“Promotion involves a change from one job to another that is better in status and responsibilities “
— Edwin B.Flippo.
5.2 Significance or importance of promotion
1. It increases the morale of an employee.
2. Removes absenteeism and labour turnover.
3. No problem in handling the existing employees.
4. Problems can be solved automatically.
5. Sincere efforts from the employees.
Promotion is the vertical movement of an employee within the organization. In other words, promotion refers to the upward movement of an employee from one job to another higher one, with increase in salary, status and responsibilities. Promotion may be temporary or permanent, depending upon the needs of the organization. There can be ‘dry promotion’ also where an employee is assigned to a higher level job without increase in pay. An example of ‘dry promotion’ is a University professor made Head of the Department with no increase in salary.
Promotion has an in-built motivational value as it elevates the authority, power and status of an employee within an organization. It is considered good personnel policy to fill vacancies in a higher job through promotions from within because such promotions provide an inducement and motivation to the employees and also remove feelings of stagnation and frustration.
5.3 Transfer and Termination
A transfer refers to lateral movement of employees within the same grade, from one job to another.
According to Flipo,”a transfer is a change in job (accompanied by a change in the place of a job) of an employee without a change in responsibility or remuneration”.
Transfer differ from promotion in the sense that the latter involves a change of job involving increase in salary, authority, status and responsibility, while all these remains unchanged/stagnant in the case of former. Also, transfer is frequent and regular whereas promotions are infrequent, if not irregular.
Transfer may be initiated either by the company or the employee. In practice, the company may transfer the employee to the place where he/she can prove more useful and effective.
5.4 Career planning
Employees join organizations to fulfill their career goals and aspiration, on the one hand, and organizations provide them opportunities available with them, on the other. The difference between the aspirations and organizational opportunities, if any, gives rise to a situation of conflict between the two. If the conflict, or say, incongruence is allowed to persist, employees experience dissatisfaction and, in turn, withdraw themselves from being actively engaged in the productive pursuits.
The same underlines need for the career planning, as discussed earlier. The career planning is a process to assist the employees to achieve a better match between their career goals and the opportunities available in the organization.
The career planning as a process involving the following steps
Analysis employee needs and aspiration
Sometimes, most of the employees do not know their career anchor and aspirations. Organizations also assume the career goals and aspirations of employees which need not be in tune with the reality. Therefore, first of all, an analysis of the employee career anchors, aspiration and goals must be done through objective assessment.
This assessment is based on personal inventory. Since most employee do not have a clear idea of their career anchor and aspiration, they therefore, need to be provided as much information about these matters as possible informing what kind of work would suit the employee most considering his/her skills, experience and aptitude into account.
Analyzing career opportunities
Once career aspirations and goals of employee are known, there is a need to analyze various career opportunities available to offer under prevailing career paths in the organization. Career paths indicate career progression. Here also, since many employees may not be aware of their own career progression path, this needs to be made known to them.
Sometimes organizations may offer career progression at a particular level for both young direct recruits and own older employees through promotions. Recognizing varying kinds of career anchor and aspirations of the two types of employees, organizations need to outline career paths striking a balance between those of internal employees with experience but without professional degree and those new recruits with excellent professional degree but lacking experience.
Identifying congruence and incongruence
At this stage, a mechanism for identifying congruence between employee career aspiration and organizational career system is developed. This helps identify specific areas where mismatch or incongruence prevails. This is done through relating different jobs to different career opportunities enable the organization to develop realistic career goals, both long-term and short-term.
Action plans and periodic review
Having identified the mismatch, now it is necessary to formulate an alternative strategy to deal with the same. Some of the strategies adopted by several organizations include the following:
o Changes in career system by creating new career paths, new incentives, new reward by redesigning jobs for lateral movement.
o Change in the employee’s hopes and aspiration by creating new needs, new goals and new aspirations.
o Seek new basis of integration through problem solving, negotiation, comprises, etc.
5.5 Promotion Policy
The following characteristics make a promotion policy as sound and good policy
- It must provide equal opportunities for promotion across the jobs, departments, and regions.
- It must be applied uniformly to all employees irrespective of their background.
- It must be fair and impartial.
- The basis of promotion must be clearly specified and made known to the employees.
- It must be correlated with career planning. Both quick (bunching) and delayed promotions must be avoided as these ultimately adversely affect the organization effectiveness.
- Appropriate authority must be entrusted with the task of making final decision.
- Promotion must be made on trial basis. The progress of the employee must be monitored. In case, the promoted employee does not make the required process, provision must be therein the promotion policy to revert him/her to the former post.
- The policy must be good blending of promotions from both inside and outside the organization.
5.7 Internal promotion system
Thus a promotion system involves clear-cut definitions of line of future advancement, detailed personnel records, specific promotion plans, definite allocation of responsibility for identifying promotable individuals and a centralized coordination of promotion function.
Beach has very described promotion systems for different categories of personnel in the organization. He observes:
“For unskilled and semi skilled workers, entry is made into ‘labour pool’ and thereafter upgrading takes place on the basis of seniority or a combination of both seniority and ability. The skilled craftsmen are recruited as helpers or apprentices and thereafter upward mobility occurs up to the position of foreman, inspectors or production co-coordinators. Entry in clerical jobs is through appointment as clerks, typists or stenographers and subsequently promotions are made to higher positions such as that of secretaries or administrative assistants. In professional jobs, entry is made as assistants engineers, engineers, senior, engineers, project engineers or even managers. Jobs in managerial positions are filled up by individuals who enter as management trainees or assistant supervisors, finally they are promoted to middle level management positions and ultimately to top management positions.”
Promotions may be based on either the “rank-in the-job” or “rank-in the man”. In former system, the content of the job including level of skill efforts and responsibility form the basis. In this system emphasis is laid on job analysis, job evaluation, organizational planning etc. These determine the pay and status in the organization. In the later system, emphasis is put on proficiency of the individuals. It determines the position level in the hierarchy of career pattern.
5.8 Seniority versus Promotion
“Seniority” refers to the length of service in the company or in its various plants or in its department, or in a particular position. Under straight plant-wise seniority in all jobs, promotions go to the oldest employee, provided that he is fit for the job. Occupational seniority may be within be within a department, within a division or in the entire plant.
Seniority offers certain rights and benefits. These are:
- Some rights are based on competitive seniority among employees Rights to promotion, transfer, layout and recall are such examples.
- Other benefits have nothing with one man relative to another, e.g., a man may be entitled to have 15 days casual leave in a year, a pension after 30 years and a certain amount of sick leave after 6 months service.
- There is a great controversy on the question of whether promotions should be given on the basis of seniority or ability. Trade unions are of the views that promotions should be given on the basis of seniority, while managements favour promotions on the basis of merit and ability.
- If a promotion is given to a qualified man in recognition of his performance or with a view to creating an incentive for him, then it should be based on his ability.
- If on the other hand, promotion is given to recognize and reward senior employees, hen it should be on the basis of seniority.
- The most widely used basis for promotion combines both ability and seniority. The best policy would be to ensure that whenever there are two employees of equal seniority, ability or merit should be the deciding factor in a promotion. Where, however, there are two employees of almost equal competence, seniority should be the decisive factor. Such a policy would satisfy the management which prefers ability, and trade unions which prefer seniority.
5.9 Benefits of promotion policy
The usual policy is to take merit in to consideration. Sometimes length of service, education, training courses completed, previous work history, etc are factors which are given weight while deciding on a promotion. Although promotions are made on the basis of ability, hard work, co-operation, merit, honesty, many informal influences are powerful determinants of a promotional policy.
For higher posts, persons are picked by the top executives:
- Who think and feel just as he does;
- Who value loyalty top him and to the organization; and
- Who have social, political, economic and religious interests similar to his own?
Top executives tend to choose those who are carbon copies of themselves.
5.10 Criteria for a sound promotion policy
Promotion can be made on various bases. Following are the major ones:
v Seniority i.e., length of service
v Merit, i.e., performance
v Educational and Technical qualification
v Potential for better performance
v Career and succession plan
v Vacancies based on organizational chart
v Motivational strategies like job enlargement.
“A transfer involves the shifting of an employee from one job to another with special reference to changing responsibilities or compensation”.
5.12 Objectives of transfer
Employees generally resist company-initiated transfer because,
1. They suspect their victimization by management.
2. They are unwilling to move to an unknown place.
3. They dislike leaving their social group of friends and relatives.
4. They develop proprietary interest in their workplace and in other concomitants of their positions such as desks, machines, tools, lockers etc.
5. They develop craft consciousness.
5.13 Types of transfer
Employee transfers may be classified into following types:
- Production transfer
Such transfers are made when labour requirement in one division or branch is declining. The surplus employees from such division are transferred to those divisions or branches where there is shortage of employees. Such transfers help avoid lay off and stabilize employment.
- Remedial transfer
Such transfers are affected to correct the wrong selection and placement of the employees. A wrongly placed employee is transferred to more suitable job. Such transfers protect the interest of the employee.
- Replacement transfer
Replacement transfers are similar to production transfers in their inherent, i.e. to avoid layoffs. Replacement transfer are affected when labour requirement are declining and are designed to replace a new employee by an employee who has been in the organization for a sufficiently long period. The purpose of these transfers is to retain long service employees in the organization and also give them some relief from the heavy pressure of work.
- Versatility transfer
These transfers are also known as ‘job rotation’ In such transfer. Employees are made move from one job to another to gain varied and broader experience of work. It benefits both the employee and organization. It reduces boredom and monotony and gives job enrichment to the employee. Also, employees’ versatility can be utilized by the organization as and when needed.
- Shift transfer
These transfers are affected by the organizations where work progresses for 24 hours or in shift. Employees are transferred from one shift to another usually on the basis of mutual understanding and convenience.
- Penalty transfer
Management may use transfer as an instrument to penalize employees involved in undesirable activities in the organization. Employee transfer from one’s place of convenience to a far-flung and remote area is considered as a penalty to the employee.
Dismissal is termination of service of an employee as a punitive measure. This may occur either on account of unsatisfactory performance or misconduct. Persistent failure on the part of employee to perform up to t6he expectations or specified standard is considered as unsatisfactory performance.
Wilful; violation of rules and regulation by the employee is treated as misconduct. Dismissal is a drastic step seriously impairing the earnings and image of the employee. Dismissal as a measure should be resorted to with great care and caution. It must be justified and duly supported by the just and sufficient cause. Before an employee is dismissed, he must be served advance notice to explain his position. The reasons for dismissal must be clearly made known to the employee.