Strategic Workforce Planning is the process for ensuring that an organization has suitable access to talent to ensure future business success. The aim of this process is that a company should have enough human resource, with adequate skills and competencies, in the future to take care of its requirements.
Following are the five steps an organization should follow to implement an effective workforce planning program:
Step 1: Strategic Direction Setting
In this step, an organization should clearly define the reasons why it wants to undertake workforce planning. The skills and competencies of existing employees should be kept in mind as well as all the resources available to it and the course of action it will follow in the future. After considering all these factors a team of professionals should be set up which will assist in the workforce planning process.
Step 2: Calculate the difference between demand and supply
Workforce planners should gather relevant data and information about the future demand, for human resource, by the company and the projected supply at that time and task to be fulfilled by that workforce. This can be done by analyzing the planning documents of the organization, reviewing the financial budgeting accounts, and setting assumptions accordingly.
Step 3: Developing an action Plan
An action plan should be developed to fill the gaps identified in step 2. This plan could include identifying internal employees who could fill the gap, partnering with academic institutions for future recruitment, following an intern program to recruit, availing the services of external recruiting agencies, etc. Internal employees should be judged on their skills and competencies and the total number of annualized hours they have put in till date.
Step 4: Implementing the plan
Properly implementing the plan is as important a step as developing one. The top management plays a crucial role in this step. They must ensure that the plan is being implemented according to needs of the organization. They should ensure that all the future hiring and retention needs of an organization will be fulfilled with this plan.
Step 5: Evaluate and Revise the plan
The final step of this process involves evaluating the plan periodically to ensure that it is fulfilling all the requirements of the organization, and suggesting any change in the plan, if required. The plan should be compared with the benchmark laid down earlier, and if any discrepancies are found then necessary changes should be suggested. These changes should be communicated to all the persons who are in any way involved with the workforce planning process.
A properly planned, implemented and evaluated workforce planning process would go a long way in ensuring a stable and profitable future of an organization.