print logo
Main Content Anchor

Phase 2 - Gather and Analyze Organizational Data for the Workforce Plan

Determining current and future workforce gaps is essential to ensure organizations meet strategic goals, customer expectations, and maintain operational effectiveness.  Identifying staffing and competency gaps requires you to develop a profile of the current workforce, determine current and future workforce needs, and project what the workforce profile will be in the future after considering anticipated impacts.


This phase provides the data-driven basis for the workforce plan using systematic analysis to reveal the organization's workforce gaps.


A comprehensive analysis of the organization's staffing and competency gaps and an ordered list of the organization's classifications by risk level.

Steps to Accomplish the Deliverable

  1. Perform a workforce supply analysis to understand your organization's current workforce, in terms of the right number of people with the right skills, and be able to project what your future workforce will look like. When developing your current workforce profile, include both staffing (number of employees and demographics) and competencies (knowledge, skills and behaviors).

    1. Gather and analyze, at minimum, six to 12 months of workforce data. Data may be gathered through your organization's access to the Management Information Retrieval System (MIRS) or other human resource management system via your personnel office.

    2. Assess competency levels of the current workforce using an assessment process, such as a readiness assessment or a 360 degree assessment.  If competencies have not been developed, you can start by adopting CalHR's Core and Leadership Competency Models, then proceeding to develop competencies at various levels (organizational, occupational, job specific).

    3. Project what your future workforce will look like based on trends by evaluating and forecasting the impact of separations and demographics by classification. 

    4. Compare your workforce profile to Statewide Civil Service Demographic Statistical Reports and Workforce Planning Statistics to gain perspective on statewide trends.

  2. Use the results from the environmental factors analysis performed in Phase 1 to illustrate current needs, the impact of not meeting those needs, and begin projecting future needs of the organization.

    1. Enhance your understanding of current and future organizational needs by conducting an environmental scan to factor input from division/program area leaders about their critical positions and whether their needs will increase or decrease for these positions over time. 

    2. Identify the workforce supply (staffing and competencies) needed to meet current and future demands.

  3. Perform a gap analysis to identify the number of employees and competencies needed now and in the future by comparing your current and future workforce supply (staffing and competencies) to the current and future demands of your organization.  

  4. Develop a list of classifications by risk level to help you prioritize strategy development in Phase 3.  Leadership classifications in high-risk categories are strong candidates for succession management.

Tools to Assist with Steps

All Steps:

Step 1:

Step 2:

Step 4:

Detailed Information to Assist with Steps

Key Terms

Competencies - The knowledge, skills, and behaviors employees must possess to successfully perform their work functions. They are observable, and can be developed and measured.

Metric - Measures of quantitative assessment used for assessing, comparing, and tracking performance.

Gap Analysis - As it pertains to workforce planning, it is the comparison of the current and future workforce supply (staffing and competencies) and current and future workforce demands (staffing and competencies).

Trend Analysis - The practice of collecting information and attempting to determine a pattern.

High-R​isk Position - A key critical position occupied by an incumbent with one or more risk factors, including but not limited to: potential for retirement or other turnover, lack of knowledge transfer taking place, or position is difficult to recruit for.

Step 1: Perform A Workforce Supply Analysis

Step 1.1: Gather and Analyze Workforce Data

Gather workforce data, such as employee information listed in the MIRS Elements and Definitions PDF by contacting your organization's personnel office to request the following workforce reports located in the Management Information Retrieval System (MIRS) Common Library.  These reports will need to be downloaded from the MIRS Common Library to your organizational library.

Important Note:

Employee information within MIRS is only available to reflect the past 24 months. Your organization WILL NEED to run the two reports listed below concurrently on a monthly basis to obtain the most accurate employee information in the MIRS Elements and Definition now and moving forward.

  • COM030 – This report will display a list of current employee information (active and temporarily separated).
    • This report is available to be ran for the current month, then monthly moving forward.
    • To have a baseline for analyzing separation data, it is recommended to have a minimum of COM030 reports for the past six months.
  • COM031 – This report will display a list of employees with appointments and separations in the past 24 months. It includes employee information at the time of the transaction.
    • The report is sorted by the transaction effective date. It can be ran for a 24-month timeframe, 12-month timeframe, or for the previous month.
    • When running this report for the first time, include dates from the start of a 24-month timeframe through the end of the last full month. Then run the report for the previous month on a monthly basis moving forward. For example, if you run the report on August 25, 2020, run the report for August 2018 through July 2020. Then in September, run the report for August 2020.
    • Moving forward, you will need to run this report monthly.

These reports can assist with conducting an analysis of your workforce not limited to determining:

  • Number of employees
  • Employee position information, such as: employee status, appointment tenure, etc.
  • Employee demographic information, such as: age, gender, and ethnicity
  • Total separations and types of separations in the past 24 months
  • Turnover rates based on voluntary separations by classification in the past 6 or 12 months
  • Number of employees at retirement eligibility and within 5 years of retirement eligibility
  • Total retirements, average age at retirement, and average years of state service in the past 6 or 12 months 

If this is your organization's first attempt at analyzing its workforce, consider utilizing the CalHR Workforce Data Workbook Template XLSX in conjunction with the  ​CalHR Workforce Data Workbook Instructions PDF. The template and instructions can be used to produce reports for analysis such as: Retirement Eligibility, Separation Snapshot, Turnover, Generational Breakout, and Demographics.

Note: The CalHR Workforce Data Workbook Template and CalHR Workforce Data Workbook Instructions were created based on Microsoft Excel 2016 capabilities. Other versions of Microsoft Excel may impact the use of both tools.

Step 1.2: Assess Competencies

The levels of competencies can be categorized as follows:

  • Core - Competencies identified by the CalHR Core Competency Model that are foundational for all California civil service state employees regardless of their classification.
  • Leadership - Competencies identified by the CalHR Leadership Competency Model that are necessary to be an effective leader and required of all California civil state service supervisors, managers, and executives. These competencies can also be relevant to civil service state employees who want to build and develop leadership skills.
  • Organizational - Competencies similar to core but support the mission, vision, and values of the organization that sets the context in which work is carried out.
  • Occupational - Competencies for like-occupations (i.e. Finance, Information Technology)
  • Job Specific - Competencies needed for effective performance in a specific position or to produce a set of work outputs within the organization.

If the various levels of competencies are not in alignment with each other, conducting the workforce planning gap analysis will point out these inconsistencies.

Developing Competencies

While the statewide foundational competencies have already been established, you will want to identify a set or model of organizational competencies that describe the ideal workforce to carry out the organization's mission and vision. In addition, establishing a set or model of occupational and/or job specific competencies provides management and employees a common understanding of the skills and behaviors that are important to achieving the day-to-day business. Therefore, competency models act as a skill profile and play a key role in decisions on recruiting, employee development, and succession management.  When developing and/or identifying competencies reference existing competency models, job specifications sheets, and duty statements to determine the behaviors needed to effectively perform the job.  When developing competency sets or models consider the following:

  • Gain input from division/program area managers regarding the most critical knowledge, skills and behaviors required to fulfill their area’s critical functions.
  • In addition to the CalHR Core Competency Model and CalHR Leadership Competency Model, decide if employees will use organizational competencies, occupational competencies, and/or job specific competencies.
  • Identify the proficiency level needed within each competency in order to be effective in the critical function it supports.
  • Identify the behavioral indicators associated with each competency so that it is clear what the employee would demonstrate if they possess that competency.

If you are not developing organizational, occupational, and/or job specific competencies, use the CalHR Core Competency Model, then interview or survey division/program area management to record any additional critical knowledge, skills and behaviors that the workforce requires now and in the future. For an organization that is unable to immediately develop competencies, CalHR recommends adding this task as a future workforce planning initiative.  

Assessing Competencies

Managers and employees should assess current competencies and define what levels will be required for each job function. Employees should assess their own competency levels, which will be compared to their manager’s assessment of competencies within each classification group or level.  Managers will not assess the competencies of each individual employee, but rather seek skill gaps within all like-classifications in aggregate. Consider the following to determine how you will assess competencies of your current employees:

  • What types of measurement tools will be needed to determine whether applicants/employees possess the desired level of competencies?
  • How might assessments  measure quality, speed, quantity, and completeness of each function?
  • How might you ensure assessments are developed to reflect and align to the organizational competencies required by the mission, vision and values?

Step 1.3: Project Future Workforce Trend Analysis

Analyze trends within each metric that has been gathered to create your organization's workforce profile. Understanding the patterns of the past can help forecast future changes. It can also help predict the supply of skills that may be available in the future. Trend data can be useful in determining hiring patterns (time required to fill vacancies, average number of vacancies in a year, etc.), retirement patterns, and turnover statistics.

It may be helpful to break down trend analysis by divisions/program areas or by occupational groups.  Trend information combined with the current workforce profile is an essential building block for forecasting workforce supply.


To determine the impact of separations on each classification,  perform a Trend Analysis (TA) of the three major separation types: retirements, transfers to a different state organization, and voluntary separations from state service. 

For detailed information about calculating the TA and other workforce analytics refer to the  CalHR Workforce Data Analysis Methodology PDF​.

The TA calculation is used to identify classifications that, on average, experience a relatively greater impact due to separations.  A relatively high TA is a signal that a high amount of separations can be expected from the classification and should alert you to look more closely at the particular separation type(s) that are common in the classification in order to develop strategies that can address the risks posed by the separation(s).

Step 1.4: Compare Workforce Profile

Compare your organization's workforce profile to Statewide Civil Service Demographic Statistical Reports and Workforce Planning Statistics in order to identify if your organization falls above or below statewide trends.  Understanding this comparison may help your organization identify areas of risk. You may choose to utilize multiple comparisons for well-rounded benchmarks or establishing interim goals, such as:

  • Recommended: State of California (workforce and non-workforce)
  • State of California public and private workforce
  • State of California civil service workforce

Step 2: Perform A Demand Analysis

Using workforce data analysis, division/program area input by way of the  Survey and Development Tool PDF | online version, and project team/Steering Committee PDF  feedback, determine the variables that could impact your current and future workforce, such as:

  • Estimated demographic factors (e.g., age, diversity, etc.).
  • Historical patterns of separations from the classification or organization overall.
  • Economy - A declining economy may bring more people to civil service. A thriving economy may increase recruitment difficulty.
  • Industry changes - A surge in demand for people in specific occupations you employ may make recruitment and retention very difficult.
  • Funding for critical positions - Are they funded from the general fund, through grants, or federal funding? Are there any anticipated changes in the funding stream?
  • Benefits - Do you have employees in classifications that include safety retirement benefits where they may retire earlier than the average state employee?
  • Geography - Where positions are physically located may impact the ability to recruit and retain your workforce.
  • Which work functions will remain unchanged?
  • Which work functions may be discontinued?
  • What are potential new work functions?
  • Will there be an increase or decrease of work in any function?
  • How might existing services or processes be enhanced or changed and what effect will that have on the work and human resource needs?
  • Will any functions be consolidated, simplified, or made more complex?
  • How will divisions/program areas, units, and jobs be redesigned?
  • How does work currently flow into each division/program area? Will this change?
  • What new services will be offered?
  • What technology changes will be made or new technologies introduced?
  • Are any reorganizations planned or needed?
  • Are there any plans to open new offices, relocate offices, or close existing offices?

Step 3: Perform A Gap Analysis

A gap analysis determines the gap between your workforce supply and demand.

  • Workforce supply = Current and future number of staff and competencies
  • Workforce demand = Current and future staffing and competency needs (based on current and future organization needs)

The result reveals any gaps and excess in staffing levels and competencies needed to perform your organization's functions. For example, you might find:

  • Excess employees performing obsolete or declining functions.
  • Inadequate supply of qualified personnel for positions in classifications that will likely remain the same.
  • Inadequate supply of personnel with needed competencies for positions described within an existing classification.

Once you measure the extent of any gaps for each classification and competency model , identify where candidates will come from to fill those gaps. Consider the following questions:

  • Is it possible to match competencies for declining functions to new functions or shortage areas?
  • For classifications that will be filled via promotion, what are the qualifying and possible qualifying classifications and competencies that feed into the promotional classifications?
  • What classifications are sources of transfer candidates?
  • What would occur if the gap is not addressed (i.e. What critical business outcomes will not be met?)

Use the answers to the questions above as well as the questions below to analyze the gaps between work functions and workforce:

  • Are the current recruiting efforts matching identified priorities?
  • Are there clear career paths into critical areas that have staffing and/or competency gaps?
  • Does the interview process result in hiring people with the right competencies to fill mission critical gaps?
  • Where there is no appropriate classification to provide the competencies needed, to what extent does the projected workforce provide these competencies? Determine the estimated number of qualified people and consider likely qualifying classifications.
  • Are the current knowledge transfer methods working to teach or build capabilities in the critical competency areas?
  • Are training or knowledge transfer methods for future competencies defined? Examples of knowledge transfer strategies can be found in the CalHR Workforce Planning Toolkit, Knowledge Transfer Section.
  • How many employees, by classification, will no longer be needed to perform their current function(s)?
  • How is the organization's retention program performing, especially in the critical competency/workforce areas?
  • Are there underutilized classifications?
  • If people are leaving other than for retirement or promotion, why?

These questions will help guide strategy development in Phase 3. Prioritize larger workforce gaps when developing strategies.

Step 4: Develop A List of Classifications by Risk Level

The risk level of a classification is based on results from completing a workforce data analysis and input from divisions/program areas. Factors that impact the risk level of a classification include:

  • Percentage of employees at or within five years of retirement age and/or length of state service
  • Separation rates
  • Vacancies and recruitment efforts
  • Mission critical and/or leadership positions
  • Current strategies to capture and share employee knowledge

The classification risk levels will help you focus your workforce strategies and limited resources toward your higher risks.

Refer to the Classification Risk Assessment Flowchart PDF | or the Position Risk Assessment Calculator | PDF​​ for more information about determining risk level.​​​​​​​​​​​​

Supporting Page
Link Back to Top