Human resources planning involves projecting how many people will be needed to fill positions in an organization. This planning occurs in a changing environment. Organizations study their short-term and long-term needs to hire new employees. Uncertain economic conditions, such as overseas competition, and changes in technology are examples of why an organization might adjust its hiring needs.

Mismatch Between Applicants and Skills

An organization may find it difficult to fill the positions called for by HR planners. This might be because there is more demand in the organization than there is in available talent in the job market. Another reason is that the organization's recruiting strategies aren't attracting the right talent. Not being able to fill positions that are critical to achieving operational goals leaves the organization in a weak business position. That's why forecasting human resources needs should be followed up with effective recruitment, replacement and retention of employees.

Environmental Issues

Environmental issues can occur inside an organization. Demographic changes affect the internal work climate. Differences in work values between generations, such as Baby Boomers and Generations X and Y, mean that employees want different things to be satisfied with their work. Programs must address these different needs in one culture. Also, technological changes require workers to continuously add new technical skills. If employees' current skills aren't needed, they may become redundant. HR planning involves planning for organizational learning, or developing staff skills, to keep pace with changes in the business market.

Recruitment and Selection

Organizations get better staffing results when they can count on HR departments and line managers to do their own jobs effectively. For example, HR personnel depend on line managers to use web-based tools to perform recruiting and selection (or hiring) functions with limited assistance. The HR department posts the steps in the hiring process, policies and procedures, and documents on the company intranet. Although HR personnel may consult about questions, line managers must be able to follow guidelines for recruitment and hiring without exposing the organization to liability.

Training and Development

Line managers must do more than recruitment and hiring. They must perform other jobs that used to be associated with personnel departments. They must address their own employees' training and development needs. Line managers must find all of the resources inside and outside the organization to ensure employees develop the required skills. This takes place in the context of keeping employees motivated to perform. Effective communication between line managers and HR personnel planners can result in effective identification of training and development needs exceeding current resources.