What can HR deliver for a business? 5 key functions of today’s HR team

November 8th 2017 | Posted by phil scott

What can HR deliver for a business? 5 key functions of today’s HR team

People are the essence of a business.  Large or small, blue chip or SME, it’s a company’s employees that bring it to life and contribute to its success.

This fact means HR is one of THE most important departments in any organisation.  No longer simply an admin or support function, HR has a much greater strategic role and tangible impact within modern business.

1) Provide day-to-day people management support

There are a wide range of people management tasks in a business; recruitment & selection, learning & development, employee disputes, appraisals and more.

HR delivers an essential service for the business across these day-to-day functions.  They assist line managers to effectively carry out the HR tasks that fall within their remit (such as defining a job role and executing interviews) and provide line management training to ensure managers can successfully deliver HR related activities across their team.

2) Support business growth

HR’s activities support the growth strategy of a business.  For a company to grow successfully, they need to have all the necessary skills and knowledge.  This is where HR comes in.

Through a staff learning & development programme, they can increase employee skills, effectively filling any knowledge gaps and increasing the level of capabilities throughout the business.

When there is a visible skills gap, they drive forward the hiring process to make sure the business recruits the right talent.

3) Steer a business through periods of change

A business is always evolving and sometimes these changes are complex.  There may periods of restructure and redundancy, which is a difficult time for the business as a whole and those individually impacted.

HR’s critical function here is to successfully support the business through change.  They can offer information and knowledge, steering the business through a time of flux to arrive at a period of consolidation.

4) Develop and promote company culture

To attract and retain good employees, it’s important that a company has a positive company culture.

HR helps to define the company culture and shapes the answers to questions like ‘what are we like as a business on the inside?’  It helps the business set internal values and communicate these.

The HR team understands how the experience of working within a company needs to match what employees thought it would be like.  They work hard to make sure employees feel their experience within the company is what they expected.

5) Make sure business policies and processes are compliant

With a whole range of policies and processes in place within a business, HR delivers essential guidance to make sure they are legally compliant.  When managing employee relationships, it is vital that a company follows the rules and looks after the best interests of their staff.

HR’s up-to-date legal knowledge and experience of real-life situations means they can support a business to ensure they work with their employees in a way that follows regulations.  This does not only look after individuals, but supports the wider interests of the business too.

The concept and remit of HR has significantly evolved over the years and it is clear that the Human Resources department plays an integral business role.