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Workforce planning

Workforce planning is an important component of business planning.

Workforce planning involves:

  • identifying the skills, capability and capacity of your current workforce;

  • forecasting the skills, capacity and capability of the workforce you will need to meet your future business goals;

  • identifying any ‘gap’ between your current workforce and your projected future workforce needs;

  • then using this collective information to identify and plan actions you will need to take to fill any ‘gaps’ between the two workforces. Then document these in a workforce action plan.


Business context and environmentCurrent workforce profileFuture workforce requirementsAnalyse and fill the gapReview and evaluate your action planWorkforce Planning Map

Why do workforce planning?

Workforce planning can help you attract, recruit, train, motivate, manage and retain your employees, so that you have the “right people, with the right skills, in the right place, at the right time”.

Developing a workforce action plan is a key component of your business planning. Many businesses find they need to undertake workforce planning for one or more of the following reasons:

Growth in:

Sales demand (local, interstate or international)
New markets​
New products/services

Decline in:

Available pool of potential employees
Sales demand from existing clients
Number of new clients​

Changes in:

Market preferences
The economy (local, interstate and international)
Technology and equipment
Job requirements
Finance costs​


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Important information
By doing some simple workforce planning you can gain a better understanding of:

  • what your current workforce profile looks like;
  • what your future workforce profile may need to look like;
  • what the gap is between your current and future workforce needs; and
  • the actions you can take to fill the gap between what you have now and what you will need in the future.