Workforce planning is a process that helps support the goals of the university with its workforce. It involves assessing the skills, knowledge and abilities of the current workforce, analyzing internal and external forces that may impact employees (e.g. large number of retirements), and considering the strategic plans of the university and the skills needed to accomplish them. Those analyses help leaders understand the gap in order to recruit, retain and develop employees effectively.
Workforce planning involves four main steps:
- Conduct an environmental scan of internal and external forces
- Review the university’s strategic plans. What kind of skills will be needed to accomplish those goals?
- Observe the external environment to the university. Labor supply shortages, budget cuts, changing workforce demographics, federal and state laws, and the evolution of higher education are all aspects to consider in relation to how it will change the skills that are needed to succeed.
- Study the internal environment of the university. What skills does the workforce have currently? What are turnover and retention rates like? Who may retire soon?
- Identify workforce alignment strategies
- Look at individual positions. Do they need to be redesigned? Transferred? Eliminated?
- What kinds of development opportunities are needed for employees to build necessary skills?
- For which positions will you need to recruit outside of the university? For which positions can you recruit internally?
- Create action plans
- Implement action plans
Would you like to start a workforce plan for your area? The Office of Human Resources would be happy to assist you.