Resourcing and Talent Planning

Be able to undertake core talent planning activities

Introduction

Workforce planning is the mechanisms that employers use to acquire employees with the right skills, competence, and experience. When carrying out workforce planning, employers are guided by the resources available, the mission and objectives of the companies as laid down in the strategic plan and the preferred competencies and experiences as defined by the organizations’ core business (Drucker 1992 p. 45). On the other hand, succession planning is the process through which an organization ensures smooth leadership continuity and advancement of individuals. It can also be defined as the process through which organizations develop individuals who show potential in preparation for filling leadership positions in an organization. According to Duane (1996), career development planning is closely related to succession planning (p. 67). In career development planning, individuals are analyzed on their potential strengths and weaknesses and put on the right career that matches their skills and abilities. More often than not, career planning is involved and decisions sometimes are made by the individual rather than the organization.

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Eastman (1995) workforce planning underlies all the other processes (p.89). While carrying making staffing decisions, employers seek to hire employees within the defined parameters of the organization. At the same time, employers seek to acquire talent that will stay with the organization in the long-term for easy succession planning. Because succession planning may be costly in terms of training individual employees, career development plans become necessary to gauge which employees are focused on making a career out of the company core business. Through the above processes, human resources departments are able to acquire talent that is suited for the organization for long-term prosperity.

Workforce Planning

Workforce planning enables an organization to operate within its means while maintaining its core business (Ettore 1993 p. 59). The main objective behind workforce planning is to ensure acquisition of the talent that will enable continuity of an organization into the future. Talent here is taken to mean the desirable skills knowledge and capacity to perform organizational activities. It’s important to note that access to talent is not limited to employing people with the required skills only. It also involves entering into productive partnerships, contracting both short and long-term employees, employing people permanently as well as acquiring new businesses. According London, et al (1990), workforce planning is finely linked to strategic planning and normally, it takes place in a cyclical manner. Supplying required resources, administering resource utilization, identifying and managing resources to full utilization and restarting the cycle precisely defines workforce-planning (p. 90).

Wray (1996) says that it’s imperative that organizations adopt strategic workforce planning which is broader and takes into account the fine elements of workforce planning. Strategic workforce planning helps business progress through accurate projection of skills that the organization needs currently and n the future. It’s not prudent for organizations to link workforce planning to acquisition of human talents. Organizations should always evaluate the talent needs as they are aligned to the organization’s overall strategy so that the current situation of talent can be reviewed to include material needs.

Workforce planning methodologies

There are numerous workforce planning methodologies including, workforce analytics, modeling approach, and segmentation approach.

In the analytics approach, organizations carefully analyze data on the current and past employees to identify relationships that exists between important variables. The relationships help HR manager deduce the needs of the organization and the kind of workforce they might require in future. Recruitment, turnover, and promotion data is analyzed to provide the above insights. Many organizations find the method advantageous especially as it gives fact based information besides helping manager analyze consistency of perceived and actual behaviors in the organization (Anker 1998, p. 297).

The modeling approach on the other hand makes use of quantitative data that is used to construct models that help in forecasting the future trends of the workforce. The method comes in hand in cases of uncertainties like the current economic crises. Sometimes, the modeling method may make use of both qualitative and quantitative data (Cook, 1995, p. 40).

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Though segmentation method, organizations divide their workforce along the lines of their job descriptions. Managers are better able to relate relevance of the available jobs through segmentation. The most important are then given priority.

For the workforce plans to work, they must contain elements that they have to take to account.

An environmental scan helps a workforce plan to carefully analyze and determine the business environment that the organization is operating. This can easily be done though business intelligence (Goodstein 1992, p. 89)).

A workforce plan also has to take into account the current profile of the existing employees. Its easier to determine the external and internal demand and supply factors through the above described analysis.

Besides the current profile, the plans must incorporate the future view, which helps the organization take into account the trends that characterize the market where they operate. The modeling approach comes in handy and can help the organization in forecasting the future (Porter 1980, p. 57).

He above element helps an organization analyze and determine the direction it would like to take in future. The targeted future will take into account factors such as demand and supply as well as quantitative and qualitative data available to the organization.

Finally, the organization needs to develop people plan. A plan that incorporates sound people management policies that will take the organization to the future. They may include, resourcing, good remuneration retention, good industrial relations, and knowledge management (Cohen et al. 1992, p. 108).

Succession planning

According to Kraut, et al. (1983), the succession plan helps provide the data that is needed for the development of coaching practices that employees will be taken through (p. 154). Succession plans are developed through the identification of individuals showing high potential or those that have impressive performance, through the analysis of the human resource needs of an organization that will help meet the future requirements of the organization. It’s also developed through the training and development need or the company as guided by the strategic plan. Additionally, it’s developed through an analysis of the likely future needs of the organization and most in importantly through the identification of the individual career paths of the employees of the organization (Rothwell, 2001, p. 58).

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According to Arieu (2010), it’s important to note that the succession planning does focus on the individual more than the team (p. 47). The individuals of the organization who may be identified through the process describes above are then appraised on their performance. The individual process includes coaching, customized 360-degree feedback assessment and career development.

The career succession plan is then rolled out and aided by the development of a coaching process that has a pool of internal coaches and mentors as well as external coaches and mentors.

Downsizing

Spreitzer & Mishra (2002), says that downsizing is the intentional reduction of the workforce of an organization (p. 34). Brockner (1988) who is more abrasive in his definition supports their view. He says that downsizing refers to the permanent and in most cases involuntary separation of employees of an organization (p.45). The most common reasons for downsizing include coast reduction, consolidations of changes in an organization, increasing efficiency and improving productivity downsizing is described in a number of terms including restructuring, rightsizing, re-organization, and delayering (Cummings & Worley, 2001 p. 37). The above terms pretty much describe the methods used in downsizing.

Many companies use the laying off method. Here, employees are forced to retire early or retrenched and paid a sum of their pension. During downsizing, some employers may reassign duties to other employees in cases where they feel there was multiplication of duties. No matter where one look at it from, the bottom line remains that companies shed off unwanted employees from the organization and retain those they think are necessary for the operation of the business.

According to Charan et al (2001), organizations can also carry out downsizing through the emergence of new organizational forms, reallocation of resources and power within the organization, increasing the expectations, responsibilities, and the workload besides raising the need for employees to relearn and develop new skills (p. 54). Finally its can also take place through redundancy of those that who do not get laid off.

Know how to contribute to the development of Resourcing strategies

Relative strengths and weaknesses of labor market competitors

In the current competitive business environment, many businesses are employing every available strategy to stay afloat. Before any organization embarks on developing an strategy, it’s important that the management does a comprehensive evaluation of the weaknesses and strengths of its labor market competitors. This way the organization will be better placed to understand the crop of employees they need and how to attract the best people to work with them. its safe to say that the labor analysis is part of a larger industry analysis that companies take on their competitors to understand how they operate so that that they can developed capabilities that ensure competitive advantage as far as labor is concerned. Goldsmith (2010) says that strategic implementation control involves organization, change management, and Resourcing (p. 85). Resourcing refers to the resources required in the implementation of a strategy, which includes capital equipment, ICT based elements and most importantly human resources.

Organizations seek to determine the modes of recruitment of their competitors. Some organizations prefer fresh talent hence tend to concentrate on recruiting final year college students. Auditing firms KPMG, Price Waterhouse Coopers, and Delloite are well known in such approaches. On the other hand, some firms prefer experienced individuals who have been in the system for along hence require little training. Organizations that require the later are well known to engage in “corporate poaching” where they offer attractive incentives to employees of rival companies that show exceptional abilities in their work. (Jaques 1989, p. 65).

While some organizations can engage in the above practices in search of the best talent, others do not have the resources to recruit the best talent there is. That therefore forms their weaknesses. Organizations therefore should consider weakness and strengths of the ir competitors in the labor markets through factors such as resources, prestige, and tradition.

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Besides, the organization should evaluate its competitor’s personnel and organization plans. They should compare their plan under elements such as positions that exists in the competitor’s departments similar to theirs, the methods they sue in the recruitment and selection of new employers and the career development paths that the rival organization gives to their employees.

According to Kesler (2002), employers should analyze training and educational activities as well as the organizational culture that exists in the rival organization (p.54). Performance assessment, terms of employments, which, may include remuneration, incentives, and the relationship with the stakeholders of the organization forms another level of analysis. Other analysis levels include trade union relations and organization with their employees as well as the promotion policies they rival organization employs.

How organizations position themselves strategically in competitive labor markets

Different organizations have different strategies when it comes or strategic positioning in the labour market. According to Mahler. (1973) human beings are emotional creatures (p. 87). Mahler (1973) further says that employee passion is one of the key ways through which an organization can sustain its performance. Therefore it’s best that management especially HR builds a strong and effective culture that shape the attitudes of the workforce towards organizational dedication and high performance (p. 65)

According to McCabe (2007), organizational performance can be sustained through creation of a culture where employees passionately believe in the purpose and objectives of the organization and where employees feel that that the contribution towards the purpose of the organization is equivalent to contributing to their own expectations (p. 85). Sustained performance is also ensured through an environment where connection and collaboration is regarded for the creation of a win-win situation between employees and stakeholders and finally where employees’ are treated with respect genuine care for their wellbeing and welfare.

The above skills are imparted on the employees through training that is offered by the company. Before that, it is important that HR roll out a program through which only people who are likely to blend with the organizational culture are recruited. To achieve the above, organizations must position themselves responsible corporate citizens who care for the wellbeing of their employees and that of the clientele they serve. Organizations also position themselves as good employers through the projection of a rosy corporate image that is supported by good physical facilities, incentives, and good media coverage.

Evaluate why and how organizations seek to be seen as employers of choice

According to McCall (1998) employers are always to inventing new approaches t help them achieve their business goals (p. 47). They are continually perfecting their ability to attract utilize to the optimum and retain the best talent which is a pivotal component in achieving their organizational goals. In essence, employers are actively engage in employer branding that is primarily focused on attracting top talent. Branding is meant to give employers exposure to become the employers of choice. Many studies have consistently pointed out to the fact that many employers of choice have better financial results, attract a bigger pool of candidates for job positions on offer, and show a higher level of employees’ engagement. As said earlier, being an employee of choice is all about building an organizational culture that is unique.

Many companies that that have been declared employers of choice exhibit numerous exemplary business practices. However, some are universal and can apply across the board regardless of the industry that the organization belongs to (Wray 1996 p. 87).

Many employers of choice clearly articulate the company’s vision and mission to the employees. The communication of the vision by the organization leaders is a sure way of enlightening employees about the future of the company hence boosting their confidence in the organization.

According to Monge (1990), employers of choice create an atmosphere that allows for the free communication of employees. When employees are allowed to clearly voice their opinions, and concerns and leader are available and willing to dress them, the organization easily becomes an employer of choice (p.94).

Provision of training and development opportunities for employees ensures loyalty to the organization. It’s therefore important that employers devote some resources towards employee development in order to achieve the employer of choice status.

Perhaps the most important strategy in becoming an employer of choice is to integrate the organizational business strategies and goals with human resources practices. Because all business organizations would want to make profits, its important that they tailor-make their compensation packages to ensure retention of top talent so that they can easily achieve their revenue targets easily.

The above will ensure employees develop an emotional connection with the organization to an extent that a competitor cannot recruit them.

  • Know how to manage dismissal, redundancy, and retirement effectively and lawfully.
  • Explain the main legal requirements in relation to dismissal, retirement, and redundancy.

Dismissal, retirement, and redundancy laws vary from territory to territory. Different countries have their labor laws that guide the above inevitable human resource practices. However, there are standard laws that govern labor all over the world and those only show minimal variations in the countries they operate.

Dismissal

According to James & Rita (2007), all employers are required to have a justifiable reason before dismissing any worker. A justifiable reason herein refers to a situation where the employers has sufficient reason to believe that the relationship he has with the worker make it impossible for both of them to work together. Some of the reasons that an employer can use to dismiss a worker include failure to follow job instructions, violation of rules and regulations governing the particular job, engaging in violence at work poor performance, financial damage and engaging in criminal activities outside the work place.

However, there are exemptions behind the law bars an employer from terminating an employees even if he‘s she ahs a justifiable reason for dismissal. The situations that may necessitate the above circumstances include temporary failure to show up to work due to medical reasons brought by occupational injury or illness. Employers cannot terminate an employee during maternity leave and the period after which may carry from country to country (Wiesenfeld, et al. 2001 p. 77).

The law requires that an employer give an advance notice to an employee before dismissal. Normally the period varies but the most common is 30 days. However, employers are allowed not to give the notice under some situations. It includes employees who have been employed on casual basis for a period not exceeding three consecutive months, an employees who has been on fixed employment for a period of less than two moths, an employee who has been employed for seasonal work in a period not more than six month and an employee still in the probationary period.

Where the notice is issued, the employer should do it in writing. The notice must disclose the reason for dismissal and the actual date when the employee is supposed to vacate office. Its important to note that failure to adhere to the above gives an employee sufficient reason to institute legal proceedings against the employer.

Redundancy

According to Van (1998),the law requires that for a redundancy dismissal to take place, the job that the affected employee is doing must disappear meaning the company can recruit new employee but nit to the position left by the redundant employee (p. 43). A redundant layoff only takes place when the employer cannot provide an employee with paid work for a temporary period. Otherwise, the employer has a legal obligation to provide the, would be redundant employee with short-term employment.

The law requires all employers to consult all the employees that will be affected by the redundancy action before the actual steps have taken place. This can be done through union or work representatives.

Age discrimination must never be a characteristic of redundancy actions. Some employer shave a tendency to kick out younger works because of inexperience, however, new labor laws have spelt out clearly that age discrimination during redundancy actions is criminal

Similarly, law to hold severance pay to the employees who become redundant bares employers

Retirement 108566

Many retirement ages vary with different governments. However, the most popular retirement ages are 55 to 65 years. However, there is talk of raising retirement age being revised in other countries, it’s yet to affect the universally accepted retirement ages in the corporate world. There is a legal provision for the voluntary retirements. In some cases some provisions does recognize the right to being employed of people perceived to be over the retirement age.

Advise organizations on good practice in the management of dismissals, retirements and redundancies

According to Mahler, (1973), when carrying out dismissals, redundancies and retirement, it’s important that employers follow the law. Failure to which is likely to engage both parties in unnecessarily long disputes that will drain the both parties time and financial resources. Some of the important factors that employers need to consider when carrying out these processes are the age limits, serving notices and consultation.

Consulting for instance is important as highlighted in the case pitting UK Coal Mining Limited and the National Union of Mineworkers. The workers union was not convinced by the reason given for the closure. As result, they took the case to the UK Unemployment Appeal Tribunal, which backed their decision. The EAT effectively ruled that it’s a requirement for employers to consult over the original reason of closure.

For employers who carry out redundancy dismissals through the “last in first out” method, lawyers warn that it’s tantamount to discrimination. Employees affected can therefore appeal on the grounds of discrimination and any evidence they may have may be admissible before a court of law (Scandura 2000 p. 67).

Cases concerning severance pay have also been a subject of legal battles involving dismissed and redundant employees. For instance in 2007 in the UK the health secretary ordered that the outgoing CEO of Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust not be given salary because the company’s products contributed to the death of over 90 patients. Given that the job is contract, based law experts contend therefore that it’s a bridge of contract on the part of the employer to withhold severance pay.

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Cook, K. J. (1995) The AMA Complete Guide to Strategic Planning for Small Business. Chicago: American Marketing Association.

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McCabe, H. (2007) Pass It On: The Entrepreneur’s Succession Playbook. London: Sage Publishers.

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