Discourse versus reality?
This contrasts with what we observed in our first survey in 2012. Back then, too, the importance of "the right person in the right place" and a commitment to talent development were emphasized. At the same time, the vast majority (more than 90%) of surveyed employers stated that keeping employees and ensuring continuity were two important objectives of their career policy. Career policies thus largely coincided with retention policies - which may (unintentionally) lead to stability rather than flexibility.
Even today, despite calls for more flexible careers, our labor market is primarily characterized by stability. Figures from the Steunpunt Werk show that the average job seniority among employees in Belgium between the ages of 15 and 64 hovers around 11 years. This figure has virtually remained unchanged in ten years. So employees are still staying put. We also see this in longitudinal research by SD Worx, based on payroll data of 176,768 white-collar workers at 18,823 employers between 2009 and 2019: 60% remained with the same employer during this period. Moreover, this stability increases with age - while in a context of longer careers it is precisely important to create dynamics throughout one's career.
We also see this reflected in how employees view their careers. Even though most feel that they are in the driving seat of their own career, many primarily see their current employer as the playing field for that career. The good news is that employees do look within their own organizations for opportunities to develop themselves further or to take internal career steps.
Career breakthrough survey - employees: 2012 : 44% "I aspire to stay with the same employer my entire career." 2020 : 55% "I would prefer to stay with the same employer my entire career."