Hulu’s the key workforce groups include content creation, global sales and acquisition, and marketing. Thus, as a company seeking to establish dominance in a highly competitive field, Hulu needs not only recruit the best employees but also to ensure that they stay in the company, but even more importantly, that their contributions augment the company’s prospects and performance. Therefore, it is imperative that Hulu adopts appropriate career development strategies for its key workforce groups. But, what exactly are appropriate career development strategies, especially for high ranking professionals in the tech-based companies? According to Keswin (2018), the traditional approach amongst most employers in tech business is to invest in continuous professional learning and development that focuses on increasing the knowledge of their workers, intending to realize immediate results in the form of ROI on the training and conferences. This approach does not work (Keswin, 2018). Beer, Finnstrom, and Schrader (2016) corroborated these sentiments by observing, “Overwhelming evidence and experience shows, however, that most companies are unable to transfer employee learning into changes in individual and organization behavior or improved financial performance” (p. 1). Therefore, Hulu needs a career development strategy that does not focus primarily on increasing the knowledge of its key workforce groups.
Instead, Hulu needs a dynamic, holistic career development strategy that addresses the short-term and long-term needs of the company. According to Brassey, Christensen, and van Dam (2018), human beings want “meaning, creativity, and novelty from their jobs” (p. 4). These elements contribute to job satisfaction, which is among the most instrumental factors in retaining employees. Therefore, the career development strategy that Hulu adopts ought to have at its core, the advancement of job satisfaction by promoting meaning, creativity, and novelty. One way through which this can be achieved is by training the employees on soft-skills (Frey & Osborne, 2013). Soft skills include emotional intelligence, critical thinking, communication skills, motivational skills, and the ability to take criticism and learn from failure, among other things (Frey & Osborne, 2013). These skills benefit both the employee and the employer. According to Frey and Osborne (2013), many employers say they want their employees to possess soft-skills, as they are essential in promoting interpersonal relationships and interdependence at the workplace, which, in turn, result in higher productivity. Thus, Hulu has sufficient incentives to train its key workforce group on soft skills.
Moreover, Hulu should dedicate a substantial portion of its professional learning and development to globalization. Globalization is an essential element in Hulu’s corporate-level strategies since the company aims at reaching a broader scope of global viewership. Thus, the global sales/acquisition and the marketing/subscriber growth teams would need training on how to deal with various demographic shifts in the global marketplace that include gender, racial, and ethnic diversity, different age groups, and cultural differences, among other issues (Frey & Osborne, 2013). Such lessons would ensure Hulu does not miss key market segments due to cultural, racial, or other differences amongst its key workers and the target markets.
In addition, Hulu needs to improve the skill sets and capabilities amongst its key workforce groups, especially in response to global emerging trends and the future of work. For instance, according to the World Bank Group (2019), 57% of all jobs could be automated in the next two decades. Also, Frey and Osborne (2013) claim that automation will replace a significant portion of work currently being done by human beings. These assessments can be verified by the fact that the field of robotics and artificial intelligence is increasing rapidly; therefore, one may logically conclude that the observations by the World Bank, Frey, and Osborne are valid. In this regard, Hulu needs to position its corporate and business level strategies appropriately to incorporate the changing trends in technology, and this can be done by training its key workforce groups on how to deal with the changes and how to harness them for the benefit of the company. Also, Hulu needs to train its key workforce groups on the evolving structures within which jobs are done. These include the gig market, outsourcing, moffice, and virtual collaboration, which are critical elements, especially when dealing with the millennials (Frey & Osborne, 2013).
The career development strategies for Hulu’s key workforce groups should entail a holistic, dynamic, continuing recalibration of skills and competencies to navigate the changing environments of the contemporary business world. It would not be enough to increase the knowledge of the employees, as evidence suggests that such strategies do not work. Instead, Hulu should aim at improving its employees’ soft skills as well as offering professional learning and development that enhances job satisfaction. This is not to say that improving employee knowledge is any less important; the global business trends require employees who are abreast with the developments in technology and the social elements of business, which implies, therefore, that the career development strategies should also address the acquisition of relevant knowledge.
Beer, M., Finnstrom, M., & Schrader, D. (2016). The great training robbery. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved from https://www.hbs.edu/faculty/Publication%20Files/16-121_bc0f03ce-27de-4479-a90e-9d78b8da7b67.pdf
Brassey, J., Christensen, L., & van Dam, N. (2018). Elevating learning & development – Insights and practical guidance from the field. New York: McKinsey & Company.
Frey, C., & Osborne, M. (2013). The future of employment: How susceptible are jobs to computerization? Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 114, 254-280. doi: 10.1016/j.techfore.2016.08.019
Keswin, E. (2018). Taking Professional Development Personally: 3 Strategies for a Better ROI. Retrieved from https://trainingindustry.com/articles/strategy-alignment-and-planning/taking-professional-development-personally-3-strategies-for-a-better-roi/
World Bank Group. (2019). The changing nature of work. Washington: International Bank for Reconstruction and Development/ World Bank. Retrieved from http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/816281518818814423/2019-WDR-Report.pdf