HR – Supporting Role or Strategic Partner?

Hiring is the front door to your future success.™

Question: Has your HR department – itself – kept up with the rapidly changing needs of your workforce.

HR should be an “A” position that requires an “A” player.  Anything less and your employees, your clients and your company’s financials will suffer.

Today’s employees want to be validated for what they bring to the company. They want to learn and grow professionally, want more life-work balance, and a manager they can respect.   Importantly, they want to know they are making a difference and contributing to something bigger than themselves.

Employees are far more open about their needs and will turnover or turn off if those needs are not meant.  To meet these challenges, CEOs must look at the HR function differently.  A supportive HR role is no longer acceptable.  HR must have a seat where the tactical decisions are made.

HR is basically in a supporting role if:

  • Your website identifies the key executives without including the head of HR
  • HR is not involved on the front-end of the company’s strategic decisions
  • Remote branches are “doing their own thing”
  • HR is blamed for an increase in the employee turnover rate
  • HR reports to the accounting or legal department
  • Managers say, “we would have hired better if HR had gotten us better candidates”
  • An executive drops a resume in HR’s desk and says “can you get the paperwork going? We just hired him/her, and they start in two weeks.”

If you answer “yes” to four or more, your company is at a significant disadvantage.  One way to gain a competitive advantage is by splitting the HR department.

  • Vice President – People and Culture – this includes the recruiting, leadership and talent development and onboarding. This is an executive level position with the person reports directly to the President/CEO.
  • Human Resources – Administration – reports to the CFO and includes the important support functions like benefits, payroll, compliance, etc.