Being in Human resources, people face many stereotypes about how their work life revolves around hiring, firing and salaries. But as any HR professional would like to tell you, this is the mere surface of the deep reality of human resources. Ranging from strategic planning to company image and employer branding, human resources have a lot on their plates, and trust us it is not as simple as it might seem. So here we are with yet another list, to break down the stereotypes and show you the side of HR that you might not be so familiar with.
Every office requires policies and procedures to keep work streamlined and efficient. All the employees need to follow the same rules and know what is expected of them as employees. Now these policies might be as fun as a dentist appointment or a trip to the amusement park, that depends on the company and field you are working for, but the undeniable fact is that the policies are present and there to be followed. It is the HR department that sits with the management and drafts out such things as sick time, paid leaves and vacation policies, and as the enforcer of these workplace rules, HR also lays out the penalties for any rule breaking, as well as deciding whether tardiness deserves a warning or reprimand.
- Employee-Company Relations
For every company, employee satisfaction is a must, because a company cannot run on management alone. Employee productivity is what drives the production and services and keeping them happy becomes imperative. So who is it that looks after the employee satisfaction? You don’t have to look far for the answer – it’s the HR department. HR surveys the employees to see how satisfied they are at work, they conduct exit interviews with departing employees to see what it was that lowered productivity.
HR professionals have reached the place they are at because they understand their subject matter, i.e. human capital. HR understands how the human capital affects an organization’s success. They participate in corporate decision-making that lies beneath the staffing assessments as well as strategizing for future recruitment based on the business demand. Also, all those special days at work – casual Fridays, free lunch Thursdays, or whichever ones your company might follow – you have your HR department to thank for those.
These are not the days of old when offices were offices and people slogged through the day just to earn a living. With more and more job options that were hitherto unknown or unexplored, and people starting to look for work they enjoy, recruiting too has had to undergo a change. It isn’t anymore about just reading a piece of paper earned at a college and deciding whether the candidate has the necessary qualifications and be done with it. Recruitment in itself has undergone a major change and is now much more complex as compared to what it was a few years ago. HR professionals need to spot the people who lie on their resumes or exaggerate their qualifications. They need to perform background checks to screen out candidates that might prove to be undesirable. They need to careful in interviews and make sure that no illegal questions like those on religion, age or family status are asked. But even this is not all. After they have decided that a candidate is genuine, they need to judge him on his soft skills, which is not the easiest to do. Another thing they have to consider is whether the candidate will be a good cultural fit in the company. So recruitment really isn’t about asking a bunch of questions and judging people, hiring mistakes can prove costly for businesses, and so an HR professional needs to be on the lookout for a lot of things to make sure of an efficient hire.
Let’s face it, no one can get along with everyone, and if people say that they can, they are more often than not lying. An organization is where suddenly you are put together with a lot of people, most of whom you might not even know. People from various fields and specialties come together at one common ground, and everyone being unique in their own way might cause friction. It’s basic human nature. When you put a lot of them in one place, you can be sure that at least a few of them will not be comfortable with each other. What to do then? Well, again HR comes to the rescue. It is HR that you go to for solving employee conflicts. They need to become mediators (not referees) and take on a peace-keeping role so they can prevent conflicts from lowering productivity or spoiling the office environment.
These roles of an HR professional are still very basic and just a beginning. But after just these few tasks an HR professional must fulfill, we can surely agree that there is more to HR than what we have been shown. Go find your HR and make sure you appreciate all that they do, because it isn’t easy keeping an organization working like a well-oiled machine. Who knows? Your little appreciation might just make their day, also they might remember you when appraisal season comes back, no really though, make sure you thank your HR!