Career Planning Frameworks

Career planning frameworks provide information and suggestions to employees on next roles they can consider, at reasonable levels of risk.

Business Imperative

With conventional methods delivering diminishing real value adds to business there is greater reliance on talent critical for business success and growth to continually add value to business. This heightened criticality of talent has spurred the development of a number of employee engagement initiatives to attract and retain talent; Carrier Planning Frameworks is one such initiative which maximizes the potential of organizations to provide meaningful career paths to their employees.

Typical Intervention Process

To enable employees to self-manage their careers, many systems need to fall into place:

  • Well-articulated organizational structure
  • A well-articulated Leadership Competency Model and similarly articulated Functional Standards, with well-defined Needed Knowledge and Needed Skill taxonomies
  • A strict policy of posting all vacancies in standard format internally before the job is sought to be filled by hiring from the outside
  • Career planning tools and guides
  • Training managers to be coaches
  • Culture of allowing talent to rotate

Organizations are typically at various stages of preparedness to enable employees to self-manage their careers. This assessment is the logical start point of deciding tasks to install career planning frameworks.


Employees transparently see their options in the organization, which makes their expectations realistic. Also, there is a sense of fairness around how people are selected into sought-after positions.


In today’s fast moving organizations, one of the best resources employers can hope to offer employees on career management is just the information on career paths available.

The belief is that, then, using this information, employees will be able to plan out their growth paths to match their individual needs.

However, there are multiple challenges in effecting this simple idea. Systems and practices listed above are easy to fix. Often, it is tougher to institutionalize the cultural elements, such as the openness to rotate talent. Experience-led judgment helps decide the content and sequence of initiatives to bring about the necessary changes.

Case Studies

At a large conglomerate, there was considerable concern around attrition of talent. Our consultant introduced the idea of setting up a career planning framework. While making it operational was envisaged to be a multi-year effort, incorporating aspects such as culture change, there was need for an organizing document that would serve to drive the needed changes. Consequently, the career planning framework document was developed. This articulated the vision of many senior leaders of how they envisaged careers of managers to pan out in the future. This led to influencing of individual businesses towards adopting practices that would enable the model to become operational – each needed to make a different set of changes for this to be achieved.

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