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HCMWorks Insights

5 Reasons To Implement Strategic Workforce Planning

Posted by Julia Fournier on 23 Nov 2016
In the past decade, strategic workforce planning has seen an explosion of analysis and new models as it has quickly spread as a business discipline. This, in large part, was due to the 2010 publication of "The Workforce Planning Imperative" by Julie Sloan, in which she describes a framework for integrating workforce planning into normal business practice and offers a process that is transferrable to any sector, industry, and business, and to government, non-government, private, small/medium size enterprises.
Sloan described Strategic Workforce Panning as a continual process used to align the needs and priorities of the organization, with those of its workforce, to ensure it can meet its legislative, regulatory, service and production requirements and organizational objectives. 
Workforce planning enables evidence-based workforce development strategies using the combined input from HR, recruitment, finance and business analytics.
In order for an organization to run smoothly, it’s important to implement strategic workforce planning, and the key to running your business smoothly is to get efficiently organized. 
That’s what strategic workforce planning is—an action plan, to help you meet your desired long-term goals to maintain long-term success. It's an ongoing process that allows your company to prepare for the future. 
When the right skills are in place and they are matched with the right positions, long-term objectives are met more easily, and your company is guaranteed to see more successful results. 
Here are some reasons why implementing strategic workforce planning is important for your company.
1. Problem Solving and Prevention
High-stress work environments make conflict management a challenge. Problems can be solved faster and easier when they are identified early. Create a written template that includes potential issues that can arise and clear, straightforward solutions to rectify them. With specific steps to managing problems, integrate a backup plan that HR can call on when necessary. 
Advanced preparation is also a great way to prevent problems from arising in the first place. When the team is equipped to deal with both minor and major issues within the workforce, they are always on the lookout for improvement.
2. Forecasting
What are the expected labor costs? Who are your competitors? Which employees may be retiring soon? Another essential aspect of strategic workforce planning is establishing what upcoming business trends and changes may take place. 
You should always be scoping out the next steps and future prospects for your business. Similar to identifying and preventing problems, forecasting involves developing helpful strategies to improve your business. By encouraging your team to look toward the future, you will see an increase in productivity as well as effective planning. 
3. Leadership Planning
Hiring the right people in the right positions will ensure success and make daily operations run smoothly. Through strategic workforce planning, you can identify the key roles that need to be filled and decide which employees should be moving up in their positions. 
Career counseling can be beneficial for boosting morale and strategizing skill management. Additionally, mentorship encourages the team to work hard towards meeting business goals. When everyone is achieving their personal best, the company as a whole sees the best results.
4. Reputation Management
Your corporate image isn’t everything, but it’s certainly a consideration when it comes to curating your company brand. How do your competitors see you? Does your work environment look and feel organized? 
By implementing strategic workforce planning you are significantly improving your image, thereby increasing the likelihood of investors taking interest in your services. If your image reflects a stressful work environment, you will not only appear inferior to your competitors but your employees will lose focus as well. 
When you are organized and have a dedicated action plan, your business looks professional and inviting. Prioritize your image by ensuring smooth operations from the inside out.
5. Improving KPIs
Once you have integrated your strategic workforce planning strategy you can keep track of KPIs and see how your company is improving. Compare stats and identify the areas where your workforce planning has helped your business move forward, and use the data as the framework for your ongoing plan. 
Assessing your company’s performance metrics and reviewing the data will help you determine what needs to be done to achieve your next goals. Employees should have a clear outline of quantitative and qualitative objectives to be met, with ideal numbers to work towards in the future. Once you have established a team strategy for workforce planning, your business can bank on long-term success.
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About HCMWorks

We are a contingent workforce service provider helping organizations gain better access to talent through the use of independent contractors, consultants, temporary workers, freelancers and other non-payrolled employees. We provide the expertise, the technology, and processes to help you reduce your workforce costs, mitigate against misclassification and co-employment risks, and increase the efficiency and timeliness of your contingent recruitment process. Read more about what our clients say about us here.


Tags: Workforce Management, Contingent Workforce

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