Everything you need to know about the process of manpower planning. Manpower Planning which is also called as Human Resource Planning consists of putting right number of people, right kind of people at the right place, right time, doing the right things for which they are suited for the achievement of goals of the organisation.

Human Resource Planning has got an important place in the arena of industrialization. Human Resource Planning has to be a systems approach and is carried out in a set procedure.

The process of manpower planning is one of the most crucial complex and continuing managerial functions.

It Includes:- 1. Current Manpower Inventory (Manpower Position) 2. Determining Manpower Needs 3. Making Future Manpower Forecasts 4. Identifying Manpower Gaps 5. Developing Employment Programmes 6. Design Training Programmes.

Process of Manpower Planning

Process of Manpower Planning – Current Manpower Inventory, Determining Manpower Needs, Identifying Manpower Gaps and Manpower Programme

The process of manpower planning consists of the following steps:

Step # 1. Current Manpower Inventory (Manpower Position):


Manpower inventory or manpower audit implies a critical assessment of present manpower. It is not simply a head count of existing staff but cataloguing of their present and potential talent. The number, levels, skills, work experience, potential for developing, job history, date of recruitment, etc., of each and every employee are carefully analysed. Such a management inventory or skills inventory would reveal the status of available managerial talent and undeveloped potential if any.

It will also be helpful in preparing selection and training programmes for future. Current manpower should be evaluated according to – (a) age groups, (b) skill groups, (c) level groups, (d) potential wise and (e) cost effectiveness.

Step # 2. Determining Manpower Needs:

Forecasts or projections of manpower needs of the organisation in future are made on the basis of the objectives, size, future changes in organisation, etc. Sales and production budgets of the company, rate of loss of personnel on account of retirement, discharges, resignations, etc., are also considered. Determination of manpower needs has two aspects — quantitative and qualitative. Quantitatively, the number of executives required in future is estimated.


Then the kind or quality of managers needed is determined with the help of job description and job specification. Job analysis is conducted to collect the information for preparing job description and job specification on the basis of the number of managerial positions in the organisation structure. A systematic and detailed analysis of every managerial position is made to identify its contents and the minimum human qualities required for performing it.

Job description or position description contains details about the title of the job, duties involved, authority relationship, working conditions, tools and techniques used, responsibility involved, etc. It describes what the job is. On the other hand, job specification sets forth the educational qualifications, experience, mental ability, skills, aptitude, etc., required for the efficient performance of the job.

The contents and requirements of a job provide an objective guide for determining the quality of managerial personnel needed in future. Executives require technical, human and conceptual skills. Intelligence, initiative, sound judgement, analytical ability, communication skill, urge to lead, sense of moral values, consistency, fairness, positive attitude are the main skills of an effective executive.

Step # 3. Identifying Manpower Gaps:

Comparison between manpower inventory and manpower forecast will reveal the gaps in terms of number and quality of personnel. Additional executives required and the improvements to be made in the present executives will be known from this comparison.

Step # 4. Manpower Programme:


After determining the net requirements for human resources, action plans are formulated to fill the gaps. If the net requirements reveal need for additional staff, plans must be made for recruitment, selection and training of new personnel. On the other hand, if a reduction in personnel is necessary, plans must be made for layoffs or discharges. Plans are also prepared for career development of executives through career counselling, etc. Manpower plans help to match the supply of managerial personnel with the demand for them.

Process of Manpower Planning – With Factors, Steps and Objectives

In manpower-planning, certain factors are tak­en into consideration and certain steps are taken to achieve certain objectives.

Factors that influence the management person­nel in manpower-planning are – the structure of the organisation and the changes that have taken place, the conditions of the labour market and the trend of retirement, the trend in trade union move­ment, the technological changes calling for chan­ged labour pattern and also changes in the job con­tent.

With these factors under consideration, the manpower-planning proceeds following certain calculated steps:


(a) It analyses the plan for future expansion,

(b) It estimates the quantitative and the qual­itative aspects of labour,

(c) It assesses the existing manpower position,

(d) It formulates the plan for the best utilisa­tion of the men of the organisation, and


(e) It finalises the planning of recruitment, se­lection, promotion, transfer, training and development of the individual employee.

So far as the objectives of manpower-planning are concerned, we can say that with the ultimate object of securing the maximum utilisation of man­power, the planning promotes the development of existing personnel. The need for manpower in the future having been carefully assessed, the man- power-planning continues to achieve its objectives through ways and means necessary to meet these requirements by providing control measures.

The objectives of manpower-planning are, in a nut-shell, the equipment of the organisation with right persons in right quantity at the right time.

Before we conclude, let us reaffirm that man­power-planning precedes all other planning in the personnel department of an organisation. Thro­ugh short-term and long-term planning, it main­tains its process of work. Various steps are taken successively for the individual and collective de­velopment of manpower with a view to achieving the desired objectives of the organisation for high­er production and higher productivity.

Process of Manpower Planning – 4 Steps in the Manpower Planning Process

Manpower planning should be done carefully as it has got long-term repercussions. Once the wrong forecast of future requirement of human resources and the wrong analysis of the available manpower inventory are made, it may not be possible to rectify the errors in the short-run. Therefore, manpower planning should be more concerned with filling future vacancies with right type of people rather than with matching existing personnel with existing jobs.


To achieve the objectives, manpower planning process should comprise of the following four steps:

(1) To analyse current manpower inventory.

(2) To make manpower forecast or work load analysis.


(3) To draw employment programme.

(4) To design training and development programme.

Process # 1. To Analyse the Current Manpower Inventory:

This may be undertaken by department by function, by occupation or by level of skill or qualifications. Appropriate adjustments in these would be made in the light of any foreseeable changes in weekly hours of work, holidays, leave entitlements, etc.

Systematic steps must be taken in order to ensure that a reservoir of talent is available under vacancies occur. The search for talented employees in the organisation must be continuous. To be sure that the available talent has been included the inventory of various skills in the enterprise should be indexed.

Detailed bio-data of each individual included in the manpower inventory must be obtained separately for the purpose of manpower planning. This record will give us the foundation for a programme of individual development. This may also reveal the non-availability of certain talents for which outside sources of manpower may be tapped.

Process # 2. To Make Manpower Forecast or Work Load Analysis:

A proper forecast of manpower required in the future must be attempted. Work study technique can be used when it is possible to apply work measurement to know how long operations should take and the amount of labour required. This is also known as “Work Load Analysis”. The starting point in a manufacturing enterprise is the preparation of production budget in terms of volumes of saleable products for the whole enterprise or for individual departments.


The budget of productive hours is then compiled by the use of standard hours for direct labour. The standard hours per unit of product are then multiplied by the planned units of production to give the total planned hours for the period. This is divided by the number of actual working hours for an individual worker to show the number of workers required. This is a crude estimate of manpower requirements.

Process # 3. To Draw Employment Programme:

Here a long-term employment programme must be chalked out to deal with forecast deficits of manpower. It will include the steps like recruitment, selection, placement, performance, appraisal, transfer and promotion.

Process # 4. To Design Training and Development Programme:

The operative employees must be given appropriate training so that they may learn the required skills. Appropriate development programmes should also be designed for the present and the would be executives. So that the required talents could be developed.

After the employment and training programme have been implemented, an appraisal must be made of the effectiveness of manpower planning. Deficiencies in the programme should be pointed out and the catalogue of manpower inventory should be updated periodically. Corrective actions should also be taken wherever it is feasible and necessary to remove the deficiencies in manpower planning.

Process of Manpower Planning – Multi-Step Process of Manpower Planning

The process of manpower planning is one of the most crucial complex and continuing managerial functions.

It may be rightly regarded as a multi-step process includes:


(1) Deciding goals or objectives.

(2) Estimating the future organisational structure and overall manpower requirements.

(3) Auditing human resources.

(4) Planning job requirements and job descriptions.

(5) Developing a human resources plan.

(1) Deciding Goals or Objectives:

It is most necessary on part of every management to frame the goals and objectives of the firm, because manpower planning is based on such goals and objectives. According to Sikula “the ultimate mission or purpose is to relate future human resources to future enterprise need so as to maximise the future return on investment in human resources.”


The objectives may be laid down for a short-term and long-term. The short- term objectives may be related to short-period say for 6 months or one year. Long-term objectives may be to start a new industry, to expand the market, to produce a new product etc.

(2) Estimating the Future Organisational Structure and Overall Man­power Requirements:

The management must estimate the structure of the organisation at a given point in time. For this estimate the number and type of employees needed have to be determined. They include business forecasts, expan­sion and growth, design and structural changes, management philoso­phy, Government Policy, product and human skill mix and competition.

Expansion, enlargement and growth in business involve the use of additional machinery and personnel and re-allocation of facilities all of which call for advance planning of human resources. Changes in man­agement philosophies and leadership styles, the use of mechanical tech­nology necessitate changes in the skills of workers as well as a change in the number of employees needed very often changes in the quantity or quality of products or services require a change in the organisation structure plans have to be made for this purpose as well.

After estimating what the future organisation structure should be, the next step is the draw up the requirements of human resources both for the existing department, and for new vacancies.

For this purpose a forecast of labour force is needed and requisitions should be obtained from different departments, vacancies occurring in any department, should be notified in writing by different department heads to the person­nel department stating clearly the number of vacancies to be filled types of personnel need, their technical qualification, and experience and the reasons for acquisition, statement of duties, type of jobs, pay scales age and previous experience should also be made.

Requisitions should be based on accurate job specification by first line supervisors. They should as for as possible be clear-cut about the exact demands of a job.


In determining requirements of human resources the expected losses which are likely to occur through labour turnover-quits, retire­ment, death, transfers, promotions, demotions, dismissals, disability, resignations should be taken in to account, changes in the human quality resulting from the experience gained in the job during the period and the training achieved also needed to be considered. Additional human resources a gained through new employment of personnel, promotions, through transfers.

After making the adjustment of wastage anticipated and expected losses and separations, the real shortage or surplus may be found out. If there is shortage, efforts are being made to meet it either by new recruit­ment or promotion or by developing the existing staff.

If there is surplus it is to be decided how it will be dealt with i.e. whether there should be transfers, lay-offs, retrenchment or reduction in the hours of work of all. According to Dr. Ram Tameja “management can ensure control of labour costs by avoiding both shortages and surpluses of manpower through proper planning”.

(3) Auditing Human Resources:

Once the future human resources needs are estimated the next step is to determine the present supply of manpower resources. This is done through “skills inventory”. A skill inventory contains data about each employees’ skill, abilities, work performance, and other items of infor­mation which indicates his overall value to the company. These facts are usually recorded by an employee in some forms from which the informa­tion is fed into a computer.

Other data pertaining to his performance ratings and his supervisor’s evaluation of his potential for promotion may also be fed into the computer. The result may either be kept in a file containing information as to the number of employees in the organisation and other data about each employee and an indication of his fitness for promotion.

Some organisation do not compile a skill inventory but prepare organisation charts to determine how many people, at what level, in what position with what kind of experience and training would be required to meet the objectives. These charts shows a person’s age, the number of years he has been in particular position, and his fitness for promotion. These charts or skills inventories help in determining and evaluation the quantity and quality of the present human resources of an organisation.

(4) Planning Job Requirements and Job Descriptions:


After having decided how many persons would be needed it is nec­essary to prepare as job analysis, which records details of training, skill, qualifications, abilities, experience and responsibilities etc. which are needed for a job. Job analysis includes the preparation of job descriptions and job specifications.

(5) Developing a Human Resource Plan:

The last step of manpower planning is development and implem­entation of the human resource plan which consists in finding out the sources of labour supply with a view to making an effective use of these sources. The first thing is to decide on the policy – should the personnel be hired from within through promotional channels or should it be obtained from an outside source.

The best policy which is followed by most organisations is to fill up higher vacancies by promotion and lower level positions by recruitment from the labour market. The labour market is geographical area from which employees recruit their work force and labour seeks & employment. Here the forces of demand and supply interact.

The personnel manager should have a thorough knowledge of the labour market. Which particular source in the labour market will be tapped will depend upon the policy of a firm, the position of labour supply, the arrangements with labour unions, and Government regula­tions. However it is always safe for the personnel manager to be in close liaison with these different sources and use them as and when the need arises.

Process of Manpower Planning – Analysing the Current Manpower Inventory Making, Future Manpower Forecasts, Developing Employment Programmes and a Few Others

Manpower Planning which is also called as Human Resource Planning consists of putting right number of people, right kind of people at the right place, right time, doing the right things for which they are suited for the achievement of goals of the organisation. Human Resource Planning has got an important place in the arena of industrialization. Human Resource Planning has to be a systems approach and is carried out in a set procedure.

The procedure is as follows:

1. Analysing the current manpower inventory

2. Making future manpower forecasts

3. Developing employment programmes

4. Design training programmes.

Steps in Manpower Planning:

Process # 1. Analysing the Current Manpower Inventory:

Before a manager makes forecast of future manpower, the current manpower status has to be analysed.

For this the following things have to be noted:

i. Type of organisation

ii. Number of departments

iii. Number and quantity of such departments

iv. Employees in these work units.

Once these factors are registered by a manager, he goes for the future forecasting.

Process # 2. Making Future Manpower Forecasts:

Once the factors affecting the future manpower forecasts are known, planning can be done for the future manpower requirements in several work units.

The manpower forecasting techniques commonly employed by the organisations are as follows:

i. Expert Forecasts – This includes informal decisions, formal expert surveys and Delphi technique.

ii. Trend Analysis – Manpower needs can be projected through extrapolation (projecting past trends), indexation (using base year as basis), and statistical analysis (central tendency measure).

iii. Workload Analysis – It is dependent upon the nature of workload in a department, in a branch or in a division.

iv. Workforce Analysis – Whenever production and time period has to be analysed, due allowances have to be made for getting net manpower requirements.

v. Other methods – Several Mathematical models, with the aid of computers are used to forecast manpower needs, like budget and planning analysis, regression, new venture analysis.

Process # 3. Developing Employment Programmes:

Once the current inventory is compared with future forecasts, the employment programmes can be framed and developed accordingly, which will include recruitment, selection procedures and placement plans.

Process # 4. Design Training Programmes:

These will be based upon extent of diversification, expansion plans, development programmes, etc. Training programmes depend upon the extent of improvement in technology and advancement to take place. It is also done to improve upon the skills, capabilities, knowledge of the workers.