Long-term Employability subentry – Information for HR and superv

How do we preserve our staff’s long-term employability? How do we ensure that employees make the best possible use of their talents (and continue to do so) and that everyone can continue to do their job effectively, in good health and with satisfaction, also in the long term? Supervisors/managers and HR play an important role in this.

The theme of long-term employability is of great importance and becoming ever more so. This is due to the ageing population, the fact that everyone has to keep working for longer and the rapid pace of development, also in education.

Below, you will find more information about:

We see long-term employability as a framework to which various HR themes are linked. In this respect, the 2017-2020 Strategic HR Agenda states: ‘AUAS invests in long-term employability by opting for a comprehensive approach directed at three themes around long-term employability that are inextricably linked: professionalisation, vitality and mobility.’

In addition, long-term employability means that consideration is given to an employee’s work capacity. It is important that the work is or remains tailored as best as possible to the employee's capacity for dealing with physical, mental and social stress.

The primary consideration is that long-term employability is a joint responsibility of both the employer and the employee. Each year, employees receive a budget in LE hours to improve their long-term employability.

- ‘Good employee practices’ dictate that employees actively use their annual LE budget.

- ‘Good employer practices’ dictate that managers/supervisors support and facilitate employees in the best possible way.

As a manager or supervisor, you are responsible for supporting your employees in the best possible way and facilitating their plans for long-term employability. You do so especially by holding consultations with your employees. We recommend that you make arrangements with your employees at the earliest possible stage regarding how they will spend their LE hours and ensure that the agreements are recorded in their personnel file.

During the consultations, you will discuss what employees need in order to improve their long-term employability and how they intend to use their LE budget. This information will enable you to support employees in the best possible way and ensure proper planning of your employees’ activities and those of the team. The strength and success of the LE scheme are not so much related to the LE budget made available, but rely more on the consultations between you and your employees about their long-term employability. The LE budget is only a means to this end.

Long-term employability is a recurring topic during the annual performance reviews with your employees. As your employees’ and team’s activities need to be planned in advance, you may bring forward this part of the review so as to make arrangements with your employees at an earlier stage.

The arrangements (including amended arrangements) that you make with your employees about how their LE hours will be spent (when, how many, purpose), or about not using their LE hours, will always be laid down in writing and added to their personnel file.

It is also important that you raise the issue of long-term employability with your team or department and discuss how you can promote long-term employability together, for example by encouraging a positive learning climate, social safety in the team and an environment in which people can think outside the box.

As a manager or supervisor, it is important that you ensure proper implementation of the LE scheme in the collective labour agreement and the AUAS agreements in the LE Regulations (PDF). The LE guidelines for managers and supervisors (PDF) have been drawn up to help you with this. These guidelines elaborate on a number of implementation issues that you may encounter as a manager or supervisor, such as:

  • ensuring timely planning;
  • how to hold effective consultations;
  • what to do if employees have not yet decided or do not respond;
  • what authority you have to arrange matters;
  • what to do if you are not a hierarchical manager or supervisor;
  • how to strike a proper balance between employee interests and those of the organisation.

The guidelines give you the tools to deal with these issues.

Holding these consultations with your employees and with your team requires particular competences. If you need support in this context (such as training, peer consultation or coaching), please discuss this with your HR adviser or check out opportunities for professionalisation in this area on the AUAS Academy website .

Published by  HR 30 March 2021