Employers are mixing it up. Jobs, that is.
Some U.S. businesses are giving employees the chance to complete a stint in a different department or temporarily swap places with a colleague overseas.
Companies have long provided job rotations for higher level executives to give them a sense of how different departments operate, but now they are discovering that short- to medium-term moves for rank-and-file employees help workers sharpen their skills, stay motivated and identify new roles they might aim for in the future. Moreover, they help address a challenge that many companies are facing: how to better foster collaboration across different specialties and regions.
“In organizations today there is more emphasis on adaptability, teamwork and learning agility. Companies have to be flexible about creating opportunities for employees to opt into projects,” says Caroline Paxman, president of the Americas for SHL, a talent-measurement firm.
A 2011 survey by the Society for Human Resource Management found that 43% of employers offer cross-training of some kind to help workers develop proficiencies not related to their current jobs…