succession planning

Contributor(s): Emma Snider

Succession planning is the process of identifying internal candidates for leadership or other key roles within a company. 

The purpose of succession planning is to ensure that vacated roles can be quickly filled with well-prepared candidates. The process is important not only because it ensures the replacement knows the business, but also because it ensures that other employees will already know -- and hopefully trust -- the successor. Succession planning usually falls under the jurisdiction of a company's human resource management (HRM) department.

Talent management software may offer tools such as organizational charts to help HR managers identify and track potential leaders for future grooming. While succession planning technology is not one of the four pillars of talent management software, experts and users say it's an important component of a broader talent management framework. It may be useful, for example, to connect learning to succession planning in order to make sure that candidates for leadership roles receive the training they will need to move up the company ladder.

This was last updated in November 2013

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