essay, commented on one of the surveys conducted on youngeremployees in his organization, where most of them have a collective notion onjob satisfaction rather than assurance of benefits and career progress.
But what are the roles of mobility in an organization? Mobility policies were constructed in order to fuel businessneeds. As availability for senior management positions is scarce, lateralmobility, which is employees’ movement into a different job scope rather than upwardmobility (promotion) (Meier, unknown) , is vital for employees capabilitydevelopment. In order to make the business global, employees should be trainedand nurtured to be high performing and highly adaptable in facing challenges indiverse fields and locations.
Lateral mobility also ensures that the brightesttalents in the organization can be retained and be fully utilized according totheir capability and skills. Part of talent management plan is to maintainemployees’ engagement with the company. Engagement