How to Calculate Staffing Needs for Your Business

Five factors are critical to any business’s success: strategic focus, operations, marketing, finances, and, of course, people. A company’s employees impact every facet of your business. That is why it is so crucial you have the correct number of people to ensure your company runs smoothly and effectively.

Looking at your workforce holistically will help you design a staffing plan to fulfill your company’s goals, meet your customers’ and clients’ needs, and ensure you hire and retain high-quality employees. 

How to Create a Staffing Plan

Your first step is to create a strategic staffing plan with your HR team as the lead. The benefits of a solid staffing plan include: 

  • Keeps costs down by maximizing productivity and reducing redundancy 
  • Tells you how many and types of employees you need 
  •  Ensures your business has the right people with the right skills to deliver services and products on time and provide your customers or clients with an optimal experience 

An effective staffing plan includes goals for your team, such as increasing sales, improving customer satisfaction, or adding new clients. From there, your HR team can identify staffing deficiencies, the number of people, and the skills they should have to fill the gaps. 

Your next step is to forecast your future needs. These are some methods you can use to eliminate guesswork and get the most accurate estimate: 

Rule of Thumb Method 

The Rule of Thumb Method evaluates your company’s current structure. For example, if your company has five administrative assistants for every 20 department leads, use that ratio to determine how many administrative assistants you need to recruit. Some benefits of this method are that it is straightforward and may help your HR team avoid lengthy, costly processes.

Ratio Analysis

A ratio analysis predicts future staff requirements using historical information based on a ratio between the number of employees and a metric such as target sales and how many employees you need to reach that goal. This method is especially advantageous for younger businesses because it allows them to scale up without relying on historical data. 

Delphi Technique

To forecast staffing needs based on the Delphi Technique, your company will identify a facilitator and a panel of current employee “experts.” Each panel member fills out several rounds of questionnaires and provides anonymous feedback. After each round, the facilitator evaluates the answers, identifies common themes, and then shares them individually with panel members. They can then adjust their answers after hearing the group responses.   

The Delphi Technique encourages panelists to provide honest feedback because their answers are anonymous. It also allows an organization to reach a strong group consensus. 

Scatter Plot 

A scatter plot uses a graphic illustration of how two variables – such as sales and your company’s staffing levels – are related. 

Ask Managers 

Managers within your company are one of your most valuable resources when it comes to forecasting staffing needs. They should have a handle on personnel requirements within their departments and the broader company. They have observed when demand is highest and know what it takes to serve your customers and clients. 

Looking Ahead

Whichever method you choose, analyzing staff needs is an ongoing process. If you identify the one that is most relevant for your company, you can create a solid staffing plan to facilitate its growth and success. 

Epic Placements Can Help! 

At Epic Placements, we use state-of-the-art recruiting technology and extensive expertise to help create accurate staffing plans and find high-quality employees to help you accomplish your goals. Contact us to learn more about how we help companies and job seekers