Discuss the reasons and purpose of succession planning

Assignment: Manage workforce planning

STEP 1 Assess factors that may affect workforce supply
Review organisational strategy and establish aligned objectives for the modification or retention of the workforce

STEP 2 Review current data on staff turnover and demographics
Establish the organisation’s requirements for a skilled and diverse workforce

STEP 3 Define whether staff turnover is unacceptable and if so consider strategies to address the turnover
Define objectives to retain required skilled labour

STEP 4 Define objectives for workforce diversity and cross-cultural management
Define strategies to source skilled labour

STEP 5 Develop contingency plans to cope with extreme situations

STEP 6 Communicate objectives and rationale to relevant stakeholders
Obtain agreement and endorsement for objectives and establish targets

STEP 7, 8 Implement action to support agreed objectives for recruitment, training, redeployment and redundancy
Develop and implement strategies to assist workforce to deal with organisational change
Develop and implement strategies to assist in meeting the organisation’s workforce diversity goals
Implement succession planning system to ensure desirable workers are developed and retained
Implement programs to ensure workplace is an employer of choice

STEP 9 Review workforce plan against patterns in exiting employee and workforce changes
Monitor labour supply trends for areas of over or under supply in the external environment
Monitor effects of labour trends on demand for labour
Evaluate effectiveness of change processes against agreed objectives

Refine objectives and strategies in response to internal and external changes and make recommendations in response to global trends and incidents

STEP 10 Survey organisational climate to gauge worker satisfaction
Regularly review government policy on labour demand and supply

Workforce planning is a systematic, fully integrated organizational process that involves proactively planning ahead to avoid talent surpluses or shortages. It is based on the premise that a company can be staffed more efficiently if it forecasts its talent needs as well as the actual supply of talent that is or will be available. If a company is more efficient, it can avoid the need for layoffs or panic hiring. By planning ahead, HR can provide managers with the right number of people, with the right skills, in the right place, and at the right time. Workforce planning might be more accurately called talent planning because it integrates the forecasting elements of each of the HR functions that relate to talent–recruiting, retention, redeployment, and leadership and employee development.

These websites provide a good overview of the workforce planning process and the issues you may need investigate and address in your workplace when planning for future employment needs:

• http://www.cqu.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0017/6407/Guide-for-Managers-Workforce-Planning-V3-120911-kp.pdf
• http://www.cqu.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/6409/Workforce-Planning-Framework-v3-Sept-2011-kp.pdf
• http://www.dpc.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0017/12680/WorkforcePlanningAGuide.pdf

Business managers who just wait and then attempt to react to current events will not thrive for very long. The new standard is to provide managers with warnings and action plans to combat full-blown problems before they become more than a blip on their radar. The HR world is no different. The rate of change in the talent market is dramatic. We now know how important talent is to the success of a business. It’s time to make the talent pipeline (a defined recruiting channel where a company can find qualified talent to meet its specific needs) more efficient. It’s also time to manage your talent inventory (a company’s current employee base) so that there isn’t a shortage or a surplus. Effective alignment of human resources / workforce planning and departmental goals is critical in achieving both government priorities, departmental goals and objectives, as well as sustaining business continuity.

The document NISC workforce planning good-practice-guides, in your eLearning folder for this unit of study, contains many case studies about organisations that had understood the challenges they faced with recruiting and retaining good staff and the steps they took to address them. To complete this assignment you will need to refer extensively to this document (NISC workforce planning good-practice-guides.)

Task 1:

In around 150 – 250 words, analyse the key strategies that Industrial Conveying Australia (Pages 5-6) and Boral (Pages 8-9), have used to manage their skills acquisition and development needs, and the ways these organisations try to ensure key staff retention and to improve workplace culture and diversity.

Task 2

Property and development company Stockland (pages 9-10), mining company Alcoa WA Mining (pages 14-15) and accountancy practice William Buck ( pages 21-22) have all implemented programs to encourage staff retention . In around 150-250 words, describe the issues they faced and the strategies they have used to manage the talent within their organisations.

Task 3:

The aging workforce in Australia is posing challenges to many organisations, yet also provides opportunities for others. On the one hand, companies risk losing the vast knowledge and experience of their older workers as these employees look to transition from full time work to part time work or to roles that are less physically demanding. On the other hand, there are mature age workers with enormous “life experience” looking to return to the workforce or retrain to start new careers to suit the changing demand for labour skills in our economy. In around 200-400 words, using the case studies for Stepping Stones Children’s Services (page 11), Alcoa WA Mining (pages 14-15), Australian Railroad Group (pages 15-16) and Logan Employment Innovation Fund (pages 20-21), provide examples of how these organisations have:

a) managed the challenges faced by the impending loss of experienced personnel
b) made use of the opportunities provided by having a new pool of experienced labour looking to retrain and re-enter the workforce.

Task 4: Monitor labour force trends

For this task you will need to read documents a) 2015 Industry Employee Projections Report and b) Skill Shortages – Statistical Summary _2014-15 located in your eLearning folder and answer the following questions:

i) Identify the industry sectors with the highest predicted increase in employee growth for the five years to 2019 and provide reasons for this expected growth.

ii) Identify the industry sectors with the highest predicted decrease in employment for the five years to 2019 and provide reasons for this expected fall?

iii) In recent years, has there been an overall increase or decline in the proportion of occupations with job shortages in Australia in recent years?

iv) Which Australian State’s employers have had the greatest difficulty overall in recruiting staff in recent years?

v) Which two occupations are the most difficult to fill based on responses to advertised vacancies?


1 What labor force trends might influence a firm’s staffing planning, in your opinion?

2 How can contingent employees help organizations prepare for anticipated surpluses or shortages of workers?

3 Discuss the objectives of workforce planning. Outline the elements of a workforce planning model.

4 Give 2 examples of workforce planning strategies used to develop:

a) the organisation
b) the current workforce
c) the future workforce

5 What is the difference between treating employees as assets and as investors? When is it appropriate for an organization to treat employees as investors? When is it appropriate for an organization to treat job applicants and employees as assets?

6 In what situations would position-oriented staffing be preferable to talent-oriented staffing?

7 Discuss the reasons and purpose of succession planning.

8 Define the term “employee engagement. What strategies can a company introduce to take steps towards becoming an Employer of Choice in the modern economy?

9 Define the term “talent management.” Identify the characteristics of effective talent management systems

10 Define the term “employee capability”. What measures can an organisation take to enhance the capability of their workforce?

11 Briefly discuss three environmental constraints on HR that have occurred in recent years. Discuss how they have had an impact on your own industry

12 Identify factors contributing to workplace diversity.

13 How does a diversity policy benefit all the stakeholders in an organisation?

14 Looking at your own organisation, identify one or more elements of workforce planning that could benefit the organisation either now, or in the future and provide reasons for your choice..

15 What steps can an organisation take to minimize the disruption and uncertainty caused by organisational changes such as redundancies and redeployments

16 How often should workforce plans be reviewed? Identify at least 5 factors that could require you to adjust your workforce plan.

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