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5 Workforce Planning Fails & How to Avoid Them

  • Publish Date: Posted about 3 years ago
  • Author: Taylor Varco

Some of the most important aspects of owning a business involve forecasting both supply and demand. Then you must take action on those predictions so that your company is prepared and organized for anything that comes in the future. 

There are a lot of mistakes that can happen when workforce planning. But a lot of these blunders can be avoided with some careful considerations. 

5 Mistakes to Avoid in Workforce Planning

Even large, successful corporations make mistakes in hiring talent, and the cost payout can be monumental. Take a look at the most common errors associated with this– and potential solutions to consider: 

1. Projections Based on Business Goals

Setting goals for your business is not the same thing as planning. Goals are usually high-reaching milestones that you’re working toward, while planning includes more realistic numbers backed by history, trends, and data. 

Solution: Be sure to hire and plan your workforce based on data-backed projections. Then you won’t run into discrepancies if you hire a team based on the numbers included in your business goals. 

2. Putting Out Short-Term “Fires” without Planning for the Big Picture

Often, a company hires a new employee as one team member leaves, and a spot needs to be filled. This can create a cycle of constantly hiring to fill a deficit. 

Solution: Be careful with your planning, including proper training and quality hiring practices. In that case, you won’t run into the short-term chaos that comes with low employee retention and workforce shortages. 

3. Lack of Flexibility During the Implementation Process

When you sell your board of directors or investors on an influx of hiring due to projected demand, you sometimes take the budget and run with it. When that demand changes, you need to be willing to change with it. 

Solution: This can include walking back your initial plan of hiring x amount of employees and being okay with re-evaluating your approved strategy along the way. Your board will see your humility and flexibility in keeping the company’s interest at the highest priority. 

4. Hiring on a Hunch

Of course, you want to hire employees that you feel good about and can picture working together seamlessly. But when you hire on a feeling rather than skills and references, this can negatively impact your hiring budget and retention. 

Solution: Look at the experience, check references, interview with skill, culture, personality, and work ethic questions to get a clear picture of how the employee will fit into your company. These behavioral questions will help you decide the best candidate to hire. 

5. Skipping Training Processes

You may think that it saves time to rely on their resume and skip training your employees specific to your company’s practices. Consequently, this doesn’t save time and leads to employees not performing to their full potential because they were never taught how their skills translate within your company. 

Solution: Training your employees is vital to building a successful workforce.It is not wise to take shortcuts and expect quality results. 

The process of offering the perfect workforce for the anticipated demand cannot be flawless because no one has total control of the demand. You can focus on long-term planning to set your company up for flexibility and be prepared with quick training processes to meet demand as it comes.