Making the business case for frontline workforce investments requires both quantitative data and qualitative storytelling. Organizations with the capacity to collect and analyze data can better forecast talent development needs and make more informed decisions when developing a workforce plan. Several business units may need to work together to gather and analyze the desired data. Workforce plans are more readily adopted when the data supports an organizational priority and workforce initiatives are aligned to business needs.
Workforce plans and analytics should align with organizational goals for maximum value. Each person tasked with gathering and reporting data should know how the data is used and how it contributes to organizational goals. Some of these goals might be:
Improving recruitment efficiency or effectiveness
Ensuring talent is aligned to new initiatives or growth
The following metrics provide valuable insight to inform strategic decisions.
How long employees stay in a position or with an organization, i.e., retention
Rate of lateral moves and promotions
Rates of retirement, voluntary departure, layoffs, and terminations
Number of days to fill a position
Number of applicants screened vs. hired
Number of qualified applicants per posting
Analysis of recruitment sources
Cost and productivity
Time to reach proficiency in a new job
Cost of hiring and training a new employee
Cost of using a temporary employment agency
Use this data to identify workforce needs and challenges, and then build a workforce plan to address them. Consider how strategies impact both external and internal talent pipelines. Ensure your strategy effectively tackles the issues revealed by the data. For example, if data shows that it is more cost effective to upskill current employees than to use an agency, assess what employees need to advance and develop programs that support them to learn and move into higher positions.