According to an online survey from Snagajob, an hourly employment marketplace for job seekers and employers, 80 percent of companies surveyed have a policy to review current staff for open positions before considering external applicants.

To foster their internal promotion policy, more than two-thirds of companies open positions to current staff before posting them publicly (70 percent) and provide training opportunities to help grow employees (69 percent). A majority of employers in the survey (70 percent) also look to management to take the reins and identify employees with potential.

"Promoting from within can be a great retention tool for hourly employers who normally face high turnover rates," said Jason Hamilton, vice president of marketing for Snagajob. "Without a clear picture that there's room for growth or advancement, the most driven employees might look elsewhere for opportunities. Employers' promotion policies can also help businesses stand out among job seekers who want to grow with an organization, potentially reducing recruitment expenses in the long run."

While an internal promotion policy could make employers more attractive than their competitors, Snagajob's survey found that only 41 percent of companies actively highlight their policy in recruitment materials.

"There's clearly room for more businesses to differentiate themselves to job seekers looking for companies where they can grow," added Hamilton.

All is not lost for new job seekers. The common practice of promoting from within should, in turn, create more entry-level positions. And with 69 percent of employers in the survey planning to increase their staff this quarter, a 6-point increase compared to Q4 2012, opportunities should emerge.

Read more about staffing and training.

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