Work force planning is the process of analysing an organisation’s likely future needs for people in terms of numbers, skills and locations. It allows the organisation to plan how those needs can be met through recruitment and training. It is vital for a company like Tesco to plan ahead. Because the company is growing, Tesco needs to recruit on a regular basis for both the food and non-food parts of the business.
Positions become available because:
jobs are created as the company opens new stores in the UK and expands internationally
vacancies arise as employees leave the company – when they retire or resign – or get promotion to other positions within Tesco
new types of jobs can be created as the company changes its processes and technology
Tesco uses a workforce planning table to establish the likely demand for new staff. This considers both managerial and non-managerial positions.
In 2008/09, for example, Tesco calculates that to support its business growth there will be a demand for around 4,000 new managers.
The planning process
This planning process runs each year from the last week in February. There are quarterly reviews in May, August and November, so Tesco can adjust staffing levels and recruit where necessary. This allows Tesco sufficient time and flexibility to meet its demands for staff and allows the company to meet its strategic objectives, for example, to open new stores and maintain customerHYPERLINK “http://www.thetimes100.co.uk/glossary–service-standards-1285.php”service standards.
Tesco seeks to fill many vacancies from within the company. It recognises the importance of motivating its staff to progress their careers with the company. Tesco practises what it calls ‘talent planning’. This encourages people to work their way through and up the organisation. Through an annual appraisal scheme, individuals can apply for ‘bigger’ jobs. Employees identify roles in which they would like to develop their careers with Tesco. Their manager sets out the technical skills, competencies and behaviours necessary for these roles, what training this will require and how long it will take the person to be ready to do the job. This helps Tesco to achieve its business objectives and employees to achieve their personal and career objectives.
Job descriptions and person specifications
An important element in workforce planning is to have clear job descriptions and person specifications. A job description sets out:
the title of the job
to whom the job holder is responsible
for whom the job holder is responsible
a simple description of roles and responsibilities
A person specification sets out the skills, characteristics and attributes that a person needs to do a particular job.
Together, job descriptions and person specifications provide the basis for job advertisements. They help job applicants and post-holders to know what is expected of them. As they are sent to anyone applying for jobs, they should:
contain enough information to attract suitable people
act as a checking device to make sure that applicants with the right skills are chosen for interview
set the targets and standards for job performance
Job descriptions and person specifications show how a job-holder fits into the Tesco business. They help Tesco to recruit the right people. They also provide a benchmark for each job in terms of responsibilities and skills. These help managers to assess if staff are carrying out jobs to the appropriate standards.
Tesco’s organisational structure has the customer at the top. Tesco needs people with the right skills at each level of this structure.
There are six work levels within the organisation. This gives a clear structure for managing and controlling the organisation. Each level requires particular skills and behaviours.
Work level 1 – frontline jobs working directly with customers. Various in-store tasks, such as filling shelves withstock. Requires the ability to work accurately and with enthusiasm and to interact well with others.
Work level 2 – leading a team of employees who deal directly with customers. Requires the ability to manage resources, to set targets, to manage and motivate others.
Work level 3 – running an operating unit. Requires management skills, including planning, target setting and reporting.
Work level 4 – supporting operating units and recommending strategicchange. Requires good knowledge of the business, the skills to analyse information and to make decisions, and the ability to lead others.
Work level 5 – responsible for the performance of Tesco as a whole. Requires the ability to lead and direct others, and to make major decisions.
Work level 6 – creating the purpose, values and goals for Tesco plc. Responsibility for Tesco’s performance. Requires a good overview ofretailing, and the ability to build a vision for the future and lead the whole organisation.
Tesco has a seven-part framework that describes the key skills and behaviours for each job at every level in the company. This helps employees understand whether they have the right knowledge, skills or resources to carry out their roles
involves attracting the right standard of applicants to apply for vacancies. Tesco advertises jobs in different ways. The process varies depending on the job available.
Tesco first looks at its internal Talent Plan to fill a vacancy. This is a process that lists current employees looking for a move, either at the same level or on promotion. If there are no suitable people in this Talent Plan or developing on the internalmanagement development programme, Options, Tesco advertises the post internally on its intranet for two weeks.
For external recruitment, Tesco advertises vacancies via the Tesco website www.tesco-careers.com or through vacancy boards in stores. Applications are made online for managerial positions. The chosen applicants have an interview followed by attendance at an assessment centre for the final stage of the selection process. People interested in store-based jobs with Tesco can approach stores with their CV or register though Jobcentre Plus. The store prepares a waiting list of people applying in this way and calls them in as jobs become available.
For harder-to-fill or more specialist jobs, such as bakers and pharmacists, Tesco advertises externally:
through its website and offline media
through television and radio
by placing advertisements on Google or in magazines such as The Appointment Journal
Tesco will seek the most cost-effective way of attracting the right applicants. It is expensive to advertise on television and radio, and in some magazines, but sometimes this is necessary to ensure the right type of people get to learn about the vacancies.
Tesco makes it easy for applicants to find out about available jobs and has a simple application process.
By accessing the Tesco website, an applicant can find out about local jobs, management posts and head office positions. The website has an online application form for people to submit directly.
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