Manpower planning

Manpower planning -- its a process!


Manpower planning is estimating or projecting the number of personnel with different skills required over time or for a project, and detailing how and when they will be acquired.[1]

This process is based on several factors to include...

Labor Rate

Calculating the Labor Rate to Charge is a formula for manpower cost per hour. This cost is how much the technicians time is worth per hour as a monetary value for services provided.

Total cost of operation / Total available chargeable hours = Cost / Hour

Labor Costs are the largest single line item in any medical maintenance program. An outside company may charge from $100.00 to $800.00 per hour to send a service technician on site to make a repair.

Let’s see how much the hospital-based department should be charging for labor?

Several approaches will yield similar results. First, let’s start with the average salary of the staff. Let’s say that all of your biomedical staff averages $100,000. per year. Even though this is admittedly high, that hourly rate calculates to $48.07 (100,000 / 2080 hours in a year). Adding benefits (at 25%) and supervision (at 15%), the hourly rate goes to $67.30 per hour. Now, considering that nobody works at 100% efficiency, let’s derate the hourly rate by a productivity factor of 70%. This leaves the effective hourly rate at $96.14, which is undoubtedly high because we have used outrageously high numbers in all of our assumptions.

Another way is to take the total biomedical budget. Subtract all service contracts, parts, and non-equipment maintenance functions. This is the fully loaded cost of putting BMETs on the floor. Divide this cost by the total number of working BMETs, multiplied by .7 (allowing for productivity of 70%). A ran this in a hospital last week and we calculated a fully loaded hourly cost of $57.53 in a department that had a director, a manager and a secretary. I have performed this calculation dozens of time in every size hospital. Every time I have worked with a manager to calculate the costs using real numbers, the hourly costs have been between $50.00 and $75.00 [2]

Total Available Chargeable Hours

Total Available Chargeable Hours are total hours paid minus benefit hours (i.e. paid-time off, holidays, vacation, or sick days. These are actual billable hours charged to the to the department that technicians provide support services. A good benchmark is between 75% and 85%. Bear in mind that metrics must be achievable and realistic so 100% productivity for a 5-day work week in far-fetched.



  1. Business, "Manpower Planning". 2011. [1]
  2. Lynch, Pat. Licketttty Blog: Calculating Hourly Biomed rates. April 4, 2011. [2]

See also

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