The Six Pillar Talent Lifecycle – Demand – Needs / Planning

Six Pillar Talent Lifecycle - Demand - Needs Planning

Think of your business as that specialist curry you are going to cook for the dinner party at the weekend, that you have never attempted cooking before! Hang on in there, stay with me, and please note; other dinner party offerings are available I just happen to love curry.

You are going to just wing it right and throw all kinds of ingredients in the mix and hope for the best???? I don’t think so! You are going to look at a recipe listing all the ingredients you need, in the right volumes, in the right order for mixing them together before applying heat.

So why do some businesses wing it and consistently fail to forecast, and therefore forecast to fail, when it comes to workforce planning? Why do they not future think and write up the recipe of all the people (ingredients) they need and the associated volumes, locations and timescales they are required in to cook up the perfect business? And if they attempt it once, why do they not tweak it continually, adding new forecast data and rolling performance metrics to empower all subsequent talent related activities? Let’s call this the seasoning!

The journey of becoming the best corporate recruiter and employer you can be starts here, and Needs / Planning is the most important component of the Six Pillar Talent Lifecycle, because everything else hangs off how well it is done initially and maintained.

It’s actually quite straightforward, and although it’s not the sexiest Resourcing and HR activity for some, once you start doing it you will notice all subsequent talent related activities become much easier and more productive. It’s like decorating for me. I can’t stand the thought of decorating, but once I start I get a great sense of potential and ultimate achievement. Then when it’s done I absolutely love spending time in the room, whilst attempting to keep it in the best order possible with two young kids in the house! OK, OK, I’ll stop with the comparisons now.

So where to start?

First of all the business and Exec need to make workforce planning a critical and mandated activity. Without this your outcome will be sub-optimal. There are obviously ways of mandating and ways of mandating but in essence you get what I mean. It needs to be part of the back office culture.

Then you need to identify your data sources and data contributors. This could be current headcount, desired 100% establishment, employee turnover, business growth expectation data etc. Coming from systems, management, the business plan, sales pipelines etc. I’ll go into more detail in a bit.

Finally you need to be able to bring it together simply and effectively so it doesn’t become a data scientist role to crunch and articulate. Some will challenge me on this but remember the first post about keeping it simple and ‘thinking start up’. Creating a complex way of doing things is the fastest way of switching people off. Keep it real and people will embrace it.

Big Idea Talent has a tool which can get you on your way. It enables you to bring together the following information and calculates demand, the recruiting resource required to meet the demand, with the added bonus of costing your recruitment delivery model. Effectively the investment numbers of the business case:

  • Current Headcount.
  • Desired 100% Establishment.
  • % Annual Turnover.
  • % Annual Business Growth.
  • Seasonal and Extraordinary Requirements.
  • Annual Resourcer Fulfilment Capability.
  • Annual Recruiter Fulfilment Capability.
  • People Costs.
  • Infrastructure Costs.
  • Technology Costs.
  • Branding and Attraction Costs.

Once you have mastered Needs / Planning it’s straightforward to build your Resourcing Target Operating Model, the basis of the next post; Service Delivery Model / Team.

In addition, everything else in the Six Pillar Talent Lifecycle has a chance of falling into place, subject to all previous components being approached and executed correctly. More guidance to follow as the series unfolds.

Remember the offer is always there if you want to chat this, or other HR challenges, through with a Big Idea Talent Associate.

All the best. Service Delivery Model / Team from the Demand Pillar is next up and coming soon…..



Colin Minto

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