Sunday, July 22, 2007

What HR does ?

This Business week article made me think how challenging and diverse can be the job of a Human resource professional.

Apart from conveying really bad news—a workforce reduction or a painful reorganization—there are a few other less-than-sensational aspects of an HR career, depending on your temperament and the companies you work for. Lots of HR people I know, for instance, complain about the constant cost-cutting that turns them into the bad guys who must inform employees on a regular basis of reductions in everything from travel allowances to flavors of tea in the break room.

Other HR people wish that the role they play could be more instrumental in making the company a great place to work and less focused on policy and documentation. Still other HR folks spend more time than they'd like protecting the company from employee-relations lawsuits and wage-and-hour claims.

The attention which HR gets, challenges it faces and kind of impact which HR actions have on the employees in the organization is profound and long lasting. I am sure if we all look back at our career as in HR we truly cherish those moments of great joy when we see people dreams come true and also have learnt few lessons when we have to take some tough human decisions at time.

Be it business partner, decision enabler, championing people’s cause or defending policy decisions it’s a challenging and ever demanding job. One has to walk on a tight rope; you are everyone friends yet can’t afford to take sides. You have to stand for fairness and consistency, be mentally prepared to face challenges and answer all odd questions. You are the quintessential nice guy yet some may look at you as part of them (management). You are the change agent and also the custodian of culture and values.

The role has been evolving continuously and best part is that you have the scope and space to scale new challenges by bring about change and move from trusted business partner to transformation partner.

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