In the Fourth Article in the Workforce Planning Series; Developing an Action Plan for your Workforce Planning involves considering its purpose. Workforce Planning is significantly more than just filling open vacancies and keeping warm bodies in positions. It involves this simple formula:
High Performing Workforce = Employees’ Knowledge + Skills + Experience + Initiative
You didn’t think you had to do math, did you? In reality, it is less math than it is understanding the relationship between different elements of Workforce Planning. The goal when Developing an Action Plan for your Workforce Planning is to achieve high performance from the workforce. Not “meets expectations” but HIGH PERFORMANCE.
How can your action plan develop HIGH PERFORMANCE from your Workforce?
Of course, we are discussing employee engagement when we discuss high performing workforce’s. These groups are the most productive. When you consider that repeated Gallup Polls show that only about 1/3rd of all employees are meaningfully engaged you either see a large problem or a great amount of opportunity. Engaged employees see opportunity.
Engagement is nothing more than the extent the individual chooses to apply their knowledge, skills, and abilities toward an effort. I invite your attention to three words “the individual chooses.” In many organizations, Engagement is based on the premise that the organization must make the employee happy. Happy in their work, happy with their pay and benefits, happy… In essence, it makes the organization responsible instead of the employee. You could say it pretty much takes the employee out of the equation and makes leadership and management decide for the employee. That would be an incorrect approach and one that will disengage your workforce.
You engage your workforce in finding out what they want from work and the relationship with the company. Leaders, Managers, Supervisors involve themselves with all employees and find out the answer to the following:
- Do they want their pay tied to performance (individual, team, company);
- Do they want flexible work schedules for arranging family and other personal desires?
- How do they want to be recognized for their efforts?
- What are their personal and professional goals?
What matters to them, and how does that match, if at all, with what matters with the company? How does it align with the company’s strategic plan?
It isn’t about how much money you spend, and it isn’t about how many people are happy because of it. It is about a joint effort with a shared reward that brings everyone to a commonplace. Further, it is unique to each organization, each culture.
Good employee engagement efforts are a combination of common processes and individual pathways. It means that getting the employee involved in the process ensures that BOTH the company and the employee are working together. It also means creating an environment where employees feel they are valued; you demonstrate that value to them, and you invest in their growth and future development.
As you develop your action plan employee engagement is an important part that you must address. Acting on employee input helps drive Action Plan design and success. Your Action Plan becomes your strategy. Executing your strategy is the first impactful goal.