Poll Results: Role-Based or Skill-Based Workforce Planning

Poll Workforce Planning

Legacy workforce planning (WP) practices have focused heavily or solely on role-based WP. And while this approach is effective in stable environments, it becomes less useful in climates of frequent change. This scenario has spurred a debate on whether WP should become more skill-based vs. role/job-based.

I asked readers of the Talent Edge Weekly Newsletter: When it comes to modern strategic workforce planning, should the focus be on planning for jobs/roles, skills, or both?

Based on 128 responses, none of the respondents support a job/role-only approach, three-quarters support a hybrid approach (both role and skill-based). Almost a quarter support a skills-based-only approach.

Possible reasons for these results include:

  1. Jobs/roles still serve as the cornerstone of many talent management systems and processes, providing greater availability and convenience.
  2.  There is value in planning for a segment of jobs/roles that is core to a firm’s strategy and operations.
  3. Many firms do not have accurate, up-to-date information on workforce skills; they need time to build this capability to embrace skill-based WP fully.

As jobs and roles continue to be deconstructed into tasks, firms adopt AI platforms that infer worker skills at speed and scale, and organizations leverage their internal talent marketplace to deploy skills when and where needed, I expect skill-based WP to increase.

What do you think? If you have a perspective, please leave a comment.

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