Research shows internal hiring opportunities lead to increased employee engagement and retention.
Employees who want new job opportunities may not have to look beyond their employer, because internal mobility is on the rise. According to LinkedIn Learning's 2021 Workplace Learning Report—which surveyed a combination of talent development professionals, learners, and managers—internal hiring comprised nearly one-fifth of all hires in 2020, compared to about 17 percent in 2019. That's an almost 20 percent increase. Further, more than half of organizations say they are now prioritizing internal mobility compared to before the COVID-19 pandemic.
That's especially good for companies focused on employee retention. The report found that at organizations with high internal mobility, employees typically stay for about 5.5 years, compared to slightly less than three years for employees at companies with low internal mobility.
The report also links internal mobility and learning opportunities with increased engagement—employees who shifted roles within the company were more likely engaged than those who remain in the same position. More than four out of five of the talent development professionals who participated in the research agreed that engaged workers are more likely to secure new roles compared to less-engaged employees.
Despite the benefits of internal mobility and its rising importance, few companies have a dedicated individual responsible for internal hiring. Only 13 percent of talent development professionals said their employers had centralized internal mobility to a single team or person, while the rest said accountability was spread across the organization.
Instead, talent development professionals often serve in a consultative role, such as by helping leaders identify current and future skills gaps; assisting with building programs for internal mobility, such as career paths; and identifying skill adjacencies—skill sets related to new abilities the organization wants to build.