Human Resources Deconstructed

Human Resources Deconstructed
By Brenan German,
President, Bright Talent Resources, Inc.

When I am meeting with clients, networking, chatting with friends, I find myself spending time  educating people on human resources and all the things that the human resources function accomplishes for a business.

What we don’t know – we don’t value
Often times when in personal or professional circles I hear the phrase “I hate HR.” I ask why and typically the remarks have to do with controls and compliance or reference the function as too administrative and not strategic. Or it’s a cost center and provides no value because HR is always in the way of progress. Other times, HR is viewed like the dentist, everyone hates going but glad to have a contact when an issue erupts. It’s an interesting profession to say the least.

As I’ve matured as a professional, I have found myself defending less against these remarks and more in support of these remarks. The problem is education and perception. The latter being reality for most which is derived from experience. When looking at the evolution of HR, I can understand these perceptions because it’s what they know…HR has done a poor job marketing itself and educating management about its strategic value.

People are important in every business
I believe it is time for radical change. Let’s start with the term “human resources” or the more modern term “human capital.” Human Resources generated out of Personnel which was a nice evolution but feels to have run its course. Human Capital generated from Human Resources, I assume coined by a business analyst, it has not universally stuck (unless you’re a business analyst). Although these terms are nice business terms, they do not adequately represent the very thing they describe. If there is a function that is concerned with the labor of a business, it is concerned with people, not an asset or genus.

If we look at the word people, the word gives more purpose to the function that is concerned with the actual meaning: people. Traditional HR functions have been concerned with the ‘life cycle’ of an employee. From the point of hiring to the point of retiring (or firing). I share in the thinking of Josh Bersin of Bersin by Deloitte, this employee lifecycle has changed and, in many instances, shortened. Companies and people rarely get ‘married’ anymore, rather, they ‘cohabitate’ until the partnership no longer makes sense. With that in mind, the people function has to evolve to keep pace with this reality.

HR should be about people not paperwork
Traditional HR is an administrative function by design however it is this design that carries flaws and hinder the function from being perceived as more strategic. If we begin to dismantle HR, we begin to see a clearer picture of the people function. For example, payroll and compensation. Many HR functions handle payroll and compensation, some only compensation. I argue payroll and compensation is a financial function and should be moved to the Finance group.

Benefits are a commodity, governed by regulatory industries that limit variance between supplier services. If we look at healthcare and retirement plans, these are better managed under the function that specializes in handling indirect spend which is procurement. I suggest the benefits function move under the Procurement function. Similarly, HRIS is a system often merged with ERP for continuity and cost benefits and it makes sense to transition this function to the Information Systems group to manage.

Great Companies care about People and Culture
If these services are deployed to these other groups this will free up the function to focus on people and the thing that matters most to management which is productivity. This will leave the People Function to focus on 5 areas:
1.     Workforce planning
2.     Performance management/Employee relations
3.     Organization Development
4.     Community
5.     Talent Acquisition

These five areas allow the People Function to specialize in the discipline of finding, developing, and retaining great people. Which, along with the CEO, sets the tone for company culture. Therefore we have created the function of People & Culture – a highly strategic, consultative group that will partner with leadership to define and nurture values and performance, on an ongoing basis.

If you’re wondering why Talent Acquisition is listed last that is because it is a question mark. Strong  arguments can be made to transition this function as well out of the People Function as a stand-alone group. Additionally, other questions have to be answered such as what type of leader runs this new People & Culture function and how does this function keep pace with the speed of business. These are other articles waiting to be written but, for now, it’s time to start reconstructing HR into People and Culture.

Why is Talent Management Important? – Attention to Talent builds sustainable profit – Part 1

Why is Talent Management Important? – Attention to Talent builds sustainable profit – Part 1

By Miki Jo Resto, Vice President & Senior Consultant, Bright Talent

Originally published on ManagingAmericans.com
Global Markets Mean Talent Markets, Too

I’ve been watching the global business economy and talent markets closely. As you may have been noticing, the need for talent is starting to recover from the recent Great Recession. While not everyone may be feeling the recovery, there is enough recovery to be conspicuous.

During the recession, leaders of most industries across the world have shared an overarching experience – the severely changing business landscape that threw competitive markets into a super-hyper-speed for efficiency and innovation. It was a fight to survive on a global scale. This time, the recession wasn’t a roving economic beast over a rolling time cycle. What was different was that leaders all over the world experienced the survival shake down at nearly the same time.
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Do Wellness and Leadership Mix? Part 4

By Miki Jo Resto, Vice President & Senior Consultant, Bright Talent

Originally published on ManagingAmericans.com

Personal Leadership is a necessity.

Stay with me for just another moment. When you take care of the needs of the organization, clients and employees are you being a Leader? When you work to ensure that they are all growing in the right direction do you call that Leadership, as well? And at times, as a leader, do you draw on outside resources to help your team achieve that next goal, milestone or initiative?

Let me ask, then, does it make sense to remember that you are your own Personal Leader? And as the Leader, you have the authority and where-with-all to seek any assistance needed to prioritize, grow and improve your own health as a personal resource – remembering you are a vital resource for your team, organization, family and community.

A decision to develop more mastery as your own Personal Leader and building the courage to treat yourself as a vital resource can be very motivating towards prioritizing and investing time, attention and energy into becoming even more highly functional, highly creative, and a more effective Leader.

Does wellness and leadership mix? The two are separate and inseparable, different and still be the same. It’s a symbiotic relationship.

Do Wellness and Leadership Mix? Part 3

By Miki Jo Resto, Vice President & Senior Consultant, Bright Talent

 Originally published on ManagingAmericans.com

 Understand that Health is a resource.

Health is a concept for the high level functionality of your body, brain, mental and emotional capacities. When someone is functioning highly and astutely on all of these levels, health has a second name. Vitality.  When it all comes together, it’s the experience of feeling truly alive with all of your senses and capacities. All systems are a “Go”.

 Vitality is the highest human state when your whole body, brain, mental and emotional capacities are ready and willing to serve you. It’s the highest human state giving you immediate access to draw on all of your talents, capabilities, knowledge, energy, wisdom, patience, resiliency, hope – all necessary qualities – to navigate, lead and achieve.

 When we’re talking about Talent Management and Personal Health, they intersect at the point where both are growing, together. Science calls that a symbiotic relationship. Organizations receive industry awards for it, called “Great Place to Work”, and employees just call it a “joy to go to work”.

 A healthy business with healthy leaders has deep resources to increase powerful impact in the community, markets and the globe.

Do Wellness and Leadership Mix? Part 2

By Miki Jo Resto, Vice President & Senior Consultant, Bright Talent
Originally published on ManagingAmericans.com

What does it matter?

After coaching many corporate leaders and entrepreneurs over the last couple of decades, I’ve noticed that most of them (men and women) hold a belief that to be successful, to lead well, and produce much they have to give up their health. Of course, they don’t necessarily think of it in this very direct way. The idea takes the form of some of these statements I hear frequently.

“I travel a lot, so I have a hard time eating well.”
“I won’t be able to exercise much until this ________ is done.”
“I intended to start _______, once that project was over, but of course something came up right behind it.”
“I can’t think about it now, because ______.”

In other words, I’ll work on it later. This is how you lose your health, little by little, or perhaps suddenly and all at once. These types of messages tell the body and mind that You are not as important as work, employees, clients, bosses or the Board – or whatever It may be. The message your mind-body learns is that you only deserve to feel vital and energized for short periods of time, like in between work steps and career leaps. The Self, called You, learns that health is recreation and not a resource. Recreation happens when work is done. Leaders are rarely finished with work.

Do Wellness and Leadership Mix? Part 1

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By Miki Jo Resto, Vice President & Senior Consultant, Bright Talent

Originally published on ManagingAmericans.com

As Managers, Leaders and Entrepreneurs we sometimes think about the needs of our people and employees more often than we think about our own needs.

We think about others’ capabilities to produce and ability to get along with the team. We also think about their ability to cope with their responsibilities, their ability to deal with stress, and grow. We may even think about an employee’s longevity. When we term this with an organizational “name” we call it Talent Management.

Talent Management and Health are not all that different.

When we turn these same questions back toward ourselves, the name we give it changes to Personal Health. Just for the moment, let’s put thoughts about our employees to the side. Take a moment and think about yourself as a Leader. Does your own ability to cope and grow right now make you feel stimulated, excited, and alive? Or, do you feel slightly tired and maybe you need to recharge? You might even feel really tired or nothing at all.

Any of these – or whatever the feeling may be – is a reflection of not only your energy level but also your wellbeing, i.e. health. While this isn’t Earth shattering information, it can be a good reminder that the mind-body senses are feeding you information about your current state-of-being and health at any given moment.

RPO Wars: Episode III – Return of the Project Manager

As originally published on www.eremedia.com

shutterstock_373582708

A time right about now,
In a galaxy not far, far away …
The line between good and bad RPO implementations has been drawn
Between the reality of well-spoken account managers versus what is actually delivered
Perceptions of customer service and successful project launch does not always align
When the project moves from concept to reality, it is at this juncture the client needs to take control
With their own internal resource to manage expectations or rely solely on the supplier …

The distress call came over the speaker phone as launch approached: “the supplier is a man down and needs to postpone.”

Like the sound of running boots of a legion of X Wing fighters scrambling to prepare for an emergency attack, the project team assembles to respond to the news that the supplier had to move a promised resource to a different project and does not have another resource lined up to replace them.

If a company relies solely on the supplier to project manage the launch of new services, they are at the mercy of the resources supplied which can be disastrous if the supplier is not reliable. It reminds of the quote by Darth Vader to Luke Skywalker: “If you will not fight, you will meet your destiny.” To loosely correlate: “If you do not project manage yourself, you will meet your destiny.”

This is written from a corporate staffing leader’s perspective and as outlined in RPO Wars Episode I – C3RPO & RFP2D2 and Episode II – A New Decision, companies that dedicate a resource to act as project manager to take the project from selection through development to implementation, will be less vulnerable to supplier shortcomings and resource availability.

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Former Processors, Sales Associates, and Receptionists Are Our Best Talent Recruiters

Bright Talent Guest Blog by Shawna Ford, Director of Talent Acquisition, Loan Depot 

As published on ERE.net

March 10, 2015

I hire non-recruiters who hire more than 1,000 people a year.

Do I have your attention?

If you’re reading this, and you’re a talent acquisition professional, you’re probably asking yourself, ‘what in the world?’ How does it work?

Well, 1,879 hires later, with a team of 12 exceptional, dedicated and talented national recruiters who had no direct previous experience in talent acquisition, it is working just right. And it all started with a simple question.

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How to Be Agile to Solve the Talent Acquisition Supply-and-Demand Dance

By Brenan German, President, Bright Talent

As published on ERE.net

March 3, 2015

When you think of the word agility, you might conjure images of an elite athlete sprinting to the finish line, or a Cheetah pursuing prey on the African plains, or a lawyer in cross examination in a court room. But have you considered what agility looks like in talent acquisition?

The foundation of talent acquisition is to align resources to business needs to fill positions. Sounds simple enough, right? Most talent acquisition leaders would agree that on paper this statement does appear simple, but many variables come into play that can complicate even the simplest of tasks.

The complication begins with resource allocation and priorities. It is vital to know which positions are critical versus non-critical; how to distribute resources (geographically versus functionally); and which recruiting tools to provide the resources. Not to mention the age old question, “How do we pay for this?”

The challenge for many organizations in high-growth mode is how to balance resource needs, especially when many open roles are considered critical to the growth of the business. For those organizations with deep funding and resources, this exercise might be easier to solve than those working with limited funding and resources. The talent-acquisition leader in the organization with financial limitations is faced with timeline challenges, political maneuvering, and funding shortages.

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Advice and How-Tos How to Be Agile to Solve the Talent Acquisition Supply-and-Demand Dance

By Brenan German, President, Bright Talent 

Mar 3, 2015, 9:03 am ET

When you think of the word agility, you might conjure images of an elite athlete sprinting to the finish line, or a Cheetah pursuing prey on the African plains, or a lawyer in cross examination in a court room. But have you considered what agility looks like in talent acquisition?

The foundation of talent acquisition is to align resources to business needs to fill positions. Sounds simple enough, right? Most talent acquisition leaders would agree that on paper this statement does appear simple, but many variables come into play that can complicate even the simplest of tasks.

The complication begins with resource allocation and priorities. It is vital to know which positions are critical versus non-critical; how to distribute resources (geographically versus functionally); and which recruiting tools to provide the resources. Not to mention the age old question, “How do we pay for this?”

Read more