HR departments are the lynchpin that holds organizations together. They’re what enables firms to find the right people, hang onto great employees, and keep their morale high. Suffice to say that HR is essential.
But HR, like the finance department, isn’t always the sexiest part of an enterprise and often falls by the wayside when it comes to business considerations.
The problem is that by failing to focus on HR, businesses risk losing competitive advantage. Talented people leave the firm, it becomes harder to hang onto the people you have, and overall team morale begins to suffer.
So what makes for a great HR department?
A Great Onboarding Experience
When a person joins a new company, they want to feel as if they were welcome and cared for. They don’t want to be plopped down at a desk and told to get on with work, without having spoken to anyone or met anyone to discuss what they need to do first.
Onboarding is the process of ensuring that a person can integrate into a team once they’ve secured a job. It’s the job of the HR department to ensure that they meet the right people and have all the tools they need to do their work. HR must make a person feel welcome, both on a professional and personal level.
HR professionals are often left to their own devices for years on end, without any specific training on how to do their job better. But as Quest Cover points out, this attitude could be costly.
Untrained HR staff runs the risk of failing to do their work correctly, leading to staff retention issues. Furthermore, they miss opportunities to get the best people to work for them, costing the company money in the long term.
HR departments dedicate a large chunk of their time to managing the day-to-day affairs of office workers. Holidays, disciplinaries, and payroll all take up vast human resources, stretching the department thin.
Ideally, you’d like your HR people to be doing the things that add the most value to your company, such as finding the right people, not just going through mechanical tasks that don’t improve profitability.
Top HR departments, therefore, automate all the rote work. They regularly search for software that can automatically process payroll and holidays without the usual fuss or manual entry.
Most business units are focused on products or customers. Few are concerned with culture building. The task of creating a great culture falls mostly to HR. After, it’s HR departments that are in charge of hiring the people who create the culture in the first place.
HR departments attempt to build a healthy culture by hiring the right people and creating a sense of community among the people who work at the company.
Building a great culture is about helping employees align their beliefs with the mission of the company. Once employees understand the purpose and believe in it, they often create their own healthy cultures that help to propel a firm to new heights.