Companies that offer a well-designed programme for professional development have a 60% greater chance of attracting talent than other employers. Yet six out of 10 companies lack such opportunities. These are the findings of a survey by Kantar Sifo, on behalf of Stockholm School of Economics (SSE) Executive Education, which measured how offering a structured pathway for training and development affects the attractiveness of an employer.
In the survey, managers at various Swedish companies were asked their opinion about two identical employers, whose only difference was that one offered a structured learning and development programme while the other did not. A ‘structured programme’ was defined as people with personnel responsibilities (or in other leading positions) being offered a tailored range of external leadership education and specialist training. The results were clear: employers that offered training and development proved to be in a much better position to attract new talent.
“Companies now invest a great deal in promoting themselves as an attractive employer, but they don’t seem to have really grasped how important opportunities for professional development are in the competition for top talent. There is no doubt that learning and development are, and will continue to be, important components of employer branding,” says Anders Richtnér, CEO of SSE Executive Education.
Of the managers who responded, 66% stated that it is “important” or “very important” that their employer offers a professional development programme, while 38% feel they would be likely to apply for an attractive role with a new employer that offers a structured programme for development. Only 23% state that they would be interested in seeking the same role with an employer that has no such programme.
The survey was conducted through online interviews by Kantar Sifo on behalf of SSE Executive Education from April to June 2018, with a total of 496 people responding. The sample was based on people with personnel responsibility, are members of a senior management team, report to a CEO or have a role that includes clear responsibility for strategic development in companies with more than 50 employees, and who have had some sort of contact with executive education in the past five years. Of those who responded, 78% work at companies with more than 200 employees.
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