Singapore business leaders need to strengthen workforce planning: Report

Singapore business leaders need to strengthen workforce planning: Report

SINGAPORE - Business leaders in Singapore need to prioritise workforce planning in order to meet future human capital challenges, a report by recruitment firm Randstad said.

The World of Work Report 2012/2013 found that local business leaders face challenges such as attracting new talent (24 per cent), retaining top performers (17 per cent) and increasing workforce performance and productivity (14 per cent).

However, slightly less than half (46%) of all business leaders in Singapore admit they spend 10% or less of their planning time on future workforce planning.

This could impact an organisation's ability to innovate, lead and succeed in the future, Asia Pacific Regional Director of Randstad Sourceright, Doug Edmonds said.

"A more robust, inclusive and long-term approach to workforce planning can ensure organisations have the right skills in the pipeline. For example, with 60% of employers looking to boost middle management capabilities to improve productivity over the next five years, now is the time to start thinking about the pipeline for executive recruitment, training and development.

"It's also important to think about the work options, systems, processes and performance measures that will support these managers, to ensure their success - and their loyalty - well into the future," he said.

The report also found that over a third of employers don't plan their workforce a year in advance. Just over half plan 12 months ahead and only 10 per cent plan for a two-year period.

Mr Edmonds said report findings indicate more can be done to foster best practice and employee engagement.

"HR and recruitment professionals can offer valuable advice on effective workforce planning, but only 56% of employers we surveyed currently engage their internal HR function in the process, and just 4% engage external partners," he said.

The report also found that less than 10% of organisations currently engage employees at all levels in workforce planning.

This year's report gathered the feedback and opinions of 1315 people, including 625 business leaders, in Singapore. It is part of Randstad's annual Asia Pacific study of more than 9800 people to understand present and future human capital challenges.

paullim@sph.com.sg

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