Mistake #9: Engaging in infrequent or cursory workforce planning

Once you’ve hired the right folks into the right culture that sufficiently engages and excites them, you’ve done good work and your company stands to reap the benefits that come from an engaged group of potential star performers. But part of ensuring that each of your employees can become stars (or at least live up to their full potential) requires that you provide these employees with the tools, training, and support needed to do their current jobs and to prepare them for future jobs, as well. This is a crucial part of fulfilling the implicit and explicit promises made to employees when you hire them into your company:  the chance to grow, be challenged, and develop new skills.

There are many ways to do this and even more ways not to do this. Simply hiring people without the necessary support mechanisms or growth opportunities will cost you both in short-term productivity and long-term retention. Additionally, hiring with only an eye for skill sets you need today without thoughtful consideration for the future will equally cost you in having to manage through later terminations or reductions in force.

The key, as in any HR program or process, is to look at the issue holistically and in the context of your business needs and strategies. What skills do you need now? What skills will you need a year from now? Three years from now? Answering these questions and preparing to meet the challenges they pose is the essence of good workforce planning. 

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