Image Courtesy: Christian Guthier
What does the HR department in a company actually do? Most employees, even within the company, often have major misconceptions about what it is that the human resources department actually does, and how they do it. Stereotypical representations of HR personnel â€˜letting goâ€™ of staff during hard times also doesnâ€™t help in doing away with some of these common preconceived notions.
Let’s have a closer look at the various myths surrounding the HR Department and try to dispel the same:
Hiring and Firing?
Having the wrong idea about the role HR plays in managing the team is surprisingly common within companies where, when asked about what the HR team actually does, employees from other departments will usually come up with a variety of different answers, each one further away from fact! Most employees believe that HR is basically only about hiring people, and of course, firing people. But the fact is that it is much more than that.
Many people think that the HR department is basically another name for admin support. A commonly held belief is that HR staff are in charge of doing administrative duties, and taking care of day to day logistical jobs. This could mean anything from handling official correspondence on a daily basis to planning office parties and meetings! This is one of the most common misconceptions but one that can be easy to dispel.
Cost Cutting Tool?
One of the harder myths to dispel about what HR does is that it is purely a cost cutting tool. Many employees believe that the job of HR is to find ways to optimize a smaller number of employees and basically to manage cost. The fact, of course, is that HR is all about managing the most important investment in any enterprise or company â€“ the people that work in it.
So What is HR About?
HR is about understanding the overall culture and the work ethos of the company â€“ and then using this understanding, professional skills, and management tools to find the best talent for specific job roles. Finding the best talent does not only mean finding someone that is best qualified â€“ but finding people with the right assets, as well as the right mind set and attitude to fit into the work culture and become part of the team.
Helping Talent to Excel
But the role of HR doesnâ€™t just end with effective recruitment. Human Resource Management is more than simply hiring and firing. Once the right talent has been found, good HR also involves equipping the talent with the right tools to excel in their job. HR management is therefore sort of like curating the right human resource to sustain the companyâ€™s work ethic and culture, and in doing so, to push the companyâ€™s overall performance in an upward direction.
The HR Myth Dispelled
There are various myths about HR and what it actually entails. Many employees are not fully aware of the role HR plays in recruitment, management as well as regular training and enabling of the team. If used correctly, HR management can have a huge impact on the performance of an enterprise. But more people must recognize the usefulness of HR management tools. Human Resources are by far the most valuable and the most important investment that a company can ever make. HR plays the role of managing this investment, optimizing it, and guaranteeing a positive return on it.
Richard McMunn is the founder of How2become.com, the UK’s leading training and recruitment website for public sector careers. The focus is on providing applicants with the knowledge they need to prepare for and pass selection processes for careers in the police, fire service and ambulance service . The website currently offers over 150 different titles. You can also find How2become on Facebook.