Manpower planning in Indian Railways

  • Manpower planning is a process which aims to have the right number of staff at right places with right type of skills at right times to enable the organisation to achieve it s short term and long term goals. In other words, manpower planning is the system, which ensures the manpower availability at a given point of time.
  • Manpower planning means establishment of job specifications or qualitative requirements of jobs to determine the number of people required and to find supply source.
  • Manpower recruitment is related to matching the personal qualities of employees with the job requirements.

Job analysis and Job description

  • Job analysis means analysing the corporate plans, objectives, finance, investments, products, marketings etc. with the trend of turnover, promotion patterns, transfers, qualifications, training, experience, performance standards and performance actuals.
  • Job description includes job design, job specifications, job enlargement, job enrichment, job responsibilities etc. When these elements are co-related, the job demand is known.
  • Job analysis, job specification and job design are the important factors involved in human resource development and manpower planning.

Assessment of Manpower in Railways

  • In open line, factors like normal wastage, death, deputation, dismissal, creation of assets and posts, leave reserve, rest givers, yardsticks etc., influences the assessment of manpower.
  • In construction projects, performance evaluation and review technique, phasing of work etc., are used to assess manpower.
  • There have been dynamic change in the technology and modernisation, electrification, computerisation, mechanisation of track maintenance etc. are taking place at fast rate to meet the challenges of traffic requirements in Indian railways. To meet the challenges of the changing environment, systematic manpower planning is essential. Therefore a category-wise analysis of staff should be carried out, to identify the surplus and to arrange manpower in the areas of need. This adjusts the surplus in one category to other categories, where there is demand. Manpower planning ensures that the existing manpower is utilized to the maximum extent.
  • Manpower planning emphasise on training to different categories of staff to improve the skill and to increase productivity. This step reduces the availability of unskilled staff, increase productivity and maximise manpower utilisation. Regular conversion training programs reduce the wastage of manpower due to changeover. The staff are also deputed for refresher course, conversion course, promotional course etc. with the aim to develop organisationally effective personnel with pride in their work and faith in management.
  • The primary objective of the manpower planning is to ensure the availability of the required skill and to reduce wastage. When the manpower availability is clearly known arrangements can be easily made to cater to the additional needs of manpower as indicated in the forecasts. Normally, the field officers responsible for executing the job are responsible for the manpower planning.