Talent Development Program Examples

May 17 2023
5 min read
Talent Development Program Examples

Your people are your greatest asset – and that’s why smart organizations have a talent development program in place. After all, the more you nurture your staff, the more you stand to gain. But what’s the best way to develop their skills? A great place to start is by looking at examples of companies who have done it well – and we’ve even provided a bit of extra proof. 

Real-Life Talent Development

We’ve scoured the web for the most impressive examples of world-class companies that have made talent development a priority. To confirm this, we’ve looked at their ratings and grades on popular company review sites. Without further ado, here are the top 4:   


Adobe has a clear focus on many talent development areas. Their workers can build skills through on-demand courses hosted by LinkedIn and Harvard ManageMentor. 

The company also offers support for outside academic pursuits in the amount of $10,000 per year, and will pay up to $1,000 per year for shorter-term courses. 

Even before applying for a job, university students can learn more about how the company operates through their internship program. New and current workers can take advantage of “Accelerate Adobe Life,” an extensive feedback program that enables them to choose areas where they want to receive development support. 

Adobe backs their programs with a high level of internal promotions, boasting a 33% internal hiring rate and an annual promotion rate of 20%.

Adobe’s overall satisfaction score on Indeed is 4.3/5, with benefits ranking 4.2/5. 

Costco Wholesale

As a relatively low-tech company, Costco might not spring to mind when you think of talent development. But this big box retailer was actually voted as America’s Best Employer by Forbes Magazine in 2017. 

Along with this achievement comes a range of talent development programs, including:

  • The “Journeys for All” program, which is available to all employees interested in upskilling, mentoring, and networking
  • Costco’s “Supervisor in Training” initiative, which enables qualified warehouse
    employees to gain exposure to managerial duties in areas of their choosing
  • The “Merchandising Training Course” for turning manager-level employees into warehouse supervisors, which is a critical role at Costco

Costco illustrates the effectiveness of talent development when it comes to retention and promotion. The company claims that more than 60% of employees have been there for more than five years. In terms of promotion, the vast majority of warehouse managers were promoted from hourly roles. 

On Indeed, Costco Wholesale has an overall rating of 4.1, with benefits ranked at 4.3.

Delta Airlines

Delta caught the attention of many in the HR world during the pandemic, as it achieved a very low 5.5% attrition rate. How did they manage this at a time when the world stopped traveling? Their talent development program can be thanked. 

Delta’s iGrow learning portal is available to all employees. It is a self-directed learning platform that is used to fulfill the goals set as part of a career development program. Delta also pursues a “skills first” hiring and development strategy, where employees can increase their skills through growth plans, apprenticeships, and mentoring. 

The airline has a general score of 4.3 on Indeed, and a grade of 4.1 for benefits. 

Johnson & Johnson

As one of the largest healthcare companies in the world, Johnson & Johnson (J&J) needs to remain competitive in a complex industry. For this reason, J&J has adopted a growth mindset as part of their culture of continuous learning. 

In line with this philosophy, J&J believes that every employee has growth potential. It divides its talent development efforts into two parts:

  • Self-directed learning programs such as SUMMIT and its global personal development platform allow employees to follow courses that they choose, and which can be based on a career plan
  • Extensive leadership programs are designed for new, mid-career, and senior employees, as well as courses specifically for those in charge of others.

According to Indeed, J&J has an overall score of 4.2, with a rating of 4.1 for benefits. (Plus, as an interesting side fact, J&J is a Growthspace client.) 

Why Talent Development?

There are countless L&D initiatives out there, like those that focus on professional, managerial, and employee skills. But companies that adopt a growth mindset believe that every worker has a set of talents that should be enhanced, both to benefit the individual and the organization. The trick is to figure out in which areas the employee has potential to excel. 

That’s why a crucial phase of any talent development program is the identification of candidates. Through performance reports, interviews, and recommendations, HR should analyze for which skills a worker seems to have a natural inclination. After matching these with business needs, the employee should be given the opportunity to develop those skills. That’s where a great talent development platform plays an important role. 

Top-to-Bottom Talent Development with Growthspace

From the leading executive down to production-line employees, skills are critical. Every single employee has a set of strengths and weaknesses that should be addressed by talent development programs. But in large organizations, how does HR adjust for so many differences?

The answer is Growthspace. The market-leading platform makes it easy and efficient for HR to design talent development programs, locate experts, and manage the whole deal. If you want to do what’s right for your talent, talk to Growthspace.

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