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Integrated planning guide

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Integrated planning is the foundation for assessing and understanding the current and future needs of departments, agencies and the Public Service as a whole.

Integrated planning is central to the successful implementation of the Public Service Modernization Act and to the promotion of healthy organizations that retain competent, committed and engaged employees across the Public Service.

Integrated planning is an important building block in continuously improving and building the human capacity of the Public Service to deliver services to Canadians (Results for Canadians). Integrated, rigorous planning can mitigate risks associated with aging workforces, tight labour markets, technological change, and so on. Integrated planning can help identify optimal strategies and activities for such important HR management components as recruitment, retention, learning, development, employee engagement, promotion, succession, employment equity and official languages.

Some departments and agencies are recognized as having taken innovative approaches to planning. Overall, however, there is widespread recognition at all levels of government that over the last ten years, the HR planning capacity across the Public Service of Canada has diminished. The time is right to rigorously rebuild capacity in HR planning. The need for sound integrated planning with business planning, has never been more important.

Why integrated planning?

  • It aligns an organization’s workforce with the government’s priorities, and the organization’s mission, strategic plan and budgetary resources;
  • It is central to the successful implementation of modern HR management as referenced in the Public Service Employment Act;
  • It supports HR strategies (e.g. training, career development, organization design and classification) that are tailored to meet the current and future needs of the organization;
  • It supports the achievement of business excellence by promoting initiatives to attract and retain an engaged, sustainable, competent and diverse workforce;
  • It leads to a supportive workplace and continuous learning culture through planning efforts associated with both employee and organizational learning;
  • It informs the development of business cases to justify resources identified through current and future HR needs analysis;
  • It assists managers in realigning their workforce (e.g. reduction, expansion, change in business lines);
  • It ultimately helps managers meet their responsibilities and accountabilities;
  • It helps develop and ensure sustained, strong leadership across the Public Service; and
  • It facilitates performance improvement and reporting through the development of performance measures, which is an important aspect of any planning-related

Defining HR planning

HR planning is defined as follows:

Human resources planning is a process that identifies current and future human resources needs for an organization to achieve its goals. Human resources planning should serve as a link between human resources management and the overall strategic plan of an organization.

Integrated planning principles

Some key principles of integrated planning are as follows:

  • Planning takes place at all levels: Reflecting business needs and strong people management practices, rigorous, integrated HR and business planning takes place in all organizations and at all levels across the Public Service.
  • Planning is information driven: Planning processes and decisions are based on factual and timely information on current and future needs (demographic data, environmental scans, employee feedback, labour market information, etc.).
  • Planning identifies risks and challenges: Planning processes identify challenges and key risks in delivering on priorities, and outlines options to mitigate critical issues.
  • Planning is transparent, values-based and well communicated: Plans are communicated to employees and stakeholders.
  • Regular reporting on integrated planning takes place: Planning efforts and results are reported on annually by all organizations.
  • Planning efforts are monitored, measured and evaluated: Processes are established in all organizations to monitor performance and progress in achieving HR objectives outlined in the integrated plan.

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