The function of human resources in business is constantly evolving. It has travelled a lot. In about last four decades it has surfaced in different avtars but still miles to go. It has done journey from transactional to transformational to strategically business contributor. It is important to understand where HR function stands today, why it is there and where it should move forward? The position and contribution of this function cannot be assessed in isolation. It has to be with context of business environment in which it operates and contributes.
It is no more a supportive or service function. It is now business-people centric. It is in centre of business. It has been understood well that by undermining the role of HR or treating it second class, business cannot get competitive advantage. Because it is the people who generate ideas, convert them in actionable plan and bring business results. It is now turn of HR to sense this opportunity and position appropriately where its opinion is valued and delivers the business objectives through people power with competence. It can be possible only when HR head thinks much in advance about possible disruptions and changes before they actually happen. He has to be ahead of time and prepare people to meet the changes successfully. He has not only to be in forefront to sail the boat in troubled waters but also to stand with CEO as trusted partner to navigate. He can contribute effectively in impacting organisation culture, right behaviours and aligned mindset of people.
HR function has also many challenges to remain relevant and important to business which professionals need to understand and act upon. Technological advancements have started impacting HR processes and business as a whole. He has to embrace the technology, understand well and assess the benefit. He has to become tech savvy but not become mad for the same. Need not to forget that people working in organisation should also be benefited by technology adoption. Technology can certainly make people smarter and processes hassle free with accurate results but may not make people happier and contended. HR’s one of the many objectives has to be of making people life better and happier along with business progress.
It is time for all HR professionals to ask themselves a question. Why they are in this profession? Just for job to meet the ends of life and getting career advancement by changing jobs after every two-three years or contributing something more to people lives working in organisation and impacting business outcomes by staying long and leaving foot prints? What is their purpose? HR professional should define and design its purpose as to what for he is there because in HR function you can be anything, but cannot allow self to ignore the desire that prioritise people care.
Dec. 2018 edition, HR stalwarts having experienced the evolution of HR function during last four decades unfold the challenges, HR may face in times to come with a word of caution, burst certain myths gathered around and way forward to move on.
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