Until several years ago, human resource management was responsible for administration, but now it’s a strategic business function. This evolution now has transformed the current role of HR executives. To thrive in the new business landscape, human resource professionals should see their role from a new growth-oriented perspective and shed traditional views of the role and responsibility.
Be more strategic
Strategy and business outcomes define the complete role of HR executives, in a nutshell. The emphasis, however, here is on the organization, not a specific HR department. You must look outside of HR and solve organizational challenges using HR tools and not just deliver HR programs and services.
Turn the focus from HR to business outcomes
Time and again, human resources has been considered an ancillary function. Recently, however, the focus has turned to business outcomes. This is a necessary step in the evolution of human resources from a support function to a growth function.
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What this means is, human resources executives should learn more about the outside of the business – cost, customers, revenue, and not just fixate on the HR department. They should share the same goal as their executive counterparts. This way HR leaders can thrive and contribute to the organization in the best way possible.
Cross function support is the way HR leaderships can fully support organizational goals and play a significant part in improving business outcomes.
HR leaders should strive to align HR programs with business outcomes. One of the most effective ways to do is to partner with managers and senior executives from other business functions. All HR programs should be sponsored by another executive. At the same time, HR leaders need to ensure that this collaboration is vital for the relevance, viability, and success of HR activities. In cases where sponsors are absent, those processes are probably not required and should be shelved for later.
CHROs must look outside of the company to understand the business dynamics, competition, and create opportunities for employees to thrive and add more value to the organization.
Influence the business
Many HR professionals tend to miss out the business grounds on which their organization operates. Understanding the business grounds will help them to influence the grounds. CHROs should strive to influence employment legislation, understand talent practices of key competitors, and utilize customer feedback to improve employee training and development programs. They should look for ways to reduce personnel expenditures and increase productivity.
Increased focus on improving organizational outcomes
A chief human resource officer isn’t merely an administrator of HR strategy, employee policies, and a compensation and benefits program manager, but a strategic business partner. C-suite executes require the presence of HR leaders among themselves to understand how human resources can enable them to achieve their business outcomes or learn how human resources management objectives fit in their long term strategic goal. Other executives in the boardroom expect them to have an overarching understanding of the business and to align their processes to achieve business goals.
This requires HR executives to open their eyes and see the outside business environment (customer, cost, competitors) to better understand the needs of the organization and focus areas that will accelerate the path to improve business outcomes.
The expectations from HR leader roles has changed and organizations have begun to realize the importance of human resources in their business strategy. HR leaders should embrace the change and focus on helping companies meet their outcomes. Naturally, it will take more than what it would have in the past.