The danger of undervaluing Human Resources

  22nd January 2019      
 Human Resources, Client

When it comes to Human Resources, many businesses fail to see the immediate value in investing in a department. As a result, HR teams are often the first to go when finances are tight, or the last to be considered as an addition to a growing business. Investing in Human Resources, however, can save your organisation thousands of pounds, keep you legally compliant when it comes to employment law and be instrumental in future success by setting out concise recruitment and retention strategies.

In control of recruitment costs

So where does HR’s value lie? The first thing that may spring to mind is the management of your recruitment, but this isn’t always the case, or the most effective use of an internal HR team.

While HR professionals may understand the fundamentals of recruitment, it’s not usually their core or day-to-day focus unless the company is continuously recruiting. Instead, they should be spending more time ensuring that staff onboarding and retention processes are in place.

Having said that, a good HR department will take on the responsibility of managing external recruitment agencies and act as the gatekeeper between shortlisted candidates and management teams.

They will play a key role in finalising job descriptions and potentially carry out first-stage interviews,  freeing up senior staff until their involvement is essential.

Solutions to stop repeat recruitment

If you’re looking for new staff due to expansion – congratulations – but if you’re continually searching for people to replace resignations, you have a different problem that HR could solve.

Replacing staff is expensive and it’s been quantified. A study by Oxford Economics found the average cost of replacing a single employee is in excess of £30,000. That’s more than £25,000 in lost productivity while a new joiner gets up-to-speed and an additional £5,000 spent on things like advertising costs and hiring temps.

While some resignations are inevitable, HR can implement strategies to stop worryingly high repeat recruitment. It all starts with staff retention. Good staff are worth holding on to – if they’re invaluable, do everything you can to keep them. After all, you’ve invested time and money in hiring them in the first place.

A lack of a clear pathway to success and feeling underappreciated appeared in Glassdoor’s top 10 reasons why employees resign but both can be mitigated with a strong HR department. They’re best placed – and best qualified – to devise plans to keep staff engaged and on the payroll.

Retention delivers rewards

An added benefit of retaining excellent employees is internal promotion – a process that HR can take control of.

As well as facilitating performance reviews and professional development programmes, HR will take control of succession planning, ensuring there is a long-term plan for staff that is in line with business objectives.

Internal promotions are also an outward sign to other employees that all the opportunities they could want are right there. If staff know they can progress their career within their existing company, they’re more likely to up their game and wait for that opening – a double bonus.

Hit the HR ground running

Add an HR team to your business and you’re also investing in specialist skills so best employment practices – above and beyond recruitment – are implemented effectively. HR professionals are specifically trained so business owners don’t have to be. They’re qualified to co-ordinate staff benefits and perks; ensure there is a clear path to promotion; organise appraisals; implement, improve and review workplace policies; adhere to constantly changing employment law and create an ‘open door’ environment where dialogue is encouraged.

An HR department’s remit is huge so don’t underestimate the benefit and value to your business in having one, especially in a competitive job market where staff retention is key.

At Bond Williams, our specialist HR division focuses purely on finding suitable candidates for a variety of HR roles, from administrators through to Directors. Whether you’re building an internal HR function for the first time or want to expand your team, get in touch today.


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