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  • Robin

    June 1, 2021 at 1:55 AM

    It seems to be a good strategy for businesses to hire employees who spends their entire lives in the same organisation. Some organisations prefer to have such a recruitment policy considering cost benefit, risk aversement and adaptability issues, but I am of the view that this approach does more harm than good both for the organisation and the employees alike.

    The proponents of the policy of hiring employees for lifetime claims several benefits to this approach like the adaptability to the organisation, lower training cost, already known behaviour etc. Let me shed some light into each of these aspects and how could they go wrong.

    The training cost would be reduced by hiring employees for lifetime in a scenario where the processes, systems and roles does not change much during their entire career. Apparently it doesn’t seem to be the case in this fast changing world. Most types of jobs are changing character, some jobs are getting entirely phased out while other new types of jobs are getting introduced. Employees who has experience working in other organisations may have already worked with a new technology and often functions as a subject matter expert when the current organisation implements that technology. While implementing a new technology, training the permanent employees in house cannot match the effectiveness of hiring someone who has working experience in the area.

    There are also cases where the employees would get reluctant for changes, while the culture of switching jobs where the employees could learn and work on new things makes them more flexible and open to change. Yet it is not advisable to switch jobs frequently because it takes some time to get adapted to the organisation. The employees hired for lifetime scores high in this criteria: they would have already got accustomed with the organisational culture and practices.

    While viewing from the employee perspective, many of them find it easy to stay in the same organisation for entire career because they wish to avoid the risk of leaving their comfort zones and stepping into unknown path. Some may have family obligations and proximity in location which compels them to stay in the company for lifetime. Yet if a situation arises that they have to switch jobs, it becomes a painful affair.

    There are many more aspects to the question of hiring for lifetime versus hiring for specific project requirement. Even though both approaches have its own pros and cons, I do not find the approach of hiring employees to work for entire lifetime advisable.

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