How Agile is Your Workforce Management Program?

Hunter S. Thompson once made the brilliant observation that “when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro”. Thompson’s quip underscored the fact that in times of change or upheaval, ideas that would normally be viewed as unorthodox or unconventional are more readily accepted as legitimate. Most would agree we’re living today in some very weird times, and the upheaval we’re experiencing is affecting labor markets and workforce planning in unpredictable ways. To navigate weird times like a pro, you must be agile, nimble, ready to embrace unusual, alternative strategies. This can be difficult for organizations, particularly if they’re not used to (or comfortable with) change. How flexible is your operation? Don’t know? Here’s one way to find out and become more comfortable with rapid paced change.

Another creative talent solution brought forward by nextSource is the “Program Agility Assessment” or “PAA”. This proprietary offering is designed to deliver a diagnostic look at your existing workforce management program and offer prescriptive advice on how to improve the flexibility needed to remain successful in today’s very weird market environment. Here’s how the PAA works.

At the beginning of every new client engagement, nextSource conducts the agility assessment to provide clients with a holistic evaluation of their existing program. This assessment goes beyond the traditional evaluation of “people-process and technology” offered by most vendors. That standard kind of evaluation is still important, but it isn’t up to the task of exploring how quickly and effectively an organization can pivot, adapt and overcome the unexpected.

The PAA provides an in-depth evaluation of the program’s governance, scalability, and alignment with key priorities and goals. Governance is supposed to provide stability to operations by ensuring adherence to a central set of guidelines and procedures in pursuit of key priorities and goals. So, by definition, governance is intended to act as a stabilizing influence. However, good governance accepts that adaptation is essential to survival in business and is designed to accommodate this critical need. Scalability is the measure of a program’s ability to increase or decrease in performance and cost in response to changes in the same priorities and goals. Governance and scalability strategies must include the capacity for agile change, or they grow too brittle and become an impediment to surviving in times of supreme weirdness.

To take advantage of the PAA, nextSource clients are prompted to complete a 15-minute survey. Based on the information and data gathered in the survey, nextSource can prepare a full diagnostic report which is presented and explored during a subsequent consultative discussion. The discussion includes suggestions for actionable program enhancements the client may take in pursuit of continued success. The Program Agility Assessment is intended to be conducted annually, to monitor alignment with changing business priorities and market conditions. Want to know how agile your workforce management program is and how well your operation can weather the storms of today’s weird reality? Ask your nextSource representative for a PAA today.

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