Workforce Management: A Competitive Advantage

May 17, 2012 by  Filed under: Management 

Workforce Management is one of the practices followed by the human resource management department of any organization. It is important that the employees hired hold the correct set of skills required for the job.

Workforce Management covers a wide range of processes that are related to employee development and other activities needed by the organization to maintain and develop an effective workforce. Many organizations forget that hiring employees in an effective way can help them improve the organization’s image and standards.

Companies usually recruit many new employees in one month and train them aggressively for some time. Later, these employees are fired during or after the training. This technique is followed by many companies and usually these companies do not have a very good reputation in the market. Such companies are not utilizing the proper human resource practices and are not employing the proper recruitment and selection process. These organizations find themselves at a competitive disadvantage because of such reasons.

It is important to first figure out exactly what the job requires from the employee before hiring one. There are many different ways of doing that. Once the employee has been hired, it is important that they be put through proper training before they are sent in the jungle.

The employees or the organization’s workforce is an important strategic element for the organization’s growth. Therefore it is important that for employers to use workforce management as a competitive advantage. Having the workforce as a competitive advantage can be challenging especially if:

• There are no standards to define the tasks that the workforce has to follow

• There is a lack of operational parameter visibility leading to ad-hoc scheduling

• There is no performance benchmark so there is a limited scope of improvement in productivity.

The challenges can be overcome by employing a workforce management system that is effective and brings out the best in your employees. Very few people are found to say that they love their job and are happy to wake up and go to work. Proper workforce management has helped come up with a workforce system that is employee and organization friendly.

workforce management can be used as a competitive advantage by employers, by planning and organizing the employees and training them to bring out the best qualities they have. This competitive advantage can be achieved by:

• Making a job description and job specification that is clear and defined. Each department and designation will have a different set of requirements that the employee has to fulfill.

• Time should be divided according to the activities and then sub-divided according to the tasks in each activity. Some activities that require a lot of brain work cannot be timed but it is possible to compute a rough time requirement.

• Once the time is divided and the tasks are specified, the employees should be trained accordingly or should be informed of the time and activity log with a labor management application.

• Once the employees have started performing tasks according to the activity log, the performance should be timed and checked against the standard of the industry. Different percentages can be calculated to clearly understand where employees stand.

• The percentages can be modified to calculate activity and time based cost analysis. This can be used as an incentive to promote performance and hand out bonuses to employees who really deserve them.

Establishing a workforce that holds a competitive advantage over other organizations in the industry can help the organization to improve its productivity, decrease costs and increase performance in the long run.

To read more about Workforce Management visit the NICE Systems website

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