From hiring to firing, there are a lot of duties that a qualified HR professional can manage for you. How can you know if your company is at the right stage to add this position to your team? Here are some additional details about the role of an HR manager and why it may be time to consider bringing one on full-time for your day-to-day personnel matters.
What is a human resources department?
If it has to do with managing employees, it probably falls under the jurisdiction of an HR (human resources) team. This department assists with the care of existing employees, and it plays a large role in attracting, hiring, and onboarding new workers.
Your HR person or team may handle everything from complying with federal and local labor and employment laws to the administrative tasks of performance review and benefits tracking. It’s possible for modest startups to handle these duties without a dedicated team, but once you find your company growing quickly, it’s time to consider a change.
What does an HR department do?
As explained above, if it’s a “people” issue, including disciplining, rewarding, and tracking, the HR department is likely involved. This may seem broad, but their primary aim is to help employees join the team, grow, and stay within the bounds of rules and laws. But they don’t do it all alone.
While your dedicated HR department may be responsible for making sure each new hire is trained, for example, you may have a K&D team (knowledge and development) that handles the actual training or helps the worker learn from their respective managers. However, measuring the outcomes of those training efforts is likely in the HR department’s purview.
Your HR staff may also create employee handbooks, track time off, write job descriptions, put together employee benefits packages, and handle staffing issues (terminations, retirements, etc.). Other HR tasks include helping design and implement important aspects of the company culture, too.
Pros to having an internal HR department
There are many benefits to letting full-time HR pros handle your employees. They include the following.
1. Investment in company culture
Company culture can be made up of many things, but an employee’s comfort and safety are among the most important. If you have a well-trained HR team to handle employee complaints or concerns, workers can feel like their concerns are being heard about everything from harassment to taking paternity leave.
HR professionals are adept at ensuring good outcomes for both the employee and the company. This role of liaison may increase employee engagement and help your company deal with a grievance before it becomes a complicated or expensive legal issue.
2. Consistency of internal practices
When you use your own HR teams to deal with employee matters, you’re ensuring that your private information, such as trade secrets or brand development data, stays in-house. You’re also mindful of how even the most menial administrative tasks are handled, allowing you to create a consistent process for performance reviews, new-hire paperwork, and more. This onsite approach to HR keeps you in the know at all times.
3. Accessible help when needed
Whether it’s an employee who needs guidance or a manager who wants to quickly onboard a new employee, an in-house team of experts can be a time saver. You only have to ask your own HR department for help. And since these HR managers work for you, they also understand how to keep internal issues internal. You’ll have the discretion of handling even tricky situations without the risk of it leaking outside the organization.
Cons to having an in-house HR department
It’s not always possible for companies to justify an onsite HR specialist. For those who lack resources or experience, these obstacles are worth considering.
Because you are hiring your HR team as employees, you’ll have to pay for their salary, benefits, and ongoing support. The better HR pros will command more pay, too, making this an unaffordable venture for small businesses with no budget for non-revenue generating employees.
2. Difficulty finding a match
There is no shortage of qualified HR pros, but which one is the best for your company? It’s not exactly easy to hire someone who matches your culture and is skilled at cultivating it. The risk of bringing on a poor fit may be much higher than not hiring a team at all. You’ll need to know that you can trust whoever you hire to handle the most sensitive parts of your business.
3. Internal bias
The HR team is trained to be a go-between for employees and management, but they are only human. It can be hard for even the best professionals to hold the line and act impartially toward each side in any dispute. It may also be difficult to handle the more difficult tasks of employee discipline or terminations if they get too friendly with those they serve.
When to hire an HR department
You’ve heard the pros and cons, but how can you choose? It’s essential to consider that HR duties can’t be skipped over and that someone will have to do the work of an HR team. Whether you make that a part of your existing company or outsource the duties to off-site professionals, you may find your desired choice changing over time. It’s likely that a smaller company may prefer outsourcing for things like benefits, paperwork, or candidate sourcing. As you grow, some of these tasks may be best done in-house, especially those that may expose company secrets or data to the outside world.
Whether you take it all on yourself or not, consider using an elastic recruiting provider like Comeet for lower cost and higher efficiency with the hiring process. This HR role can reduce your workload, but it doesn’t necessarily involve sharing your company’s coveted intellectual property. As a result, you can safely offload time-consuming candidate sourcing tasks to free HR teams up for the more delicate matters of managing employees.
Want to know more about how our elastic recruiting process can work for you? Get in touch today!