Succession Planning

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Succession Planning

Succession Planning Development Steps

Use the following steps to create a succession planning development plan with your employee.

Step 1: Identify Key Positions

Form: Succession Planning Critical Position Worksheet

Step 2: Identify Capabilities for Key Positions

Form: Succession Plan Capabilities

Step 3: Identify Interested Employees:

Form: Applicant Self-Nomination Form
Form: Identifying and Selecting High-Potential Employees
Form: Nine Box

Step 4: Develop Implementation Plans

From: Succession Planning Questionnaire – Knowledge Transfer

Succession planning is the process of identifying key positions within your organization and developing action plans for individuals to assume those positions. Taking a holistic view of current and future goals, this process ensures that you have the right people in the right jobs today and in the years to come.

A succession plan identifies future staffing needs and the people with the skills and potential to perform in these future roles.

In the long term, succession planning strengthens the overall capability of the organization by:

  • Identifying critical positions and highlighting potential vacancies
  • Selecting key competencies and skills necessary for business continuity;
  • Focusing development of individuals to meet future business needs.

Succession Planning Policy


Recognizing that changes in staff is inevitable; The Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee (HACM) has established a succession plan to provide continuity in key positions. HACM’s succession plan is designed to identify and prepare candidates for key positions that become vacant due to retirement, resignation, or new business opportunities.


It is the policy of HACM to assess the needs of the company to ensure the selections of qualified successors are diverse and a good fit for the organization’s mission and goals and have the necessary skills for the organization.


The Secretary/Executive Director chairs the Succession Planning Committee, which also includes the Associate Director, General Counsel, the Director of Strategic Initiatives, Chief Financial Officer and the Director of Human Resources. The Secretary/Executive Directory may appoint another member of the executive team to be a member of the Succession Planning Committee at his discretion.

1. Each year, a Succession Planning Committee meeting will be held. At each meeting, each division head will:

  • Identify key positions and incumbents targeted for succession planning. This should include an analysis of planned retirements, potential turnover, etc.
  • Identify individuals who show the potential needed for progression into the targeted positions and leadership within the company.
  • Outline the actions taken in the previous six months to prepare identified individuals to assume a greater role of responsibility in the future.

2.  Each year, the Committee will approve targeted candidates.

3. Each year, the Committee will approve an outline of actions that will be taken   to prepare individuals to assume a greater role of responsibility in the future.

4. The Secretary/Executive Director will periodically request updates from senior management on the development process for each targeted candidate.

Why is Succession Planning Important?

With pending retirements and other anticipated changes, Succession Planning is a key process and tool in helping agency leadership identify what competencies are needed to execute the agency business strategies, and how to best develop and retain talent. Succession Planning is a living process and should be used as a continual checks and balances by the agency to identify what talent is currently available, what talent may be leaving, and how to prepare to capture necessary knowledge and disseminate to it to future successors. A good succession plan is supported by other key HR systems such as Learning and Development of key talent, Recruitment and Selection of internal/external talent and Performance Management to drive competency excellence in identified talent. These HR systems will enable a successful execution of the succession plan.

The following steps will help agencies to plan for future vacancies and ensure business continuity:

Succession Planning Steps