Strategic Workforce Planning

Posted by HR Analytics on Monday, April 21, 2014
©StratEval Services, LLC
Workforce planning is something that many organizations are doing. Some are doing it in systematic ways while some do it in not so systematic ways. Above is a diagram that illustrates a strategic workforce planning that has incorporated some of the common and basic elements of a workforce planning.  Workforce planning is future-oriented and so the steps you do today are all geared towards what you would like to accomplish in the future.  You're planning for the scenarios of the future and so you will have to incorporate your supply and demand equations of today and of tomorrow.  The supply (pipeline) and work demands of the future will be different from today's so in many ways, your workforce planning must be predictive and able to foresee short term and long term futures.  Workforce planning must take into account the alignment with overall company strategies.  If the company's goal is to produce the next big thing in technology, workforce planning must be aligned to that strategy.  That means the recruiting efforts, the training and development efforts, etc, should all be aligned to that strategy in order to have a workforce ready to complete that strategy.  

Analysis is a huge piece of the workforce planning process.  You must know the supply and demand equation and this includes an analysis of your current workforce capacity as well as capabilities.  You must take into account the skills and competencies that you currently have and will need in the future in order to maintain alignment with the company strategies.  You must also take into account the risks that you face when conducting workforce planning and building out your workforce.  Some of the risks to consider when conducting workforce planning are budget shortage, skills gaps and shortages, unexpected attrition, layoffs, project derailments, etc.  You must have a plan in place for addressing or minimizing these risks.  

Nowadays, with companies operating with a lean budget and a lean workforce, HR has to be more of a strategic partner.  HR is now a lot more than just your administrative worker bees.  With big data, automation, technology, and all the other tools to become more strategic, HR is in an excellent position to set the strategic direction for the company.  

Tags: strategic hr 
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