HR Glossary  >   Workforce Planning

Workforce Planning

What is Workforce Planning?

Workforce planning is the process used to analyze the staffing requirements of an organization. Using this, organizations determine gaps in the present and future staffing needs to recruit and train employees with suitable knowledge, abilities, experience, and skills. Through the implementation of this technique, organizations can understand their economic and technological needs.

To explain this better, consider the planning of the sales team. An organization is willing to expand over different regions of the country. However, the salesforce is only limited to a state. Under such conditions, your workforce planning can occur in the following way.

  • Identify the total locations you want to increase.
  • Identify the number of staff you need considering all the locations.
  • Create a list of required abilities, knowledge, and experience.

Once you have fulfilled these criteria, you can use this to plan your future manpower needs effectively.


What is Strategic Workforce Planning?

Strategic workforce planning is the proactive process of understanding future workforce needs while aligning every HRM function to that of the business targets. Areas that are focused on in this are:

  • Budget for staffing
  • Minimizing risks
  • Progression planning
  • Employee transfer
  • Managing total capacity


Frequently Asked Questions

Why is workforce planning important?

Workforce planning is important to implement your strategic thinking into reality. It sets the alignment of the goals with the employee's performance. Hence, the company’s growth can be executed in a planned manner.

How to implement workforce planning?

Workforce planning is essential for any organization. Improper planning might lead to conflicts and confusion between the employees. Thus, below are some points for effective planning.

  • Understand your organization's goals.
  • Analyze and evaluate your employees.
  • Assess future manpower requirements.
  • Determine any gaps in skills and resources between the present and future plans.
  • Implement strategies to overcome talent requirements.
  • Track and assess plans regularly.

How does workforce planning help organizations?

Workforce planning helps an organization in the following ways.

  • It helps you develop a roadmap of employee requirements for better future planning.
  • It enables you to determine probable gaps present in today’s manpower regarding hiring, training, and transfer.
  • You can effectively overcome employee turnover by determining and improving employee potential for leadership roles.
  • Gaining knowledge about your employees’ capabilities helps you plan their career development and thus improve retention.
  • As you can plan hiring and training needs, you can make the organization more adaptable to future change.
  • As you will be able to retain better talent, you can also reduce turnover costs and improve business ROI.


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