For many decades, employment was a relatively stable affair. Often, a young person would gain an apprenticeship with a company, particularly one where there were already family connections, perhaps through older employees. Over the years,employees were trained and gradually rose up the ranks to occupy more senior positions until the time came to retire.
This “job for life” scenario had some advantages, in that employment prospects were generally as good as the employee’s ability to develop skills and respond to change, and there was usually some kind of modest pension arrangement on retirement. The job market today is very different, however, and there are now a number of ways in which employers can consider attracting and retaining workers.