Are we asking too much of HR?

Human Resources has morphed from its earlier personnel management days and basic transactional services to strategic HR management and various guises of the business partner model including centres of excellence and shared transactional services. On the one hand HR is expected to be all about people development, talent identification, attraction and management; reward and employment law specialists; employee relation gurus, savvy workforce planners who are experts at forecasting and mitigating risks and issues; superb policy writers and implementors; agents of change, project managers, people managers; culture warriors; the organisations conscience….. and the list goes on.

In effect we are valued for all the aforementioned skills and disdained sometimes in equal measures. As I sit outside on what can only be described as a lovely summer evening in spring, enjoying a well deserved cup of tea after watering my plants, my mind wandered to this question about the role of HR in organisations today and whether organisations are asking too much of their HR function. Can we be all things to all people? maybe this is why the value add of HR is still being debated today, despite the function proving its intrinsic value add time and time again. Could we be suffering from trying to be too many things? I never hear of or read about debates around the value add of the finance function or the legal function to specify a few but the debate rages around HR. So it begs the question, as a function are we perpetuating our own demise by trying to be too many things to all people?

I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic and as always have a brilliant week.


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