What is next for the HR department
With the very first wave of COVID, everything was happening at an incredibly fast speed. Suddenly HR had to shift focus from whatever they were working on (appraisals, comp and ben, succession or workforce planning) to digital transformation and remote working transition. Now everything is a bit more stable and the main question is: What is next for human resources?
Before the pandemic, HR was very specialised. Performance, wages and perks, learning, people happiness or training specialists were some of the roles and projects going on in HR. We can all agree that every project serves an essential purpose in the organisation, but the question is: Are these projects aligned with the current business situation?
With COVID, we all realised how critical resilient people and organisations are. Based on predictions and the current business landscape, change and speed are the new normal, and for HR this means rethinking how we structure their department.
No more silos
As is often the case with very specialised positions and roles, people start working in silos. The bigger the team, the harder it is to share information. In a fast-speed environment, HR needs to be able to share information so that in case something unexpected happens, the entire department is aligned and ready to act.
As a matter of fact, tools and technology are helping teams to communicate and align more efficiently. However, what we've seen is that HR's activities still appear to be disconnected from the reality of an organisation and technology by itself is not going to make this transformation happens. The new way of work demands HR to focus on interpersonal relationships rather than control, policies, standards, and hierarchy.
What is next
We all know that core HR activities (such as comp & ben, recruiting and coaching) are still necessary for administrative purposes. However, to respond to this volatile and flexible world, HR has to leave specialisation behind and start working on projects. Projects respond to the specific needs of the moment. For instance, during COVID-19, the project team should have been working towards a transition to remote work. Positions, titles and responsibilities are not as fixed as they were before.
Part of preparing the workplace for the future is to focus on what needs to be done for the business and for people's wellbeing. By creating a project team, with leaders, visionaries and very hands-on members with broad skills, HR will develop a complete understanding of how they need to evolve.
This new "structure" will trigger more collaborative opportunities with managers and the board. It will open opportunities to work agile and bring value to people and the organisation. It is also an opportunity to step outside of the HR bubble and learn more about how the organisation is structured, how the business and finance system work and what the strategy is in the short and long term.
This is the time to rethink HR and focus on driving value for people and your organisation.
For more information about the future of HR, read our latest white paper reports on distributed Talent Management, trends 2021