Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Adult, Career and Higher Education

Major Professor

Rosemary B. Closson

Co-Major Professor

William Young


employability, employee development, human resource development, psychological contract, self-directed learning, workplace learning


The purpose of this qualitative multiple case study was to examine HR executives' perspectives on employability enhancement for employees and how it is operationalized in their workplace. The exploratory questions that guided the study were, What are the perspectives of HR executives regarding employability enhancement for employees, and In what ways and under what conditions is organizational support of employability enhancement demonstrated through workplace learning initiatives? The conceptual framework for this study is based on Clarke and Patrickson's (2008) list of assumptions concerning employability as the premise for the new employment contract.

Data collected consisted of background questionnaires, semi-structured interviews, organizational documents, and researcher reflective journal notes. Cross case analysis yielded four major themes of "Shared Responsibility," "The Power of Learning Attitude," "Assessment for Growth," and "Resource Availability." These four themes include discussions of the roles and responsibilities for employability, desired employee learning attitudes, recommended assessment activities, and conditions affecting development opportunities provided by organizations. Implications for organizations, their employees, and HRD professionals are described. This study contributes empirical research on today's employment contract based on an employability model from the organization's perspective. It also adds to the body of literature on employability rarely focused on, employability enhancement for employees.