By Michelle Dix

It happens. Sometimes HR departments blow up. Or they just don’t work like they should.

…the large 1,000-plus employee enterprise that made a poor hiring decision in its senior VP of HR and is now wondering what to look for in a successor. 
…the small business that made its office manager the HR director has now grown to 400 employees and realizes it needs a lot more from the individual and the function. 
…the 200-employee firm that is growing fast, but leadership doesn’t have the bandwidth to think about HR, much less staff for it.   

Sometimes your situation requires more than new leadership to take the reins and give direction. It might also be time to evaluate your overall HR direction – past, present and future. The need goes beyond standard HR outsourcing that meets functional day-to-day needs. You may need a more strategic, consultative approach and a partner to help build a solid foundation for your future investment in human capital. 

Leading from a human capital perspective

Strategic HR outsourcing services and consulting are relevant and scalable to employers of all sizes. A team of seasoned experts can step in to lead your HR team or even become your HR team. This can include outsourcing day-to-day tasks, providing hands-on HR support and managing tasks like recruitment, requisition and onboarding. But the experts can also provide strategic, consultative services that address strategic HR issues like infrastructure, regulatory compliance, and long-term planning. 

What the engagement looks like depends on each employer’s individual needs. But how do you really know what those are?

There are 10 categories that strategic HR outsourcing should assess to determine the direction your organization should go in, and what HR investments need to do made to ensure success. These categories are legal compliance, recruitment and selection, onboarding and integration, total rewards, training and development, employee relations and communications, policies and procedures, employee records maintenance, employee separations, and HR technology

The categories that concern today’s HR departments the most are:

  • Legal compliance. Many organizations don’t know enough about HR and employment laws to know whether or not they are compliant. The constant changes in federal and state regulations pose an even bigger challenge. Strategic HR outsourcing will help your organization review a host of compliance issues, such as job descriptions and requirements under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), and employee protections under the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and the Family Medical Leave Act. Compliance issues like these need to be addressed immediately in order to risk and avoid fines, and to ensure your compliance structure supports your HR foundation.
  • Recruitment, selection and onboarding new hires. The issue for recruitment is typically two-fold: Do the procedures reflect fair and legal hiring decisions as well as attract the best candidates for your culture? For onboarding procedures, the concern is that they are utilized consistently and do the job of engaging new hires. If this isn’t done right, you won’t be able to attract or retain top talent. Further, you leave yourself open to discrimination-related issues.
  • Total rewards. Providing competitive benefits and compensation will do the job in attracting and retaining the most talented employees. It’s important to step back and assess whether new benefits should be added to the mix. But it’s not just benefits that need to be examined. Is the compensation you provide competitive and legally compliant? Is there a compensation structure or benchmarking in place, or are wages based on historical salary information or worse, potentially discriminatory past processes?  Total rewards can pose a pitfall if you don’t use best practices when determining pay for your employees, and getting it right is critical to attracting and keeping your talent.

A comprehensive evaluation of your HR can be an eye-opening experience for senior management. It will lead the way to optimal returns on your organization’s human capital investment – your most important business asset. 

HUB International’s HR experts with its Human Capital Consulting practice are available to guide you through our strategic HR consulting and other services.