Now is the time of year to prepare budgets for 2021 and navigating growth, including effective workforce planning is going to be exceptionally difficult with the uncertainty 2020 has brought. Although 2020 has been a unique year to say the least, that doesn’t mean you can’t go into 2021 with a business strategy to grow and expand, just plan to be flexible and agile to quickly adapt as rules and regulations develop.

If you haven’t completed workforce planning in the past, don’t fret; any shot you take at creating a plan is better than you have (or haven’t) done. Here are 5 simple tips to help you develop a plan and identify any gaps that will give you guidance and development to follow throughout the year.

1.     Build a Team: Taking on your company’s workforce planning process alone is going to be overwhelming. Assemble a leadership team that can collaborate cross departmentally to provide insight to operations and trends unrecognized by a single driver. You will discover nuances and strengths from contributors that will help excel your plans and business forward for the long term.

2.     Create Actionable Goals: No one likes setting meetings without a value add or action item to follow up on. Emphasize the need to walk away from each meeting with action items and how they play into company goals. Strategically planning how and where to add resources in your workforce planning group will create synergy across the company and help drive key achievements.

3.     Use Free Tools: There are plenty of free diagrams, forms, charts, graphs and market data you can utilize to aid your workforce planning for future business. Here’s a few links to some resources we found helpful as a good starting point.

·       5 Essential Workforce Planning Tools for any HR professional

·       Free Workforce Planning Templates

·       CalHR Workforce Planning Toolkit

4.     Utilize Your Network: Your network is powerful and don’t forget to use it. Internally at your organization and outside peers and service providers. For example: if you’re trying to create a competitive salary or benefits program, don’t be afraid to reach out to other business owners or companies that specialize in market data.

5.     Hire Talent with the Right Skills: Adding headcount to staff can be difficult to navigate and making sure you hire the person with the skills you need is essential. Talk extensively with your Human Resources department or engage a specialized cannabis staffing firm to help you find the perfect fit. High Bluff Group offers contingent searches for professional placement, meaning you don’t pay any fees throughout the search until you hire someone and they start.

Tyler Cook, Partner


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