Monday, July 13, 2015

What are the Best Principles and Practices for Workforce Planning and Management?

The best practices for people and culture management include better understanding, better education, and better empowerment.

Strategic workforce planning and management is about far more than just putting a ‘strategic’ label on the term. It’s an entirely new approach that uses tools and resources often weren’t available in the past. It involves moving away from tactical and transactional processes towards a holistic approach that aligns business and organizational needs. It involves both hard factors, such as organizational structure, process and technology, and soft factors such as leadership and culture., etc. But what are the best principles and practices for workforce planning and management?

Cross-functional collaboration, optimized process, and analytical tools: Strategic workforce planning is no longer the responsibility of just HR – all functions in the organization have a stake in it which requires cross-functional collaboration between HR, executive team, managers, finance, marketing, IT and others. To change means work and investment, but done right the outcome is worth the sacrifice. It needs to utilize available data to inform decision making. HR often falls short in this area. Strategic workforce planning requires collaboration among HR staff, managers and executives; access to and a better understanding of data and analytics; and apply advanced technology solutions to integrate disparate planning sources. You simply cannot accomplish this through Excel spreadsheets - even though 90% of organizations use them for workforce planning. You need to utilize technology to gather data from multiple sources and allow sophisticated analytics to help plan.

Culture and workforce management practices: The effective workforce management focuses on Attraction, Engagement and Performance AlignmentThe best practices for people and culture management include: better understanding, better education, and better empowerment. If businesses are wanting to grow, the first question is how they are attracting people (1) Attraction: then once they are in the door, how do you engage people (2). Engagement: How do you engage people, and then how do their remuneration and performance management systems reinforce the organizational strategy (3). Performance & alignment: When there is better understanding, one is automatically able to choose a better lifestyle than when restriction, discipline, management or control does not work. The pressure is withdrawn and people are filled with inspiration supported by better understanding, and they can better adopt changes easily.

Leadership Practices: Everybody wants to be a leader, but to get there it needs lots of sacrifice and self-discipline. You need lots of discipline to do what needs to be done in the interests of the company rather than by going through your moods.
(1) Balance Task Management with Thought Leadership and Behavioral Leadership,
(2) Translate Senior Management Vision and Goals into Workforce "Language," and
(3) Feedback: Allow input into direction and objectives.
(4) Self-management is not practiced on others, but on self: that’s why it’s called self-management, to know and comprehend how you can manage emotions and behaviors and as an individual recognize what is best to think and do, in relation to the betterment of his/her own life, including effective communications, and then, of course, it would ripple out to bless others too, it may encourage, nurture trust, or inspire peace -- when self-management taps the inner and outer resources of strength.

Workforce planning and management have to become more analytic and systematic, it does not mean that you treat people as "objects," but it does mean that whatever workforce management programs you run align with business’s strategic goals. More specifically, it needs to focus on the planning and best practices that will align people to the business in the long run, to put the right person to the right position at the right time, to both unleash talent potential and achieve long term business prosperity.


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