Manpower Requirements Approach
Recall that ‘manpower’ was earlier defined in unit 13 and was also distinguished from human capital. In this approach, certain categories of highly qualified manpower categories like doctors or nurses are determined as proportions of total population e.g. doctor-population ratio, nurse-bed ratio, etc. Likewise, it is common to determine the number of teachers required as a proportion of teacher-pupil ratio. Manpower analysis is intended to provide an incisive account of the availability, the needs and the demands for educated, trained or skilled personnel in an economy at a given point of time.
There is a need to distinguish between manpower need and manpower demand. At any given point of time, the number and variety of skilled personnel required for an economy is known as manpower need. Alternatively, taking into account the current level of investment in the economy, prevailing levels of technology, trends in economic growth and potential for the same in future, the types of economic activities it may generate, the types of roles and functions to be performed by the people, the skills and knowledge they require to perform the specified roles effectively and efficiently, the analyst would assess the number of persons required at different sectors and levels of the economy to realise the objectives of investments. The forecasting of personnel needed, over a period of time is known as estimating the ‘demand’ for manpower. In this sense, manpower analysis serves as an instrument of directing the growth/development of an economy in a systematic way.
It will assist in achieving coherence between the educational/ skill development of a sector ensuring thereby the complementarily needed for the growth of other sectors of the economy. By doing so, manpower analysis would facilitate achieving the dual objectives of maximisation of economic growth and minimisation of wastage of resources. Manpower forecasting is one of the dimensions of manpower analysis. It is an exercise wherein certain assumptions are made about intended directions and targets of economic growth. Based on these assumptions, the sector wise manpower needed by different levels of educational attainment is estimated for a future date.