HR professionals are expected to be much more than administrative and compliance experts, according to a 2018 Paychex survey of companies with 50-500 employees. They are strategic partners who continually consult with leaders to influence business decisions, and take a lead role in strategies to attract and retain top talent. These HR professionals have four priorities:
- Workplace productivity and efficiency
- Staff training and development
- Driving results through culture
- Discrimination and harassment training
For small and mid-sized organizations, the role of the HR function is often in flux. For employers with fewer than 100 employees, HR is often considered a necessary evil; it is a set of compliance and administrative tasks that are assigned to someone who wears many hats (payroll, bookkeeping, facilities, etc.) As an employer grows, the HR role expands and employers typically hire a full-time HR professional at 100 employees. At this point, the complexities of talent management, compliance and business necessity demand a focused HR professional.
Once hired, organizations often struggle with the role of a full-time HR professional who seeks to assert themselves as a strategic partner; giving this wholly new role a seat at the Leadership table may ruffle feathers and challenge accepted business norms. As the Paychex survey suggests, it is also a terrific opportunity to leverage the HR professional’s skills, expertise and experience to advance the organization toward key goals.
This suggests a couple of questions about the HR function:
- How does your organization measure up to what this survey indicates? Do you have a full time HR professional, and if so, are they given a seat at the Leadership table? Are they given the support, resources and respect needed to achieve more than administrative and compliance tasks? Are they expected to contribute and be results-oriented?
- As an HR professional, how do you measure up to these expectations? Do you possess the business skills and confidence to assert yourself at the Leadership table? Do you strive to understand the organization’s key performance indicators? Are you willing to learn more and stretch yourself beyond handling compliance and administrative tasks?
If you and your organization want to achieve higher levels of potential, Employers Council membership can help with classes, team on-sites, individual coaching, and organizational consulting. Contact us today for help with measuring up to expanded expectations.