What Are Workforce Planning Tools?

Workforce Planning Tools

How healthy is your workforce? That’s a question that any enterprise should be able to answer — and yet, short of giving the business a cardiac stress test, it’s not always easy to get a complete view. 

Workforce planning tools help a business to understand the current and future health of the company across a wide range of parameters, including skills gaps analysis, scenario planning, and budgeting. 

Fiverr Enterprise is a workforce management tool designed for businesses and enterprises to scale the way they work with their external workforce. 

This article shares why enterprises use workforce planning tools, and how you can make sure you’re making the right choice for your own business needs. 

Benefits of Using Workforce Planning Tools

Without the right data to hand, many organizations feel like everything is going really well, but might not see that there are problems right around the corner. Workforce planning allows a company to look two or three steps ahead, and enhance their decision-making with valuable insights into their workforce.

For example, how many employees will likely retire within the next five years? How many are showing signs of boredom or frustration, and need a promotion or a new challenge? What projects are upcoming that will need more hands on deck, perhaps via an outsourcing or freelance strategy? 

Many of these questions can be answered by workforce planning tools. They allow you to access more data, and then take a proactive approach to hiring and skills development, rather than wait for gaps to emerge and source in fire-fighting mode. 

Workforce planning tools also help you to get greater visibility over your workforce, which means resources can be allocated more effectively, and you can obtain cost savings by simply being more efficient about the way you work, and acting ahead of time. 

By starting with the organizational goals of the business, teams can use workforce planning tools to ensure that they are aligned with the executive team. For example, let’s say the business wants a new product launch to happen by Q2 2024. Workforce planning tools help ascertain whether that is realistic, and to decide what extra budget, resources, or support they will need to make it happen. 

Types of Workforce Planning Tools

Before you make a technology purchase, it’s critical to think about what you need. Here are some of the most common workforce planning tools on the market. 

  • Analytical Tools: Giving you greater insight into your existing workforce, these platforms collect, analyze and report on worker data, with the goal of increasing engagement and boosting productivity. A good solution can measure all kinds of workers, both in and out the office, and find trends and patterns. 
  • Forecasting Software: What will your workforce look like tomorrow? How many people will you need to meet demand? This technology will look at internal and external factors, and accurately estimate the number of FTE or augmented staff necessary to get you to your goals. 
  • Skills Gap Analysis Tools: Skills gap analysis is less about how many, and more about what skills. If your plans for next year are to build a product, launch a service, or design a website — are you equipped with the right people? Businesses are increasingly turning to freelance talent to find niche expertise, so this could be a smart choice. 
  • Scenario Planning Tools: Every business has what’s known as “critical uncertainties”. Scenario planning helps provide a path for any situation, estimating resource needs, training requirements, and establishing policies and strategies to follow as a situation emerges. 
  • Integrated HR Suites: In some cases, your existing HR suite will include workforce planning technology. Make sure that it covers what you need, and doesn’t include too many bells and whistles that make ease of use a struggle. Often HR suites are focused on only full-time in-house employees, and don’t support freelancers or remote workers. 

Considerations when Choosing Workforce Planning Tools

If you’re already window shopping for workforce planning technology, make sure to start with your own company’s organizational needs and goals. Ask yourself and the executives, what’s the biggest challenge today — from understanding what skills you have in your talent pool, to saving money on sourcing and hiring the right people. 

Never underestimate the need for a tool that is intuitive and easy to use. Change management is hard, and if you want hiring managers and HR to use the software, a user-friendly design will go a long way, alongside integration capabilities so that users don’t need to manually re-enter data or move from one system to another several times in their course of work. 

Each organization is different, so it makes sense to look for a platform that allows for customization to meet a specific business context, for example personalized workflows for onboarding and compliance. 

Spending money is always a tough call, but you can add peace of mind by balancing the constraints of budget with what features and benefits are included in the software. If your choice solves a specific problem for the business, and solves it well — the money will be seen as well-spent. 

Related content: Read our guide to workforce planning.

Related content: Read our guide to strategic workforce planning.

How Fiverr Enterprise Can Support Workforce Management

If an important part of your workforce planning strategy is working with freelancers, they deserve their own workforce management tool. 

Fiverr Enterprise is a SaaS solution that gives you full visibility and control over your entire freelance workforce by allowing you to source, hire, onboard, manage and pay, all while ensuring compliance, so your teams can work faster and maximize business growth. 

If we think back to the benefits of workforce planning tools, all of them can be realized with the support of Fiverr Enterprise. That single pane of glass into all of your freelancers supports enhanced decision-making with the data to back it up, and a smart sourcing service means you can take a proactive approach to hiring the right people in the right roles. 

Once onboarded, Fiverr Enterprise provides complete visibility over all of your freelance talent, so you can allocate resources effectively where they will make the greatest impact. As you’re no longer relying on disparate emails, messaging channels, and workforce management tools, you can save serious zeroes from your bottom line through efficiency gains. 

Most important of all, you can align your wider workforce strategy with the goals of the organization as a whole, showing definitively that freelancers are moving that all important needle. 

Interested? Schedule 30 minutes to speak with one of our workforce experts.