O*NET Career Planning and Decision Model

Career Planning

Research in career decision making suggests use of phased models for a structured way for career planning. Six basic tasks are generally identified

  • Orientation to choice
  • Self-exploration
  • Broad exploration of the environment
  • In-depth exploration of the environment
  • Choosing an alternative
  • Committing to a particular career alternative

ONETCP Career Planning Model

O*NET is the world's largest occupational database and provides very comprehensive industry data about careers and individuals suitable in them. However O*NET, given a vast set of intended usages, is difficult for individual users to understand and use for their career planning. Even career guidance professionals find it difficult to understand and leverage methodically. Thus, there is a identified need for a phased model that is tuned for use with O*NET. Tucareers’s career planning model ONETCPTM is based on the six–phased approach recommended in research. The six phases in our model are named Orient, Navigate, Explore, Track, Choice and Plan; these facilitate exploration and significantly remove decision making difficulties


The orient phase focuses on increasing the decision maker’s awareness for the career decision. The decision maker is oriented to the key aspects, such as different career options, job families, and the role of worker characteristics like interest, personality etc. in choosing a career. The navigate phase based on multi trait assessments helps the individual to steer to a broad list of suitable options. This acts as a filtration phase for narrowing the career list down to a few. The explore phase helps the decision maker to explore methodically the recommended list of career options in greater depth. At this stage, career decision makers can either include career options that have not been recommended to them or exclude a few.

The track phase focuses on in-depth study and comparison of the shortlisted careers based on different factors. Labor-related external factors (employment outlook, salary etc.) can also be enumerated in the track phase to facilitate easy comparison and assist in understanding trade offs. Predicted measures like career satisfaction and tenure are reported to facilitate the decision process. The choice phase helps the decision maker to zero in on the most viable options (or a set of options). The role of the career counselor is critical at this stage, as the counselor helps the individual to zero in on the best possible choices. Once the choice(s) are made, required knowledge and skills gaps are identified for career planning purposes. For facilitating career planning for industry entrants or professionals, Tucareers also provides an instrument for assessing to identify critical learning needs by specific roles.

In the next blog we cover the key features of the Tucareers career decision framework