Nowadays, organizations are placing much emphasis on developing the graduates’ functional skills and knowledge. Yet, they tend to neglect on nurturing the graduates’ social skills – a critical element for successful interactions and collaboration. Hence, there is a compelling need for organizations to develop the graduates’ Employee Innovation as well as interpersonal skills for continued organization success.

Many organizations continue to grapple with the challenges of how to keep ambitious graduates engaged, as well as how to provide the rapid career progression and personal development they desire. Failing to meet these challenges has real business impact, as unfulfilled young employees turn to seek opportunities elsewhere and leave frustrated leaders questioning their ability to meet the demands of the Generation Y graduates.


This raises a question many organizations struggle to answer: How do they apply what seem to be traditional (and possibly outdated) approaches to development and career advancement for Generation Y employees?

We believe the answer lies in understanding what makes your graduates tick – such as doing real work, personal development, advancement and opportunity – and using tools which are already at your disposal to match their career goals with opportunities within the organization. It is also vital for leaders to set the right examples, implement a sound and measurable performance management system, offer a mentoring / coaching program to enhance their skills, and meet their work-life balance expectations.

Work measurement – the hidden resource

Work measurement, also known as job evaluation, allows leaders to assess jobs and examine the factors that capture what and how a role contributes to the organization. By comparing the scores allocated to the factors identified for each role across the organization, leaders can ascertain if the role is achievable, as well as identify the gaps between assumed and actual career paths.

More specifically, the application of the work measurement framework can help organizations place their graduates in the right roles and develop clear advancement plans for them. For the graduate, work measurement breaks the job down into meaningful components – the know-how (skills and experience), problem-solving (ability to meet challenges) and accountability (impact on the organization). This would then shed some light on the requirements of their role as well as the areas they need to develop in order to advance further. For both the employer and the graduate, a good work measurement framework will also identify career paths that may not have been obvious at first glance.

Helping graduates develop their path

Our experience has been that clients with a well-developed work measurement system are able to explain the following to the Generation Y graduates more easily:

  • the requirements of a particular role – what do they need to succeed in the role?
  • how would their current role prepare them for their next role – what areas should they develop now to help them in their future role?
  • the relativity between seemingly disparate roles – what are the other available roles that require similar skills and competencies?
  • a clear path to a leadership or next step role in the organization – what goals and development plans can be put in place?

For leaders within the organization, the work measurement framework can assist in engaging and motivating graduates, provide a framework on which to base performance development conversations, as well as serve as a guide to develop the graduates into future leaders.

While the work measurement framework is predominantly used by HR professionals as a means of remuneration strategy and benchmarking, this trusted methodology is proving its worth by revealing a far wider application, including how to increase capability and engagement in the workplace. Good news is, you already hold the key to unlocking the key elements of this framework. It is just a matter of application.

Work measurement and reward go hand in hand for most of our clients. In fact, some organizations only use it to assign a level of pay to a role. Reality is, work measurement is far more powerful than it seems – it is capable of providing our clients a strong foundation for talent management, career-pathing, succession planning, and organization design. It can also help answer questions around the fit between the role and the individual.

With just a small amount of effort, the framework that you have in place can truly deliver greater value and insights if you know how to utilize it correctly.

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About Contributor

Huynh Duy Tan is the Group Product Services Manager at Korn Ferry Hay Group Vietnam. He specialises in designing bespoke solutions for clients from various sectors. Tan has deep experience in architecting bespoke talent, leadership development solutions, and employee effectiveness solutions for Vietnam and ASEAN countries. He is a certified practitioner in the use of various assessment instrument such as Talent Q, Leadership Styles & Organizational Climate, Personal Motivators and Values, Emotional Social Competency Inventory, Manager Competency Model.

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