3 Questions Business Leaders Should Ask About HR

Business owners often don’t know what goes on behind the door to the human resources department. But the actions of your human resources team can have a huge effect on your company – positive and negative. So, how can business leaders determine that HR is making the right kind of impact? There are three questions you can ask.

If you don’t know the answers to these questions, here’s why you should find out.

Question 1

Are your employees engaged?

In my years of HR consulting, I’ve seen this scenario play out time and time again: Leaders believe that their employees are happy and engaged, but when they ask those same employees, the results come back differently. And you know what? That’s okay. The important thing is you asked. Now that you know how employees feel, you can make an informed decision on how best to proceed.

Often, we learn that employees are disappointed with benefits and programs that company leadership assumes are desirable. Today’s workforce is changing. You’ve probably heard that before, but it’s worth repeating. What was once important to employees may have less value today. Doing a survey can help you determine what is truly important to your current workforce. Another other common finding is that employees don’t know about the programs at all! Effective communication practices around HR matters is extremely important in today’s tight talent market. Tell your team what their health insurance is worth. Explain to your employees the benchmark data available around the perks and benefits you offer.

Question 2

Do your talent management practices support your business strategy?

The focus on talent management is helping businesses optimize results. Talent management—recruiting, your approach to pay, the policies you want your employees to follow, the perks and benefits you offer, the organizational structure, and more—impacts your culture significantly. There was a time when an employer’s products and services, or reputation in the marketplace was a key differentiator for job seekers. The landscape is shifting. The prime differentiator is quickly shifting to workplace culture. Your talent management strategies directly impact your company culture and should become a focus, if it is not already!

Question 3

Are your leaders aligned around HR strategy?

If you are thinking, “What’s HR Strategy?”, it’s okay! A strategy doesn’t just happen, it is a process and sometimes an evolution. In fact, many clients we first work with don’t have a defined strategy for their HR programs. Helping them navigate this territory and arriving at a clear strategy is some of our most rewarding work. Once a strategy exists however, and it is linked to the strategic plan of the business, finding alignment is amongst your leadership team key. We all need to be driving in the same direction to get from point A to point B in the fastest time. Knowing if your leaders value your HR strategy and understand how leading and developing talent impacts the bottom line will be crucial when determining the route to take.

If you are finding yourself pondering these three pivotal questions, and need some help finding the answers, our HR Discovery is just what you need. Our certified and experienced HR professionals will dive into each of these areas and provide valuable insight to you and your leadership team.

About the Author: Nancy Johnson is Senior Director of Project Management at HR Collaborative. To learn more about Nancy, connect with her on LinkedIn.

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