workforce challenges

Paradox: High-Performance Organizations Encounter More Workforce Challenges

Most research from the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp) finds that high-performance organizations—based on revenue growth, profitability, customer satisfaction and market share as compared to levels five years ago—demonstrate better results across a wide spectrum of human capital and business productivity matters. However, i4cp's most recent study, Workforce Planning: Data Choices for High Performance, revealed that high-performance organizations (HPOs) actually have more pressing challenges when it comes to data management in workforce planning.

Why are high-performers seeing more challenges?

Consider this: high-performance organizations reported significantly greater effectiveness in workforce planning than did their lower-performing counterparts at operational, tactical and strategic workforce planning (see sidebar). The survey also found that high performers’ workforce planning initiatives are more mature, with nearly a third saying their planning programs have been in place for at least five years (versus 23% of low-performance organizations).

Data concerns reflect level of maturity

Ironically, it's HPOs' greater concerns about data that actually reflect their higher level of workforce planning effectiveness and maturity. Early on their path toward workforce planning, organizations must concern themselves with the activities required to establish planning: identifying a burning platform for the initiative, and securing resources and executive support for the planning function.

But as planning initiatives evolve, attention shifts from foundational concerns to those that drive stronger outcomes from workforce planning activitie—such as identifying and segmenting roles, forecasting talent supply and demand, or analyzing potential workforce or skills gaps. It's the execution of those more advanced activities that requires workforce planning teams to have accurate and comprehensive data at their disposal. Consequently, planning professionals on longer-lived teams are more likely to encounter and report data issues.

Given the complexities of data issues related to workforce planning, professionals responsible for producing planning results need proven methods and actionable strategies—all found in this new report. Not an i4cp member? Download the complimentary excerpt of the report now.

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Carol Morrison
Carol Morrison is a Senior Research Analyst and Associate Editor with the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp), specializing in workforce well-being research.