About Operational Workforce Planning

Its a simple fact that business enterprises that have an accurate operational workforce planning model that can be used to periodically re-evaluate workloads will have better productivity and lower labour costs compared to businesses that don’t.

To control costs and maximise performance you need to;

  1. Define processes
  2. Forecast volumes
  3. Calculate workloads
  4. Identify resources
  5. Quantify resources
  6. Balance resources to workload demand


Three compelling reasons;

  1. The planning process requires you to benchmark your true capability. This could identify opportunities to reduce operational workforce costs by as much as 10-15%
  2. Planning takes the guesswork out of the decision-making process. When workload demand increases only bring in as many additional hours that you need, and when it falls reduce hours by the amount that the plan suggests.
  3. Realise the full benefit from process improvement activity. Let the plan determine the adjustment in hours that is justified.


Operational workforce planning requires the development of a representative operating model to analyse the variances between the forecast for workload demand and the availability of labour resources in order to support decision-making processes.

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An activity-based operations workforce planning model is a complete representation of all the tasks involved in the processing of units of output. By using measured labour standards this method is the most accurate way of determining workload demand. Tasks are organised within a hierarchy including teams, departments and sites so that it is possible to match resources for any forecast level of demand and to resolve any gaps and variances that are identified.


These models can be used with forecast demand looking weeks and months into the future to provide the most accurate operational workforce planning information for managing budgets and optimising resources over the longer term.

The model can also be used as the basis for improving decision-making within operations during day-to-day activity as forecast demand is replaced by actual demand.