Department and Workforce Assessment

Department and Workforce Assessment

Talent reviews begin by establishing the context of the department’s work and gaining a solid understanding of the current workforce.

Steps include:

  • Review of Work Priorities and Services: To set the context for the talent management process, the first step is an inventory of needs, projects, and services. This review includes an analysis of departmental strengths, challenges, and any potential changes. The goal is to answer the questions:
    • “What are we trying to accomplish?”
    • “Where are we going?”
    • “What, if anything, might be changing in the department?”
  • Identification of Critical Roles and Tasks: After identifying department priorities, the next step focuses on the roles and activities needed for the department to be successful. The manager (or management team) identifies key job functions, roles, and tasks that contribute to success. They answer the question:
    • “What roles are important to discuss given our goals?”

This activity helps structure and focus the talent review. Depending on department need, the review could focus on any of these groups:

  • All staff in a particular function or organization unit
  • A specific group or job category of the employee population
  • A specific tier of leaders, managers, or supervisors
  • Inventory of Skills and Knowledge: This step focuses on reviewing the key skills, knowledge, and attributes needed by the workforce to accomplish department goals. The inventory can also include a strength / gap analysis that highlights existing capabilities and identifies gaps to be filled by external hiring or internal development initiatives.
  • Demographic Analysis: In some cases, an overview of the workforce in terms of age, generation, gender, and ethnicity provides a valuable perspective about the employee population. Demographic information helps to support diversity goals, anticipate turnover, and discover other factors that may affect employee career development.

For help in conducting a department and workforce assessment, contact oed-request@mit.edu.