Strategic Workforce Planning (SWP)

Female hands, painted in the world map, forming heart shape isolated on blue background
The organization harnessing digitalization to drive innovation in the planning and management of one of its most important assets — its people


  • Our client the food-assistance branch of the United Nations and the world’s largest humanitarian organization focused on hunger and food security was keen on getting the ball rolling on the adoption of strategic workforce planning practices, moving up the maturity curve
  • Organization is mandated to offer technical assistance and development aid, such as enhancing capacity for emergency preparedness and response, managing supply chains and logistics, promoting social safety nets, and building resilience against climate change
  • It is an executive member of the United Nations Development Group, which collectively aims to fulfill the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), with a priority on achieving SDG 2 for “zero hunger” by 2030
  • Leadership recognized the need for strategic workforce planning, but only had the capabilities to plan at an operational level


  • Maintaining staffing levels in the face of planned expansion and difficulty recruiting certain positions this agency undertook Workforce Planning with Agile Dynamics’ help
  • Lack of formal processes and procedures for forecasting long term talent needs created an environment of firefighting that was putting a great deal of pressure and stress on already stretched resources
  • Misalignment between forecasting and resourcing, combined with labor shortages in both mature and emerging markets made meeting commitments to have resources in place for contract start dates and anticipated budget impact a challenge
  • All this was further aggravated by the nature of the business environment and inherent volatility induced by geopolitical and climate related challenges


  • Agile Dynamics developed end-to-end perspective on the operating model of the organization
  • Created empirical perspective on the workforce drivers as well as external environment scenarios
  • External environment scenarios accounted for more than 100+ variables impacting the work demand
  • Our team of experts spent a great deal of time socializing key findings and ideas to ensure necessary business buy-in and understanding of the methodology
  • Developed the work model and capacity development for the critical business functions
  • Ultimately Agile Dynamics secured requisite approvals and buy-in of the sponsor and key stakeholders to develop the Strategic Workforce Planning model


  • 5-year SWP accounting for workforce quantity, and location at the global level
  • As a result the planning process is so effective–and well-communicated–that talent acquisition teams don’t need to wait for requisitions; the headcount targets in the workforce plan already take into account turnover assumptions like resignations and retirements, allowing recruiting teams to predict future hiring needs and budget requirements more accurately
  • Recruiting and the employment proposition was rebranded to highlight career opportunities for new employees

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