What is workforce management?
Workforce management is essentially management of employees or human resources. This means ensuring productivity and performance of employees in the workforce.
Workforce management also involves deciding on a set of results that employees are expected to achieve that are necessary for the business; whether it be long term growth or exceptional customer service.
Why is workforce management important?
Workforce management is important because a company relies on its workforce in order to survive and grow long term. Without proper workforce management, valuable tasks and important portions will be affected. For example if customer service is poorly managed, this can lead to a bad reputation for the company and negative word of mouth in the long term. Another example could be poor management of a specific department e.g. if the financial team is poorly managed; important reports and documents could be affected; affecting data and decision making.
Depending on the size and structure of your business workforce management may or may not be important to you. There may be certain areas of the company that require workforce management and others that don’t. Common departments that require workforce management can involve:
Human resources – hiring, payroll, administration, recruitment and employee performance
IT – diagnosing and fixing IT related issues, resolving help desk enquiries, maintenance, infrastructure, telephony and website management.
Customer service – customer satisfaction, service and resolved issues.
Finance – reporting, accounting, taxes and financial analysis.
Marketing and sales – advertising, branding, product management, strategy and data analysis.
Research and development – research, improving current products, and market research.
Workforce management allows companies to closely monitor the performance of these different departments closely so they can identify and improve performance overall leading to positive effects for the business. While not every single metric is important; the data gained from workforce management is important in optimising the business.
Workforce management systems or software are examples of how workforce management can be simplified – allowing more data to be tracked and reported so that clearer decisions can be made. An example of where this can be valuable is in large departments with many employees. With the massive change to working conditions from COVID-19, many employees are now working from home – so the importance of staying connected and being able to collaborate is crucial.