"HR are useless. Next time your find yourself frustrated by HR;
just be thankful you are smart enough not to work there."
I overheard this whilst I was on the train to work this morning. It struck me as both a harsh and unwarranted statement.
There probably are bad HR departments out there, but I know from first hand experience, there are also great ones too.
While employee sentiment towards HR isn't always an indicator of HR's capability, it can make a difference in the support HR receives. In a recent survey of 1,112 small to medium-sized businesses with 26 -1,000 employees across all industries, BambooHR asked how capable HR was at solving their organisation's most pressing business issues. 49% of those who weren't in HR roles selected "Somewhat Capable" - the middle choice on the five-point scale.
This indicates that the majority of people outside HR think that HR has little effect, if any, on business outcomes. In that respect, the reality is that HR isn't hated - in most instances, it's just ignored.
So what can we do to change that?
Here are three easy; actionable steps you can take today to improve your company culture, both in the short and long term.
HR have access to a vast amount of individual data (performance ratings, tenure, safety records, job performance, education, line managers, prior roles, etc.) which can then be used to better understand an organisation's current composition, performance and development opportunities for each employee.
Transparency isn't just positive for employees. The effects of a transparent company culture impact the entire organisation and the people it serves.
In the digital age, the most human companies will win. We have fantastic opportunities to use technology to tear down the barriers between people instead of erecting them.
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