Mass Career Customization - Deloitte's Cool New Retention Tool

I went to a networking event this week, sponsored by the FWA. While I’ve attended FWA events previously, this one was particularly interesting to me because one of my “best buddy-pals”, Sydney Firestone, Director in the Forensic & Dispute Services practice of Deloitte & Touche, was one of the speakers. Sydney and I met when we both went back to school “later in life” to complete the coursework necessary to sit for the CPA exam. Sydney’s co-speaker was Natalie Mehta who is a Senior Manager of Deloitte’s Valuation Services group.

Sydney and Natalie spoke about Mass Career Customization, or MCC. This is a strategic program developed and piloted by Deloitte & Touche USA LLP. The whole project has culminated in a book, written by Cathleen Benko, Chief Talent Officer at Deloitte and Anne Weisberg, a Director of Talent Diversity at the firm.

MCC was developed in response to growing negative retention trends and the cost/benefit analysis of those trends to the bottom line of the firm. The program is based upon the fact that the “…workforce has changed while the workplace has not.” MCC seeks to redefine the traditional “corporate ladder” into a newer, more socially reflective “corporate lattice”. The lattice design demonstrates the idea that an employee’s career progression can move in many directions and timeframes along different segments of a framework rather than only straight up.

The idea, quite simply, is that the lives of employees change as they progress through life. Companies who want to retain great people must also provide a framework, or “lattice”, through which an employee may alter their current work situation. According to MCC, an employee may, at any point in time, need to change one of four core dimensions of a career: Pace, Workload, Location/Schedule and Role in order to maintain the necessary “work/life balance” required to address the employee’s current life situation.

The program is designed to level the playing field for all employees by providing a common basis for flexible work situations. MCC seeks to replace the current environment which creates a situation whereby an employee who chooses to avail themselves of one of the 69 flexible work arrangement programs offered by the firm (flex hours, job sharing etc.) is considered to be in need of an “exception”. This, then, creates an unintended perception of “special treatment” for the employee. By implementing MCC firm-wide, Deloitte will provide a corporately condoned “space” for employees to modify their MCC dimensions as required without the accompanied exception perception.

I am fascinated by this idea. The firm’s plan is to roll out MCC to the entire organization this June. The firm will be assessing each employee’s MCC framework as a starting point which will be reevaluated throughout the employee’s career. How exciting. Will the idea of the corporate lattice catch on?

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Comment by Regina Farr on May 5, 2008 at 1:59pm
Bravo D&L; this will definitely put D&L in the forthfront of retention recruiting practices; I'm eager to hear how the roll out goes and what if any challenges D&L experience. Let's hope other companies are soon to follow this effort.


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