Developing & Implementing Workforce Plans

Section 3.5 Human Resource Strategies

Chapter 17


Workforce Planning

Definition: Getting "the right number of people with the right skills, experiences and competencies, in the right jobs at the right time." A comprehensive process that provides managers with a framework for making staffing decisions based on an organisations corporate objectives, strategic plan, budgetary resources and a set of desired workforce skills

Workforce Plans: Details of how the business will implement its HR management policies.

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Other Factors in a Workforce Plans

A skills audit of the current workforce to identify the qualities and abilities. These employees may have unseen potential. Qualifications and experience may have been acquired from outside the workplace

Data of labour turnover, wage rates, trend analyis of workforce demographics (such as level of entrants into a market)

Market Research data and sales forecasts which will indicate the number of employees required. If combined with technological advances, quality of workers and their productivity can be assumed

EU directives and government initiatives and legislation relating to the workforce

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Main Components of a Workforce Plan

  • Recruitment requirements - New job description & person specifications
  • Training & Development programs - Acquiring new technical skills to meet future business needs and developing employee potential
  • Retraining & Redevelopment - When skills become redundant as a result of technology, employees will need to gain new skills which will be in demand later
  • Redundancy - If a smaller workforce is needed then redundancy plans must be included in the workforce plan. This will start with natural wastage then move to voluntary and compulsary (if required)
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Benefits of a Workforce Plan

  • Provide Strategic basis for making human resources decision and facilitating solution to workforce issues
  • Managers can plan replacements and changes in the workforce skill levels by focuses on the factors of the plan
  • Organisational success depends on having the right employees with the right skills at the right time
  • Managers can identify ways in which technology can change the skills required of the workforce. Which can be addressed through recruitment, training etc..
  • Facilitates the introduction of flexible working arrangements. Training to make the employees multi-skilled helps to create job enlargement and therefore improves motivation
  • Efficiency of the employees will help reduce companies costs
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Internal Influences

  • Corporate Objectives
    - A growth objective could mean direct labour is increased
  • Production Objectives
    - Introduction of new technology could like to new skill requirements and loss of low skilled jobs
  • Marketing Objectives
    - Development of new markets overseas could lead to redeployment and recruiting a local sales team
  • Finance
    - Organisations could be unwilling to pay for training and development costs associated with "Soft" HRM. Similarly redundancies may prove too expensive
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External Influences

  • Market trends and buyer behaviour
    - Growth in fair trade goods could lead to relocation of manufacturing
  • New Technologies
    - The need to retrain employees may have a negative impact on motivation
  • Competition
    - If there is a skill shortage, then competitors may attempt to attract high quality employees with attractive reward packages. This could lead higher labour costs
  • Labour Market Trends
    - They will give an indications of suitable workers in the future. In recent years the ageing population had led to companies re-evaluating their attitude to older workers
  • UK government legislation
    - Changes in working practices such as minimum wage legislation, limits to working hours
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Implementation Issues

  • Employee-Employer Relations
    - Could improve communications
    - Could cause fear and unrest
  • Cost
    - Cost will be reduced and better in the longer-term
    - Many short-term costs such as reduncanices. Hard to measure success over long-term
  • Corporate Images
    - Organisation may be seen a caring for it employees and their needs
    - Decision could be unpopular and cause critism, leading to social costs
  • Training
    - Good training has a beneficial impacts all over the business in terms over motivation &efficiency
    - Training can be very expensive and there is no guarantee the employees will remain with the business once they're trained
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