A couple of years ago there were many mistakes that could be made with impunity but sadly this is no longer the case. If you want your business to survive, you need to maximize both productivity and efficiency in your organization and one of the key places to do this is by maximizing the effectiveness of your human resource strategies. Your employees make or break your business and though the current financial climate is forcing many companies especially small ones to really think about their HR strategy, there are still three mistakes that are commonly made. Many overlook the following three points and you overlook them at your peril.
The first mistake is not fully understanding or perhaps accepting the importance of ensuring that the knowledge acquired by departing workers during their time at the organization does not leave with them. Many managers accept that some employees that are trained at the cost of the organization do not stay for as long as was hoped, this is natural of course and it is unavoidable. However knowledge that is acquired by workers during the course of time that they have taken on a role can be left in order to benefit those that are about to take over the job. While a certain amount of knowledge will always be passed on, to ensure that as much as possible is transferred requires that specific knowledge transfer policies and mechanisms are in place. The number of companies implementing such policies and mechanisms is rising daily and if you are not already, you really need to be one of them.
The second mistake that if often made is failing to take into account the importance of having at the company’s disposal a workforce that is spread evenly across multiple demographics. The baby boomer generation is set to retire in the near future and this adds new challenges to those tasked with designing effective human resource strategies. Setting aside for the moment the fact that having a large percentage of the workforce being from this generation leads to very high staffing costs, you need to consider how your company will continue to function should many key players choose to retire within a short period of time. While implementing knowledge transfer policies can minimize the effect, these alone are not enough. Put simply, you need to ensure that you currently have at least some young people in key roles throughout your organization.
The last mistake that I will outline is pretty simple to understand. An effective HR strategy needs to take into account the future predictions for the company. While no human resources manager worth his pay grade will ignore such predictions completely, many either pay too little or too much attention to such predictions. If too much faith is put in to such predictions, the company will not continue to function efficiently should said predictions not come to fruition. Many companies make this mistake and for small businesses in particular it can have very serious consequences. However at the same point, taking a “we’ll deal with it when it happens” approach is equally hazardous. It is important to find a balance. A company is in a far safer position if they have a workforce that can function effectively should future predictions come true or not. A company that will generate massive profits if the director’s strategy comes true but will make heavy losses if it does not is not a company that you want to own.
So in conclusion, if you are working in the human resources department of an organization, these three mistakes need to be avoided if you want to safeguard your company from the perils that the recession is currently threatening. And if you are the owner of a company and your human resources manager is currently making these mistakes, maybe you need to find a new human resources manager.