HR in the Driver’s Seat: Moving Human Resources from Support to Strategy

How do most businesses think about human resources functions? Do they see it as central to their strategic planning? When an organization’s leadership team sits down to set strategy and make business decisions, does HR have a seat at the table? In most cases, the answer is no. Human Resources is pegged as an administrative support function. It means payroll and paperwork and little else. Why is this? It is partly because compliance at the state and federal level is an ever-changing landscape. With regulations constantly evolving and multiplying, much of an HR team’s energy and resources must be dedicated to regulatory compliance. There continues to be an archaic view that HR has a limited operations-only role. At a time when labor is the largest cost for businesses, and attracting, retaining and engaging top talent is one of the greatest challenges faced by companies, why isn’t human resources seen as a strategic resource and partner? Because the truth is that business success is rooted in efficient, empathetic HR service delivery. So how should organizations be thinking about HR and what are some ways to go about incorporating it into strategic leadership and planning? First, technology and data do matter. Like other business areas, HR must be forward-thinking in its use of technology to streamline cumbersome HR processes and provide data in real-time. This data must be used to provide employee insights. HR is often seen as reactive rather than proactive. It’s the department that tells you how you can’t do something rather than how you can. Instead, HR needs to be solutions-oriented and lose its reputation as the policy... Read More