Create Your Succession Bench with the Succession Bench Template

Part of the Nominating Succession Candidates Stage is to create your Succession Bench. This worksheet is used to evaluate the overall readiness of your succession candidates for a role. Further, it can be updated and used to track candidate preparedness over time. A strong bench is essential for your succession plan to be effective and valuable, and this worksheet can bring awareness to your organization on the current state of your bench and your candidate readiness.

How to Build Your Succession Bench

Begin by creating Succession Benches for those roles you have identified as critical using our Critical Roles Identification Questionnaire. Indicate important role information across the top of the worksheet, such as position, current incumbent, and urgency to replace role. Then, populate the Succession Bench with those candidates you identified in the Succession Nomination Survey.

Succession Bench Planning Template - Sigma Assessment Systems
Succession Bench Template

1. Rate Succession Candidate Readiness

Sort candidates based on their readiness to take on the focal position. Use the three levels indicated along the left-hand side:

* level A: succession candidates ready for role in less than 3 years

* level B: individuals ready for role in 3 to 5 years

* level C: potential successors ready for role in more than 5 years

2. Record Candidate Progress

Use the Progress to Succession Position columns to track progress over time. Indicate the dates at which a candidate enters each level, tracking when they move from Level C to B, and from Level B to A. This can give you a sense of an individual’s progression timeline, as well as the speed at which your organization typically trains and develops employees. This information can be useful for populating your Talent Progress Scorecard.

3. Track Intermediate Growth

Although an individual may be a good future candidate for a role, they may require experience in other positions first. This is especially true of Level C candidates. For example, a department manager may show potential as a future C-suite executive, but may need to spend some time as a vice president or associate director first. Use this space to indicate the current and the next position for a candidate, and their readiness for their next role in the ladder to progressing toward the focal role.

The Succession Bench should be seen as a living document, with candidates moving up or down levels as appropriate. To learn more about how to use the Succession Bench effectively, click here, visit our succession bench page  As you train your succession candidates using Individual Development Plans, be sure to revisit this worksheet and update it as needed.

Once you have categorized your candidates, consider creating a Candidate Succession Profile to better understand how you can help these individuals progress across levels.

Download SIGMA’s SUCCESSION TEMPLATE GUIDE for Succession Planning Templates for each stage of your Succession Planning Process

Need Help Getting Started?

SIGMA’s Succession Planning Launch Series offers a simple and cost-effective way to build a robust Succession Planning process and ensure your organization’s leadership is positioned for success and prepared for the unknown.

Contact us to learn how we deliver a full year Succession Implementation Plan for each member of your leadership team in just two half-day workshops.

Request More Information