5 Unexpected ways to boost internal talent mobility

Satisfy employees’ diverse development goals with unique internal talent mobility opportunities.

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By Miriam Wallack

June 23, 2019


When people hear the term internal talent mobility, they automatically think of employees moving to new positions within their company. Although this is one way to implement internal talent mobility, this narrow definition takes away from the number of other ways that employees can participate in internal talent mobility.

It’s crucial for companies to think beyond this static definition so that they can meet their employees growing desire for relevant development opportunities. After all, not all employees are looking for an entirely new job at their company, but most are looking for growth opportunities. According to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Learning Report, 94% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their careers.

Internal talent mobility opportunities provide employees engaging and relevant experiences that meet their professional goals and actively improve their skills. For companies, internal talent mobility is about transferring skills across the organization in order to increase productivity and future proof their workforces agility.

1. Part-time projects

Part-time projects are the perfect way to provide your employees internal talent mobility while remaining in their existing roles. Such projects give employees the opportunity to gain hands on experience in new areas of interest without the leap of faith and responsibility of moving into a new full time role. Part-time projects can be cross-departmental or even global, allowing employees to network and learn from their colleagues. The key here is to allow employees to develop by selecting their own experiences to both broaden their horizons and develop targeted skills for their future.

With 48% of Millennials and 44% of Gen Zers ranking ‘opportunities for continued learning’ as one of the most important factors when considering to work at a company, part-time projects are a great way to meet your worforce’s growing desire for on-the-job development.

Part-time projects allow employees to explore their interests beyond their main roles in ways that quickly boost their skills and expand their experiences. Adding a project of 5 to 10 hours a week can provide employees the kind of professional development that could otherwise take years to amass.

Employees not only diversify their skill sets and experiences through projects, they also increase their capabilities and productivity. According to Deloitte, on-the-job development opportunities increase employee engagement by up to 30%. Engaged workers are more productive, happier, and more likely to stay at your company longer.

2. Mentorships

The knowledge, advice, and resources that a seasoned employee can share is priceless. Giving employees the opportunity to learn from their peers generates an environment of growth and development that establishes the foundation of internal talent mobility. WiIth 79% of Millennials believing that mentoring is crucial to their career success, mentohips is a must for companies who want to promote internal talent mobility.

Implementing a mentorship program gives employees the opportunity to find a peer that has the experience and skills that they are looking to develop. Mentors can provide employees valuable insights and expose them to new networks that can help them grow in their positions and build a career path. Employees also benefit from the personal guidance and support from mentors, which provides employees an advisor that they can always turn in. It’s also important to keep in mind that learning goes both ways in mentorship programs. Mentors gain leadership experience and build meaningful relationships with younger peers that promotes knowledge sharing and collaboration.

3. Internal job change opportunities

Although not so unexpected, internal job change opportunities greatly increases internal talent mobility by encouraging employees to move to new positions within their company. Internal job change opportunities allow employees to develop their careers and pursue their goals while still remaining part of their company. This concept is very appealing to employees, with the Harvard Business Review reporting that nearly 90% of employees would move to an internal position without any financial incentives.

Moreover, internal job change opportunities seem to be an expectation for the youngest generation in the workforce today. 75% of Gen Zers are interested in holding multiple roles within a company.

Internal job change opportunities give employees the ability to easily grow a career while being part of an organization that they already understand and feel connected to. Employees are more likely to stay at a company if they have the opportunity to take on multiple roles. Likewise, employers benefit from keeping top talent in their company and from saving millions of dollars on the costs involved in hiring new employees. Not to mention, companies that hire internally are 32% more likely to be satisfied with the quality of their new hires.


4. Relocation

Relocation increases internal talent mobility by providing employees the opportunity to move to an office outside of their own for their job. Working with new teams, under different management, and in a foreign location allows employees to grow their experiences and expand their skills in unique ways. International work experience gives employees a competitive edge in their talent as a global perspective is highly valued in today’s post-modern workplace.

Typically, employees who are looking for a totally new experience outside of their office would simply leave their job and take their skills and expertise with them. However, with relocation, employees can continue to develop at their company while bringing their skills to a new part of the organization. Based on a recent Indeed survey, 42% of Millennials would move if their company offered voluntary relocation.

5. Job swaps

Job swaps allow employees from different departments or locations to exchange jobs for a period of time. Through swapping roles, employees learn about a new position, collaborate with new teams, and operate under a new role. Job swaps increase internal talent mobility by giving employees the opportunity to experience new roles first hand. Employees learn the skills necessary to perform new job functions within an organization which furthers their development and tightens their skills gap.

Additionally, job swaps increase employees’ understanding of how other departments operate and encourages the transfer of knowledge and skills between departments. Job swaps give employees the chance to explore other positions within their company in order to better understand their career paths. Job swaps are often short-term and therefore a fraction of the cost of relocation as often the cost of relocation involves resettling entire families rather than an individual for a set, short period of time. The experience is still incredibly impactful on an employee’s career and emotional bond with the organization that made the experience possible.  

Conventional internal talent mobility opportunities just won’t cut it in today’s post-modern workforce. Especially in the absence of structured internal mobility efforts such as a digital internal talent marketplace, companies need to think creatively about how to provide employees with opportunities to grow without the constructs of full job changes. In order to successfully implement internal talent mobility and meet the growing desire for on-the-job development, your company must provide various types of internal talent mobility opportunities to satisfy the diverse growth and learning goals of your workforce.

InnerMobility by Gloat is an AI-powered internal talent marketplace connecting employees with personalized career development opportunities. It empowers employees to take control of their own careers and find their maximum productivity bliss within their current company. 


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