Overview: Staffing an organization involves an integration of business goals, organizational structure, compensation planning, and legal protections. Employers should be sure to adhere to any applicable affirmative action requirements, fair employment laws and licensing mandates. Because the workforce is an organization's single largest cost, HR should engage in workforce planning (whether operational or strategic) to optimize recruiting efforts, retention rates and organizational resources.
Employers should also include planning for alternative work schedules or flexible work arrangements to facilitate business needs. For example, the ratios of full-time equivalent, part-time employees, temporary or seasonal employees and independent contractors may vary among particular industries or specific occupations.
Trends: If using a staffing agency in conjunction with filling open positions, employers need to ensure that background screening procedures are followed in order to minimize security breaches, workplace theft, or third-party negligence court claims. Failure to prudently staff an organization may hurt an organization's short-term bottom line and long-term viability. In many states, employers may not avoid liability simply due to the presence of a joint employer relationship with a staffing agency.
Marta Moakley, J.D., Legal Editor
This How To details the steps a prudent employer should take when managing contingent or temporary workers.
One of the most challenging aspects of staffing a productive and profitable organization concerns striking a balance between employee compensation costs and fulfilling client expectations. Often, an employer strikes this balance by increasing staff on a seasonal basis - especially in industries such as hospitality or retail.
Workforce planning involves calculating the number and type of human resources an employer needs to meet its long- and short-term strategic plans. This section explains how to use operational workforce planning for short-term talent management and acquisition strategies, and strategic workforce planning for long-term goals.