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When Business Leaders Loathe HR...

HR Lori commented on an article from Workforce Management last week that questioned the need for HR Generalists within organizations - see the entire article here.   In reading it, I'm reminded of southern redneck comedian Jeff Foxworthy's tag line, altered to say "If you <insert decades old transactional HR practice>, you might be a Personnel Administrator" (rather than a HR Professional).  From the article:

"Why do we still have HR generalists? I have met thousands of them in both large and small corporations and unfortunately have found most to be little more than hand-holding, silo-building, no-change agents who serve as barriers to HR having a measurable business impact.  Many generalists are really just highly paid HR assistants who help general managers fill out forms, get through the performance appraisal process and handle troublesome people issues (something that should be done by the managers themselves)."Foxworthy2

That, my friends, is an old fashion smackdown from someone who has never been served by a progressive Human Capital/HR professional.  And you know what?  He's right, in that the things he has experienced generally don't add value.  If you haven't sourced out to technology the transactional side of the business (or at least gotten into the planning stages of doing that), you run the risk of being perceived like this.   In the spirit of Jeff Foxworthy and contrasting progressive/non-progressive HR services, I offer up the following:

"If you make everyone in your organization come through you to get that personnel action form, you might be a non-value added Personnel Administrator" 

"If you think the primary role of HR in Performance Management is to report upcoming Review Dates, you might be a non-value added Personnel Administrator"

"If you prefer not to track the metrics that are available to HR shops like Turnover, Time To Fill, Cost Per Fill, Loaded Benefit Cost, etc., you might be a non-value added Personnel Administrator"

The bottom line?  Business leaders are always watching, so manage what you spend your time on accordingly and above and beyond all else - don't try to gate/control things that don't matter or add value...   


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