Job rotation is a method in which professionals, instead of being fixed in their positions and responsibilities, start to “rotate” through other areas of the company. Something that generates empathy, collaboration, motivation and works on the individual and collective development of everyone.
The football analogy is not always easily assimilated by everyone, but the following example is as simple as it is specific to explain what job rotation is.
During the 1974 World Cup, the Dutch national team gained a number of nicknames such as mechanical orange and Dutch carousel.
To explain this, understand that the selection (surprisingly, runner-up in that edition) was a collective. Point guards and attackers also understood the concepts of defense—and vice versa.
Even the goalkeeper had good notions to play with his feet too. Thus, it was possible to surprise the opponents, who did not have the knowledge to stop the arrival of a defender in attack, full of skill and integration with his team.
Then you can ask yourself: what does this have to do with job rotation? Everything! And we'll explain it in detail throughout this article. Check out!
What is job rotation?
Nowadays — and at the corporate level — job rotation gives up the use of gloves and shin guards to be functional. The concept is even versatile.
This is because it can be applied in a timely manner, such as internships and trainees, as well as in a robust structure in which everyone learns various functions in the company.
And what does this imply for the company? Well, unlike the Dutch carousel, the main idea is not to confuse the opponents, but to qualify the team.
Something that is obtained from this experience in other areas, adding more knowledge and systemic vision to employees to propose new solutions.
How job rotation works
In its semantic context, job rotation translates as job rotation. Something that allows the company to structure itself in a model in which the employee goes through more than one role and responsibility in the organization, instead of being fixed in just one.
Therefore, the planning must go directly through the HR sector and the leaders of the respective sectors involved.
Thus, the effect is immediate, positive and with high added value for the organization, in addition to other benefits such as those listed below. Check out:
- as an integration tool, job rotation is a differential for new hires to easily assimilate the company's culture and the needs of each sector;
- empathy with colleagues is also reinforced, as professionals will experience the challenges of each department;
- their systemic view is also developed, as they will understand how the market reacts to their work in each sector;
- development of a sense of ownership, adding to the profile of its employees the autonomy and flexibility to develop;
- the career plan also gains more plurality to offer employees a rise in the area they feel safer and more comfortable;
- cost reduction with training, qualifications and integrations, since professionals will qualify, in practice, throughout their flexible routines;
- for the company, job rotation is also the opportunity to identify talent and develop them so that they can grow themselves (personally and professionally).
As a result, HR gathers even more data—both quantitative and qualitative—about its staff. The ideal opportunity, therefore, to draw the right profile for each sector, the needs and objectives of each area.
Job rotation: how to implement and challenges
It's not all flowers in job rotation planning and execution. After all, the resources allocated in this practice must be analyzed coldly.
If the results do not change with rotations and only add more investments in this transition period, job rotation ceases to be a differential, becoming a cost.
Furthermore, learning interruption is considered a disadvantage. However, this aspect can be remedied with the exchange of knowledge between teams.
Thus, job rotation remains happening in practice as well as in theory — which allows for the recycling of knowledge.
It is also worth noting that not every department — and not every company profile — adapts to this type of modality.
It is important to analyze, first, which are the sectors that facilitate this exchange and what results can be obtained from this practice.
There is no point in implementing the concept, therefore, just looking for results: it is essential that job rotation is able to be absorbed by the company's culture and structure.
Actions to implement job rotation
Now that we've gone through the concept, differentials and challenges in planning job rotation, are we going to put its implementation under analysis?
As discussed at the beginning of the article, internships and trainee programs are models that can be reconciled in the short term to the company's reality.
However, there is also the application of this idea in the long term. It is the most complex one, which requires:
- greater learning;
- impactful changes in routine and work structure;
- contractual modifications;
- demands of each area.
Even so, planning facilitates these changes. Therefore, let's understand how this can be configured in the company's daily exercise:
1. Find out what employees think about it
Meet with collaborators and understand what they think of this period of experiences. To do this, remember to:
- explain the objectives and what is expected from the use of job rotation;
- identify resistances and fears, to dissociate them with arguments;
- disclose the differentials of this practice;
- simplify the idea, present examples and transition gradually, adjusting as necessary;
- be available (HR and leaders) to provide guidance, support and assistance when requested;
- disseminate the results so that more people can engage and be motivated with the idea.
But that is not all. First, HR must pay attention to other factors as well.
2. Meet and evaluate employees
Do you know who the company's talents are? Which professionals adapt well to change and which tend to lose productivity and engagement with it?
Assess your professionals, therefore, before starting. This helps to untie nodes that might come up along the job rotation path.
3. Create a logical sequence
During job rotation, make sure employees go through a logical process — like workflow, for example.
Otherwise, they may find it difficult to adapt to routine, departmental objectives, and industry-specific demands.
4. Experiment with the areas involved
Don't implement everything at once! Start small, with just a few professionals, which makes it easier to monitor performances and results.
As we said: this allows punctual adjustments to be made, so that the final transition takes place with the least possible number of unforeseen events.
So, did you understand what job rotation is and can't wait to share with colleagues the possibilities that involve this practice?
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