Our HR Benchmarking Survey identified the number one HR challenge was Workforce Planning.
Many clients see Workforce Planning as being a challenge that is just too big to think about and much too hard to approach. However like all challenges these can be tackled one step at a time!
Tips for getting started
Step 1: Take away the mystery: know your people demographics!
Collect all your people statistics that you have available.This is your starting point to understand the size and nature of your organisation, the age and gender mix against the different types of roles you have in your organisation as well as the status of each employee (permanent, casual, part-time).
Step 2: Review your strategic goals and plans and your external environment.
What is really going to be important in the coming months and years and what areas need the greatest focus?What is going on outside your organisation that you need to consider?
Step 3: Consider what’s keeping you awake at night?
Review your workforce demographics and list your workforce concerns (even if you don’t think they relate to the subject of workforce planning). Rank your concerns in order of urgency from the perspective of your strategic goals and plans.This step alone will help you to significantly size up your challenge!
Step 3: Consider activities that will bring solutions to your concerns and challenges.
These could be large or small activities such as succession planning, recruitment campaigns, retention programs and traineeship programs.
Step 4: Review your activity solution list against your concerns and strategic imperatives.
Will some activities naturally need to occur before others?Will some activities be more easily placed soon or later?Where can you focus to get the most results?Where are the quick wins?
Step 5: Set a realistic timetable and program of activities.
Understanding your resourcing availability will help you set a realistic, achievable program of projects.Discuss with your senior team how you can get things done:
- What projects can internal staff undertake?
- Who will work on your solutions?
- Do you have the skills to do this?
- Will you need some help from outside the organisation?
Remember to include short term and long term goals in your timetable and build in check points to monitor your progress.
Step 6:Celebrate your achievements at every opportunity!
As you tackle your Workforce Planning activities it is important to reflect on small and big successes and acknowledge these along the way. Celebrating is a positive way of helping to keep you on track and maintaining some excitement of building a sustainable organisation.