Over the last hundred years, HR has evolved in reaction to significant changes in the way organizations work. Think about the various names HR has had over the past few decades. In the early 1920s, the profession was called ‘Industrial Relations’. It was changed to ‘Personnel’ in 1960, and to ‘Organizational Capability’ or ‘Organizational Effectiveness’ in 2000. HR’s challenge today is to define our own future based on eminently predictable trends or, even better, create it ourselves.
HR from a C-Suite Perspective
I’ve been talking to many boards about their view of HR. They’re looking at HR to drive change management and would want to see the human capital strategy integrated with business strategy. In other words, HR would partner with line management in developing both business strategy and human capital management. Sounds like consulting!
HR Meeting Business Leaders’ Needs
In order to meet the business leaders’ needs, an HR department would gather as concentrated centres of excellence as opposed to decentralized HR. IT would provide relevant data for decision-making as well as data required to measure HR capabilities. Metrics and analysis will be developed to help with assessing the feasibility of new business strategies.
And In the End
HR’s chance of success in delivering business goalsis only as good as the consultant. The consultant who helps make the client more successful has done his or her job. Overall, we have reason for optimism as the evolution of HR continues. In fact, business leaders are recognizing our value.
Marketing should work hand in hand with HR to create a strategically driven employer brand. From recruiting to onboarding, every lifecycle change that talent goes through will have a focus on organizational value-based goals and will be aligned with the employer’s brand.
Too many organizations are in a place where no matter how great their talent is, talent management is so poor that core business objectives aren’t communicated or agreed upon. A consulting approach will ensure that organizational values are part of every function and process.
The HR evolution results in making the profession an art. It’s the art of aligning the right talent at the right place and the right time, with the employer’s values and culture.