My department has recently restructured with the initial communicated focus of defining roles to clarify the career advancement goals of the team members. All of us were very excited as we felt that there is no way this could be a bad thing and we felt that it would bring us closer to the meritocracy most of us desire.
However, when the new roles were handed out, most of us were put in a position with a job description for which we are overqualified (full disclosure: I am one of these people, but I am also concerned for my colleagues). We were told that we would not be dropping responsibilities despite the role definitions. We were also told that promotions were not an option at this time. We were understandably concerned, so we voiced our opinions.
Here was the official response (paraphrased to protect the innocent):
These are meant to be general guidelines. These will be used in public job postings, but apart from that, these should not be regarded as hard-and-fast rules or specific benchmarks that will be used to measure employee performance.
It seems we have no reasonable recourse here. Is the company drawing a line in the sand that current employees are not a priority? Is this a practical, acceptable way for an organization to act, or is this out of the norm?
(If it helps clarify the context of the question, we are a software development team in a medium sized subsidiary of a large corporation.)