Determining capacity begins with process evaluation. List your key processes and prioritize them by the amount each contributes to profitability. Start at the top by mapping your highest priority process steps, identifying who is responsible for each step and how much time it takes to complete each step. Add the “waiting” time between each step. Identify your largest constraint in this process…where do things get bogged down? Seek to minimize inventory…inventory equals capacity.
Redesign this process to accelerate throughput (productivity), while reducing cost (time? waste?) and inventory. Then, close the gaps…what must change to allow implementation of the refined process?
Investing time to work through process improvement will clarify your actual capacity and help you determine your true hiring needs. If you need an extra set of experienced eyes and hands to accomplish this work promptly, then get it and include this cost in your ROI calculation. Waiting to do this just costs you money and prolongs your capacity uncertainty. Process evaluation is synonymous with growth so expect it to be an integral part of your continuous challenge to find capacity.