Understanding demographic changes in your workforce is important these days. Every year your existing workforce gets a year older, a year closer to retirement. Competition for your talent is increasing every day and employee turnover is often increasing to match.

You can set-up and run a number of reports on your current demographic mix. Based on these reports you can easily do some rough predications on retirements and terminations over the short term. It will take some effort but it’s possible.

Adding in new entrants then complicates the predictions as they will impact both terminations and over the longer term, retirements. Refine the rough predictions by considering both age and service for departure rates for each and every employee for each in the organization.

Then throw in some assumptions about your organization’s growth plans for different departments over the short and longer terms. Consider the current economic and political environment and run the model for pessimistic and optimistic conditions. Consider the impact of some organizational interventions influencing departure rates or hiring profiles.

New information… re-run the model and reports. New data… re-run the model and reports.

This is quickly getting complicated and very costly, even if it’s all internal costs. It’s likely taking you or your staff away from the more critical question… what actions can we take to change the outcome?

Ultimately, if your organization is facing this situation, you should consider using an existing tool for the analysis and projections. Like most tools, they become more beneficial and cost effective the more you use them (and the better use you make of them).