Workforce and Succession Planning
Getting Started: Identifying Scope and Context
What issue, initiative, or organizational unit needs your attention? How do the related workforce issues affect the organization's strategic direction? Do you have an immediate critical talent need or do you have time to plan?
If your organization is new to succession planning, conducting a key person or key position risk assessment may be a natural place to start.
Although every employee is a contributor to organizational success, some employees, due to the nature of their position or individual competencies, fall under the category of "key employees." The knowledge and skills that these 'key employees' possess are necessary to achieve organizational goals and are not commonly found in the workforce, which makes replacing the employee much more difficult. This situation is also referred to as "key person dependency."
Similarly, there are "key positions" in organizations that when vacant can cause significant impact on the organization's ability to operate smoothly. Often, succession planning centers on addressing what happens when the loss of either a “key person” or “key position” generates unacceptable operational risks; however, ideally workforce planning considers all aspects of staffing an organization and starts as soon as an employee is hired or a position is created.
Regardless of your experience level, clearly identifying the business objectives, how outcomes will be measured and defining success is a necessary part of your process design.