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Succession Management and Career Development Are “Two Sides of the Same Coin,” According to White Paper

New report from Cornerstone OnDemand examines how the right processes and technology support can enable succession planning to be more than a list of names in a desk drawer

SANTA MONICA, Calif. – February 8, 2011  Agile businesses are shifting from a narrow, top-down succession management process in favor of planning that delves deeper into the ranks – and engages employees at all levels with career development opportunities. A new Cornerstone OnDemand white paper, “Two Sides of the Same Coin: Using Succession Management and Career Development to Improve Talent Mobility,” examines this comprehensive approach and how the right processes and technology support can allow succession to be more than a list of names in a desk drawer.

“Despite high unemployment levels, businesses are still challenged with finding the right people with the right skills through external recruiting, in part because of growing demand for technical and leadership expertise. At the same time, there are concerns of a talent exodus once the job market strengthens,” said Charles Coy, Director of Product Marketing for Cornerstone OnDemand. “Succession planning, paired with career management tools, can help companies build the right bench strength to fill critical roles, while also ensuring that high-performing employees are moving up in the organization, not out.”

One example of a company taking a well-rounded approach to succession management is global media and entertainment leader Turner Broadcasting System Inc. (TBS, Inc.). In support of the company’s mission to grow and retain the best talent, Turner uses Cornerstone’s comprehensive talent management software solution to facilitate internal processes for learning and development, performance management and succession planning.

“Having a strong people management foundation, with the right processes and technology, allows us to have a pipeline of ready talent to further our position as a market leader and innovator,” said Michele Golden, Vice President of Talent Management for Turner Broadcasting System. “We use Cornerstone’s software to assess our talent needs and to implement strategic talent planning. For example, we will use the system to access individual employee assessments for identifying skill gaps and creating custom leadership development plans that align with our current and future business objectives.”

While succession management still requires the involvement of senior leaders, particularly in defining critical roles and key competencies, an interactive, organization-wide, bottom-up process is gaining traction for several reasons:

  • Improved engagement and retention. Career management and career pathing allow businesses to better engage and retain their people, empowering them to take a more active role in their careers within an organization.

  • More candid discussions between managers and employees. An interactive process enables managers to have more candid performance discussions with employees, providing coaching and identifying development opportunities based on a person’s career aspirations.

  • Increased transparency. It also creates organizational transparency, helping employees to better understand the criteria they need to meet and gaps that must be addressed before moving to the next level.

To learn more about succession management and career development best practices, download the complimentary “Two Sides of the Same Coin” white paper at

For more information about Cornerstone OnDemand, visit To read Cornerstone OnDemand’s talent management blog, visit To follow Cornerstone OnDemand on Twitter, visit

About Cornerstone

Cornerstone is a premier people development company. We believe people can achieve anything when they have the right development and growth opportunities. We offer organizations the technology, content, expertise and specialized focus to help them realize the potential of their people. Featuring comprehensive recruiting, personalized learning, modern training content, development-driven performance management and holistic employee data management and insights, Cornerstone’s people development solutions are used by more than 6,000 customers of all sizes, spanning more than 75 million users across over 180 countries and nearly 50 languages. Learn more at

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