Human Resource Planning(HRP)

Human resource planning is the process of anticipating and carrying out the movement of people into, within, and out of the organization. Human resources planning is done to achieve the optimum use of human resources and to have the correct number and types of employees needed to meet organizational goals. 

    Thus, it is a double-edged weapon. If used properly, it leads not only to proper utilization, but also reduces excessive labor turnover and high absenteeism, and improves productivity.

Lets discuss definitions of HRP as given by different experts. Vetter opines that it is the process by which management determines how the organization should move from its manpower position to its desired manpower position to carry out integrated plan of the organization. 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,
  • At the right time, doing work for which they are economically most useful”

“HRP is a kind of risk management. It involves realistically appraising the present and anticipating the future (as far as possible) in order to get the right people into right jobs at the right time”.

Why HRP:

  • Ensures optimum use of man (woman, too nowadays?) power and capitalize on the strength of HR. The organization can have a reservoir of talent at any point of time. People skills are readily available to carry out the assigned tasks, if the information is collected and arranged beforehand.
  • Forecast future requirements (this is done by keeping track of the employee turnover.) and provides control measures about availability of HR labor time. If, for example the organization wants to expand its scale of operations, it can go ahead easily. Advance planning ensures a continuous supply of people with requisite skills who can handle challenging jobs easily.
  • Help determine recruitment/induction levels. Let me explain this with an example: you as a manager want to determine what kind of induction the organization will require at such and such date. If you have a ready HR plan, you will have fairly good idea what kind of people are being recruited and at what position. Thus you can successfully plan your induction level.
  • To anticipate redundancies/ surpluses/obsolescence. Remember Geisler and Wickstrom’s definition??
  • To determine training levels and works as a foundation for management development programmes
  • Know the cost of manpower if there is a new project is being taken up, example: in cases of expansions or a new factory, one would naturally requires more human resources, hence a budgetary allocation can be made in advance for this upcoming corporate strategic move.Planning facilitates preparation of an appropriate manpower budget for each department or division. This, in turn, helps in controlling manpower costs by avoiding shortages/excesses in manpower supply.
  • Assist in productivity bargaining. For example, if a firm is going fully automated, it can negotiate for lesser workers as required for the same amount of the job by using the manpower predictions regarding the same. It can offer higher incentives (VRS) to smoothen the process of voluntary layoffs.
  • Help assess accommodation requirements (- You must be wondering how that can be related to HRP? A good HRP can assist in solving many problems of the firm, from day to day ones to very strategic ones, too.) for example: an organization decides to establish its production center in a remote area, an accurate HR plan can help it to decide how many people will be required there, and thus start the process of establishing a township for them in advance. The physical facilities such as canteen, school, medical help, etc., can also be planned in advance.
  • Management decisions. Now!! Lets see how this can happen. Example, suppose the question is to outsource an activity or not? An HR manager knows what is the distribution of workflow, and whether the present available staff can accomplish these. If it is realized there is no one available for the job in question, and training cost is coming out to be more or in some cases the skill is not going to be of much use, then such activities can be subcontracted or outsourced.
  • In addition, HRP (as already pointed out) prepares people for future challenges. The stars can be picked, mentored and kept ready for leading positions in future. All MNC’s have such policies and programmes (Wipro InfoTech has a leadership development programmes), where a “hot list” of promising candidate are assessed and assisted continuously for future management positions. This selection is possible only through a thorough HR plan.

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