Making HR a True Business Partner for Competitive Advantage

"Hire people in HR who defy conventional wisdom and instead play the game by different rules." Jim Woods

"Hire people in HR who defy conventional wisdom and instead play the game by different rules." Jim Woods

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As the speed of business accelerates and competition intensifies, firms in nearly all industries are braving greater uncertainty and complexity. In the midst of such challenges, human resources have the potential to be an important asset by making certain that their organization has the human capital they need to vie and also the ability to react quickly to ever-changing environments. This is after all the age of speed.

However, human resource departments are generally the exception, not the rule. In fact, the hr model at some companies, particularly established ones that have been in business for an extended time—is more and more obsolete and inadequate to help them navigate this situation. Human resource still functions in its traditional role as a service provider that focuses on transactions, instead of as a real partner to the business units. Most business issues are people problems, particularly in-service industries and this obsolete hr model will prevent firms from creating the changes required to compete more effectively.

Not to mention the human propensity of creating protected silos.

If hr will adopt a more innovative and strategic role, it can have a positive multiplier effect. By optimizing company structures, developing and flexibly deploying company resources, and therefore making certain that the company has the right human capital in place, hr will help the organization meet its business objectives and improve both financial and operational performance. To get there, hr functions need to adopt more efficient and innovative ways of working. A competitive environment necessitates they take on a much more active role to support the business. Many organizations understand this objective, however, they're less clear concerning a way to deliver the goods.  

Tip: Rather than functioning simply as a service provider, Human Resources needs to become a REAL partner to the business units.

About Jim Woods

Jim Woods is a business adviser, leadership speaker to CEOs and corporate boards and the author of 2 books. Jim is married to his business partner Lucy Kovalova-WoodsPlease visit here to learn more about Jim. See our  Follow Jim on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.