Succession Planning

Create a succession plan process that adapts for the future

Predicting how leadership roles will change is not straightforward

Most HR leaders approach succession planning by managing a pipeline of successors who have the potential to fill a specific position or type of role. However, almost two-thirds of HR leaders expect a significant portion of leadership roles to change within the next five years, and one-third of those leaders can’t predict how the roles will change. 

Only 27% of business units have the leaders they need for the future.
Leadership roles are changing all the time — for example, we no longer have a chief administrative officer, but we recently created a chief sustainability officer position.
Vice President, HR, FMCG Organization

Develop agile succession processes and diversify bench

To create flexibility for future leadership needs, our research will help you develop agile succession processes that can better adapt to changing leadership skills and roles. Furthermore, in order to introduce much-needed diversity into the leadership bench of most organizations, our research will consider how to mitigate selection bias across leadership pipelines.

Portfolio management strategies can strengthen the leadership bench by 2x compared to pipeline strategies.

Insights you can use

To create flexibility for future leadership needs, Gartner research can help you develop agile succession processes that can better adapt to changing leadership skills and roles. 

Identify Critical Roles & Select Successors

The first step in succession planning is to analyze organizational needs and identify potential candidates. Use this tool to identify successors based on performance, potential and future organizational strategy. 

Develop and Deploy Successors

Declining bench strength is not a result of insufficient leader capabilities, but rather, the result of three major changes in the business environment. This presentation details the changes and offers guidance on improving your organization's end-to-end leadership strategy.

Communicate Your Succession Strategy to the CEO and Board

As heads of HR are responsible for working with the board on succession management, Gartner has designed this customizable template, which includes suggested language, and fill in the blank slides, to provide guidance on introducing a succession management framework to the board.

Questions about becoming a Gartner client?

Key Takeaways from Gartner ReimagineHR Conference 2019

More than 2,800 HR leaders came together worldwide to learn how to prepare their organizations for the future of work. Download the key takeaways to see what you missed.

First time attending the conference and found it very informative and helpful. Already looking forward to next year!

Rich Campana

Recruitment Director, GSK

Gartner topic experts

Gartner’s HR experts include more than 170 people worldwide. Meet a few of our leaders. 

Kimberly Shells
Director, Advisory

Caitlyn D. McDonough
Director, Advisory

Ericah J. Schmucker
Director, Advisory

Lee-Anne Vallee
Senior Director, Advisory

Gartner’s 170+ HR experts are trusted advisors for over 4,000 HR leaders.

Our experts can equip you with HR function benchmarks, and relevant best practices and tools that accelerate speed to execution and ensure decision quality.