Organizations should consider the strategic goals of the organization and the type of skills that are required to meet these goals.
Look at all your organization's human resource management practices to identify practices that could be improved.

Realistic forecasting of human resources required by a non-profit organization involves estimating both supply and demand. Organizations should consider the strategic goals of the organization and the type of skills that are required to meet these goals.

According to information provided by the Human Resource Council to the non-profit sector, when forecasting demands for human resources, the organization must also assess the challenges it will have in meeting staffing need based on the existing internal and external environments. Internally, may mean completing skills assessments of current staff. To determine external impacts, the organization may want to consider some of the following factors:

  • How does the current economy affect our work and our ability to attract new employees?
  • How do current technological or cultural shifts impact the way we work and the skilled labour we require?
  • What changes are occurring in the Canadian labour market?
  • How is our community changing or expected to change in the near future?
  • Does the current workplace and hiring policies support diversity?



The next step is to determine the gap between where your organization wants to be in the future and where you are now. The gap analysis includes identifying the number of staff and the skills and abilities required in the future in comparison to the current situation. You should also look at all your organization's human resource management practices to identify practices that could be improved or new practices needed to support the organization's capacity to move forward. Questions to be answered include:

  • What new jobs will we need?
  • What new skills will be required?
  • Do our present employees have the required skills?
  • Are employees currently in positions that use their strengths?
  • Do we have enough managers/supervisors?
  • Are current HR management practices adequate for future needs?
Each time you recruit you should be looking at the requirements from a strategic perspective.


The Human Resource Council identifies five human resource, or staffing strategies for meeting an organization’s needs in the future:

Restructuring strategies

This strategy includes: reducing staff either by termination or attrition; regrouping tasks to create well designed jobs; and/or reorganizing work units to be more efficient. (Termination packages are governed by case law as well as by employment standards legislation (which only states the bare minimum to be paid). Consult with a lawyer to determine the best approach to termination packages.

Training and development strategies

Training and development needs can be met in a variety of ways. One approach is for the employer to pay for employees to upgrade their skills. This may involve sending the employee to take courses or certificates or it may be accomplished through on-the-job training. Many training and development needs can be met through cost effective techniques.

Recruitment strategies

This strategy includes: Recruiting new staff with the skill and abilities that your organization will need in the future, and considering all the available options for strategically promoting job openings and encouraging suitable candidates to apply. For strategic HR planning, each time you recruit you should be looking at the requirements from a strategic perspective. Perhaps your organization has a need for a new fundraiser right now to plan special events as part of your fundraising plan. However, if your organization is considering moving from fundraising through special events to planned giving, your recruitment strategy should be to find someone who can do both to align with the change that you plan for the future.

Outsourcing strategies

Many organizations look outside their own staff pool and contract for certain skills. This is particularly helpful for accomplishing specific, specialized tasks that don't require ongoing full-time work. Some organizations outsource HR activities, project work or bookkeeping. For example, payroll may be done by an external organization rather than a staff person, a short term project may be done using a consultant, or specific expertise such as legal advice may be purchase from an outside source. When deciding to outsource to an individual, ensure you are not mistakenly calling an employee a consultant. This is illegal and can have serious financial implications for your organization. To understand the differences between employees and self-employed people, visit the Canada Revenue Agency's website.

 Collaboration strategies

Finally, the strategic HR planning process may lead to indirect strategies that go beyond your organization. By collaborating with other organizations you may have better success at dealing with a shortage of certain skills. Types of collaboration could include: Working together to influence the types of courses offered by educational institutions; Working with other organizations to prepare future leaders by sharing in the development of promising individuals; Sharing the costs of training for groups of employees; and Allowing employees to visit other organizations to gain skills and insight.

Human resource planning should be updated on a regular basis. You will need to establish the information necessary to evaluate the success of the new plan. Benchmarks need to be selected and measured over time to determine if the plan is successful in achieving the desired objectives.

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Having a clear understanding of what role the position plays in the organization, including the complexity of the required responsibilities and tasks, is factored into the equation along with data on market and sector comparatives. Organizations that take the time to ensure they have factored in all of the following components will be more effective in managing their competitiveness externally as well as their consistency and credibility internally. Things to consider:

  • Job Descriptions

Job descriptions define the requirements and responsibilities of a job that has been created to meet an organizational need.

  • Conduct a Job Analysis

Conducting an analysis of each job by group/department to determine which tasks are being done and by who will help both in determining if you have the most effective alignment of tasks to roles and in developing your job descriptions.

  • Perform a job evaluation

A comprehensive analysis of each position, tasks, responsibilities, knowledge, and skill requirements is used to assess the value to the employer of the work performed and provide an internal ranking of the jobs.

  • Review Pay Structures

Pay structures are helpful when standardizing your organizations compensation practices as they reflect the grouping of jobs based on relative worth. Typical pay structures can have several grades or levels, career bands, or job families with each having a minimum or maximum salary associated.


Role Evaluation for Salary against External Data


Salary Scale

Salary Scale

External Survey Midpoint


35,550 – 43,450




39,690 – 48,510




47,880 – 58,520