Workforce Planning: Use this information sheet in conjunction with p13, 14, and 15 of the Learning Guide.

It is designed to give extra commentary and examples to supplement the course content.

Developing and Training the Workforce
Reviewing the workforce
Reviewing the workforce is important as it allows the following to be identified;  Any problem areas (for example, is there one team where staff turnover more frequently than the rest of the organisation? If so, what is happening to make this occur?). Once identified, steps can be taken to rectify the problem; steps may include re-training and/or redeployment of staff. Areas within the business that need more training and/or re-training Opportunities for development of staff (for example, buddying/mentoring programmes, work shadowing, candidates for succession planning)

 

All of this is important so that the business continues to have access to the right people with the right skills needed to fulfil the company’s vision, mission and other strategic plans.

Exit Interviews
As stated in the Learning Guide, exit interviews can give valuable information to an organisation about any problems that may exist in the workforce. This is important because of the high cost to replace staff and the potential difficulty in finding suitable replacements (see textbook 5th Edition, p 314-315). The process of exit interviews contributes to the overall planning for company development and its future needs. It allows the business to ask the person leaving questions along the lines of “what happened?, “why are you leaving?”. The information gathered from these interviews can be analysed for patterns and used to pinpoint areas for improvement within the organisation.

Economic Policy
- Think of the impact the introduction of the carbon tax had on the mining industry. There became less incentive for mining companies to produce (so they did not have to pay extra tax), which led to slowed industry growth, which meant a decrease in the demand for labour.

Michelle Charlton: May 2013

Page 1 of 6

this example illustrates the impact a legal change such as working age eligibility could have on the pool of potential workers.798 less people that businesses and organisations would be able to choose from. A note on retirement age . that would mean an extra 6. that would mean an extra 4.Australia has what is called an aging population. organisations are under different pressures to attract and retain their workers. If the government changed its policy and moved the minimum legal age at which you could get a job to 20 years old. and if the retirement age was raised to 70 years old.7% If the legal working age was between 15 and 65. Michelle Charlton: May 2013 Page 2 of 6 .7% of the total Australian population would be suitable to be a possible employee based on age. This means the proportion of young people being born aren’t presently enough to counter the number of people who are getting older.Another example of a legal change could be the minimum working age. See the diagram below for an example: % of Total Population in 2011 Age in Years 0-4 5-9 10-14 15-19 20-24 25-29 30-34 35-39 40-44 45-49 50-54 55-59 60-64 65-69 70-74 75-79 80-84 85 and over Ages 0-14 and 65-85+: 33. it would mean 66.405. As the pool changes in size. that would mean that only 60. Similarly. if the minimum working age was dropped to 10 years.3% Eligible working age: 15 – 64 years: 66.4% of the population would be available.3%. Although simplistic.Legal Changes . This equates to 1. this limits employers in terms of who they are able to source as potential workers from the pool of adolescents to make up the population.2% of the population would be available based on age.

That means that between a fifth and a quarter of Australia’s population is moving toward retirement age within the next 10 – 30 years. Also note that collectively. (Median is a type of ‘average’ calculation but it represents the middle number out of a range.AUSTRALIA Michelle Charlton: May 2013 85 years and over Page 3 of 6 . this is impractical in this case with the population statistics with which we are working. the percentage of the population that is in the age bracket listed. Note the black bars trend taller than the orange ones from about 60 years onwards. in 2011. Note the light grey bars which represent the older generations are getting longer over time. because the number of numbers is so large). 20% is made up of people aged 40 – 54 years. the ages 35 to 54 make up about 28% of the total population. is more than before (the exception is the 75-79 age group). POPULATION AGE STRUCTURE . We generally calculate the average (known as a ‘mean’) whereby we add all the numbers and divide by the number of numbers. This means that over time from 2006 to 2011.8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 0-4 years 5-9 years percentage of population 2011 2006 25-29 years 75-79 years 10-14 years 15-19 years 20-24 years 30-34 years 35-39 years 40-44 years 45-49 years 50-54 years 55-59 years 60-64 years 65-69 years 70-74 years 80-84 years The graph above is a comparison of Australia’s population between the 2006 and 2011 census counts and breaks the population into age groups. Can you think of the impact this will have on labour supply for the workforce? The diagram below from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows the median age in 2101 is projected to increase.

External Mandates As the Learning Guide states. an aging population and workforce planning Workers approaching retirement age indicate a proportion of skilled labour about to exit the workforce. How do you think that would that affect a small business that currently may employ (and be able to afford) a 15 year old worker? Changes in the marketplace are another example of something external influencing a business. and in turn. Organisational Climate Understanding its organisational climate is important for a business as it gives an indication of how workers feel about coming to. Current Australian demographics trend toward an aging population. How the workers feel about their organisation in turn influences how they perform whilst on the job and impacts their level of productivity. external factors can impact future workforce needs for a business. Much research has been done on the topics of job and worker satisfaction and many workplaces conduct climate surveys to determine what the ‘feeling’ is amongst their workers. and being at work. changes in legislation can influence workforce planning. as the data will give a gauge of how likely the organisation is to attract people to work there. and not enough babies being born to replace the older people when they die). Results of an organisation’s climate survey are important in terms of workforce planning. Michelle Charlton: May 2013 Page 4 of 6 . How might these changes in the marketplace have affected the manufacturers’ production and the people and skills required? What about the record shop owner? What adjustments might they have had to make when a lot of music is now downloaded from the internet? The flowchart below gives an idea of how an external mandate such as a change in the marketplace might affect a business’ workforce planning. Couple this with workers approaching retirement age and you have a scenario whereby a great number of workers are about to exit the workforce. This can lead to an overall shortage in labour supply for Australia forcing some companies to look elsewhere (overseas) for workers to meet their human resource demands.Retirement age. Imagine if Australian legislation were changed such that the minimum legal working age was increased to 17 years old. and not enough younger people to take their place. an idea of what strategies need to be introduced to either counter or augment the results. (This means there are proportionately more old than young people. One example to consider here would be to imagine what electronics manufacturers had to do to adjust to the market when CDs started to replace the vinyl record. As an example of an external mandate. and again when MP3 started to replace CDs.

introduction of the MP3 music downloaded from internet less sales of CDs and records in-store less sales due to less customers coming in less customers coming in means less staff required (downsizing) less staff means staff employed need to have more (cross-) skills possible retraining required to ensure remaining staff have the skills and knowledge to cover all that is needed workforce plan needs to reflect how the business will attract and keep the types of people needed Scenario for how the changing marketplace affects a record shop Michelle Charlton: May 2013 Page 5 of 6 .

A typical 1970s secretary Shorthand Mimeograph machine and its characteristic purple outputs Telex Machine Rolodex Michelle Charlton: May 2013 Page 6 of 6 . Consider a secretary from the 1970s… she would need to know shorthand. different types of knowledge and skills are required for workers to gain employment. Rolodex or something else that the younger generation has never heard of! Compare that to the skills that are required of a PA in today’s workforce. There may have even been cause for her to know how to use a telex machine. For employers it means considering what strategies are needed to ensure that the right people with the right skills are sourced to be in the right place at the right time. he or she would have very different skills to their 1970s counterparts. a dictation device. how to take and transcribe notes etc. a desktop calculator. As jobs change and new technologies are introduced.Evolution of Job Roles Needs of the workforce change as jobs evolve. it means keeping up with the changes through more training and education. Mimeograph (or duplicator). how to accurately type a certain number of words per minute on a typewriter. For workers already employed.

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