Saturday, October 18, 2008

What Does a Staffing Management Plan Include?

Jumping into your project without a staffing management plan is like jumping from a plane without a parachute. It might be the fastest way to your destination, but it clearly is not the safest or smartest decision.

The people you select to work on your project will either contribute to its success or its demise. To ensure the success of your project, you will want to identify your staffing requirements and come up with a staffing management plan.

A staffing management plan is an output of the organizational planning process. This kind of plan includes your basic staffing requirements and provides details about how people will be brought on board and released from the project.
  • staffing requirements
    Staffing requirements describe the team members you need to carry out the tasks your project requires. Objective and subjective criteria are used to match the team members to various positions that need to be filled.

    Objective criteria outline the technical competencies needed from a potential team member to successfully fulfill a project task. Subjective criteria deal with the needed personality traits to successfully fulfill a project task.
  • information about how people are brought on to the project
    Planning for your team members before they even come on board will help you to take better advantage of their expertise. Bringing people onto a project can be chaotic. New team members have many questions about their project tasks, roles, and responsibilities. You can help make this transition as smooth as possible by anticipating team members' questions.

    Job descriptions, training, project information, and reward programs, and a closing meeting are just some of the items to include in this part of your plan.
  • Job descriptions - When team members know the parameters of their position, they can focus on exactly what they are there to accomplish. Job descriptions eliminate confusion and provide direction.
  • Training - You want your team members to work as efficiently as possible. For this to happen, your team members require proper training. Training takes time up front, but saves you time in the long run.
  • Project information - Project information allows team members to see where their tasks fit into the big picture. The more fully informed team members are, the more focused their tasks will be.
  • Reward programs - Reward programs work as productivity incentives for your team members. This creates good morale, as team members feel they are recognized for a job well done.
  • Closing meeting - A closing meeting, reviews both the positive and negative elements of a finished project. It allows you and your team members to make better plans for the next project, as well as capitalize on the strengths demonstrated in the finished project.
  • Information about how people are released from the project
    Creating a plan to move people off projects is also beneficial. This type of planning provides direction, focus, and smooth transitions.

    Your staffing management plan should include a plan for re-assigning your team members as soon as the project is completed. Your team members should know when and where their next assignment begins.

    Properly releasing staff reduces costs by reducing or eliminating the tendency to make work to fill the time between this assignment and another. It also improves morale by reducing or eliminating uncertainty about future employment opportunities.
Completing a staffing management plan before jumping into your project will save you time and trouble later in the project. The plan you develop will help you to see how to put to the best use the skills, expertise, and talents of each and every team member. And this will allow you to execute the project sure and steady with fewer surprises.

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