This report from the CIPD aims to explore the attitudes towards employability and responsibilities for career development in the UK.
The past few decades have seen a major shift in the work relationship. Where before job security represented the foundation of employers’ proposition to the workers, the new ‘deal’ has focused on supporting workers’ employability over the course of their careers and with multiple employers, rather than providing continuous and long-term employment in an
organisation (Sullivan and Wong 2009; Dries et al 2014).
Compared with job security, employability is a far more elusive concept. Unlike a limited period of working for a single employer, it refers to the overall success of an individual in the labour market, spanning different job roles, modes of employment (for example, being self-employed or taking a zerohours contract), and even multiple careers. As a result, the factors underpinning employability may involve anything from workers’ skills and attributes, enabling them to compete for specific jobs, to personal circumstances, requiring flexibility in ways of working, to labour market conditions, influencing availability of employment opportunities.