To maintain a company’s long-term success, it’s key to create a strategic workforce plan which includes information collected from business analytics, finance, and input from the HR and procurement team data.
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What is a Strategic Workforce Planner?
Strategic workforce planning is the process created to anticipate an organization’s current and future hiring needs. This will ensure your organization has the right person at the right job at the right moment. With the help of an HR analytics company, an organization will have all the resources to meet its business goals.
Taking into account all the considerations of an HR analyst, you will create an absolute work department, with the right skilled people in the right positions that bring successful results and higher returns on investment.
In a survey of 88 leaders at companies with at least $50 million in revenue, CareerBuilder found that 65% of CEOs agree that the opinions of HR leaders carry a bigger weight with senior management than before.
Why Should Workforce Planning Be Used In HR Analytics?
You might be wondering what is the difference between strategic workforce planning and HR (human resource) analytics. HR analytics is a field that deals with people analysis within an organization to then improve employee performance.
Strategic workforce planning fits the description of HR analytics, so it can be considered a tool in HR data. However, where human resource analytics mostly focuses on analyzing relations between people and business outcomes, strategic workforce planning has a long-term analysis and is focused on employee formation.
Strategic workforce planning and HR analytics have boosted with the change in work norms. With the economic uncertainties, an HR Technology Pulse Survey conducted in 2020 by Gallagher, showed shifting in performance management and employee communications.
The key steps in strategic workforce planning
According to Forbes Human Resources Council, strategic HR means taking into consideration different aspects, such as talent retention, recruiting, and professional development, and then leveraging human resources in an advisory capacity in these areas.
There are several main steps HR professionals should take into consideration during strategic workforce planning.
Guarantee alignment and goal precision
Alignment is a critical step in strategic workforce planning, the alignment of business strategies, organization structures, people, and results. Ensuring precise goals and clear objectives will ensure a transparent organization with the right people who have the right roles and will deliver great results.
Understand the company’s future
Unlike HR analytics, strategic workforce planning takes into thought where the company is headed, future organizational capabilities, and prospective goals. This helps the company identify new skills and competencies needed to master future learning and development opportunities.
Execute a current state assessment
Assessing the current business state is crucial as many workforces tend to jump straight forward into planning without realizing what are the current resources and problems. The organization needs to understand whos in what place right now and how they can develop a more accurate plan for better workflow.
Create staffing models
Creating a staffing model will allow prediction and drive workforce planning. Without clear answers to questions, you won’t be able to shape a strategic workforce plan for both headcount and timing.
Find gaps to fill with talent
To build an ideal workforce plan, you’ll need to identify current gaps and needs and find an understanding of how to fill those. If you determine the conflicts, you can then focus on updating your team or looking for new members who will fill the missing expertise.
Identify long-term necessities
Determine the long-term needs of a company to build the next steps. This strategy will allow you to know what you need to develop in the workforce for the step thereafter. Developing and hiring for the future must be a step ahead of your tomorrow steps.
Challenge the status quo
Evaluate where people are needed, what for, how and how many. This will challenge the status quo and start a new thought process about strategic workforce planning.
Point out vital competencies and invest in the current talent
Understanding what are your team members’ key competencies is necessary to rate them against specific core competencies. This will allow you to add to the lacking competencies and departments. Make your focal points – knowledge, skills, and abilities, the three that make up competency.
One very important lever is to retain and engage your current talent. Invest in developing their skills, knowledge, and experiences so that they can alternate and appreciate a variable career journey within one organization.
Follow through and consider the budget forecast
An essential step is to always follow through in strategic workforce planning, evaluate, monitor, and make ongoing adjustments to plans. Go back to already implemented solutions to check on performance and address any gaps if identified. A workforce plan should be flexible and ongoing as the strategic directions, workforce supplies and workloads change over time.
Investing in employee growth can take a toll on profit and increase budget standards. Therefore you need to consider your budget forecast for the next 6, 12, and 18 months out and remember about employee retention, internal promotions, and internal lateral moves.
Human capital, workforce management, and financial data can get complicated, especially when there is a need to switch between different platforms. It is crucial for all data to be collected and stored in one place to effectively conduct the important workforce planning.
With the strategic workforce planning, you can create great strategies to ensure that organizations have the perfect mix of talent, technologies, and employment models.