Workforce planning can be a challenging task for most employees working in operations. Experienced managers, however, tend to anticipate the number of personnel needed to complete the given daily assignments. Then they compare the payroll budget and decide upon the number of required personnel.
Usually, in small-to-medium-sized companies, this is how managers make their decisions. But what happens when a company’s growth snowballs and the demand gets bigger? Or when the company is overstaffed and needs to cut down on employees?
That’s when workforce planning comes into the picture.
What is Workforce Planning?
The definition of workforce planning is simple – the right person is in the right position at the right time. This, combined with HR software that help companies assess and react to their workforce gaps, creates a practical and functional workforce planning method.
It all comes down to finding and deploying qualified personnel to keep things going smoothly. This process involves:
- Analyzing the current employee engagement levels
- Identifying the workforce’s future needs
- Identifying the differences between the current situation and the desired outcome
- Creating and implementing strategies to help achieve business objectives
- Using talent effectively to carry out the business plan
Workforce planning can be a time-consuming and challenging thing to manage. However, having a solid employee schedule maker is an invaluable resource.
Why Is Workforce Planning Important?
People are the main component that keeps influential companies running in today’s talent-based economy.
Anyone who has ever dealt with a staffing shortage knows that not getting the right employees will put a company’s brand under a lot of stress.
On the other hand, organizations that can predict what tasks, abilities, and people will be required to achieve their business goals now and in the future are more likely to succeed.
This is easier said than done. Workforce planning is a strenuous activity that involves a systematic, rigorous, and disciplined process. Managers that do this well have a solid grasp of business strategy and a deep understanding of human talents and capabilities.
How to analyze the current workforce?
Strategic workforce planning is often structured to fit three-to-five-year scenarios that involve day-to-day activities of talent analysis and development. The scenarios must be in line with the needs and goals of the company over those periods. As a result, these frequent evaluations help accomplish the end goal faster and smarter.
It takes experience and time to put together a plan that considers future business strategies and incorporates short-term and long-term scenario planning.
HR leaders, who already wear multiple hats and are notoriously short on time, will find workforce planning especially difficult. However, being genuinely strategic and using the simple nine-grid table for frequent talent evaluation and a good employee engagement software is how experienced managers handle these situations. However, this is only possible if HR operations are running smoothly.
Different talent management policies are needed for different groups of people.
High-potential individuals need to be coached and developed further.
High-potential employees should not be given bonuses or promotions because they would not be able to develop anymore. As a result, the company will become top-heavy. Furthermore, since people are well-paid, there is no reason for them to quit if they stop performing. These types of issues are common in the banking industry
Low-potential employees should not be given bonuses or promotions. These are the people you should let go of because they will be happier in a different position
An HR professional can find many possible combinations and outcomes when it comes to a worker’s career. The thing that can streamlines the company’s effort the most is constant improving of the workforce planning strategy and keeping focus on the main company goal for development and growth.
Workforce planning isn’t something that managers can do on the spur of the moment. It’s a difficult task that’s based on data processing and preparation. However, workforce training is a brilliant and extremely useful tool that can help the company gain a competitive edge when performed correctly.