Why is labor mobility important?

    October 1, 2020

    Labor mobility is the movement of workers throughout different positions or grades in an organization. It usually refers to a vertical move upward, but it can also refer to a lateral move in which an employee retains their position but goes to a different team or department.

    Why is labor mobility important for employees?

    Employees want labor mobility because it usually means an increase in salary—often between 10 and 20 percent. In contrast, workers who stay in their current roles only see raises of around three percent per year.

    At the same time, labor mobility can mean a physical move that provides an employee with new experiences and/or a better quality of life. Or if an employee makes a lateral move to a different department, it can result in them acquiring new knowledge and skills that can improve their earning potential.

    Why is labor mobility important for employers?

    According to Investopedia, because increased labor mobility offers workers the opportunity to improve their personal and financial situations, they’re more likely to be happy at work. This in turn can have a positive impact on productivity and engagement.

    Facilitate labor mobility in your organization

    Clearly, labor mobility is important for employees. If you offer your people sufficient opportunities to advance and earn more, or to make lateral moves and gain more knowledge, it will make you a more attractive employer. That can help attract more top talent, which will provide your organization with the ability to innovate and grow. And that in turn can help you create even more opportunities for labor mobility, so you can establish a growth cycle that benefits both your employees and your business.

    At Kelly, we believe everyone should reach their full potential in work and in life. If you like this article and want related content on retaining, managing, recruiting, and hiring employees, visit our business resource center. 


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