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Human Resource & Change Management Consultants New Zealand

Succession Planning – Why Do It?


Put simply, “succession planning makes sure the right people are in the right place at the right time in order to be able to cope with unexpected events”.

On average, NZ organisations will lose around 33% of their current management team in the next 5 years. As organisations have become flatter with fewer layers of middle management, there is not the same depth for organisations to be able to promote from the next layer down. The focus has been over the last 10 years for most organisations to rely solely on recruiting staff and not to have any formal succession plans to develop teams and individuals. Succession planning is about taking a proactive approach to “risk management”.

What Are The Benefits Of Succession Planning?

Having succession plans enables organisations to:

  • Locate and prepare staff for future executive roles
  • Be “Best Practice” organisations using succession planning to develop their leaders
  • A smooth transition between staff leaving and new staff being appointed can be assured if succession planning is taken seriously
  • Recruit the right candidate from within will save dollars and help organisations meet their strategic goals more easily
  • International research shows that outsiders in top jobs stay only a short time

Getting Started

Key steps are:

  • Developing competencies which relate to the desired skills and behaviours is a good starting point and can be used to identify potential for key roles.
  • Develop templates and processes to be followed to ensure that all of the information required is included.
  • Preparing timetable and introductory memos for executives.
  • This is the planning process and advice to Executives and Senior Managers on the process to be followed and the timetable for visits.
  • Undertake Interviews.
  • This process gathers the key information on staff included in the succession planning process.
  • Developing Database of Results.
  • The results from the interviews are entered onto the database and summarised onto one or more documents for validation by Senior Managers and the Executives.
  • Present results to Chief Executive and Executive Group.
  • Establish Review Timetable.
  • Define how often the Succession Plan will be reviewed.

If you require assistance in developing your succession plans contact: