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Manpower Planning – Meaning, Need, Importance

Manpower planning is also known as human resources planning. Every organization has goals. But to achieve those goals or move the company forward, people with a common interest must come together or must be hired. The number of individuals required to accomplish the said goal also has to available.

Manpower planning is a broad topic. It is also critical to every firm, irrespective of size. When a company hires the right employees, in terms of skills and number, it would be much easier for them to move forward. But when reverse is the case, the business can crumble before you know it.


So, in this post, we will take a close look at manpower planning, importance and why it is needed.

What is Manpower Planning?

The definition of manpower planning is simple and straightforward. “It means matching the right employees to different roles and at the right time. The essence is to work together or individually to achieve the organization’s goals”.

Manpower planning is also called human resource planning. Another definition of this term involves estimating the right number of people needed to complete specific tasks within a given time frame.

For example, the company XYZ is building a house and wants to complete it in 180 days. So, their target is to finish up the building in 180 days right?

Since the duration and goal of the project are known, the next thing would be to plan. The planning will not only involve estimating the materials needed for the job. The manager also needs to calculate the number of human resources (employees or workers) that would be required to complete the project within the stipulated time.

However, human resources planning also involves figuring out how and when employees or workers will be hired and sent to their respective positions. It also takes into account the skills and strengths of each worker. Effective human resource planning is vital for every business. So, it is one aspect of human resource management that should not be treated lightly.

What are the Steps in Manpower Planning?

Human resources planning involves different steps, which are critical to the process. Knowledge of the various phases will benefit the company in the long run.

1. Analysis of the Current Human Resources Strength

In this case, the manager will have to analyze the status of the current human resources he or she has before making any future forecast. Before the prediction, the manager through an inventory needs to understand the following situations.

  • The type of firm.
  • The number of departments the firm has.
  • The workforce or employees in each department.

However, until the manager finds the answers to these factors, he or she might not be able to make futuristic plans regarding the human resources needs of the company.

2. Deciding the Future Human Resources Needs of the Firm

The manager must first and foremost determine the factors that are affecting human resources planning. These include the firm type, number of departments, the employee working in each unit and so on.

Once these factors are known, the manager can then deploy effective human resources forecasting techniques to meet the organization’s workforce needs.

Here are Some of the Techniques in Question;

  • Expert Forecasts – This includes the Delphi technique, formal expert survey and taking informal decisions.
  • Trend Analysis – The manager, in this case, can determine the future manpower needs of the company based on previous projections, and statistical analysis.
  • Workload Analysis – This human resources planning technique is based on the workload of a department or organization, in general, is handling.
  • Workforce Analysis – When the firm has a target to hit certain production levels and time, the manpower needs have to be critically analyzed. The result will help the manager to make the right decision regarding the manpower needs of the firm or a department.
  • Using Mathematical Models – Another technique involves the use of specific software packages or other means to forecast the manpower needs of a company. These include new venture analysis, regression, budget, and planning analysis.

3. Recruitment and Selection Process

After the manager has successfully determined the future manpower needs of the firm, the next step would be to develop recruitment, selection process and placement of employees to satisfy that need.

4. Employee Training Programs

Employees will not only be added to the company but given adequate training to perform at their best. They will also develop the needed skills for that particular job.

Importance of Manpower Planning

These are several reasons manpower planning should be taken seriously in every company.

  • Helps to Enhance Productivity

The basis for establishing a business is to make a profit. With that in mind, many companies through effective manpower planning process hire and train their employees to perform optimally in various positions.

The point here is, manpower planning enables an organization not only to hire the needed staff but provide adequate training that will enhance their skills for the job. Another reason there will be high productivity is that the company will no longer experience wastage of time, money and other resources too.

  • Lower Spending on Labor

With increased productivity through effective manpower planning, firms can reduce their labor costs. Of course, when employees with the needed skills are hired, jobs will be handled effectively.

  • Effective Recruitment Process

Through manpower planning, the manager or firm in question will be able to analyze and determine the future human resources needs of the firm. The implication is that highly talented employees will be hired and equipped with the needed skills for the job.

The benefit is there will hardly be a shortage of human resources at every stage. And this is critical to sustain growth and achieve targeted goals.

  • Improved Motivation

Through effective human resources planning, incentives that will motivate employees to perform at an optimum level will be inculcated into the staffing plans. And with the right motivation, there is a high possibility that employees will give their best effort to achieve the organization’s goal.

Need for Manpower Planning

Manpower planning does not only involve meeting the current human resources needs of a firm. It also includes taking into account the future human resources needs as well. However, the necessity of human resources planning includes;

  • It helps to ensure that the human resources necessary will always be available for the growth and expansion of the said business.
  • Enables companies to realize the value manpower has regarding the success of the business.
  • Helps to address high labor cost by identifying situations like overstaffing and understaffing.

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About Sonia Kukreja

I am a mother of a lovely kid, and an avid fan technology, computing and management related topics. I hold a degree in MBA from well known management college in India. After completing my post graduation I thought to start a website where I can share management related concepts with rest of the people.