Turnover or Connection? The Influence of Employability Competencies Development Programs of Engineering Professionals on their Relationship with their Company
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As a result of globalization, the increasing needs in the engineering field is dynamically changing faster than ever. Academic degrees alone are becoming insufficient and engineering professionals are demanded by employers to broaden their competencies. The development of employability competencies could satisfy these increasing needs. However, employable professionals may become more attractive for other companies as well, potentially leading to higher turnover. This study aims to explore how engineering professionals develop employability competencies and what turnover intentions they engage in as a result of a competence development program. An instrumental case study design was used with the Architecture Competence Development Program as the case. Semi-structured interviews were held with open-ended questions to explore the participants’ experience and perceptions of employability competence development. Findings revealed that the relation between the development of employability and potential turnover intentions involves one’s interpretation of the opportunities for employability development by their employer. Furthermore, findings indicated that employability competencies are primarily developed through gaining work experience. Nevertheless, training programs add value by expediating the process of gaining experience and facilitating formal and informal networks. Therefore, for most respondents, participation in the training program has enhanced the employee-employer bond, reducing their intentions to leave.