From the Ask Tom mailbag –
As our company looks to its annual planning meeting, I have been asked to prepare a personnel plan for my department. I have never thought about it before. When we get busy, I hire someone.
Many companies are faced with increasing volume, more revenue, more customers, more transactions, more inventory, in short, more work. And that’s the place to start. Define the work.
Start by defining the output, its quality standard, how much and where it ends up (the market).
- Steps required to create the output.
- Oversight required to implement the output, monitoring pace of output, quality of output, quantity of output related to target.
- Systems required to create consistency of output, predictability of output, to determine necessary resources. This would include not only the core systems (functions), but also the supporting systems (functions) necessary to create the output.
- Oversight required to implement all the systems together at the same time, optimized and integrated.
In the list above, I have described four different levels of work, each requiring a different level of problem solving and a different level of decision making.
Your department may only require three levels or two levels of work. It depends on your company business model, and whether your department is a core function in that business model, or a supporting function. Your personnel plan starts by defining the work.