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Strategic Labor Planning

Modern warehouses, factories, and food production lines are unpredictable regarding the delicate balance of sourcing required workers when there is a need for more available talent.

A typical hiring team faces many challenges. They must deal with tight labor markets, supply chain disruptions, seasonal demands, and a tougher-than-usual cold and flu season. It is difficult for the most diligent hiring teams to ensure they can consistently and quickly meet your business needs with so many variables at play.

The American Staffing Association (ASA) reports that American workforce solution partners hire more than 14.5 million temporary workers annually.

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Do you need support handling the numerous challenges of managing your operational workforce with limited resources? Do you have a small hiring team or a tight budget? Can you confidently rely on standard, less comprehensive staffing services with little notice?

Proactive labor planning and workforce management strategies will ease your worry and frustration to keep productivity and profits soaring.

This post will explore what you need to know about maximizing productivity, compliance, and satisfaction with a labor planning partner.

Understanding Workforce Demands

Imagine having a clear road map of your workforce needs with your workforce management partner to guide you through any challenges.

When you partner with a labor planner, they help you gain insights from your resources. Together, you will explore internal business trends, data analysis, industry trends, and economic, political, and societal conditions to inform and forecast your workforce requirements today, tomorrow, and the future.

Internal and external factors dictate your workforce demands. The right labor planning partner can help you understand how those components work together to help you maintain quality, productivity, and competitive advantage. Finally, workforce planning provides the flexibility crucial to personalized workforce models that ensure efficiency and customer satisfaction for warehouses, logistics, and light industrial worksites.

What to Look for in a Labor Planning Partner

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As an innovative business leader, you understand you must invest in your people. But you want to build your team wisely, within your budget, and according to your requirements. Tackling this task alone is challenging, especially as your business begins to scale. And given the challenges in recent years, workforce planning has become a game changer.

Understanding Variable Workforce Needs: Managed with Data and Technology

Workforce strategies typically aim to build a team that can grow to meet escalating demands during peak periods. The labor planning team also manages all internal needs and ensures seamless growth.

The ability to pare down your workforce when necessary is equally essential for an employer.

A labor planning team manages these tasks with the assistance of data and technology. Examples of technology used include:

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    Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

  • Workforce management icon

    Proprietary Workforce Management Software

  • Performance gauge icon

    Performance Management Systems

Your labor planning partner will use these tools and more to handle sourcing, interviewing, vetting, and staffing for you. That leaves you with the time and peace of mind to focus on your business objectives.

Onboarding, Training, and Development

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When working with a contingent workforce, it is crucial to have a strategy to get them processed, onboarded, and trained as quickly as possible to meet performance standards.

A workforce solutions manager can fast-track all of this with agility and success. Their primary goal is to get temporary or seasonal staff up to speed, meet performance standards, and participate in and contribute to your workplace culture.

With all this in place, you can enjoy a more resilient and responsive workforce.

Performance Management and Quality Control

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Labor planning partners support you in setting clear expectations and assessing the performance of their workforce effectively while on assignment with your business.

Effective workforce performance management and quality control are the hallmarks of a thriving organization. These factors ensure the workforce is productive and aligned with the company's quality standards. These critical functions require a systematic approach to tracking performance, providing feedback, and fostering a culture of continuous improvement.


Working with a labor planning expert ensures compliance on multiple fronts, as it is a fundamental part of their work to keep up with:

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    Industry regulations, policies, and standards

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    Federal and local government regulations, laws, and standards

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    Internal company policies and procedures

Specific compliance matters workforce planners and their teams monitor regarding hiring include:

  • Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
    (EEOC): Anti-Discrimination / Anti-Sexual Harassment
  • Ban-the-Box
  • Pre-employment Screening (Background, Criminal, Credit, Drug, etc.)
  • ISO 9000 Standards for Quality Management
  • Form I-9 and E-Verify

Labor planners also ensure employees undergo skills and development training compliance standards set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP).

Finally, workforce solutions experts work with their agency's payroll team members to monitor scheduling, work hours, and pay compliance regarding overtime, holidays, and pay.

Leveraging Data and Technology

Leveraging technology available through your workforce solutions partner offers you the ultimate competitive edge.

The most compelling data and technology capabilities in workforce management include:

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    Digital time capturing

  • Online Portal icon

    An online portal, available via computer or mobile browser, enabling clients and employees to monitor their respective accounts

  • Billing icon

    Single-source invoicing

  • Vendor Management Systems icon

    Vendor Management Systems (VMS)

  • Data analytics reporting icon

    Data analytics reporting

Advanced software and HR technologies can aid in labor planning, offering predictive analytics, workforce management systems, and employee scheduling tools to meet every deadline.

Would Labor Planning Help You Meet Your Business Objectives?

Have you recently reviewed your organization's labor planning strategies? Did they come up short?

Do you have time to take a deep dive into your labor needs, or are you regularly doing triage and submitting talent requests to your trusted staffing and workforce partner when deadlines are at stake?

With a labor planning partner, you gain a deeper understanding of the anticipated headcount, allowing for a planning baseline. This partnership will enable you to identify gaps between supply and demand long before you require triage.

With Surge Workforce Management Experts, there is nothing left to question. Our team has studied, adopted, and developed a list of best practices for effective labor planning, emphasizing data and technology, flexibility, quality assurance, skills training, and employee engagement. Even better, our team members are there with you, boots on the ground to troubleshoot, strategize, and anticipate your needs before you identify them.

Contact us so we can work together to launch your customized Workforce Management Program to fulfill your needs quickly and to your satisfaction.

  1. https://www.wsj.com/economy/jobs/where-the-job-market-is-heading-in-2024-in-six-charts-49f5c5f5
  2. https://americanstaffing.net/research/fact-sheets-analysis-staffing-industry-trends/staffing-industry-statistics/
  3. https://www.logiwa.com/blog/3-easy-steps-to-successful-warehouse-labor-planning
  4. https://www.osha.gov/
  5. https://www.fda.gov/drugs/pharmaceutical-quality-resources/facts-about-current-good-manufacturing-practices-cgmp

Additional Resources

  • https://hr.nih.gov/workforce/workforce-planning
  • https://www.forbes.com/advisor/business/workforce-planning/
  • https://www.marketwatch.com/guides/business/what-is-workforce-management/
  • https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbeshumanresourcescouncil/2022/09/02/workforce-planning-modeling-the-workforce-of-tomorrow-today/?sh=32c437da33ca
  • https://www.hrdive.com/news/hr-pros-need-a-seat-at-the-strategic-workforce-planning-table-report-indic/703083/
  • https://www.conference-board.org/publications/talent-acquisition-and-strategic-workforce-planning-a-powerful-partnership
  • https://www.hrdive.com/news/workforce-planning-professional/621941/
  • https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbeshumanresourcescouncil/2023/07/13/staffing-success-effective-strategies-for-long-term-workforce-planning/?sh=44799b3877c9
  • https://www.barrons.com/articles/september-jobs-data-inflation-119795f1
  • https://www.marketwatch.com/press-release/workforce-analytics-market-to-grow-by-usd-1-85-billion-from-2022-to-2027-growth-driven-by-demand-for-efficient-workforce-management-and-recruitment-technavio-52d6d3a0
  • https://www.cipd.org/en/knowledge/factsheets/workforce-planning-factsheet/