Forget the total “FTE.”  What’s your “FCE” count?

The typical measure of organizational capacity is the “Full Time Employee.” Organization charts have a box for each, or a line in a capacity plan.  Organization expect that a certain number of bodies will generate a specific amount of product or services.  But these counts do nothing of the sort… they simply tell you how many bodies are in the workforce.

Capacity Analysis

Capacity analysis is the process of not just telling you how many people you have in the workforce, but how effective they are.  ElementOne processes show you how to determine your actual ability to achieve your  mission.  Whether it is the very simple “Stop Light Review.” or a full assessment using ElementOne performance and development scores, this process will bring to light your strengths and weaknesses, and point you in a specific direction to truly right-size your organization with the right people.

The Stop Light!


Take out a copy of your organization chart and some markers.  Highlight every box – green for staff whose performance is right on target all the time, yellow for people who are still learning or aren’t consistent over time, and red for individuals whose performance just isn’t going to get up to speed.  Leave boxes blank if jobs are unfilled.  Now look at it – if it isn’t completely green, your organization does not have the full capacity to achieve it’s mission.  No matter what your FTE count, it can’t deliver 100%.

Get a Real Handle on Your Capacity

Using a job-description based performance and development plan, score each employee with 100% reflecting an employee doing the work exactly the way the job is designed.  Add up the total and divide by the number of FTEs and you have your FCE score. Now look department by department, location by location, function by function.  Compare their FCE score with their output of product or services.

  • If output is less than planned, there should be no surprise, there isn’t enough capacity.
  • If output is as planned, but the FCE is under 100%, you may have too many people.

A capacity analysis provides management in operations, finance, human resources, process improvement and other functions with the objective information they need to move forward.