According to Geisler, "Manpower planning is the process including forecasting, developing and controlling by which a firm ensures that it has the right number of people, the right kind of people at the right places and at the right time".
More recently, manpower planning has given way to Human Resource Planning. The latter can be viewed as having a broader perception of the issues concerning the employment of people. The purpose of Human resources planning is to achieve the best possible use of human resources and to have the correct number and types of employees needed to meet organisational goals. Human resource planning is also closely linked to high level strategy.
PROMINENT POINTS OF HUMAN RESOURCES PLANNING
Ensures a continuous and proper staffing. It avoids or checks on occupational shortage or surplus occurring in any of the departments of the organisation.
There is a visible continuity in the process.
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There is a certain degree of flexibility to accommodate the needs if the organization.
Human resource planning is an ongoing process required to forecast manpower requirements. It requires a continuous evaluation of present manpower resources and an assessment of how these resources are being employed. Human resource planning helps to determine the need for new recruitment and to analyse the induction level of employees whilst anticipating redundancies. With efficient human resource planning, the organization can have accurate figures for the cost of manpower when embarking on new projects.
The effectiveness of Human Resource Planning depends on how well the existing manpower is utilized and future needs are met. Benefits associated with effective Human Resource Planning include the identification of sources of manpower which are likely to provide sufficient number of employees having the appropriate levels of knowledge, skills and the capability of integrating important elements of manpower planning into the overall corporate planning system in the organisation.
Succession planning is a critical part of the human resources planning process. Succession planning involves using the supply of labor within the organization for future staffing needs. Succession planning is typically used in higher-level organizational positions, such as executive-level positions. For instance, if a company predicts that its Chief Executive Officer will retire in the near future, the organization may begin looking months or even years in advance to determine which current employee might be capable of taking over the position of the CEO. Succession planning is aimed at promoting individuals within the organization and thus makes use of internal selection. Internal selection, as opposed to hiring employees from outside the organization, has a number of benefits and drawbacks. With internal selection, the organization is aware of current employees' skills and abilities, and therefore is often better able to predict future performance than when hiring from the outside. Internal selection is often motivating to others in the organization-opportunities for advancement may encourage employees to perform at a high level.
Despite its many advantages, internal selection can also have some drawbacks. While the opportunities for advancement may be motivating to employees who believe that they can move up within the organization at a future date, those employees who feel that they have been passed over for promotion or are at a career plateau are likely to become discouraged and may choose to leave the organization. Internal selection still leaves a position at a lower level that must be staffed from the outside, which may not reduce recruitment and selection costs.
Recruitment selection in an organisation
Recruitment is the process of identifying that the organisation needs to employ someone up to the point at which application forms for the post have arrived at the organisation. Selection then consists of the processes involved in choosing from applicants a suitable candidate to fill a post. Recruiting individuals to fill particular posts within a business can be done either internally by recruitment within the firm, or externally by recruiting people from outside.
Internal recruitment can save the organization considerable costs as individuals with inside knowledge of how the business operates will need shorter periods of training and time for fitting in. From the firm's point of view, the strengths and weaknesses of an insider will have been assessed. There is always a risk attached to employing an outsider who may only be a success 'on paper'. Internal promotion also acts as an incentive to all staff to work harder within the organisation. Internal recruitment however means that another employee will have to replace the person being promoted.
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This process of recruitment makes it possible for the firm to choose from a broader pool of talent, and provides the opportunity to bring new experience and ideas in to the business. The drawbacks of external recruitment are that it is more costly due to advertising. The company may also end up with someone who proves to be less effective in practice than they did on paper and in the interview situation.
The recruitment and selection process works in various stages which are essential to define the nature of particular jobs. Before recruiting, a job analysis is conducted in order to indentify the key elements of each job, for example; the title of the job, to whom is the employee responsible, for whom is the employee responsible and a simple description of the role and duties of the employee within the organisation.
The job analysis is used in order to choose employees either from existing staff or by recruiting new staff. This stage also defines the training that will be required by the new employee to fulfil his/her new duties or responsibilities. Job analysis can be carried out by direct observation of employees at work, by finding out information from interviewing job holders, or by referring to documents such as training manuals. Information can be gathered directly from the person carrying out a task and/or from their supervisory staff.
The job description will include the duties and responsibilities of the job. A job description could be used as a job indicator for applicants for a job. Alternatively, it could be used as a guideline for an employee and/or his or her line manager as to his or her role and responsibility within the organisation.
The job specification goes beyond a mere description as it defines the qualifications, experience and personal qualities required by the job holder.
Job analysis, description, and specification can provide useful information to a business in addition to serving as recruitment instruments. The selection process involves procedures to identify the most appropriate candidates to fill posts. An effective selection procedure will therefore take into consideration that the costs of the selection are kept low, that the skills and qualities being sought have been identified and how to develop a process for identifying them in candidates. Finally the selection process has to make sure that the candidates selected, will want the job, and will stay with the company.
Keeping the costs of selection down includes finding a suitable place for the interview to take place in a location which is accessible to both interviewers and interviewees. The selection panel must have available all the necessary documentation relating to the applicants including the application forms and curricula vitae of the candidates. A short list must be made up of suitable candidates, so that the interviews do not have to take place a second time, with new job advertisements being placed.
The skills required for the post be identified through the job analysis, description and specification. Thus during the selection process one must deal with interviewing the applicants and involve the candidates in simulated work scenarios while asking them about precious work experiences. In order to test their abilities, personality and intelligence tests may sometimes be used as well.
Induction and training
Once the candidates have been chosen for the post, an induction programme is usually set up in order to meet other workers. The induction programme should also focus on making the candidates aware of their full duties and responsibilities. The first few days of the induction programme will involve general observation with an experienced member of the department. Further training can also be provided on the job where the employee will learn the required skills through experience at work. Off the job training is also offered by many organizations wherein employees are given the opportunity to attend academic courses related to their particular jobs.
Promotion within a firm depends on acquiring qualifications to do a more advanced job. In accountancy for example, trainee accountants will be expected to pass exams set by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). At the same time, a candidate for promotion must show a flair for the job. It is the responsibility of the training department within a business to make sure that staff with the right skills are coming up through the firm or being recruited from outside.
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