It Takes A Village

ST. PETERSBURG, FL (July 11, 2007) – When it comes to career development, many companies have an “it takes a village” mindset. According to a just-released study conducted by the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp), 60% of the 382 polled companies have a career development program in place and 41% of those use in-house coaches and/or mentors to drive development. The study also suggests that people who want coaching and mentoring are better off working in the rich and diverse “villages” of large corporations.

“We asked about career development outside of skill-based training and found that this kind of thing is a community effort,” said Jay Jamrog, Senior Vice President of Research at i4cp. “By far the most common type of development programs are mentoring and coaching. People aren’t relying on trainers. They’re relying on one another, tapping into each other’s experience and expertise, especially in larger corporations.”

The study findings showed that use of coaching/mentoring programs rises along with company size. For example, 48% of companies with fewer than 500 employees use coaches and mentors. That rises to 58% for those firms with 3,000 to 5,000 employees, and it peaks at 65% for companies with 10,000 or more employees.

The study also found that career development programs are an up-and-coming trend. Of the companies that presently do not have such programs, four-fifths plan to implement one within the next two years.

“There are a couple of possible reasons for this,” said Jamrog. “First, a lot of companies are complaining about talent and leadership shortages, and these programs are one of the best ways of addressing those shortages. Second, younger employees attach a great amount of value to these kinds of programs. If they don’t feel they’re getting anywhere or learning anything, they’ll just leave. So these are retention as well as development programs.”

Among other findings, the study showed that more than half of companies (53%) select career development candidates by manager referral, although a number did say they use a combination of manager referral and employee self-selection. Also, the majority of companies (76%) integrate their programs with talent management goals, and 81% say career development is integrated with business objectives.

“That just shows good sense,” said Jamrog. “Development is as important for the organization as a whole as it is for the careers of individuals.”

The Career Development Practitioner Consensus Survey was conducted by i4cp, in conjunction with, in June 2007.

For more information about this study, please contact Greg Pernula at or via phone at (727) 345-2226.

About i4cp, inc.

Building on the 35-year history of its predecessor (the Human Resource Institute), the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp, inc.) improves corporate productivity through a combination of research, community, tools and technology focused on the management of human capital. With more than 100 leading organizations as members, including many of the best-known companies in the world, i4cp draws upon one of the industry’s largest and most experienced research teams and executives-in-residence to produce more than 10,000 pages annually of rapid, reliable and respected research and analysis surrounding all facets of the management of people in organizations. Additionally, i4cp identifies and analyzes the upcoming major issues and future trends that are expected to influence workforce productivity and provides member clients with tools and technology to execute leading-edge strategies and “next practices” on these issues and trends. i4cp is a for-profit company with its headquarters in Seattle, WA, and research offices in St. Petersburg, FL.