How to Improve your Planning with a Detailed HR Planning Solution?

by Stephen Lang

HR planning is the process organizations use to plan recruitment, retain existing employees, and optimize the deployment of people. It is very important in terms of meeting an organizations’ strategic business objectives and responding to changes in the business environment. Finally planning for Human Resources is an important part of Budgeting and Forecasting for many companies.

The Steps involved in HR Planning

Analyze High-Level Business Objectives

To fully grasp your organization’s objectives people in management will need accurate and informative reporting. The basis of important decisions that impact the organization needs to be based on accurate and adequate information. The objectives also need to be clearly and concisely communicated. For Example, if you are opening a new facility that will need to be staffed and the expenses and HR requirements should be Forecasted to that new facility. Furthermore, you may be staffing this new facility with employees transferring in from another facility which should be tracked. Another example could be the implementation of a new bonus structure the effect of this new policy should be taken into consideration when forecasting HR costs. The strategic direction of the company is an important consideration when planning.

Inventory of Current Human Resources and Capacity

An accurate picture of what your current HR situation is imperative when determining future requirements. Without an adequate understanding of where you are it is impossible to accurately predict where you will be. For this reason, the integrity of your data is imperative.

Headcount reports are a great example of something that can give management a quick look at what the capacity for a given business unit is versus the current staffing numbers. This can be a great way to catch staffing gaps and at the same time analyze trends.

Forecast Demand and Expenses

Accurately tracking your forecast data is incredibly important. Especially when it could be coming from multiple input sources. A well-planned workflow and review process are essential for ensuring forecasts are entered correctly. It can also be important to have multiple versions of forecasts for comparison throughout a period.  

The detail with which you forecast is also of great concern. Do you only forecast at a Divisional or Department level? Do you forecast at the Position level, or will you need to go all the way down to the employee level to get the accuracy needed? 

Planning at the employee level will give you the greatest degree of detail when it comes to forecasting. It also allows you to plan for individual merit increases, fringes, and taxes.

Estimate Gaps

If the setup has been done correctly this should give you all the tools necessary to examine your current capacity vs future targets and plan or re-plan accordingly.

Monitor and Control Feed Back

Reviews and communication channels are imperative in clarifying discrepancies and having a full understanding of a company’s HR situation. It is through these channels that information can reach key decision-makers who will ultimately decide on a given set of targets and business objectives.