Steps in Planning process
As planning is one of great importance to an organisation, the entire process of planning should be carried out in a systematic manner. Planning is an intellectual process which an executive carries out before he does any job with the help of other people. It involves the following steps :
1. Determination of the objectives :
The first step in planning is to identify certain objectives. The objectives set must clearly indicate what is to be achieved, where action should take place, who should perform it and when it is to be accomplished. The objectives should be established for the entire organisation and for each and every department. Planning has no utility if it is not related to certain objectives.
2. Collection and forecasting of Information :
Sufficient information must be collected in order to make plans and sub plans. necessary information includes the critical assessment of current status of the organisation together with a forward look at the environment that is anticipated. The collection and forecasting of the information must be done in terms of external and internal environment. The considerations of the external environments must the competitions now and in the future. The assessment of internal environment may consist of the strong and weak point of the organisation. This is an important step of planning process.
3. Development of planning premises :
The next step is the establishment of planning premises. Planning premises are the assumptions and predictions about the future. The assumptions are the basis of planning. Forecasting is important in premising. It helps in making realistic assumptions about sales, costs, prices, products etc in future. This requires a collection of data on present trends and future possibilities.
4. Discovering alternative courses of action :
Usually, there are several alternatives for any plan. The manager should try to find out all the possible alternatives.At the time of developing alternatives he should screen out most viable alternatives. So he has to analyse in detail a limited number of alternatives.
5. Selection of best alternative :
The various alternatives identified are evaluated and compared in terms of their expected costs and benefits. Many quantitative techniques are available to evaluate alternatives. after evaluating the various alternatives the best alternative should be selected for implementation.
6. Formulation of derivative plans :
The next step is to develop detailed sub plans for its implementation. Derivative plans are required to support the overall plans. The derivative plans are developed in the frame work of overall plans.These are drawn up with respect to different areas of activity.
7. Communicating the plan :
It is very important to get the co operation of the subordinates at every stage of its implementation. For this purpose the plans should be communicated and explained to them so that they can get the clear picture of what to be done. An organisation is not benefited from planning process until they are put into action.
8. Follow up measures :
To ensure the plans are proceeding along the right lines, the actual performance is compared with the planned performance. In this way, any short coming can be noted and suitable remedial action can be taken.
Steps in Planning process
The steps are arranged in their order but considering the way an organisation is run , it is not always the case that the actual running of organisations considers the steps in their order. So , the order might change depending on the situation the organisation is facing.