The human resources department oversees the administrative functions within an organization. The department manages payroll and benefit administration, recruitment and employee relations. Staff members act as a liaison between workers and management. The department also maintains relationships between employers and labor unions. Because the human resources department manage a variety of tasks, failure to plan departmental responsibilities effectively could result in an unproductive and inefficient workplace.
Poor human resources planning can have a negative effect on workplace productivity. Unproductive workers are not enthusiastic or engaged in their job duties and responsibilities. In many cases, poor management, lack of motivation and changes in organizational structure are at the forefront of an unproductive workplace. The HR department is charged with ensuring managers have the training and resources necessary to meet the needs of employees. If the department fails to implement planning strategies that support management training and workplace morale, a decline in productivity will eventually develop.
The human resources department typically handles an organization's hiring practices. The department works with managers to determine hiring needs as well as to interview and assess the skills of potential job candidates. Unorganized and poorly planned hiring practices may lead to the employment of unqualified and inept workers. An HR department that does not plan practical recruiting strategies could negatively impact the integrity of the workforce. For example, if the department does not follow proper employee screening policies, an applicant with an unacceptable criminal history could gain employment, exposing the individual to confidential employer and customer information.
Poor human resource planning could lead to an increase in employee turnover. For example, employees who voluntarily leave an organization usually have an exit interview with a member of the HR staff. The purpose of the interview is to give the organization an indication of the worker's motivation to leave. A poorly planned exit interview could fail to provide the company with vital information related to employee morale, workplace attitudes or other information necessary to retain a satisfied and productive workforce.
The HR department ensures a company complies with employment and labor regulations. Equal employment opportunity laws, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) and the Family and Medical Leave Act are a few of the comprehensive and complex regulations about which the department must remain knowledgeable. A department that poorly plans the legal aspects of the workplace could negatively impact an organization's good standing and reputation. For example, if the department lacks a well-defined anti-harassment policy and a harassment incident leads to a lawsuit, the consequences could be devastating to the employer, financially and otherwise.
- Society for Human Resources Management: Poor Management Responsible for Negative Impact on Productivity; January 2005
- Young HR Manager: Roles and Functions of the Human Resources Department; Amit Bhagria; April 2010
- Society for Human Resources Management Foundation: Retaining Talent; A Guide to Analyzing and Managing Employee Turnover
Sherrie Scott is a freelance writer in Las Vegas with articles appearing on various websites. She studied political science at Arizona State University and her education has inspired her to write with integrity and seek precision in all that she does.