Workforce Planning

Planning the Total Workforce – Audio

Forecasting is a challenging and demanding function of human resource managers. One of the most important activities of a human resource manager in a firm is to come up with an ideal workforce plan. It is therefore surprising and concerning that workforce planning only recently became popular in firms. The fact that organizations are just starting to add workforce planning to the functions of HR managers is an indication that many firms do not have solid strategic plans. After all, a workforce plan is needed to adequately meet a company’s strategic goals. Workforce plans provide human resource managers with a guide to make the right decisions based on the available resources, budget, plans, and goals of an organization.

Workforce plans can come in many forms. They could be complex or simple depending on the requirements of the firm.

The goal of workforce planning is to find the organizational structure and human resource needed to achieve the firm’s strategic objective. (1)

Generating the Required Human Resources

This technique involves hiring, recruiting, training and giving out assignments to employees according to the firm’s workforce plan’s strategic imperative. With the ideal plan, the right training can be identified based on the needs of the firm for the moment and in the future. To get this done, recruitment practices should be weighed based on the goals of the firm. (1)

Restructuring Strategies

Restructuring strategies involve making a change to an organization’s structure to increase operational efficiency. This can be done in a number of ways. Managers could decrease the size of the workforce or reorganize work units to make them more efficient. They could also choose not to replace employees after attrition. This method is convenient when hiring urgency is low. Restructuring strategies are particularly important when there is an excess supply of abilities. In this case, restructuring improves the cost-effectiveness of running the firm.


This technique involves the recruitment of new workers that have the abilities that your firm might need in future. One of the jobs a human resource manager in planning is to ensure that the recruiting process is done strategically. If a new recruit does not align with your future expectations, then they should not be considered for a position for your organization.


This is a process that involves making use of external firms to complete projects. This is usually done when the right skill that is needed to complete a task is not available in the organization. Alternatively, managers can outsource workers when all employees in the organization are busy carrying out their assigned tasks. The process of outsourcing is especially important and efficient if the task is part-time.

It is important to ensure that each outsourcing move has positive implications for the organization.


There are instances when the right skill set of individuals to carry out a project are not available in a firm. One way to handle such situations is to collaborate with another firm instead of outsourcing.



Jackie, L. (2018, April 05). Forecasting techniques in human resource planning Retrieved from

HR Demand Forecasting. Retrieved from