Planning for Retirement: Replacing Valued Employees
When supervisors and managers retire, it is important to fill their positions with employees who are not only capable, but who will bring additional value to the position. Succession planning should begin early and be a thorough process. Employees should be considered based on their potential and not necessarily on management experience. According to page 318, a candidate might have important contacts within the community or industry that would make him or her much more valuable as a manager. The current leaders most likely have contacts which might be lost when they retire. In addition, the leaders who are retiring will be doing so in the next seven years. Therefore, the employees still have plenty of time in which to be groomed for the job. An individual who is retiring will have expertise to share with his or her successor.
It is important to avoid common succession planning mistakes, as described on page 319. For example, the search for candidates to fill the vacant positions should begin early. Waiting too long to start the search can result in a loss of manpower to handle the workload, or it can result in a hasty decision. When succession planning begins early, this allows HR (or whatever entity is in charge of filling the vacant slots) to widen the search for a candidate beyond the current employee pool. Finally, strategic plans should be considered when filling a vacant position. If the overall strategic plan is to boost sales or increase revenue, HR should consider a candidate who is capable of bringing in business.
In conclusion, planning should begin early, it should include every capable candidate regardless of current experience, and should take into account the organization’s plans for the future.