What Is Involved in the Human Resources Planning Process?

Carrieanne Larmore

The Human Resources (HR) planning process includes strategy development, management systems creation, requirements predicted and performance measurements established. To begin the human resources planning process, the business must create an HR strategy that is in alignment with the overall corporate strategy and mission. The business can then decide on the design, policies and practices that will need to be followed in order to carry out the overall business strategy. In order for human resources to function properly, forecasts should be made about the workforce size and job structures. The final step of the human resources planning process should be designing benchmarks and measurements to make sure that the department is meeting performance expectations.

Developing a strategic plan that is in alignment with the corporate strategy accounts for a large segment of the human resources planning process.
Developing a strategic plan that is in alignment with the corporate strategy accounts for a large segment of the human resources planning process.

Developing a strategic plan that is in alignment with the corporate strategy accounts for a large segment of the human resources planning process. This strategic plan must discuss its current human resources capacity, needs and direction. It should include an inventory of the skills its current workforce has, along with which skill sets will be needed for the company to fulfill its objectives. Throughout the strategic plan, it should be clear about what the purpose and outcomes of each recommendation are and how they support the overall strategic plan of the organization.

Constructing management systems involves deciding on the design, policies and practices to put in place for carrying out the strategic plan. This includes whether the company will adopt outsourcing, flexible work hours and peer reviews. The cost savings of each policy or practice should be objectively weighed, and its benefits and risks outlined. If the business wants to consider adopting a work-at-home option, it could save on overhead expenses but negatively affect its ability to build the skills of its workforce. If the business’s strategy is to have the most knowledgeable team, then having this work-at-home policy may negatively affect its ability in achieving the overall business objective.

Forecasting the workforce size and job structures is a necessary part of the human resources planning process that requires creating an inventory of what the business has currently. Employees should be segmented according to their capabilities, skills, education and potential. If there is a gap between the capabilities and workforce numbers, then a forecast should be done to see how many employees will be needed for each position. Reviewing the inventory of current employees is also a useful method to determine if future jobs can be filled by internal promotions, which can be a powerful motivational tool when facing company-wide changes.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discussion Comments


I've often thought about working in the human resources management area. I hadn't realized before what extensive planning they did.

There seems to be a lot of forecasting involved - like the number of certain types of workers needed, wages and raises prediction, and style of working - at home, flex-time, travel. It sounds like an HR worker needs some math and statistic's training.

It sounds like an interesting job, with room for creativity.


After reading this article, I can see that when the human resources department is doing its planning, it must try to balance the needs of the company to benefits given the employees.

A lot of changes must need to be made depending on the economic situation in the country. During difficult economic times when products and services are not selling well, changes are often made that don't benefit the employees, like layoffs, current workers having to work overtime, and benefits might be cut.

While in good times, more hiring is done, and raises and promotions are given. Unfortunately, in either economic climate, the company does better than the worker because the company makes so many cost savings steps.


Many companies in their strategic planning process are outsourcing jobs to other countries. A lot of companies realize that reducing the domestic workforce and hiring abroad can save the companies millions over the long haul. This is what the company that my husband works for did.

They made a strategic decision to outsource their accounting department to Costa Rica because they could find skilled personnel there for one fourth of the standard wage of an American worker. My husband said that a lot of companies are doing this as there was a large presence of American companies in the area of Costa Rica that my husband’s company is working out of.

These are really hard decisions for the executives and the human resource manager to make, but many companies do offer relocation assistance for employees considering the move.


I work in the human resources department of a large company. Before I worked at this job, I had no idea of the variety of duties that need to be done in a human resources department.

You really get a better understanding of all that is involved with a company and how important it is to have good employees. One hr planning process that I was involved with was working with the flex time policy.

Most of our employees can choose the starting time and ending time for their work day. This is one of the perks that many people are attracted to as it helps those families who have young children, and helps create more of a balance between work and family.


My college degree has an emphasis in personnel services, which qualifies me to work in human resources management.

I think a lot of people think the human resources department of a company mainly focuses on the interview and hiring paperwork. While this is an important aspect of the job, there are so many other things that are involved with a human resources department.

Without continual and up to date human resources planning, the company will not run smoothly and efficiently. There is a lot of behind the scenes work that is done that many employees are never aware of, but yet they are things that are quite beneficial for their job.

Post your comments
Forgot password?