5 reasons why you cannot work without a medium-term planning
We believe that every organisation needs to plan. Only then it is possible to effectively and efficiently employ scarce resources and employees. When this only happens in the short term, this will not succeed. Why?
1. Not all measures are employable in the short term
Everyone knows that a new employee cannot be found, trained and be employable instantly. This needs time. Also the use of external or temporary employees and other capacity measures are not directly employable. Some measures have a turnaround of several months, some of several weeks and others of a few days. In general it is true that the short term measurements are more expensive than long term measures. In order to be able to make a proper assessment it is thus necessary to have insight in the medium-term planning.
2. Decisions on work play in the longer term
The demand for capacity is determined by the supply of work. This can be an autonomous supply on which influence cannot be exerted, but this can also be work which the organisation can regulate itself. In order to reach a good balance between the supply and demand of capacity, there should be proper insight throughout the year and especially during special periods like peak times and holiday periods.
3. Educating employees takes a long time
By closely watching the demanded and supplied knowledge, situations can be prevented in which there is both a shortage of employees and an outflow of employees. This may occur when a mismatch in knowledge is present. Sound appointment of the areas of expertise, conducting a gap analysis and matching the training programme to the demand can prevent this in the medium term.
4. Clear agreements within your organisation
Every organisation makes internal agreements on the quality and timeliness of work. These can be agreements on service level, but also internal and external objectives that need to be achieved. These objectives will not be realised by just one organization component, but often by a chain of components. Medium-Term Planning is used to make an overarching planning for the whole organisation chain so that it is clear for each component what the desired performance is and which capacity is needed.
5. Boundary conditions for successful Short Term Planning
The Short Term Planning can only be successful when the proper alignment has taken place on the medium-term, such that there is sufficient capacity and knowledge present to process the workload within the required time. Short term measurements can of course solve problems, but are generally more expensive than measurements in the long term.
Anago Medium-Term Planning
The Anago Medium-Term Solutions consists of a collection of adjustable modules that cover various components of the planning. Each component is adjusted to fit the structure of the organisation.
For each employee the amount of time available is determined to execute the tasks. This can be done by relying on gross FTEs and converting these to available hours, or on the basis of presence planning.
Forecasting the workload
The workload forecast is dependent on the type of process and organisation. The forecast can be arranged with the help of various statistic forecasting methods, as well as a bottom-up manual planning.
Both the demand for capacity and the flexibility of the capacity is specified per skill. This accounts for a high level of flexibility. The component Skill Management encompasses defining skills(hierarchies), scoring of employees and determining the need for training.
Planning and appointment
The demand for capacity per skill is covered by appointing employees to activities/processes/workflows. This appointment can easily be executed manually, or automatically on the basis of various conditions such as skill, availability, travel distance, etcetera.
Medium Term Planning at a Customer Contact Center
One of Anago’s clients is an international Sales & Service Centre within the aviation industry and provides services such as reservations, website support, Loyalty and complementary services. As a subsidiary of a major Airliner, they assist direct clients and travel agents in 19 European countries in 11 different languages. Each year the expected budget regarding required agents and skills is identified for at least one and a half years in advance.