When conducting a promotion process it is essential for the employer to behave fairly and to conduct a structured and transparent process. In a similar way to the recruitment process (see interviewing), decisions on promotion should be based around clear, benchmarked criteria. The person appointed should be the person who best meets these criteria rather than someone next in line who expects the job to be theirs.
It is essential to document the process, possibly using a skills matrix to benchmark the skills needed for the new job against those held by the people being interviewed. This gap analysis can help identify possible areas of training to be developed and also can serve as evidence in the event a decision on promotion is challenged by the disappointed candidate.
Employers who do not conduct a fair and transparent promotion process can run the risk of a discrimination claim as a consequence. A disciplined approach to promotions can mitigate that risk significantly.