Determine which succession management strategies will ensure a strong pipeline of talent is ready to assume mission critical roles.
Succession management strategies develop a deep bench strength through employee recruitment, development and retention.
Part 3 identifies strategies to address succession management needs based on competency gaps existing in the current talent pool.
An action plan with measureable strategies and objectives to address succession needs in the highest priority areas.
Develop a process to track employee progress.
Complete steps 1 - 3 then return to Phases 3 – 5 of the State of California Workforce Planning Model to ensure the succession management action plan and strategies are incorporated into the overall workforce plan. Track their implementation and evaluation within the context of the workforce plan. If an organization is pursuing succession management apart from workforce planning, follow the phases in the State of California Workforce Planning Model and apply the direction specifically to succession management.
Succession Plan Template DOCX | RTF - Appendix C: Action Plan
In some cases there are general knowledge transfer strategies you will want to implement throughout the organization, such as developing standard operating procedures for how to complete critical processes throughout the organization. In other cases you will be utilizing a more targeted approach to develop competencies and may want to prioritize efforts based on employee Readiness Assessment PDF | RTF
Succession management can be addressed through a variety of strategies such as recruitment, development/learning and retention, as outlined below:
To view examples, tools, and resources from other state organization visit the Succession Management section of the
Workforce Planning Toolkit webpage.
Depending on the formality of the succession management effort, or the capacity for the number of candidates the effort can accommodate, participation may be all-inclusive, or prioritized to a certain number or group(s) of candidates determined by objective criteria. Develop an objective and well-documented process for determining if, how and by whom employee eligibility will be assessed. CalHR recommends compiling a review panel that can consist of the Succession Management Coordinator/Facilitator, Candidate's Manager, Leadership Development staff, and an Executive level member. The following objectives should inform the candidate eligibility process:
All eligible employees should have the opportunity to self-nominate and express their interest in participating in the succession management effort. Eligibility requirements may include:
Employees who are not eligible should continue to receive development opportunities to prepare them for eligibility in the future.
There are three major types of knowledge:
When implementing succession management and/or knowledge transfer strategies, the organization's leadership team should acknowledge and challenge common barriers to knowledge transfer with their employees, such as:
Difficulty communicating highly specialized knowledge/processes.
If necessary, managers and supervisors should assist employees in effective communication of the material.
Ensure employees receive sufficient time to train others with consideration to their ongoing responsibilities.
Organizational “silos” that hoard knowledge in one area of the organization.
Emphasize common goal to support the organization's missions and goals.
Create opportunities to work across different areas in the organization.
Assure employees that their level of expertise will grow when they share their knowledge with others, which could increase their marketability while training others.
Encourage employees to engage in mutual knowledge sharing to increase their own breadth of knowledge.
Investment of time and effort.
Reframe the investment of time and effort to show that having more than one employee able to perform a critical job function makes the employee’s job easier and less stressful. Additionally, the more people that have knowledge of their function and processes, the greater understanding there is for the length of time or complexity involved in a process.
While employees may not be aware of their own barriers, it is important to communicate these along with suggestions for alternative perspectives.
Some strategies will be developed to accommodate individual needs of the candidates, While others can be developed to address a larger group’s needs, and may be beneficial for multiple audiences, not just those participating in succession management.
A support panel should meet with candidates to discuss the following:
Develop a plan to track employee progress. On top of ongoing development plan evaluations and adjustments, as needed, the review panel utilized in Step 1.1 should conduct a formal evaluation at the end of one year. Discuss who met development goals and what their next steps for development are, who needs to focus on various competencies in the next year, etc.. Again, Managers should meet with candidates to provide feedback and determine next steps.
At this point, CalHR recommends re-advertise the program to gain ongoing participants and maintain a large pool of talented employees with the skills to potentially succeed key positions.
Once you have completed Part 3 and developed strategies and an action plan for implementing them, return to Phases 3 – 5 of the
State of California Workforce Planning Model to ensure the action plan and strategies are incorporated into the overall workforce plan. Implementation and evaluation of succession management strategies will continue to be tracked within the context of the workforce plan. If your organization is pursuing succession management apart from workforce planning, follow the phases in the State of California Workforce Planning Model and apply the direction specifically to succession management.