May the Force be with You: Creating an Effective Workforce Strategy

By: Kyle Michel, Analyst

Talent management is a critical piece of any organization. To thrive, companies must have the right people with the right skills in the right positions. Creating and maintaining the perfect team is no easy task, but companies that avoid completing it, risk wasting large amounts of time, effort, and money, while those that manage to optimize their teams can reap rich rewards. Although the prospect of developing this team may seem daunting, the challenge can be overcome with the use of a solid workforce strategy. By using the following four steps, your company will be positioned to assemble the skills and people you need for success.

Define the Necessary Skills

This first step, though small, is critical to the overall success of the initiative. Organizations should start by creating a list of ten necessary skills for the team to possess. These can be generic, such as leadership or strategic thinking, or function-specific skills, such as proficiency in a programming language or expertise in the insurance industry. This list sets the foundation for the rest of the initiative, as the parameters established here will carry through into each future stage.

Evaluate Your Current Resources

The second step in creating the perfect team involves using the criteria established in step one to evaluate your existing resources. Rate the level of expertise each member of the current team has in the defined skill areas. Doing so will not only expose the gaps in your current strategy but will also reveal strengths that should carry over into the new one.

Delineate What Your Ideal Team Needs

Now that you have a grasp on the abilities of your current team, create an image of your ideal team using the same set of skills. Consider how many people may need a specific skill and the level of expertise of each. Then, compare your requirements to your team’s current capabilities and visualize where your team is under – or overqualified. A workforce strategy is not merely about having the right skills and people, but also about ensuring that you are not overinvested.

Bridge the Gap

Now that you understand the skills you need, how those skills should spread out, and what skills you currently have across your team members, you can develop a plan to shape your current team into the ideal one. This plan should focus on addressing the differences between your team’s current state and its ideal state. Such a process could involve shifting responsibilities to different team members, training certain individuals in new skills, creating new positions, hiring new individuals, or even thinning down your current team to meet a more accurate estimate of your needs.

Even with all this information on hand, determining your next step can be difficult or overwhelming. NEOS can help with that. Our team of experts is highly skilled in managing these types of transformations and can help your company achieve a smooth transition into its future state. Identifying the right skills and determining how to integrate them will ensure that you assemble the best team possible, thereby positioning your organization for greater success.

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