Workforce planning is getting the right number of people with the right skills employed in the right place at the right time to deliver an organisation’s short- and long-term objectives. It covers a diverse range of activities, such as succession planning, flexible working, job design, and many more. Whatever its precise form, workforce planning should be linked to strategic business goals and viewed as an important part of the strategic business planning process.

This factsheet examines the concept of workforce planning and looks at recent developments. It examines the distinction between 'hard' and 'soft' workforce planning, which work in conjunction to generate, analyse and action information. It also explores the different stages of the workforce planning process and highlights a number of key issues and action points around its implementation.

CIPD viewpoint

What is workforce planning?

What does workforce planning involve?

Stages of the workforce planning process

Implementation of workforce planning

Further reading

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