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HR News

HR in Smaller Organisations

Many owners of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME’s) do not acknowledge the need for HR, which can prove a costly and time-consuming mistake.

Often SME’s do not have the budget to employ an in-house HR resource, so many look to outsourcing HR to professionally qualified companies such as Coppice HR (www.coppicehr.com). An excellent idea, which is backed up by a quote from US business tycoon Steve Wynn:

“Human Resources isn’t a thing we do. It’s the thing that runs our business.”

HR can certainly improve the bottom line of an organisation, but many SMEs do not even realise the minimum legal requirements for paperwork they must have in place. This includes a Statement of Terms of Employment or Contract, a Disciplinary Policy, a Grievance Policy, and a written Health and Safety Policy if they employ five people or more. Similarly, Employee Handbooks would give consistency and stop the inefficient or potentially illegal ‘this is the way we have always done things’ mentality.

Frequently SME’s believe managers can take on the HR role without any training or consistency across the company. This at best leads to confusion, at worst discrimination claims. By sharing HR to managers with direct reports it has an impact on the amount of time or resources to put effective policies in place to deal with staff issues. Let alone deal with holiday entitlement or the risk of employee status mistakes, etc.

It’s an ongoing process to ensure employees are performing well and are motivated. This is particularly important in small businesses without big budgets for salary increases or bonuses. Making sure all the staff are working to the best of their ability has a huge impact on business performance. This can be addressed by making sure job descriptions are up to date, ensuring appraisals are carried out regularly and include meaningful objectives, and making sure that communication with employees is two-way and regular, but who has the time, inclination and ability to do all of these?

This leads on to training and development! Often the individual who is “best” at the skill or area they work in gets a promotion to be a manager. Someone who’s the best at their job might not be the best person to manage a team of people – there are often very different skills and attributes involved. A lack of training can lead to an issue of retaining the best staff. It is a never-ending cycle of expensive and time-consuming events….

If the ability to protect an organisation from the damaging effects of poor HR and make it grow through great HR is what your organisation needs, contact Coppice HR at paul@coppicehr.com or 07814 008478