It’s in every business leader’s best interests to tap into workforce potential from within. This points to getting the hiring cycle down to a science. The assumption that your talent pool’s composition and interests won’t change over time causes companies to take a tactical approach to finding replacements.
Filling vacancies is harder than it looks. For one, you may not find the right candidate immediately. And when you eventually do find and interview a suitable candidate, anything can happen. They can back out at the last minute in favor of another company, or would cost you more than someone presently at your firm.
You also have to take into account the time new joinees would need to gain mastery over the role before assigning work. The side effects of this lapse is having to extend timelines or scale back on quality.
At the end of the day, efficiency is all about getting more done in less time without adversely impacting team morale. And a business runs more efficiently when role-specific tasks are allocated evenly, and optimally across workloads. Here are a few tips to tap into workforce potential;
1. Customize Business Views
Data is vital to make decisions. And the type of data you have before you determines how aware you are of the ins and outs of the business. Workforce data, for example, gives you insights into departmental teams, work dynamics and future requirements. Plugging this data into modules beyond human resource analytics lets you share skills across other departments, such as finances, operations and projects. In other words, managers know who to go to, and what to ask for.
A resource management software makes this data more visible and therefore, accessible to the right stakeholders. It lets project managers liaise with resource managers to find the right and available skills for existing and unforeseen demands. A tool that can accommodate portals and views according to role ensures that the data being looked at is relevant and comes straight to the point.
2. Create a Skills Bank
A skills bank, or competencies database stores information about your resource pool, from their employment contract type, seniority and experience to skills, qualifications and certifications. It lets you know which skills are in active use, and which ones aren’t.
This way, rather than let go of skills early only to find out you’ll be needing them for a future project, you can fill positions internally and minimise the gap between bench-time and project vacancies.
A further investigation on the relevance of benched skills lets you determine where best your staff can fit into, as well as their future employability. While the aim is to keep work as billable as possible, even the non-billable aspects of work such as internal and administrative projects require the right skills.
With a skills bank, you know exactly who is available and right for the task in question, and thereby avoid assigning a high-skilled, or overqualified employee to low-level work or vice versa.
3. Predict Talent Requirements
The proliferation of AI has disrupted the very DNA of work, workplaces and workforce. With low-level work being replaced by self-service digital desks, manually-intensive jobs are not as much in demand as tech-heavy roles. This disparity has resulted in a shift in demand which has to be met with the right quantity, and quality of talent.
The growing talent shortage can be closed with a better understanding of workforce capacity and demand comparison reports. Besides letting you know if your business is likely to face an excess or shortage of resources, the capacity tells you how many work hours are available.
The demand covers all types of services undertaken by your business. While short-term skills crunches can be corrected by shuffling available workers around, a mid-to-long term talent strategy can include additional hires, retraining existing staff or even delaying work until the right number of employees are on board.
Similarly, demand insufficiencies in times of recession can be treated by advancing timelines where appropriate.
With diversity in employment contracts, firms have more options to tap into. An on-demand workforce of freelancers, casual and part-time staff prove to be cost-effective while bringing in different work perspectives to your business.
This lets you benefit by ensuring you have the exact match in skills without having to add more to your payroll costs. Let us know if this read made you rethink your approach to hiring and retaining true potential!