Step 4: Gap analysis, workforce plan and training needs

Step 4: Gap analysis, workforce plan and training needs


Workforce needs gap analysis

You have now identified what your current workforce looks like, and what your future workforce needs to look like. It’s time to compare the two – what’s different? What do you need more of, or less of? Comparing what you have with what you need will help you identify any gaps that may exist in the skills, capability and capacity of your workforce. It will help you develop strategies to reduce the gap between your current workforce, and workforce of the future. 


Explore these questions:
  • What are the gaps in core, functional and role-specific skills?
  • What priority would you give each gap?
  • What types of things could you do to address this gap?
  • Who should be responsible for addressing each gap?
  • When do these gaps need to be addressed by, and what resources do you have to address them?

Templates available:

My Workforce Gap Analysis: Basic


My Workforce Gap Analysis: Comprehensive












Developing your workforce plan


After you have identified the gaps, you will be equipped to develop a strategy that will help you build your future workforce. It is useful to document the specific workforce development activities that you need to do in order to grow the capability, capacity and productivity of your workforce.


When developing your workforce strategy you should think about the areas that need to be changed, managed and developed.



Templates available:


Workforce Development Plan: Basic

These will fall across the following focus areas:
  • Planning. How do you plan for and understand the current and future demands of your workforce 
  • Engagement and recruitment. How do you get the right people, and from where?
  • Support and development. What are the different types of training and education opportunities that will meet your needs and the needs of staff?
  • Reward, recognition and retention. How will you build a positive culture and workplace and keep talented staff working for you?
  • Leadership and communication. How will you lead your teams and develop this capacity within the organisation?

For further information on these focus areas see: Workforce Planning Framework









Skills Active is working on a strategic level workforce plan template which is suitable for workforce planning across a number of organisations, businesses and industries.


If you would like more information about this tool please contact one of our Skills Active advisors.














Determining your learning and development needs


You will have identified a number of workforce needs, including building up the capability of existing and new staff to undertake the work you need them to do.

There are many ways to address any competency and skill gaps that you have identified. These may include in-house training courses, external training courses, conferences and events, national qualifications, e-learning, self-directed learning, secondment, coaching and mentoring.


Training is a great way of addressing performance and skill gaps. Engaging in a training cycle with your staff will ensure they develop where it is most beneficial for them and for the business. Training is good for business when it strongly supports business requirements. When a business has identified its skill requirements and is considering opportunities to train and upskill staff, there are a number of options to consider.


These include:
  • Apprenticeship programmes
  • Traineeship programmes
  • Upskilling, cross-skilling and re-skilling programmes
  • Customised training programmes addressing the specific skill requirements of a business
  • Recognition of prior learning processes
  • On- and off-the-job learning opportunities
  • Project work
  • Shadowing, coaching and mentoring
  • Self-directed learning

Please talk with one of our Skills Active advisors about your training needs analysis.



Training has a number of advantages for business:


• better workforce flexibility • lower staff turnover rates • increased productivity • improved safety performance • less exposure to risk • enhanced external profile.


The benefits for the workforce include:


• increased job satisfaction • better workplace morale • increased motivation and engagement • improved skill base • potential for career advancement.
















Templates available:

Learning and Development Plan: Basic

Learning and Development Plan: Comprehensive