Slade Group has partnered with Prima Careers, one of the leading career transition and outplacement firms in Australia. Prima is the Australian and New Zealand arm of the Career Star Group (CSG).
CSG is the world’s largest career transition company, with 1000+ offices in 102 countries. CSG provides career support for over 80,000 individuals annually and is known for its coordinated, high touch, and high quality delivery of international career transition programs.
The Top Six Career Transition Challenges
Everything, from global economies, to the way individuals spend time each day has changed as a result of COVID-19. Smart companies are reviewing, and refining their business model, and dramatically changing the way they support employees and interact with their customers. Prima has also responded to the Covid environment by ‘reinventing’ outplacement delivery to meet the challenges and demands of career transition in this newly emerging employment market. Below are the Top Six Career Transition Challenges that have emerged since the onset of COVID-19.
Continue reading to find out more about Prima’s responses to these challenges.
1. Proactive mental health support
The combination of greater uncertainty, significantly higher unemployment rates and increased isolation has resulted in the highly reported increase of personal stress and anxiety during career transition. Clinically significant levels of mental distress rose from 18.9% in 2018/19 to 27.3% in 2020 (The Lancer Psychiatry 2020).
Prima’s career transition programs now provide unlimited psychological help for all participants and their families. As part of their program every participant has unlimited access to confidential consultations with one of the Prima EAP psychologists. Participants and family members also have unlimited access to the Prima EAP and mental health online resource centre. This allows participants to proactively manage their physical and mental health during transition, through access to Australia’s leading organisations and experts on a range of issues including financial stress, anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol dependency etc. The Education section includes regularly updated webinars, articles and videos on a variety of emerging mental and physical health issues.
2. Push technology to support adult learning
The way we work has changed forever. Working from home is the new norm despite the fact that two and a half million Australians are “not online” due to issues of affordability, location or lack of digital literacy (Australia Bureau of Statistics). In addition, the way we consume information and learn has radically changed. Today Australians spend two and a half hours on their smart phones daily. Adults no longer “pull down” information from a company LMS (with the exception of compliance training) or from outdated outplacement portals.
Our award-winning career transition technology (Design Award December 2019) has reinvented career transition technology to address the adult learning styles and career transition needs of individuals in the post Covid world. It provides information, instructional videos, links to career sites etc. directly to individuals’ mobile devices that is “just in time”, “specific to the individual” and “specific to the situation”. Prima’s push technology respects individual adult learning styles and promotes great individual engagement, better discussions with coaches at weekly catch ups, and faster transitions to alternative roles.
3. Future of work opportunities
Thousands of roles have disappeared from the airline, retail and other sectors. More so than ever before, individuals need to pivot their career into newly emerging roles and sectors that continue to grow. Currently one in three (35%) of Australian adults are likely to look for a new job post pandemic, with three million Australians wanting a complete career change. 23% of job seekers don’t think they have the skills for the future and 28% want to develop new skills (ING future of work report 2020).
Prima combines smart technologies, weekly newsletters about emerging opportunities, and individual coaching from some of Australia’s leading career experts to assist individuals to navigate the emerging career landscape. This allows individuals to match their current career goals and aspirations with appropriate future careers in sectors of growth. Where necessary, Prima also assists individuals to assess the “bridge” training for these identified roles and further “future proof” their careers.
4. Next generation coaching support
Individuals in transition today are experiencing increased level of stress, lower national employment rates, more competition for emerging roles and the need to access the right research and smart technologies to identify and win alternatives roles (Australia’s unemployment rates are now at a 19 year high, Australian Bureau of Statistics). As a result, the profile and skills of leading Career Coach has changed dramatically. Candidates need a tech savvy, highly experienced coach who provides empathic, but challenging, support with a high-touch approach.
Prima attracts and hires the best coaches in Australia and NZ, and to meet the new challenges, Prima’s program structure has changed to ensure candidates get the high-touch coaching support they need. Our participants now have daily contact with their coaches and this approach resulted in reported greater levels of candidate support, increased optimism and reduced time between roles. Our new approach has also fostered the need for greater collaboration and education amongst the coaching group. This has increased their knowledge of emerging technologies and trends, promoted sharing of industry contacts and extended their knowledge of the emerging Australian market.
5. Real-time 24/7 reporting and accountability
In this world of flexible working arrangements and the need to manage team members, suppliers and customers remotely, managers need information available 24/7 and at their fingertips. A recent Boston Consulting Group study found that the people who can work from home would like to continue to, but not necessarily full time (Boston Consulting Group 2020). A further Harvard Business Review study has confirmed this trend.
Prima provides 24/7 real-time reporting on all participants. Reports include trend data and individual narrative reports. We provide tangible data and clients can hold us accountable for each employee outcome. At times of large number of retrenchments that could threaten the employer brand, overall company EVP is enhanced by proactive reporting, especially when the quality of the support can “filter back” to existing employees.
6. Pricing models that reflect partnerships
In December 2020 the unemployment rate was 6.6%. 1.5 pts higher than a year ago (Australians Bureau of Statistics). Most leading ASX and private companies have a strong track record of supporting departing individuals with comprehensive outplacement support. Many of these firms, however, are now releasing staff in unprecedented high numbers due to dramatically falling revenues, and the reality is that budgets and spending, in a whole range of areas, have been greatly reduced. “COVID-19 has devastated the economy” (Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison).
It’s now time for outplacement firms to truly partner with their clients to support them in these difficult times. With real partnering behaviour, outplacement firms need to support their clients to maximise redeployment, provide innovative programs and flexible pricing structures while still ensuring that departing employees receive the comprehensive assistance they need, and company’s EVP and brand loyalty are preserved.
The Executive Outplacement Packages are managed and delivered by a separate division of Prima Group. Executives are matched with the Prima Executive Lead Coach who typically has an extensive corporate career and has held positions equal to or more senior than the assigned participant. The coach provides immediate emotional support and ongoing mentoring.
Prima’s international research has demonstrated that for extended executive programs, the coaching experience is ‘greatly enhanced’ by the introduction of a ‘coaching circle’. This process introduces the individual to a number of Australian subject matter experts, industry leaders and valuable network contacts to further support the executive throughout the program. This approach ensures that all the participant meetings are relevant, sometimes thought provoking and challenging.
Through the combination of the Prima coaching circle, ‘just in time push notifications’ that are specific to the executive career goals and the weekly meetings with their lead coach, participant receives the most comprehensive executive program available in Australia today.
Manager and Team Member Program
The Prima Management and Team Member Outplacement Package takes great care to match the participant to the most appropriate coach, who typically has an extensive managerial career very often in the same industry. The coach provides immediate emotional support, practical help and ongoing encouragement.
During the program, the weekly one on one coaching meetings are complemented by daily texts, emails or phone calls that provide invitations to relevant webinars, financial health check, videos, EAP and mental health support, TEDTalks and instructional videos on resume writing, Indeed, Seek, Livehire, LinkedIn, and other key job search activities.
The participant also receives daily “job feeds” identifying appropriate roles that match their career goals, along with other resources and support that assist them to identify alternative career goals and opportunities, and re-training pathways to these opportunities.
These additional resources and learning opportunities are debriefed at the weekly 1:1 coaching meeting to ensure that the program and material are tailored to the specific individual needs. The extensive program above results in participants securing another role more than three times faster than Australian averages.