Resource Projection Best Practice 7 – Qualification Projections

Performance proficiency for any given task is only maintained through repetitive performance over time. Without ongoing practice, performance declines until a point is reached when the individual is incapable of performing the task at a level consistent with existing standards and expectations. Additionally, those not routinely performing a task are commonly unaware of changes in expectations and methodologies associated with the activity’s performance. Subsequently, these individuals have a difficult time meeting established performance expectations when assigned the activity. Thus, many organizations establish a personnel qualification system identifying those individuals capable of and authorized to perform a given task. Task qualification is maintained over time through demonstrated performance proficiency and/or testing.[wcm_restrict plans=”40903, 25542, 25653″]

Given the need for individuals to be qualified in order to perform a task, it is incumbent upon the organization’s leadership to ensure a sufficient quantity of persons is available to perform tasks requiring a specific qualification when needed. The only way to ensure a suitable number of qualified individuals will be available when needed is to project the number of qualified individuals that will exist over time given the applicable set of individual qualification expiration dates and the ability of qualified individuals to perform requalifying tasks in a timely manner.

The figure below provides an example of a qualified staff member projection. Note that while the department is often staffed near its authorized complement of personnel, there are periods of significant shortfalls in qualified staffing. Factors contributing to the staffing and qualified staffing level projects include:

  • authorized staffing level
  • planned/announced retirements
  • additional projected retirements based on historical retirement age
  • attrition resulting from personnel transfers
  • attrition resulting from personnel terminations
  • voluntary attrition rate
  • organizational policy regarding preemptive hiring
  • time to hire
  • expected level of augmentation staff, their arrival and departure
  • time to train new hires and staff augment personnel
  • time to fully qualify new hires and staff augment personnel

Figure 1: Maintenance and Work Management Department Staffing

Armed with this staffing information, leaders can make better decisions regarding the initial and requalification of personnel and the hiring of augmentation staff such that the organization has an optimal number of qualified personnel with which to carry out its work at all times. Additionally, managers may also decide to adjust the project schedule or outsource some work to accommodate periods of low qualified staffing and assume additional workload during full and overstaffed periods.[/wcm_restrict][wcm_nonmember plans=”40903, 25542, 25653″]

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