We’ve already established what strategic workforce planning is and why SWP is important. Now let’s dive a little deeper into this concept and discover how you can accomplish strategic workforce planning in a way that’s both effective and efficient.
A scenario-based workforce plan is grounded in the reality of your business, and it involves understanding and establishing strategies that cater to its ebb and flow. Take into account the big picture of your business and how it’s affected by the composite parts.
For example is your business small or large? Seasonal or year-round? B2B or B2C? All of these scenarios should guide your overall workforce plan. Failing to design a workforce plan that’s customized for your business’s real-life scenarios will result in a workforce plan that runs inefficiently — if at all.
If Goldilocks were an HR Manager, she’d ask, “Are your departments overstaffed, understaffed, or just right?”
The size of your workforce is directly related to the efficiency and profitability of your business. A workforce that’s too small will be unable to keep up with demand and will produce low-quality work as a result, while a workforce that’s too large will lose the company money because payroll expenses will exceed profits.
The most efficient workforce plans are rarely the product of one person’s strategic thinking. Rather, they’re the collaboration of several thinkers — ideally an HR manager who partners with company decision makers such as CEOs, CFOs or COOs. Together, these influential players pull and analyze data from human resources, financials, and business analytics.
The result of such a business assessment is a comprehensive and efficient workforce plan.
What good is a highly efficient workforce plan if you never execute it? At some point, you have to transition out the planning stages and move into implementation if your plan is going to prove efficient.
While implementing your strategic workforce plan may be intimidating, remember that it’s not set in stone — at least, it shouldn’t be. An efficient workforce plan is dynamic. You create it with the expectation that you will revisit it often (monthly, quarterly or bi-annually), and evaluate its effectiveness. Major changes in your business are another reason to re-assess your workforce plan. The important thing is that your plan isn’t static; it must grow with your company in order for it to work efficiently.
If you’re doubting the efficiency of your strategic workforce plan but don’t have the time to make any changes, consider how OpSource can help.