Benefits of succession planning

Category: Success, Sustainability
Last Updated: 28 May 2020
Pages: 4 Views: 241

This thesis proposal seeks to evaluate the meaning and importance of succession planning in the development of human resources in different organisations. It seeks to verify the hypothesis that human resources in an organisation can not be developed by the use of succession planning. Succession planning is a complex, expensive and time-consuming affair. However, every organisation requires leaders with experience on matters pertaining its running and operations.

Since the training programmes offered in schools can not exactly address the managerial needs of every organisation, succession planning is the thought to be the only way that a company can ensure that its future management lands on safe hands. This research seeks to determine whether succession planning is worth the heavy investment put in its implementation in terms of money and time resources.

A comprehensive review of literature from books and journal articles of management studies shows that succession planning is simply having a system or a planned process whereby the managers of given organisation identify and develop their employees to ensure that they are well equipped to assume the management roles of the organisation in the future. Attracting and maintaining talented employees is a priority for many companies due to shortage of skilled personnel (Jenkins, Hendry 69).

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Moreover, the issue of filling gaps left by employees who have left the organisation due to may be retirement, resignation or even death can prove to be quite hectic and often results in hiring people externally if no internal employee is found to be suitable for the position (Johnson 231). The urge to cultivate a healthy working environment, maximise the talents and potentials of all the employees while at the same time maximising the company's output is the major focus of succession planning (Fox 744).

This is not something which happens overnight but rather, it is a continuous process which seeks to empower every employee in the organisation (Organ 89). According to Sparrow and Hiltrop (pp. 43-59), efficient succession planning program comprises of several factors which include: Succession planning has been in use for more than fifty years now. Traditionally, many companies ran highly-structured, mechanised and systematic schemes to identify potential successors for top posts and educating them on the relevant matters in order to help in the smooth transition of power in organisations (Moulton, Fickel 199).

This schemes normally worked perfectly in stable economic environment where the employment terms were long term. This traditional approach to succession however failed because it did not take into account the succession of non-managerial posts such as researchers who might be very helpful in the future (Mishra 22). With increasing revolution taking place in the business world and uncertainties in the job security, succession planning started being ignored in the early 1990s.

Pfeffer (p. 98) argued that it is not logical to plan for opportunities meant to come next year which might not even be available. This led to the appointment of managers from without the organisation. On the contrary, today succession planning is viewed as a vital operating tool for all organisations. This can be attributed to the fact that the availability of skilled personnel has continued to reduce and organisations prefer not to trust leadership potentials of managers hired from outside. These factors have led to the revival of succession planning strategy (Leadbeater 19).

The kind of approach adopted by a specific organization on succession planning is usually aimed at getting the right people into the roles that they are best suited in. This fact is emphasised by Weber (p. 64), who argues that the primary essence of succession planning is to link a person's potential with the available position and in simple terms it seeks to have the right person doing the right job at the right time. The extent of this plan however largely depends on the future visions of the company as well as the size of the organisation in question (Maertx, Campion 101).

In this case, the larger the company, the greater the likely hood of having a serious and more detailed succession plan. Succession planning and development of leaders. It is believed that experience is the best teacher. The use of succession planning to train future leaders exposes them to their future responsibilities as well as the challenges they are likely to face thus preparing them to be able to handle any crisis which might arise in the organisation in the future (Polany 98).

In order for a company to ensure that only the best candidate is chosen for the leadership position, the senior managers should come up with a systematic, well programed process of getting feedback on the candidate with the highest potential (Arnold 677). Succession planning is never completed. It is a continuous process which depends on the future needs of the organisation as well as the resources available to train the potential successors (Hall 133).

In addition, the period within which each candidate is exposed to the training is dependent on the individual capabilities and the future responsibilities which are to be entrusted to the candidate upon succession. This plan thus needs to be put in place long before hand, like several years ahead of the expected needs. This is because sufficient time is necessary to monitor the progress of the potential candidate and to train him or her on the expected responsibilities as well as the likely challenges.

Recently, the time taken to fully implement succession planning has greatly reduced from five years to around two years due to increased technology as well as the improved skills (Stewart 97). Succession planning is of great importance in any organisation because it helps it to identify unexploited potential or talent in its employees and equip them with the necessary education for bigger responsibilities in the future (Burns, Stalker 199). This ensures that the key posts in an organisation are only filled by employees from within the organisation and that the company is always under the management of capable hands (Miller 874).

The potential candidates are normally trained throughly on ways in which to tackle issues which might arise ion the future and to survive in a highly changing business world. Moreover, succession planning is important because it motivates the employees to work hard in order to be considered for succession and it also ensures that there is always a ready and well equipped group of managers to oversee the company's management in case the need arises (Garfield 190).

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Benefits of succession planning. (2018, Apr 13). Retrieved from

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