Why Is It Important for HR Management to Be a Strategic Business Partner?
Human resources personnel are advantageous to your senior management team. They encourage the team to consider employee needs and the strategic use of HR activities. If you leave HR personnel out of business planning, your management team could miss valuable insights on using existing HR activities to implement a new business strategy. In addition, your team might overlook ways a new strategy will impact employees, which can produce undesirable side effects, such as when employees resist taking on new roles or resent hiring of more employees.
In the past, many businesses focused primarily on building capital and physical assets, such as property and machinery, as signs of their competitive advantage. In the 21st century, competitive advantage refers to hiring employees, developing them as assets and assigning them to tasks while building up the store of knowledge in the company, according to business professor, Edward Lawler. Your business can become rich in human assets and knowledge by following through on HR's recommendations to offer new performance incentives and rewards to employees. You can also look at ways to store employee knowledge in a central database and give employees different tools for accessing that knowledge.
HR experts can help improve your company's organizational structure. They might suggest assigning employees to tasks using HR software that tracks employee talents, skills and work experience. For example, when a warehouse manager will switch to a new software system for processing customer orders, an HR expert can consult the HR software and suggest people who are highly suited to managing that new system based on their technical skills. This might involve moving technical employees to the warehouse department and moving warehouse personnel to other jobs.
Someone in the business should analyze staffing levels, or how many employees are on the payroll and how many employees are assigned per business function. In a small business, like a larger corporation, it makes sense to adjust staffing levels based on market changes. You also have to realign your staffing when you adopt a new strategic initiative. HR personnel might suggest how to plan for future staffing needs, such as how much money will be needed to staff each new position and what kinds of skills each new employee should have. These are important considerations to make before your business introduces a new product, service or business location to the market.
HR employees have expert knowledge of recruitment and hiring. They can write a new recruitment plan for each business initiative. They can also suggest revisions to existing HR policies and practices and additions of new policies and practices as needed. You can adjust the screening criteria in your HR software system so that candidates who won't fit your company culture will be eliminated. HR employees can ensure that your new screening criteria comply with U.S. employment law. They also develop employees who come aboard to adapt to the business culture and become greater business assets. They also help existing employees accommodate the diverse needs of new employees.