Employee development has never been more important as a means of keeping employees engaged and maintaining competitive advantage. High-potential talent today expects mentorship from management and a clear outline for success with formal development offerings, yet many HR departments are increasingly overwhelmed with administrative tasks. Employee development programs often suffer, leading to a gradual erosion of bench strength.

For businesses in growth mode or in any fast-expanding market, this problem is intensified: up-and-coming talent must be deployed into more challenging positions. That means instilling new leadership skills quickly so they can perform in a new and more complex role. But without solid employee and leadership development plans, those companies are likely to find human capital a major impediment to successful execution of their business strategy.

New technology presents a unique opportunity to reinvent the employee development process so that it is not only perfectly customized to each individual and role, but also focused on key leadership abilities instead of narrow job skills, and equally driven by motivated high-potential employees as by their managers. Given the trends in mobile device use and social media, the generation entering the workforce is particularly primed to embrace such tools for their career development.

In the Korn/Ferry Institute white paper Leadership development in the digital age: Online and mobile platforms hold the promise of accelerating and individualizing talent management, David Marzo, Leslie Jane Parsons, and Andy Simmons of Futurestep explore how modern technology can be used to create innovative talent development.

“By giving individual employees a tool for self-improvement, organizations can create a culture of learning and enhance the collective capability and productivity of the enterprise.”

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