Strategic Staffing: A Comprehensive System for Effective Workforce Planning

Strategic Staffing: A Comprehensive System for Effective Workforce Planning

by Thomas P. BECHET

Paperback(Second Edition)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780814433010
Publisher: AMACOM
Publication date: 05/14/2008
Edition description: Second Edition
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 1,231,631
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 9.80(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

Read an Excerpt

C H A P T E R 1

An Overview of This Book

This book describes pragmatic approaches for developing and implementing practical, effective, targeted strategic staffing/workforce planning processes. It includes process descriptions, actual examples and case studies a advice and hints, a series of spreadsheet templates that can actually be used to develop strategic staffing models, and PowerPoint presentations that can be used to communicate (and train others on) the strategic staffing/workforce planning process. Specifically, the book is divided into five sections.

Section 1: Setting the Stage

Section 1 sets the stage for effective strategic staffing. It provides an overview of the strategic staffing process and its objectives and describes the context in which strategic staffing works best. The section focuses on descriptions of specific nontraditional approaches to strategic staffing/workforce planning that have proved effective in a wide variety of organizations and industries. The section also includes a description of a new ‘‘hybrid’’

approach to strategic staffing/workforce planning that combines some aspects of a companywide approach with the focused, targeted process that a strongly advocate.

Section 2: Developing the Strategic Staffing/Workforce

Planning Process

There are many approaches that can be used to organize and structure your strategic staffing/workforce planning efforts. Section 2 describes in detail an effective, practical approach that can be (and has been) implemented effectively in a wide variety of situations. This approach includes:
• A detailed description of the process itself (creating both long-term staffing strategies and short-term staffing plans)
• Specific examples of how required staffing levels can be determined (including actual, numeric examples with solutions)
• A discussion of various techniques that can be used to define useful staffing plans even when specific business plans are not complete or available
• A complete numerical example of a staffing strategy (and the staffing plans that result)
• Three detailed, ‘‘real-world’’ case studies, each of which describes the issues that an organization was facing and the staffing strategies and plans that the organization developed to address those issues
• A series of less detailed summaries of projects in which strategic staffing was implemented successfully

Section 3: Implementing and Supporting Your Strategic

Staffing/Workforce Planning Process

Developing the right strategic staffing process won’t help if that process is implemented incorrectly. Section 3 describes the context within which strategic staffing is best implemented. It includes:
• A framework that ensures effective implementation of the process
• A diagnostic tool that you can use to define the strategic context in which the process will be implemented in your particular situation
• A form that you can use to evaluate your company’s current strategic staffing process and identify opportunities to improve its effectiveness
• Specific suggestions on how you can engage and involve line managers in the process, including an interview guide that can be used to help identify staffing issues and define staffing requirements
• A description of what might be included on a strategic staffing web site that could reside on your company’s intranet
• A description of the HR functional structure that best supports strategic staffing/workforce planning (including some of the skills and capabilities the staff will need)
• Detailed suggestions and notes (almost a script) that you can apply when using the PowerPoint presentations that are available to you on the web site

Section 4: Beyond Staffing Plans: Analyzing and Applying the Results

One of the key deliverables of the strategic staffing process is a set of very specific staffing plans that should be implemented to address critical staffing needs. There are times, though, when a broader analysis of your results will be needed if you are to select the appropriate course of action.

The fourth section of the book describes what those analyses might look like, including:
• A discussion on how strategic staffing/workforce planning can be used to identify and address the impacts of retirements on your organization
• A description of how some of the quantitative aspects of workforce planning can be used to strengthen your management succession and development process
• A case for including workforce planning (‘‘talent planning’’) as a mandatory first step in any talent management process
• Specific suggestions on how to structure strategic staffing/workforce planning processes to support common business initiatives (e.g. a opening a ‘‘green field’’ site)
• A description of how workforce planning concepts can be used to define and implement staff reductions more effectively
• A description of how to measure the effectiveness and efficiency of your staffing practices
• A discussion of how an analysis of staffing costs can be integrated into your strategic staffing process


The appendices include a number of supporting materials that will help you implement an effective strategic staffing process. Specifically, the appendices include:
• Frequently asked questions (with answers, of course!)
• Specific instructions for modifying the generic spreadsheet staffing model templates (made available on the web site when you purchase this book) so that they can be used to support the development of your own staffing models, strategies, and plans
• Instructions for retrieving the computer files that come with this book.


While no approach is foolproof, this book is designed to help you get an effective strategic staffing/workforce planning process up and running quickly and easily. If your organization is not yet creating staffing strategies a these tools will ensure that you will get off on the right foot and avoid many of the pitfalls that other companies have encountered. These tools can also be used to jump-start or improve the effectiveness of an existing strategic staffing process. If you are already developing staffing strategies a the approaches and tools provided in this book will help you improve the quality and effectiveness of your results. In either case, be forewarned:

Many of the ideas in this book may differ from what you think strategic staffing/workforce planning is and what you think the process entails.

Just read it with an open mind and be ready to consider alternative approaches—

approaches that many organizations have found to be realistic and helpful.

Table of Contents


Preface to the Second Edition vii

Section 1: Setting the Stage 1

1. An Overview of This Book 2

2. What Is Strategic Staffing, Anyway? 6

3. How Should You Begin? 17

Section 2: Developing the Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning Process 21

4. Placing Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning in a New Context 22

5. Designing Your Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning Process 41

6. Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning at 30,000 Feet 77

7. Defining Required Staffing Levels 85

8. Defining Staffing Requirements Where Plans Are Uncertain 112

9. A Staffing Model Example 125

10. Effective Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning: Case Studies and Examples 141

Section 3: [ixImplementing and Supporting Your Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning Process 165

11. Implementing Your Process Effectively 166

12. Placing Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning Within Your Business Context 177

13. Engaging and Involving Managers in Strategic Staffing 191

14. Developing a Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning Web Site 205

15. Supporting Strategic Staffing/Workforce Planning: HR Structure and Required Skills 214

16. Getting Started: Conducting a One-Day "Kickoff" Session 227

Section 4: Beyond Staffing Plans: Analyzing and Applying the Results


17. Using Workforce Planning to Define the Impact of Retirements on Your Workforce 240

18. Using Workforce Planning to Support Management Succession and Development Planning 247

19. "Talent Planning": The Key to Effective Talent Management 261

20. Structuring Strategic Workforce Planning to Support Common Business Initiatives 270

21. Defining Staffing Reductions in a Strategic Context 283

22. Measuring Staffing Effectiveness and Efficiency 288

23. Calculating Staffing Costs and Evaluating Staffing Options 295


A. Frequently Asked Questions 309

B. Using the Strategic Staffing Templates from the Web Site 317

C. Retrieving the Book's Computer Files 335

Index 337

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