5 strategies to retain your talent with Internal Mobility

The need for Internal Mobility:

Employee turnover has become a vital issue for many organisations in 2022. Unfortunately, the great resignation and two years of a pandemic didn’t make it any better. In these times of constant change, finding, attracting and keeping the talent interested in their company is an essential task for many HR Managers.

Internal Mobility has many advantages, such as encouraging the people who would otherwise leave the company to stay, breaking the silos within the organisation and having skill diversity in teams. In addition, people already working within the organisation are easier to onboard than someone new. The most important benefit of Internal Mobility is that it makes employees believe that they can have successful careers within the organisation. Once that trust is established, the employees are most likely to become ambassadors for your company. 

What is Internal Mobility?

Let’s start with a fundamental question. What’s Internal Mobility? Although HR professionals often use it, what does it mean more than being a buzzword?

Internal Mobility means moving employees vertically and laterally within the company. A vertical movement means an employee is transitioning from a junior to a senior position in the same role. In contrast, a lateral movement means an employee is shifting from one role to another with the same seniority level. 

The why puzzle:

Let’s not waste our time and focus on why Internal Mobility is essential for your organisation. 

“The Law of Mobility: Mobility is inevitable. The choice is either Internal or External. Should you choose to accept it.”

Internal Mobility Strategies:

Now the question is how to implement internal Mobility in your organisation? What are the best ways of doing it, and how to ensure it benefits your company’s needs? 

To help talent managers solve these puzzles, we have identified the following five strategies. These strategies are helpful in structurally implementing Internal Mobility in an organisation. Also, these strategies are actionable and involve all stakeholders and bridge the gaps between them. Therefore, follow these strategies as a step-by-step approach to maximise your Internal Mobility efforts.

  1. Map the skills of the organisation
  2. Create a career path for employees
  3. Reskill & Upskill your employees
  4. Incentivise your managers about Internal Mobility
  5. Use Talent Management tools for effective implementation

Map the skills of the organisation

Mapping skills within an organisation is the first and foremost step needed to make better internal mobility decisions. The most significant advantage of conducting this is that the ​​mapped skills could be made accessible to everyone inside your organisation.

It’s important to know your organisation’s skills and identify any gaps. This helps you figure out which employees need what kind of training. Skill mapping can help you find a replacement for an employee who is sick or on leave. On an organisational level, skill mapping helps identify the strengths and weaknesses of your company. 

Actionable steps: 

  1. Identify your employees’ skill levels and spot top talents in their field.
  2. After mapping skills, based on the findings, prepare a learning & training catalogue for your employees. 
  3. Facilitate mentorship possibilities to your employees who would be interested in being a mentor to someone junior. 


Pro tip: Mapping the skills of the organisation is the first step in executing an effective Internal Mobility strategy. 

Create a career path for employees

Career pathing: It is employees building their career roadmap within the organisation according to their career aspirations. 

What are the benefits of that roadmap? First, it will give employees a purpose and a sense of future safety and development opportunities within the company. Due to that roadmap, your employees will stay & grow with you. It will also be an effective strategy to retain your top talent. 

You can also use career pathing to learn the skills of the future. Once you identify the skills, you can create their ideal development plan to prepare them for the next step. Thus, you can motivate your employees to train and learn.

Actionable steps:

  1. Identify training needs according to the career paths
  2. Create the learning goals with respect to employees’ career aspirations.
  3. Create a unique development plan for each employee.


Pro tip: As career pathing is driven by employees, it’s the best way to motivate and empower them to grow in their careers.

Reskill & Upskill your employees

Reskilling and upskilling employees is an essential step for organisations in 2022. Upskill your employees by keeping their future career aspirations and organisational goals in mind. In addition, expanding employees’ skill sets is necessary and valuable for an organisation. 

Actionable steps: 

    1. Provide peer-to-peer mentoring/coaching. 
    2. According to future projects, create a well-equipped workforce by focusing on reskilling and upskilling. 
    3. Create a future-proof workforce by investing in closing skill gaps. 


Pro tip: Don’t underestimate your Internal learning potential.

Incentivise your managers about Internal Mobility

Who plays the crucial role in implementing Internal Mobility? It is the managers. Managers usually don’t let their top talents go quickly, so the only way to change this is by incentivising the managers to actively participate in Internal Mobility. 

Actionable steps: 

  1. Break the silos within the organisation by creating cross-functional teams.
  2. Set up the development-focused performance reviews in your organisation. 
  3. Encourage managers to look for talent internally when recruiting for new positions and reward those who are successful in doing so.


Pro tip: Internal Mobility should be the norm, not the exception.  

Use Talent Management tools for effective implementation

Implementing all these strategies seems stressful, but it’s worth the effort. You might feel overwhelmed by the workload and start wondering where to implement it? Talent Management tools are helpful in effectively implementing Internal Mobility processes. 

Technology is an enabler to simplify and efficiently work on many tasks simultaneously. Choose a platform where you can have an overview of your employees’ talent profiles, and your employees can work according to their learning and development needs. In addition, a talent platform should enable your workforce to follow up on their activities quickly.  

Actionable steps: 

  1. Structurally implement Internal Mobility in your organisation by using various functions of a Talent Platform such as mapping skills, career pathing, upskilling workforce etc., 
  2. Utilise the platform to facilitate peer-to-peer mentoring or coaching among your employees.
  3. Maximise your Internal Mobility actions by using technology to go beyond the limits of geographical restrictions. 


Pro tip: Talent Management tools help effectively implement your Internal Mobility strategy and improve the HR processes by serving the employee and organisational needs.

Conclusion: Create a Talent Management Ecosystem

A talent management ecosystem is an internal resource where an organisation has a pool of internal talent for future mobility moves. Creating that ecosystem has many advantages that aren’t possible with the traditional approaches to talent management. For example, a talent management ecosystem makes the company’s skills accessible to everyone, identifies the gaps, and summarises the company’s strengths and weaknesses.

An effective talent management ecosystem should have all the organisation’s skills mapped and facilitate dedicated career paths for the employees based on their skills and development needs. Furthermore, using a platform, talent managers should be able to find the internal talent easily, and the internal talent can effortlessly apply for the internal positions once they are available. A robust talent platform should be intuitive and easy to use and give an overview of your whole internal talent, their motivations and career aspirations. Hence creating a talent management ecosystem is the solution to execute all the Internal Mobility strategies and best practices. 

If you want to learn more about Internal Mobility, listen to the HR Magazine podcast on Talent Mapping with Ellen Neirynck and Kristof Stevens for more information.




Co-Founder & COO

I always found a way to get or to create for myselfs jobs where I could achieve my life’s purpose: connecting with people and helping them grow (while growing myself).

After studying general management and HR in Lyon, I joined Solvay where I had several rich & diverse HR experiences. I worked in Lyon, Brussels and Paris, to finally come back to Brussels and accept the challenge of creating and managing Solvay’s Digital Studio flagship.

Being an intrapreneur leading an innovation incubator, taking part of creating a new ways of working platform that transformed the company culture and HR woke up my inner intrapreneur and made me jump into co-founding huapii!

Today at huapii I use my HR and change experience to make the workplace a developing and empowering place to be.