European Network on Career & AGE (Age, Generations, Experience)

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1 European Network on Career & AGE (Age, Generations, Experience) Organisational level practices to facilitate sustainable careers White paper for the second learning seminar, Belfast, 1 & 2 July 2014 Prof. dr. Ans De Vos Tim Gielens Competence Centre Next Generation Work and SD Worx Chair Sustainable Careers Antwerp Management School Antwerp, Belgium Contact:

2 Table of Contents European Network on Career & AGE: Learning Seminar I. Introduction Document structure Organisational level Good practice Validation by experts Learning seminar Methodology Rationale Approach Program overview Program details day 1(morning) Program details day 1 (afternoon) Program details day Key of the program outline II. Clustered presentation of submitted practices Clustering of practices Cluster 1: company and broad Age Diversity (Belgacom, Belgium) Diversity and Inclusion - Novartis Benelux People-oriented entrepreneurship (Race Productions/Ridley, Belgium, Flanders) Strategic Plan for the HRM s development (Autonomous Province of Trento, Italy) The House of workability (Johnson & Johnson Belgium, Flanders) Work longer with enthusiasm (Christelijke Mutualiteit, Belgium, Flanders) Cluster 2: network and broad

3 3.1 Alliance Emploi (France) Balance project (Resoc Mechelen, Belgium, Flanders) Employer Rings (Starck & Partners, Sweden) Job Life Cycle Model (Finland) Quality of Ageing at Work Questionnaire (Trento, Italy) WISE: co-operation and sharing expertise, an intergenerational approach (University College Ghent, Belgium, Flanders) Cluster 3: Network and narrow Génération + (Belgium, Wallonia) Minerva (KBC, Belgium) Multi Company Mobility Centre (MC²): (Belgium) Time is now! Let s support work & family balance (Czech Republic) Time4yourTalent (Trendhuis, Flanders, Belgium) Cluster 4: company and narrow Competencies and experiences (Banca Popolare, Trento) Learning labs: Knowledge transfer between generations (SIRAM, Trento Italy) Today for tomorrow (BMW, Germany) Other submitted examples of good practice Employment competences evaluation service for SMEs (Chamber of commerce Seville, Spain) Flexible work organisation and work performance (Hungary) INQA-Check HR Management (Federal Institute of Occupational Health and Safety, Germany) INQA-Quick-Check Care (Federal Institute for Occupational Health and Safety, Germany) PsyGA (Federal Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, Germany) Valorising the worker along his life (AM.IC.A, Italy, Trento) Workable work (SERV, Belgium, Flanders)

4 III. Overall framework: Sustainable career management Definitions and concepts Careers Career Management Sustainable career management Dimensions of sustainable career management Focus on employability and workability Anticipating for the future: a proactive approach Inclusive approach Enabling a tailor-made and individualized approach Active involvement of employees Career support IV. Conclusions General tendencies Overall conclusion V. References VI. Appendix

5 European Network on Career & AGE: Learning Seminar 2 I. Introduction 0. Document structure This paper serves as a manual for the second learning seminar in the context of the European Network Career & AGE (Age, Generations, Experience). In the first chapter we describe the process as it occurred during the second learning seminar. The methodology, the rationale, the approach and finally the program details will be discussed. The second chapter of this paper describes the examples of good practice at the organisational level submitted by the partnering countries and by the external partner, and the ones that were retained by the experts after the validation process. These examples of good practice will be presented using a clustered pattern as observed by the validation experts and the content expert. In the third chapter we present the overall framework for sustainable career management, explained in terms of the organisational level. The concepts used in the framework will be explained, as well as the six dimensions of sustainable career management. In the final chapter the conclusions are presented. We discuss the patterns emerging from the validated practices. Observed trends will be presented including the things that seem to be missing from the collected sample of submitted practices. 1. Organisational level By organisational level we mean practices, processes, programs and projects initiated by organisations, companies and/or associations of companies, as well as tools or other initiatives designed and implemented by third parties like consulting firms and employer associations. 2. Good practice Prior to the seminar a preparatory phase took place during which the members of the steering group delivered suggestions of good practice. The expert and the team delivered additional suggestions. These examples of good practice are presented and analysed in this paper. Good practice is defined as career practices, policies, programs and tools that foster sustainable careers. More specifically we will focus on practices that facilitate individuals employability, workability, career length and that reach further than e.g. accommodative practices for specific groups. The range of these examples of good practice is very broad, including e.g. flexible working models, measures to facilitate work-life balance, networks to have careers taking place across organisations, measures that stimulate cross-departmental collaboration leading to innovation, as well as measures leading to a higher employability of workers or policies proactively managing the demographical changes of the workforce. These 5

6 practices can be installed for the whole workforce or for specific target groups (e.g. focus on specific age category or gender). A good practice also shows potential for transfer to other countries. Transferability of a good practice is defined as the degree to which the good practice can easily be transferred and used in other contexts (organisations, firms and companies in EU-Member States and EU regions, in different sectors and diversified markets) by other users or by other target groups. 3. Validation by experts The proposed examples of good practice have been validated by a team of academic experts appointed by the steering committee using the criteria contribution of the practice to sustainable careers and potential for transfer. This validation process took place in Brussels on 27 and 28 May As a result of this validation process 17 cases of good practice were retained by the team of experts. Three of these validated practices were invited to attend the second learning seminar and accepted the invitation. We thereby aimed to select for heterogeneity i.e. three different cases in terms of types of practices installed, case and country characteristics. Also the practical criterion of availability and willingness of the owners of these validated cases of good practice needed to be taken into account. In the second chapter of this white paper we will detail which of the examples of good practice have been validated and which were not retained by the team of validation experts. 4. Learning seminar 4.1 Methodology The overall objective of the learning seminars was to facilitate participants in generating concrete and useful ideas and insights for initiatives with regard to Career & AGE in their home country, based upon the presentation and the active discussion of validated cases of good practice in countries and/or regions in Europe, as well as outside Europe. Participants were not merely inspired by listening to and talking about these practices, but will return with concrete insights about what is transferrable given the specific context of their own country and/or region, and how a transfer can be realized. The methodology followed and to be followed in the upcoming seminars hence aims at maximizing the impact and learning effect of each seminar. To serve this purpose we followed an approach that guarantees continuity and in which insights can be anchored in the structured framework of sustainable career management. This framework, which will be discussed in the third chapter of the paper, serves as a guiding principle through the three seminars and the final event. 6

7 The final output after the three learning seminars and the closure event should consist of a toolbox life course approach. This will be presented in the last paper and will consist of an e- tool representing an easy-to-use grid of good practice. 4.2 Rationale In what follows we describe the general rationale of the methodology used during the second learning seminar. For participants who attended the seminar it is important to be aware of the specific context in which organisations in their home country are operating: e.g. what are particular socioeconomic challenges in this context, what are important characteristics of industries, organisations, regions, the workforce and broader population, the labour market, what are relevant system level policies that need to be considered when evaluating the transferability of a practice to organisations in their own country? What conditions need to be fulfilled in order to realize transfer? Especially given the goal to stretch participants learning experiences by listening to practices from countries over the world that might be substantially different from their own context, it is important that participants are facilitated in recognizing their own framework and to look at commonalities in cases that might be at first sight totally different from their own context. Only in this way we can tap into the collective intelligence and knowledge of all participants leading to deep level learning and true co-creation. The process followed implies diversity of viewpoints leading to diversified insights on the one hand and integration and consolidation of these insights by applying this in a real business case. This principle of Diversity and Integration is known as the D-I principle (Agazarian, 2004). 4.3 Approach The seminar used a blended approach and consisted of a combination of 1) key note presentations, including time for Q&A, 2) case presentations and 3) workshops in small homogenous groups to discuss these validated cases of good practice and their transferability to participants home country. 1) Key note presentations Both on day 1 and day 2 there was a keynote presentation by an expert in the field of sustainable careers. On the first day we had Anne Weisberg, Senior Vice President of the Families and Work Institute. On the second day there was a key note by Aukje Nauta, Professor at the university of Amsterdam and partner at Factor Five. 2) Case presentations The 3 validated cases that served as case presentations were the House of Workability (Hilde Willems, Johnson&Johnson), the case Strategic Plan for HRM s development (Stefania Allegretti, Autonomous Province of Trento, Italy and Francesco Marcaletti, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, WWELL Research Centre) and the Job Life Cycle Model (Jarna Savolainen, Centre for Occupational Safety, Finland). 7

8 3) Workshops By means of an interactive workshop, according to the principles of the peer reflection methodology, the 3 validated cases were discussed during day 1. Peer reflection is an interactive format in which participants interact and reflect about the selected cases in small subgroups. The peer reflection process followed the presentation of the three selected cases by the case owner as described above. We have chosen to form homogeneous groups of participants who engage in a discussion with the different case owners to enable in-depth elaboration of the case. In the next stage an analysis of and reflection on one of the discussed practices took place in these homogeneous groups, using five trigger questions that are tailored to the specific background of the subgroup (business & HR profiles, ESF stakeholders and a mixed group consisting of academics and governmental authorities) and these questions were distributed during the introduction of the learning seminar. The five questions were first answered individually, next a compromise had to found on subgroup level by discussing the individual answers on these questions. The output of this subgroup interaction was posted on the wall and finally there was a plenary presentation of this output. The output was also used as feed-in during the business case on the second day. Interactive business case. On day 2 the interactive part consisted of an action learning approach during which we explicitly linked the acquired insights to the application of these insights: by applying the insights and output generated on day 1 (from the keynote presentations and the peer reflection) on a real-life business case, participants achieve a deeper level of learning, as compared to a mere knowledge transfer. Moreover the probability that the participants will use these insights in their own context will increase. The interactive business case challenged the participants to solve an actual career management problem in a different context than their own context. This interactive business case was introduced on day 1 by Sven Decremer, principle consultant SD Worx Belgium during the framing (building block framework ) by Prof. dr. Ans De Vos. Relevant information concerning this business case was distributed at the end of day 1 and the link with the five trigger questions which were used during the peer reflection was explained. The flow of the interactive business case (cf. fig. 1) started with a presentation of the career management challenge the company is facing by means of documents, presentations and a conference call with the HR manager. After an explanation of the challenge questions were directly asked to the HR manager. In the next phase the same homogenous subgroups as used on day 1 worked on the business case by answering the following questions and assignments: What are 3 priorities you would tackle? Work out a concrete action plan Stakeholders: who and how to involve them? What are possible problems you anticipate that you might be confronted with? 8

9 What could ESF do to facilitate you in this process? The answers on these questions served as input to create a subgroup presentation. Afterwards there was an exchange of the proposed solutions through the presentations of each subgroup followed by feedback. Finally a plenary wrap-up briefly synthesised the insights developed during the interactive business case. Fig.1. Flow of the interactive business case This approach maximizes learning by connecting head (knowing what), heart (knowing why) and hands (knowing how). Learning by doing has proven to be an effective methodology in learning and changing behaviour. Through exchange with others on a real-life business case we empower and engage all the stakeholders and create ambassadors for sustainable career management. 9

10 4.4 Program overview Below a general overview of the building blocks used during the second learning seminar is displayed, which took place in July 2014 in Belfast. Next the program details are displayed. Fig.2. Program overview of the second learning seminar. 10

11 4.5 Program details day 1(morning) Fig.3. Program details day 2 (morning). 4.6 Program details day 1 (afternoon) Fig.4. Program details day 2 (afternoon). 11

12 4.7 Program details day 2 Fig.5. Program details day Key of the program outline Fig.6. Key of the program outline. 12

13 II. Clustered presentation of submitted practices In this chapter we present the examples of good practice submitted by the stakeholders and the content expert. First we describe the clustering of the validated practices. Second we discuss the validated examples of good practice according to these clusters. In the final part we describe the submitted practices that not have been validated. In appendix (cf. chapter 6) an overview of all the submitted practices is provided. Input regarding good practice came from the partnering countries and from the external expert. 34 examples of good practice were originally submitted. Finally 27 were retained for the validation by the experts. This pre-selection was made according to two criteria: 1) level of the practice (system, organisational or individual) and 2) sufficiency of information available to enable validation. 1. Clustering of practices The submitted practices can be clustered based on two axes: 1) leading partner and 2) scope. The leading partner can be found on the company level (i.e. management and/or HR) or on the network level (i.e. supra-company level, namely collaboration between organisations and/ or intermediary organisations like consultancy firms, universities, educational organisations, social partners or non-governmental organisations). The network level also covers alliances, ecosystems and external platforms. The scope is defined in terms of target groups to which the practice or practices apply. The scope can be narrow (i.e. focus on one target group) or broad (i.e. focus on multiple target groups, for example on all workers.). Fig.7.Typology of practices according to two axes, leading to four clusters of practices 13

14 The combination of these 2 axes results in a 2x2 table (cf. fig. 7) with four combinations of the variables partner and scope. In what follows we present the validated examples of good practice clustered according to this typology. 2. Cluster 1: company and broad Practices with a broad focus and with a leading partner on company level focus on multiple target groups and are developed as part of in-company HR systems. In these cases often an integrated and holistic framework is designed and implemented, meaning that these practices are conceived as an organisation-wide effort to change career management practices. This approach is inclusive by nature and often they come down to a cultural change in the organisation. Fig.8. Broad practices on company level Exemplary cases, as we will see, are Age Diversity (Belgacom, Belgium), Diversity and Inclusion (Novartis International), the House of Workability (Johnson & Johnson, Belgium), People-oriented Entrepreneurship (Race Productions, Belgium), the Strategic Plan for HR development from the autonomous province of Trento and Work longer with enthusiasm (CM, Belgium). These umbrella programs, which mobilize the whole organisation, contain several subprograms and projects focused on employability, workability, work-life integration, flexibility, competence development etc... Often innovation and organisational performance are triggers to initiate these programs. In other words, a strong business case precedes these initiatives. 2.1 Age Diversity (Belgacom, Belgium) The employees of Belgacom, a large telecom firm operating in Belgium, are on average older than the employees of other Belgian enterprises. Moreover Belgacom realized that the early retirement schemes it was offering did not fit with the new socioeconomic context anymore. Improving employees working conditions and maintaining employees longer motivated at work were the main objectives. First there was a clear focus on employees aged 50+ and 14

15 employees with harder/heavier tasks, in a later stage all employees were addressed by this program. At the start there was an evaluation of the needs in close collaboration with the social partners. This evaluation was direct through focus groups consisting of 45+ employees, as well as indirect via a survey. Next extensive communication took place to raise the awareness that early retirement schemes were not possible anymore, to fight stereotypes and finally to open minds to the lifecycle approach and to intergenerational collaboration. Consequently a program was created dealing with 9 fields of intervention: 1) ergonomics, 2) health, 3) lifelong learning, 4) career planning, 5) end of career planning, 6) adaptation of time and place of work, 7) work organisation, 8) back in business after a long absence, and 9) corporate culture. At the same time Human Resources integrated the lifecycle approach and the attention for the intergenerational collaboration in its practices, processes and policies. The focus of this effort was on flexibility and customization (solutions that start from a personal choice principle for all employees) and on an adaptation of the communication strategy to perform a sanity check for the HR procedures and to keep the focus alive. Examples of the customized measures taking the different age groups into account are the time saving account, which allows employees of all ages to put a part of their bonus or 13th month in an account for later use after the age of 55, and the Work-life unit, which focuses on events for the different categories (e.g. family day). As a result of the Age Diversity program there is a reduction of absenteeism, higher employee satisfaction, an increase of internal mobility and an increase in participation to training of employees aged Diversity and Inclusion - Novartis Benelux The Diversity and Inclusion program (D&I) is a global initiative, initiated and led by the Novartis management team, and has shown to be a good driver of Novartis Pharma Strategy. The strategy is developed globally by the D&I team and rolled-out and implemented on a national level by the local Novartis Pharma Leadership Teams, in close collaboration with HR and the local D&I team. The motive for this program is the business case for diversity and inclusion. Novartis claims that diverse groups are more creative: they perform better on highly complex tasks, with a wider range of thinking processes and more creativity, and secondly organisations leveraging diversity adapt better and more innovatively to external changes. Novartis presumes that diverse talent delivers better results, which is also reflected in Novartis baseline Leading through innovation and with responsibility. Novartis assumes that employee satisfaction is strongly linked to how fairly a company treats diverse employees and consumers. The main objective of this global initiative is to create a diverse and inclusive workplace leveraging diversity and promoting gender equality. With this initiative Novartis aims to create a business culture which recognizes and values individual differences (including 15

16 gender), while at the same time providing for every employee opportunities to develop and to grow professionally. A Diversity & Inclusion business case has been developed, taking into account commercial, ethic and legal considerations. Furthermore, strategic imperatives have been developed and elaborated to shape the culture, to develop and retain talent, and to drive business results at the marketplace. They have been translated into clear objectives and an action plan, which are fine-tuned on a yearly basis, taking into account the current situation and aspirations for the future. Through these continuous efforts, diversity is embedded in the mission and values of the organisation and recognized as one of the pillars they build upon, together with access to patients, operational excellence and ethical behaviour. It is also included in the individual objectives, competency evaluation and assessment process for all managers. All these have been broadly communicated at the different levels of the Belgian organisation by Janneke van der Kamp (CPO Head & Country President; CEO Novartis Belgium & Lux) personally, by the Novartis Pharma Leadership Team, by the D&I champion and by HR during staff meetings, training programs, workshops with internal and external speakers, on intranet pages etc. The Novartis policy is built on 4 pillars: 1) diversity, 2) inclusion, 3) life-work integration and 4) external communication. Fig.9. Graphical representation of the 4 pillars of the D&I initiative As a result of the Diversity and Inclusion cultural program a solid global D&I community and network was created. Novartis is in the top 10 companies for diversity in the US and worldwide and finally Novartis Belgium has won the award in Belgium in People-oriented entrepreneurship (Race Productions/Ridley, Belgium, Flanders) The fast growth of this company in the past 10 years caused a lot of pressure and uncertainty among employees. The objective of this project is to bring motivation and satisfaction on a higher level by installing self-earning teams, talent scouting and talent management. 16

17 Mensgericht ondernemen (people-oriented entrepreneurship) is a broad Human Resources umbrella project comprising various actions and measures which are focused on all employees. Advised by consultancy organisation Motmans-Vanhavermaet N.V., several measures were taken and implemented: implementation of improvement teams, training for team leaders and people managers, regular surveys for employee satisfaction rates (with feedback and improvement programs), stimulation of multifunctional and flexible job descriptions and active stimulation of social innovation activities (award winner 2012 for Flanders). The process of implementation started with buy-in from top management for the strategic HR roadmap. Next, management by example and training and education for team leaders and managers were established. Afterwards there was the introduction of the core values of the company. Finally processes and practices rewarding the desired behaviour were installed. Thanks to the project there was an improvement and more structured communication towards employees and a higher motivation among the employees to keep developing their own competencies and careers. 2.4 Strategic Plan for the HRM s development (Autonomous Province of Trento, Italy) The new HRM strategy of the Autonomous Province of Trento (PAT), which employs employees, seeks to promote a way of working that can be cost saving, but at the same time can enhance flexibility, work-life balance of workers and their well-being at work, regardless of age. The mean age of PAT s employees in 2013 was 48 years and 25% of the total workforce was aged 54+. The new HRM strategy aims to raise the awareness of managers and supervisors concerning the processes of ageing at work. Likewise this program wants to raise their awareness regarding the effect of ageing at work on the perceived quality of the work and strives for the development of age-positive (and cost saving) HR practices. This program consists of several actions: 1. launch of a Teleworking programme (TelePAT) addressed to all employees (2012- ongoing), 2. organisational survey involving all the PAT employees (permanent) with the support of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (2013) using the questionnaire Quality of Ageing at Work Questionnaire (cf. 3.4 p. 23), 3. Implementation of an age management plan as a part of the overall HR strategic plan (2014) and 4. Implementation of a communication plan concerning the age-friendly organisational policies addressed to all employees (2014-ongoing). Employees and managers have increased their awareness on how the quality of the daily work is perceived according to diversity in age, generation and seniority. Managers and HR understand which possible future issues to focus on (e.g. telework and the influence of care responsibilities) in order to improve the well-being of their employees. Managers and HR have also developed new ideas and suggestions for further development of age management 17

18 practices based on the analysis of the questionnaire. Concerning TelePAT the results include cost savings, a better work-life balance and environmental benefits. In general this program promoted a reorganisation in the company (on-going) and a redistribution of roles and tasks. It started the dialogue between the management and the employees and improved the company climate. 2.5 The House of workability (Johnson & Johnson Belgium, Flanders) Demographic changes (an older workforce and changing expectations of younger generations), changes in society (different ways of working and the need for flexibility linked to life phases) and changes in the business with a future that has become more and more unpredictable, leads to the need for different skill types and more agile people. This is why J&J chose to create and implement the House of Workability framework, incorporated in a broader, company-wide Collaboration 2020 project. The framework aims to stimulate the workforce at Johnson & Johnson (J&J) to take ownership on their own House and to help people leaders to support their employees in designing and developing their own House of Workability. Employees and people leaders use the House of Workability to build more workable and sustainable careers. The strength of the concept is that it really offers an umbrella to integrate all the initiatives taking place as part of the Collaboration 2020 project in a structured way, which makes it clear for all employees how they can take charge of their own career in view of sustainability and workability. J&J explicitly chose to use an existing model and not to invent something new. The House is a concept that is very well accepted at all levels in the organisation and it is easy to understand. People are energized by the concept and it really makes sense to bring it all together. It gives employees and people leaders a framework to start the discussion on sustainable careers and how to support and build it. It helps to create ownership and leadership. There are 4 different levels that can be distinguished in the House of Workability: 1) health, 2) talents, 3) values and 4) work. Each level contains numerous initiatives. The level of talents for example, represented by their Talent Fit Centre, consists of several initiatives that enable employees to make a resolute choice to discover, develop, and make full use of their talents. The Talent Fit Centre offers personal career coaching and various workshops or tools to help employees gain a sharper insight into who they are, what they are good at, and what they want to achieve. In this way they can personally shape the sustainable use of their talents. For managers, the Talent Fit Centre is a partner in their talent-focused leadership and their search for professional workers. J&J Belgium launched the concept in 2013 following from their Collaboration 2020 project which started in They are currently working on a viral change project in order to create the right culture to support Workability. The steps taken so far include: a participative process with all stakeholders to answer the question: How will the Janssen Campus in Belgium develop into an attractive employer for all generations by 2020, with the aim of creating innovative health-care solutions together? 18

19 a move from generation management towards sustainable careers for all employees start of building blocks such as Talent Fit Centre, Flex place and Flex working time, and discovery of the fact that the right infrastructure also needs the right culture, the right behaviours in order to be successful start of a cultural change project to leverage desired behaviours for employees: - take ownership and be the designer of your own House of Workability - take the opportunities and use the building blocks offered by the Campus - be the change you want to see! start of a cultural change project to leverage desired behaviours for people leaders: - stimulate your employees to take ownership on Workability - use the process of the 5 conversations to discuss the Workability of your employees, linked to their personal life phases - build a Campus of Workability The House of Workability is considered as a concept, a tool to create this behaviour and to communicate and connect all the initiatives. It was launched by HR management during personnel information sessions in March 2014, during which they also solicited for ambassadors for the concept, resulting in more than 100 ambassadors. During the next phase the ambassadors will work on tools, communication and strategy in order to bring the concept alive throughout the whole company. 2.6 Work longer with enthusiasm (Christelijke Mutualiteit, Belgium, Flanders) Christelijke Mutualiteit (CM), a health insurance service organisation in Belgium, decided to reform their career management approach following the decisions made by the Belgian government regarding the pension system. The objective of the project is to work longer with a high level of motivation. This implies stimulating the employees to develop themselves continuously during their whole career at CM, so that they can stay motivated at any point in their career and life phase. CM does not focus on 1 specific target group, but by focusing on diversity they integrate measures that are applicable to all their employees. CM started an initiative (focus groups: coordinated brainstorms with their employees on working with enthusiasm) that resulted in a redefinition of the companies vision on and in a redefinition of the HR strategy. The implementation has just started up and, as a consequence, changes and effects are not visible yet, but so far the involvement and engagement of the employees has increased. A study of the drivers of their motivation is launched to uncover what really motivates employees and what evokes frustration. A common HR vision has been created organisationwide, there is more transversal collaboration nationally (between the several and different management committees) and there is a new way of communicating towards the employees. 19

20 3. Cluster 2: network and broad Network-based sustainable career management practices, tools and processes that have a broad scope have an integrated focus on multiple target groups and are established by collaboration between organisations and intermediary organisations. Fig.10. Broad practices on network level Practices in this quadrant are Alliance Emploi (France), the Balance project (Belgium), Employer Rings (Sweden), the Job Life Cycle Model from Finland, Quality of Ageing at Work from Italy and the WISE innovation project (Belgium). 3.1 Alliance Emploi (France) In France an exemplary case of co-sourcing is Alliance Emploi, which is a network of 400 companies and a pool of more than 1000 employees. Alliance Emploi is a non-profit organisation that aims to provide employees for organisations that need them. It was founded by the organisations. The employees are available on a flexible base. Members of the Alliance Emploi network can make use of them. Employees hired by the alliance receive a permanent labour contract from the alliance and they cannot work for external employers. The idea was to create a pool of well trained employees that could be shared between different employers grouped in the alliance. An employee can work in company X during a certain period and in company Y during another. Alliance Emploi hires and trains the employees. The professional profile of employees that are part of the network is very diverse: operational, technical and administrative professions are included in the talent pool. Alliance Emploi acts as the employer of the employees. The alliance takes care of the administration, manages the planning of the working schemes of the employees and manages the relationship between organisation employee. The organisation who is a member of the network is responsible for the work conditions. The 400 employers grouped in the network 20

21 belong to different markets and sectors and are large, medium, as well as smaller organisations. The Alliance Emploi association is an example of an innovative work organisation because it allows for flexibility for employers and at the same time there is less insecurity for employees. The results of this innovative practice are more flexibility for the employers in the network, higher level of collaboration between organisations by sharing human resources, competencies available on the right time and adapted to the specific needs of the companies and a good social climate. For the employees the advantages are more job security (work and remuneration) by levelling the fluctuations in the demand for labour, a better work-life integration for the employees and the development of a larger set of competencies and areas of expertise. 3.2 Balance project (Resoc Mechelen, Belgium, Flanders) Although it has become an imperative that longer careers are needed, how such careers can be created often remains unclear, especially when it should benefit organisations and simultaneously stimulate employees motivation. This project, designed by Resoc - a regional socio-economic consultation committee - aims to create careers in balance with long lasting benefits for employees and employers. Balance wants to create enthusiasm for the use of a lifecourse career policy in order to create a winwin situation for employees and employers. Careers can only be balanced when there is a good interaction between the needs and desires of individuals and the goals of organisations. Balance consists of an action manual and a movie focused on reflection and action. The BA[L]ANCE action manual wants to inspire to consider the different stages of life when dealing with careers. The action manual offers tools to deal with challenges like binding people from different life stages, talent detection and talent development and ensuring that employees keep working on their career development. The manual has two objectives: offering support and career guidance for employees and developing a lifecourse approach in organisations. In this hands-on manual, background information is offered, together with frameworks, questions, tips and practical examples to create balanced careers by means of a competence based life course approach to careers. The reflection part mostly offers a theoretical background. The different life-stages and the different ways in which a lifecourse approach to careers can be viewed are presented. The manual also explains what is meant by a lifecourse approach to careers. The second part of the manual is action. This part tells how employers can create a lifecourse approach in careers by means of frameworks, tools, practical examples, tips & tricks. This approach offers different methods for conducting a lifecourse aware dialogue. Balance sees a lifecourse approach to careers as a canvas, a general strategy in which everyone should find their own way. The balance project can be called broad and integrated since it uses a life cycle approach and because it can also be used to offer opportunities to employees that have 21

22 more trouble entering the job market, such as immigrants, disabled people, semi- and unskilled workers making the approach inclusive. 3.3 Employer Rings (Starck & Partners, Sweden) In Sweden there is the Employer Rings case. Unfortunately we lacked information to make a fiche of this practice, but nevertheless it is worth mentioning since this type of practice corresponds with the tendency that more and more initiatives in career management follow a network-based approach. Employer rings works in a way that a number of employers, mostly in smaller towns in Sweden get together in a network and "exchange" workers. This network of small scaled organisations designs and implements careers tracks beyond the borders of their respective organisations. This Swedish local project was created in smaller regions to overcome the problems of lower employment opportunities (i.e. little opportunities to find new jobs) inherent to these regions. In Sweden it became a widespread phenomenon in the whole country. In practice Employer Rings involves people that one employer has to dismiss because of labour shortage, whilst another employer just needs extra employees. Another example can be an employee that suffers from a certain health condition or reduced workability after a long-term sick leave who can no longer be employed by his/her former employer, while another employer in the network has a suitable job instead. 3.4 Job Life Cycle Model (Finland) Age management has become a major concern in the past few years. The reason for this is twofold. On the one hand the average age of the working population increases and this affects the availability of personnel. On the other hand there are conscious efforts to extend careers. The Job Life Cycle Model is a new model for designing a workplace age plan. The Job Life Cycle Model is a tool that advices workplaces how to enhance occupational well-being of the personnel during the different stages of their career. It also helps workplace communities seeing employees of different ages as a resource for a successful workplace. The Job Life Cycle Model offers an information package for employers, which helps them to draw an age plan for their organisation. There are seven central areas of a workplace age plan: 1) age management, 2) making plans for the career and for extending it, 3) managing competence and professional skills, 4) flexible working hours, 5) re-defining jobs, 6) health assessment at the workplace and promoting healthy habits and 7) life management. The age plan of a workplace must be based on sufficient information about the age structure and the related resources and opportunities, weaknesses and threats for the organisation. On the basis of this information, it is possible to set targets for the age plan and later to assess whether the plan has succeeded and how to go further and develop operating models. In order to secure good results, the operations should be planned with a long term perspective. It is also important that any proposed measures are discussed with the 22

23 employees and their representatives and that their execution and impact is monitored and assessed. A working group of social partners prepared the Job Life Cycle Model. In order to help workplaces to put the model into practice the Centre for Occupational Safety is currently developing a web based tool for the workplaces. The tool helps workplaces to develop their own practices by evaluating the current state of play and by offering tools for designing an age plan. The effect so far is that matters related to age, life stages, work and career are regularly discussed with all employees of a workplace. Creating this kind of workplace community requires trust, cooperation and strong support from the management. The Job Life Cycle Model was developed only in 2013 and web tools for creating the age plan are finalised in The concrete effects of the good practice will be seen in the coming years. 3.5 Quality of Ageing at Work Questionnaire (Trento, Italy) The pension reform in Italy has increased the awareness of employers and managers for implementing age-positive HR practices in order to prolong work careers and to retain, motivate and maintain a good level of productivity for a longer period. In order to create more inclusive workplaces for all employees, regardless of their age, employers and managers have to be aware of the changes in the workforce composition, of how these changes will affect their organisations and of how it is possible to rethink existing managerial practices so that these changes can be translated into opportunities. They need to be supported in this awareness raising process. The basis of this process is the development of new tools and research methodologies in the field of age management consistent with the Italian socio-institutional and cultural context. The aim was to increase the awareness of Italian employers and managers about the processes of ageing at work and about how it could affect the perceived quality of the work, in order to sustain the development of agepositive HR practices. The quality of Ageing at Work Questionnaire (QAW-q), developed by the WWELL Research Centre, is an action-research tool aimed at supporting the awareness raising process about critical aspects deriving from the ageing at work. Thanks to its modular structure, the QAW-q can be adapted and customized to the local specific context. Based on the 4 key elements of the workability concept - health, competencies, motivation, work organisation - the QAW-q broadens the perspective by introducing four additional elements aimed at bridging intra-organisational dimensions affecting the employees wellbeing: 1) work-life balance, 2) employment and economic stability, 3) professional identity and 4) relations at workplace. The QAW-q also weights the influence of the different meanings of age on the individual perceptions and on the assessment of the organisational performance related to these eight key topics. 23

24 The questionnaire has been tested in 7 work organisations, both private and public, in the Autonomous Province of Trento resulting in a total number of questionnaires. Afterwards the results have been discussed in each organisation with the management in order to support the awareness-raising process and to implement organisational measures fostering the quality of ageing at work of all the employees. Employers received new ideas and suggestions for further development of age management practices and they have developed an increased awareness on how quality of the daily work is perceived by their employees according to different ages. 3.6 WISE: co-operation and sharing expertise, an intergenerational approach (University College Ghent, Belgium, Flanders) This innovation project starts from the observation that too much focus on generational differences leads to misperceptions and stereotypes. While generational stereotypes are widely discussed in media and literature, few instruments and solutions are developed to enhance co-operation between generations in organisations. The WISE project conceptualizes generations as ways of seeing rather than being. Each generation has another pair of generational glasses which causes distinct generational perceptions about working conditions, goals and processes. When a certain generation leaves the organisation, there is a risk of losing valuable expertise. The objectives of this project are to promote a positive stance towards diversity on the workplace and a differentiated HRM, starting from discussing generational differences, in a way people are more inclined to discuss diversity, secondly to achieve co-operation and better communication between all workers/employees in teams and organisations and finally to elaborate pragmatic solutions that can be easily adopted and accessed. A simple downloadable spreadsheet cross table was created which makes it easy to analyse the distribution of generations by any personnel information variable possible. Training sessions and awareness workshops were organised for teams, HR and organisations. Knowledge sharing was ensured by scripting these workshops in detail and providing future users easy access to necessary educational material. There was a provision of scientific and experiential information about generational theories. A sample implementation map for organisations and teams was designed to get started from scratch and for use in different contexts and finally also universal scripts were established that can easily be adopted in different settings. The results show that the generational glasses facilitate and enable discussions about diversity in general from a multi-actor perspective. The training sessions proved to be useful to create insight in generational differences and improved relations between co-workers. 24

25 4. Cluster 3: Network and narrow This cluster contains practices with a narrow scope (focusing on one target group), which are established on a network level. This implies that these practices and tools are produced based on cooperation of several in-company and external stakeholders and/or on collaboration between different companies. Fig.11. Narrow practices on network level Examples of validated practices in this area are Génération+ (Wallonia), Minerva program (KBC bank, Belgium), Time is Now! in the Czech Republic and Time4yourTalent (Trendhuis, Flanders). Additionally a not (yet) validated but promising practice will be discussed, namely Multi Company Mobility Centre, a cooperation between multiple companies in Belgium. 4.1 Génération + (Belgium, Wallonia) The project Génération +, designed by HEC/ULG University of Liège partnered by the employment agency of Wallonia (FOREM), focuses on the issue of managing age diversity in companies as well as the intergenerational transfer of competences. It is aimed at keeping older workers aged 45+ in employment through HRM and adapted competence management policies, raising awareness in companies about age management and fostering the reciprocal transfer of skills between generations. One of the main actions of this project consisted of developing a diagnostic methodology to help firms in age management. It is basically a guide that aims to help companies to establish an overall assessment of the company's age pyramid and to analyse its balances and imbalances. The diagnostic tool also helps to identify the HRM practices that tend to favour or act as an obstacle to recruiting and keeping experienced workers employed and it enables companies to draw up possible actions that would help to improve these HRM practices while meeting the company s objectives. The practical tool helps to review the situation concerning key jobs and helps to identify the critical skills among the company s experienced workers. Finally it helps to encourage thought and actions concerning the transfer and exchange of skills within the company. 25

26 It is intended as a practical and easy to use tool that can reveal the stakes linked with age diversity management in companies and the diagnostic tool suggests possibilities for implementing actions that take the needs of experienced workers into account, as well as the optimization of the company s performance. Besides this diagnostic methodology and action path for HRM, seminars, conferences, and workshops were organized for public and private organisations. As a result companies are now more aware about age management and have methodologies for diagnosis and age management plans which enable them to develop pro-active management policies, practices and processes. 4.2 Minerva (KBC, Belgium) At the national level the proportion of aged people that are still active in Belgium s workforce is one of the lowest in Europe. Belgium s average effective retirement age is also one of lowest in the OECD (59.6 for men and 59.0 for women). The Belgian government is gradually raising the retirement age to relieve the pension burden and to address the growing demand for a skilled labour force. The proportion of older employees of KBC, a Belgian bank, is gradually rising: the number of employees in the 46+ age group went up by almost 3% from 2011 to 2012, and employees aged 46+ represented 46% of total FTEs in 2012, while the average age in 2012 was 44 for men and 41 for women. This uptrend has been in place for at least five years. Bottom line of the Minerva program is to try to motivate the ageing workforce to remain active longer and to provide innovative career paths during the transition to retirement. More specifically the objectives are 1) to keep the older workforce longer active as a way to face the War for Talent and to keep knowledge in-house, 2) to deal with staff overhead and 3) to keep older employees motivated to work longer. KBC developed the concept of the I-deal or individual deal in KBC terminology providing employees the opportunity to determine their own career path in the pre-retirement phase of their working lives. Five tracks were created and formally implemented in the organisation: 1) same work, 2) less work, 3) lighter work, 4) less and lighter work, 5) work outside KBC (with preservation of contract with KBC). In this way a triple-win solution can be achieved, not only for the employer and the employee, but as well for society as a whole (keeping people employed longer, reducing the tax and pension burden, ensuring skills are not lost). The Minerva Programme was only very recently introduced within KBC Belgium. It should be noted that many of the Minerva options have already been present at KBC for a while, as there are already quite a number of older employees who are following a Minerva-type path. But this is the first time that KBC is actually giving the employees a formal say in their preretirement plans, enabling a two-way dialogue with their employer. Currently the program is aimed at the 55+ age group of the workforce. However, a preparatory phase is already in place on a voluntary basis for KBC employees aged

27 All Minerva principles can be applied at earlier stages in an employee s career, but the 55+ group is currently the main focus, as it is most impacted by new Belgian laws and regulations concerning a higher retirement age and associated pension rights. One of the core principles underpinning the Minerva Programme is that the employee is responsible for his/her own career, and the employer will ensure that employees are empowered to perform well throughout their careers. The results of the first wave of Minerva participants should become known in the coming months. However, there is already a shift in the general mindset of older employees within KBC, from a feeling of disappointment and neglect (lack of appreciation after years of service) to a more favourable view on the new (holistic) possibilities of extending one s working life. KBC discovered that there are also issues and challenges in the age group just below 55+, namely in the age group, since the time horizon of these employees has been dramatically enlarged by the recent reforms in the pension system. 4.3 Multi Company Mobility Centre (MC²): (Belgium) Multi Company Mobility Centre (MC²): is a social innovation project designed by consultancy firm HazelHeartwood. The project has been nominated in the European Social Innovation competition and ended on the shortlist of finalists. This practice was not considered during the validation and was not actually validated since it was launched very recently (started in May 2014). Nevertheless it is worth mentioning since this type of practice represents a potential discontinuity which can radically change the rules of the career management business. Several large Belgian organisations are involved including AXA, Belgacom, Business & Society, KBC and recently also SDWorx. An external platform was created to exchange experienced employees on a temporary basis. Through co-sourcing between organisations, older employees have the opportunity to use their skills, experience and competencies in new environments. As a consequence employees involved in this project can stay longer at work with a higher level of motivation and job satisfaction. The benefits for the employer are higher productivity due to optimal use of competences through exchange, and more flexible and efficient workforce planning since experienced senior workers can be hired for projectbased temporary assignments. The advantages for employees include an increased feeling of appreciation because of full utilization of their competencies and financial incentives when accepting temporary assignments. Society benefits as well since this solution represents a sustainable answer to issues of prevention of talent destruction, and lower costs for early retirement. 4.4 Time is now! Let s support work & family balance (Czech Republic) This project addresses the discrimination of parents in the labour market in the Czech Republic and tries to tackle the challenges of gender equality, diversity and harmonization of professional and personal-family life. APERIO, a non-governmental organisation, has guided this project. 27

28 Often parents are unaware of options and rights they have and they have little information regarding existing instruments for work, family and personal life harmonization. Employers are often unaware of the connection between working flexibility and competiveness. The objective is to improve conditions in the area of harmonizing work and family life. The project addressed the needs of parents and employers and facilitated the transfer of good practice from selected EU countries to parents and employers in all regions of the Czech Republic. Besides the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland and Sweden are also involved in the project. International workshops for employers and parents were organized in the presence of project's EU partners. There were video interviews with HR managers from Czech Republic, Germany, Poland and Sweden. Seminars and webinars for parents in all regions of the Czech Republic were organized and a web space was created for parents devoted to harmonization of work and family life. Furthermore a web space for employers was created as well (HR point) and publications for employers were provided addressing the topic family-friendly provisions in companies. As a result a better understanding between employers and parents was established, employers and parents were better informed about the issues related to work-life balance, a higher level of gender equality was reached, as well as more flexible work arrangements, including legal aspects. Parents have more self-confidence (empowerment) and employers are more open and better informed. Finally there has been an accumulation of knowledge about the expectations and needs of both employers and parents, which is used as input for the follow-up work with both sides. 4.5 Time4yourTalent (Trendhuis, Flanders, Belgium) European citizens currently suffer from high unemployment rates. Specific target groups such as low-educated youngsters and people over-fifties have very few job opportunities. The candidates do not have fewer talents than others, but they show fewer competences. Time4yourTalent focuses on the older working population (over-fifties) and offers these employees new opportunities by generating new skills or competences based on their specific talents. In short this project aims for a higher appreciation of talents. Employers should not only consider competences, but also talents when they hire new people. Main objective is to improve the workability, motivation and the access to the labour market. Thanks to the talent scan and the talent pool opportunities to gain experience in different organisations or jobs are created. Consequently Time4YourTalent will create a more mobile labour market and therefore guarantee sustainable work security for employees. 28

29 5. Cluster 4: company and narrow This cluster consists of practices at the company level, with a narrow scope, i.e. focus on a few target groups, although these practices sometimes are gradually extended to a larger group of workers in a later stage. Fig.12. Narrow practices on company level Validated cases in this quadrant are Competencies and Experiences from Banca Popolare di Vicenza, Learning Labs (Trento, Italy) and Today for Tomorrow from BMW (Germany). 5.1 Competencies and experiences (Banca Popolare, Trento) In the Italian bank Banca Popolare there was a lack of motivation among employees aged 55+, as well as a need to promote their capabilities by involving these employees in new professional plans and by engaging them in the continuous improvement projects of the company. In the company there used to be a poor age sensibility and a lack of age management skills among the managers. To tackle these challenges, Studio Duo, an Italian consultancy firm, created a program aimed at senior employees and a program focused on the people leaders of these employees. For the employees the program included different objectives: to develop new capabilities for self-awareness and a deeper understanding of the source of personal and professional power (experiences, competences, behaviour ), to create a vision on one s professional value, to keep in touch with one s inner voice and to develop a strategy to recognize it as a guideline of ones life and work projects, to design proposals for organisation s performance improvement through innovating the organisational processes, the service, promoting intergenerational learning and a new personal career path within the organisation, to consolidate one s proposals into a robust action plan, and 29

30 to develop the capability of negotiating one s proposals and action plan with the organisation. To serve these goals a two-day training course was designed focused on self-development techniques. For employees managers the objectives were to develop sensitivity in the domain of age diversity, to manage creative and innovative teams able to integrate age diversities and to develop intergenerational learning. Besides that the program revealed the link between valuing age diversity and organisational performance it also showed that dialogue skills are necessary to discuss the action plans that were developed. To reach these objectives a twoday training course was organised focused on the deconstruction of age stereotypes. Results are that the action plans are discussed between employees and their managers and that there was a general improvement of the motivation of employees. The company is assessing the opportunity to diffuse the project to the whole bank. 5.2 Learning labs: Knowledge transfer between generations (SIRAM, Trento Italy) This company project focused on 30 contract managers of Siram, an Italian energy service company. Assisted by the polytechnic institute of Milano, they addressed the lack of collaboration among their contract managers and the lack of knowledge and transfer of best practices among contract managers with different professionalism, experience and age and from different territorial business units. The intervention aimed at fostering socialisation between the different groups, promoting exchange of knowledge and experience through collaboration focused on management, technical and organisational problems to be solved by the contract managers. The project also focused on the creation of a community among the different generations of contract managers based on mutual trust and collaboration. A phased training pathway, called Learning Labs, was developed consisting of 4 stages based on problem solving methodologies and creativity development: first each contract manager received a document in which he was asked to describe a critical event or planning situation to be discussed during the labs. Next small working groups were created and for each group there was a focus group aimed at the identification and selection of critical and primary situations. This was followed by a lab meeting with a context analysis and the identification of possible internal or external experts. Afterwards during a second lab meeting there was a debate with these internal experts, during which best practice and solutions were identified and action plans were created to implement these solutions or to disseminate the best practice. The effects of the learning labs are an improvement of the technical and management competences of the contract managers, the creation of a professional and cohesive community and the creation of a trusted and supportive connection between the contract managers and the business. 30

31 This approach allows for tailor-made solutions and is concrete as it addresses specific topics. Learning Labs is a so-called spot practice that tackles a specific and well defined issue, relevant in situations of mergers, acquisitions and restructuring. 5.3 Today for tomorrow (BMW, Germany) BMW recognized that the average age of its production workers would increase to 47 by This demographic trend threatened the company s competitiveness. BMW s ratio of workers aged 50+ will rise from 25% today to 45 % by Before the start of the program older workers were absent more and worked harder just to keep up, they were less productive and healthcare and insurance costs were higher. Yet their expertise represents an important asset for BMW. Consequently the main objective was to design a future workplace to meet the physical needs of an older workforce. BMW launched a pilot product line where the average worker was 47 years old. The line was operated by 42 employees. Consultations were organized to encourage and explain the concept. Workshops and surveys were launched to create ideas. These ideas had to develop productivity-improving changes, such as managing health care, enhancing workers skills and the workplace environment, and instituting part-time policies and change management processes. There were two main interventions: modifications of ergonomic accommodation and reengineering of production processes. Modifications of ergonomic accommodation. Facilities include ergonomic back supports for the monkey-wrench turners, mobile tool-trolleys that mean workers do not have to strain themselves reaching for tools, magnifying glass and enhanced lighting for the visually challenged. There are stools in place where workers once stood for long hours, special adapted shoes to avoid backache and overload. They installed a 'relaxation room' and a fitness area. The catering serves healthy and varying food. A greater proportion of tasks in the Old Town plant are also performed by robots. Process re-engineering. Even the production line itself has been slowed down around one third of the normal pace in other car plants to account for the workforce s general slowing down in life. Altstadt comprises 6,500 square meters of space that was designed by the usual mix of industrial architects and automotive engineers - plus therapists and doctors who specialize in treating more elderly people. Employees switch tasks more frequently, an example of job rotation and job enlargement. Besides these modifications Altstadt remains a normal car plant operating a three-shift, round-the-clock work system for 200 people. The results so far are an increased productivity by 7%, a drop in absenteeism by 2% and a 20% reduction in assembly costs. The output of the plant is 1200 cars on daily basis. 31

32 6. Other submitted examples of good practice In this section we present the examples of good practice submitted by partnering countries and the external partner that were not retained after the validation process and thus were not considered during the learning seminar. The major argumentation not do so was 1) relatively low plausibility of transferring these examples of good practice to other countries, 2) shortage of information available to be able to validate the practice and/or 3) lack of relevance for sustainable career management Employment competences evaluation service for SMEs (Chamber of commerce Seville, Spain) For SME s the relationship between the workplace as a learning environment, strategies for competence development used by SMEs and learning outcomes are often unclear. This project partnered by Chamber of commerce Seville aims at offering assistance to SMEs in the analysis of competences of their employees in order to define a proper training plan. A methodology was developed to implement this analysis in the SME s of the province and the SME s received support to perform the analysis. This service resulted in better training plan for employees in SME s, higher satisfaction and higher quality of the training. 6.2 Flexible work organisation and work performance (Hungary) Here we combine the presentation of the three Hungarian practices (Dorsum, CSSK and Prolabora) since the academic experts as well as the content expert assumed that these fiches addressed one and the same integrated project. All three relate to the reconciliation of work and private or family life, representing a mix of family oriented and work oriented interventions. On the one hand system of working time flexibility was established and kindergartens were installed as potential company measures, on, the other practices promoting a healthy balance between work and private life (family life) were implemented. 6.3 INQA-Check HR Management (Federal Institute of Occupational Health and Safety, Germany) The idea of this project is to create an easily accessible tool for managers in particular in SMEs - to self-asses the quality of HR management in their company and provide concrete alternatives for improvement. HR Management of the future needs to reflect on individual 1 It should be noted that in general the information provided on the fiches varied substantially in terms of level of detail and amount of information. The idea behind these summarizing fiches was that interested countries might use this first description of the practice to further check out the initiative following the links or references provided in the document, or by contacting the contact person on the fiche. However, the concise summary of information on the fiche made if sometimes difficult to evaluate the practice. As a consequence we adapted the process for this learning seminar and we have chosen to present and to elaborate 4 promising cases based on a selection of the fiches that were put on a shortlist by the validation team. 32

33 needs of employees and has to develop new approaches to the organisation of work and working time. This self-assessment check was developed by a network of scientists, social partners, consultants and other practitioners from the Initiative of New Quality of Work (INQA). The key questions that INQA-Check HR Management wants to address are: What are the strengths and weaknesses of HR Management in companies? How can HR Management address (future) skill gaps and prevent shortages of skilled labour? How can a company address challenges of an ageing workforce? The self-assessment check offers a systematical review of the current quality of HR Management concerning 11 topics (personnel planning, recruitment, motivation, diversity e.g.) and helps to plan the next steps. The online version of the HR Check also offers very concrete suggestions for improvement according to the results of the check, and links to good practice examples in other companies or further tools. Furthermore it is connected to a databank of consultants that are licensed and trained, so companies can easily find trustworthy partners in their region to continue their process. 6.4 INQA-Quick-Check Care (Federal Institute for Occupational Health and Safety, Germany) The increasing pressure on workability in health care sector is affecting the quality of work. INQA-Quick-Check Care is a tool for organisational self-assessment to cope with demographic change and staff shortages. The aim is to create an accessible self-assessment tool for managers in the care sector to open them up for the topic and give guidance concerning further measures. INQA-Quick-Check Care enables identifying the strengths and weaknesses of the working conditions and HR policies within care organisations. It presents concrete areas were reform measures should be introduced and there is a link to a database of good practice, tools and consultants. The check makes companies resilient in five crucial areas: 1) personnel recruitment in the light of demographic change, 2) work organisation, 3) lifelong learning, 4) leadership, and 5) health management in companies. The check is tailored for geriatric, medical and health care institutions. 6.5 PsyGA (Federal Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, Germany) Many jobs are physically demanding and strenuous which leads to a significant increase in mental illness, rising absenteeism rates and early retirement due to mental problems. Thus there is a need for pro-active health management. The aim is to increase the awareness and the sensibility for stress related symptoms and to offer a wide range of information and practical advice on this matter. A wide range of practical measures and instruments are developed with a particular focus on small and medium sized companies and employees: PsyGA offers a set of easy to access self- 33

34 assessment tools, elearning tools, and good practice examples for workers, managers, and work council members. As a result the awareness of the economic, social and individual impact of stress related illnesses was considerably increased through the project PsyGA in Germany. The products and practical examples of PsyGA are highly sought after, more than copies of PsyGA related brochures and tools have been ordered and distributed. 6.6 Valorising the worker along his life (AM.IC.A, Italy, Trento) AM.IC.A (Attività Motorie, Itinerari Corporei, Animazione) was established around the idea to recognize and promote the centrality of fitness and well-being. From a management point of view the objective of this project is to launch a comprehensive process to involve the whole organisation in a work life balance approach, by specific actions and company solidarity measures; from an employee point of view the objective is aimed at testing new time flexibility schemes, such as part-time. Thanks to the Family Audit certification process, AM.IC.A launched some new initiatives to favour the work life balance: a competence assessment tool and the availability list. Furthermore specific measures had been taken to support especially women and young mothers in order to promote a better climate within the company, namely the time bank which gives employees flexibility in working time and a flexible pathway to re-enter after the maternity leave or after a long period of absence. The actions undertaken have promoted a reorganisation in the company (on-going) and a redistribution of roles and tasks. It introduced new measures and tools which will be part of the Quality System (certification ISO 9001), started the dialogue between the management and the employees, improved the company climate and promoted company solidarity measures and a perception of "scattered responsibility" among the employees. 6.7 Workable work (SERV, Belgium, Flanders) The SERV (Flanders Social and Economic Council), the Foundation Innovation & Work and Flanders Synergy searched for validated cases of good practice, usable instruments and methodologies in European projects and networks. In dialogue with the social partners, researchers, academics, consultants, managers and policy makers, they decided which of those instruments and methodologies can be used for the Flemish labour market and thus can be translated and adjusted to this local context. The objective was to improve the quality of work and performance of businesses and organisations by developing instruments that strengthen or extend the knowledge, insight and review of social innovation to all stakeholders. Based on company visits in Finland, the Netherlands and the UK, peer reviews and critical feedback of social partners and consultants, four products were produced: 34

35 1. definition- argumentation cards (to discuss, sensitize and inform people on social innovation), 2. a training module on social innovation, 3. a follow-up questionnaire on participation and communication in a social innovation project (to support organisations at regular intervals during the change project), 4. a forum theatre play on social innovation (to explore situations in participants own workplaces). More people learned about social innovation and the involvement in discussions on social innovation was higher thanks to the discussion cards. The forum theatre has proven to be very powerful in strengthening communication and in discussing the non-discussable by creating a safe environment where reflection and action is stimulated. 35

36 III. Overall framework: Sustainable career management In this chapter we describe the overall framework of sustainable career management used in the context of the European Network Career & AGE (Age, Generations, Experience) and we explain in detail the six dimensions of this framework in terms of the organisational level. For each dimension we will give relevant examples stemming from the validated examples of good practice discussed earlier. 1. Definitions and concepts 1.1 Careers A career refers to the pattern of work-related experiences an individual encounters during his or her professional life (Greenhaus, Callanan & Godshalk, 2010; Hall, 2002). It is a complex mosaic of objective situations and events, and subjective experiences. One of the most important evolutions of the past decades is that this pattern of experiences is no longer, or should no longer, be restricted to the context of one single organisation (Arthur & Rousseau, 1996; Sullivan & Baruch, 2009; Hall, 2002). Moreover, career development can mean much more than making logically often vertically structured steps or promotions accompanied with growth in status and power (Inkson, 2007). Over an individual s life course, many events can happen both in individuals personal lives and in the broader organisational and societal context that affect the career choices individuals make, which make careers highly unpredictable. This means that careers are highly subjective and complex, unique to each individual and dynamic over time. For organisations, this implies that it is difficult to get grip upon the individual career of every single employee. Moreover, as for more and more employees careers no longer take place within the context of one single organisation, this results in a different view on the ownership of a career. When an individual leaves his or her employer, the employment relationship with this specific employer ends but the career continues. Stated differently, a career is not the property of an organisation but is owned by the individual. It is the individual who is considered as being the owner of his or her career. At the same time, careers and the management of careers is highly relevant for organisations as for their continuity they depend to a greater or lesser extent - on their human capital. Inversely, career management policies undertaken by organisations can have substantial implications for individuals. Indeed, organisations have a strong influence on careers, through their career policies and practices. Differently stated, individuals careers do not develop in a vacuum but are affected by the contexts in which they unfold; the organisational context as well as the broader labour market, but also the private context of individuals personal lives. Careers can hence be conceived as eco-systems (Baruch, 2014). This also means that when an organisation ends the employment relationship with an employee, this does not mean the end of the career for those employees who are not yet facing retirement. Careers evolve within the context of a broader external labour market and are hence also affected by the broader socio-economic environment and the policy measures 36

37 taken by governments and labour market intermediaries. This brings us to the societal dimension of careers: the concern of policy makers for careers which ensure sustainable employment for each individual. Careers are broader than employment alone. Periods of unemployment, career breaks, parttime work are just a few examples of transitions that can be part of an individual s career. And these transitions do not occur fluently for every individual. Even though the time dimension is inherent to the notion of a career, time is not a synonym for continuity. For example, it is not always easy for an individual to see the link between what he or she is doing in his daily job at this moment and the implications for their employability in the long run. The cumulating effect of experiences can have major implications for someone s long-term employability but is often not considered from that perspective. 1.2 Career Management Career management refers to all the processes and practices that manage the development of individuals along a path of experiences and jobs (Hall, 2002). In the contemporary view on careers, careers are considered as boundaryless and individuals are expected to take charge of their own career development (e.g. by reflecting on their career values and competencies, and investing in career planning and selfdevelopment). The organisation as well as governments can provide tools, resources, processes and structures that allow employees to assess and develop themselves and to plan their career pathway based on the organisational reality (Baruch, 2004). For the individual this implies that much has become possible today for those individuals who wish to actively take charge of their career. However, this also poses a threat since in reality the group that actively guides and directs its career, and possesses the necessary career competencies to navigate their careers, is still relatively small (De Vos & Soens, 2008; Dewilde & De Vos, 2009). This entails risks for the employability of this group when jobs and organisations change so dramatically that they no longer fit in the new environment. For organisations the opportunity of self-directedness is that one can invest much more in talents of employees and that they become more involved in their personal development. Moreover research and practice show that offering an attractive career perspective is an important factor in attracting and retaining of employees (De Vos & Meganck, 2009). Career management is, especially for the well-educated, a crucial element in the employee value proposition of an organisation. 1.3 Sustainable career management Sustainable career management refers to those career policies that facilitate the workforce in working longer, differently and with a higher number of employees. As career management is generally considered to be an important functional domain of HRM, sustainable career management refers to all the processes and practices that manage the development of individuals along a path of experiences and jobs (Hall, 2002), with respect for employees, openness towards different stakeholders and in view of continuity. Sustainability in careers, however, does not automatically equal lifetime employment in one single organisation. 37

38 Sustainable career management can be considered at different levels: system, organisation and individual. In this paper we elaborate on the organisational level, in the forthcoming paper we will address sustainable career management at the individual level. For an elaboration of sustainable career management at the system level, we refer the interested reader to white paper 1 (De Vos & Gielens, 2014). For organisations, sustainable career management means more than designing an attractive career perspective for (core) employees. Underlying the notion of sustainable career management is the principle of balancing: a balance between organisational and individual needs; between support and active involvement of employees; between a tailor-made approach and inclusion of all employees; between the present and future. In this sense, sustainable career management is considered as a sub-part of sustainable HRM characterized by respect for employees, openness for different stakeholders, and continuity (De Prins, De Vos, Van Beirendonck & Segers, 2014). From this balancing perspective, six ingredients of sustainable career management can be discerned. In what follows, these six dimensions will be described. This framework has been developed based upon the research conducted as part of the Chair sustainable careers (Ans De Vos). This research consisted of a survey among a sample of 782 organisations, case studies in 15 organisations, and a currently ongoing employee and line manager survey in a subset of organisations. 38

39 Career support Anticipating Sustainable Employability & workability Tailoring Career management Inclusive Employee active involvement Fig.13. De Vos A. (2013). Overall framework for Sustainable Career Management 2. Dimensions of sustainable career management 2.1 Focus on employability and workability Career management essentially comes down to a matching process of individual and organisational needs (Baruch, 2004). Sustainable career management addresses this matching process with a long-term view in mind by focusing on ways to ensure employability of employees in the short and the long run, with explicit attention also for their work ability and vitality, i.e. the sustainable employment of employees. Sustainable employment is defined as employees having the opportunity to perform work with preservation of health and wellbeing during their working life, now and in the future (Van der Klink, Bültmann, Brouwer, Burdorf, Schaufeli, Zijlstra, and Van Der Wilt, 2011). The value aspect of work is emphasized: work must add value for the organisation as well as for the employee to be sustainable. This implies that sustainable career management is more than matching current organisational needs with available competencies on the internal or external labour market (De Vos and Dries, 2013). A focus on employability implies attention for the career potential of individuals, enabling their growth and facilitating their career security by investing in the development of competencies and talent (De Vos, De Hauw, and Van der Heijden, 2011). By workability, we mean attention for a sustainable work pressure in order to safeguard the physical, psychological and sociological ability of people to work (Ilmarinen, Tuomi, and Seitsamo, 2005). Careers imply a time frame and this is also connected to the idea of sustainable careers: no short-term view on overambitious challenges in a job today with the risk of burnout tomorrow, but attention for a workable career that will last even longer for the younger generations. 39


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