How many times have you heard that HR must have a seat at the table?
Numerous times over a period of multiple years, right?
The premise remains that HR needs to focus on ensuring alignment with the organization’s business goals and providing value to the organization. But, what’s the best way to do this?
The first step is for HR to become a strategic contributor for the organization. You need to take charge of your department and own it. There is an increasing rate of change in our global, complex industries and companies. It’s becoming more difficult to keep up, but if HR is acting in a strategic role you must be on top of updates and changes.
Unfortunately, too many HR professionals have not developed the business skills and more sophisticated human resources capabilities that are needed to succeed as a change agent. If this cannot be done in your own department, how are you going to contribute to the overall objectives of your organization?
Good news is that we can adapt and change.
With HR’s focus on the relationships with employees, there is an opportunity to improve and deliver value through people. You can create more strategic improvement responsibilities that focuses on performance/innovation/productivity improvement as one of the keys to understanding how to move forward.
Since we are responsible for all aspects of the employee’s life cycle as they navigate their career through your organization, you have the responsibility to build and maintain a strong workforce. This begins with how you acquire talent all the way through to off-boarding of employees.
To begin to think like a businessperson, you need to deep dive into the current state of your entire HR department and determine where gaps may exist to become a more strategic partner. That means willingness to be inquisitive, examine your motives, and answer the question: do you value your employees? If your answer is no, you may need to think about a different line of work. However, if your answer is yes, “I love people” and you are interested in their well-being as an employee, then that is a very good start.
Conducting a thorough assessment will give you an idea of what is your department’s current state. Most HR professionals know some of the gaps that exist but without a more thorough examination, how do you know where your focus should be to drive overall improvement to become that more strategic thought leader?
The assessment should be comprehensive, and you need to be brutally honest with the state of your human resources department. This is the best way to understand what gaps exist to be able to prioritize and develop a plan of action to address.
Here are some examples of gaps in an organization:
You could conduct an assessment on your own, but you have the necessary resources, time, and most importantly objectivity that it takes to conduct an appropriate assessment? There are organizations, such as Willory, that provide auditing services which requires an investment in a consultant to do the work. This includes time and resource allocation for the discovery sessions, having someone on-site, and waiting for a report to be completed.
But that’s no longer your only option for gaining an outside perspective on the health of your HR department. Over the last 18 months, Willory has developed an innovative new product: How’s My HR? This is an online assessment that mirrors a traditional audit but at fraction of the cost and time. The survey focused on 12 functional areas of HR and takes about 45 minutes to complete. The result is a comprehensive and action and actionable report that you can download quickly and easily upon completion of the survey.
Take the first step of owning your department by focusing on assessing, building, and maintaining a strong workforce. By implementing just a few key continuous improvement ideas, you can make a dramatic impact on the success of the business.