Planning

Planning

Planning is the process of setting objectives and deciding on the methods to achieve them.

Types of Planning

Strategic Planning

Strategic Planning is long-term planning lasting for 3 to 5 years. It is undertaken by the top level management.

Examples of Strategic Planning includes:

Tactical Planning

Tactical Planning refers to Medium Term Planning that lasts for 1 to 2 years, which is undertaken by the Middle Level Management. The aim of Tactical Planning is to implement the strategic and/or corporate plan that has been set out by the top-level management. Tactical Planning is carried out at the department or divisional level.

Examples of Tactical Planning includes:

  • Budgets

Operational Planning

Operational Planning refers to lower level or front line planning. This can be undertaken on a regular, short-term basis, which may be daily, weekly or monthly. This type of planning is usually carried out by the supervisors or leadings heads of the front-line or lower level management. Operational Planning follows the general direction that is set out by the higher levels of management and is often practical or technical in nature.

Examples of Operational Planning includes:

  • Rosters
  • Breaks for employees
  • Delegation of Daily duties

The Planning Process

The process of planning should follow this process.

  1. Set Objectives to be achieved.
  2. Analyse current situation of the organisation. This can be done using a SWOT Analysis.
  3. Develop and evaluate alternatives and/or strategies that can be used to achieve the objectives.
  4. Implement the developed plan. The organisation must decide on one of the strategies or alternatives and put the plan into place.
  5. Monitor and review the results of the implementation of the chosen strategy or alternative. This must be in the form of a living document. IF upon review the strategy or alternative is not seen to be effective changes may be made.

SWOT Analysis

A SWOT Analysis involves the identification and analysis of the internal strengths and weaknesses of the organisation as well as the opportunities in, and threats from the external environment.

It is a useful tool in the planning process. It can allow for strategies to be formed based on the current situation the organisation finds itself in based off the internal and external environments.

An example of how a SWOT Analysis may be conducted within an organisation is:

STRENGTHS – INTERNAL ENVIRONMENT

  • What is the organisation good at?
  • Is our product popular?
  • Are our customers loyal?
  • Do we function efficiently?
  • Are we in a solid financial position?
  • Is our equipment state of the art?

WEAKNESSES – INTERNAL ENVIRONMENT

  • Are our manager and staff competent?
  • Is our computer system obsolete?
  • Is our product line likely to become obsolete with future technological developments?
  • Have we experienced past failures
  • Have we been upgrading our facilities to keep pace with others?

OPPORTUNITIES – EXTERNAL ENVIRONMENT

  • What will future technology bring for us?
  • Is the National Economy Strong?
  • What are the possible new markets?
  • What other businesses can we acquire to expand the organisation?

THREATS – EXTERNAL ENVIRONMENT

  • What new trends have been evident in out market?
  • Are there new laws regulating what we do?
  • Are there new competitors?
  • Are the current competitors taking over our market share?