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I am a M.A. in industrial/organizational psychology. Most of my experience has been in human resources and change management. My passion lies in employee assessment, organizational development and employee opinions. Website: www.IanMondrow.com LinkedIn Profile: http://linkd.in/drBYoC

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Organizational Dual Career Ladder

Summary by: Ian B. Mondrow, M.A. 

I was recently reading SHRM's HR Magazine when I came across a brief article regarding dual career ladders. A career ladder is the path that an individual takes to grow within his/her position. Often these career ladders only follow one path/trend. As an individual follows this path, he/she gains mores responsibility in managing others and teams.

Unlike a traditional career ladder, a dual career ladder provides an alternative for qualified employees that have little interest in managing others or being a supervisor. One can not ignore the benefits this program provides, including: increased retention (especially among senior members) and continuous development of employees.  These programs are often found in jobs that require professional training and expertise. Furthermore, jobs known for rapid innovation and/or employees receiving national awards or a license are more likely to offer the dual career ladder. This type of ladder also provides organizations with a competitive advantage over traditional organizations and is a method that effectively attract talent of all ages and levels.

Fiester (2010) provides a series of steps in creating a program, and they are as follows:

  1. Determine evaluation criteria for the job.
  2. Determine the proficiency of criteria needed for each level in a ladder.
  3. Develop job descriptions for each position on the ladder.
  4. Use market data to benchmark salary ranges for each level. 
  5. Ensure equity among company personnel.
  6. Regularly communicate the program, especially during implementation. 
Much like any career ladder, a significant amount of maintenance is required. Not only must one maintain the traditional path but also this alternative path. It should be emphasized that this is not meant as an alternative for the traditional career ladder but instead an additional path. 

Source: Fiester, M. (November 2010). What is meant by the term "dual career ladder?" HR Magazine. 

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