Internal Mobility – Promotion


Promotion refers to the upward movement of an employee from current job to another. It leads to greater responsibilities, higher status, better working conditions and better salary. It works as a motivational tool for the employee. A mere shifting of an employee to a different job which has better working hours and better location does not amount to promotion. The new job is a promotion for the employee only when it carries increased responsibilities and enhanced pay. However there can be “Dry Promotion”, where an employee is moved to higher level of job without increase in pay.

The Government in various part of the globe have made promotion an important activity on the part of the organisation. In India, the Equal Remuneration Act 1976 protects the interests of the employees stating that no employer should show discrimination while recruiting, transfer, training or promotion between men and women. In the same way, in United States of America, The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) says, the employer cannot deny promotion on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions. On the other hand, The Age Discrimination in Employment Act says one cannot be discriminated in any way on the basis of age when making decisions on hiring, firing, pay, benefits or promotions.

The promotion is a double-edged weapon. If handled properly it can motivate employee and if mishandled it can lead to dissatisfaction among employees. The purpose of promotion is to:

  • Motivate employee for better performance
  • Retain talented employee
  • Recognize employee’s performance
  • Reduce employee dissatisfaction
  • To fill up the vacant position that has created because of resignation or retirement.

Promotion can be either on the bases of

  • Seniority: It means the employee is given promotion on the basis of length service in the organisation. It is easy to understand and reduces labour turnover. On the other hand, the talented employees are not promoted which de-motivates employees.
  • Merit: When merit is the bases of promotion, it motivates employee to perform well. Merit implies hard work and performance. The employees who excel in their work are given promotion on the bases of merit.

One of the problems of promotion is “favouritism towards family members” better known as Nepotism. The employees feel dissatisfied and disengaged when relatives of the management are promoted. Nepotism degrades level of commitment and loyalty which leads to higher attrition level. Nepotism is most commonly runs in family businesses.

Some images about Promotion and Internal Mobility;