This is from a person who has been working in HR for over 8 years and the answer is Yes and No.
Can you get it any “clearer”, you may tell me…
Well, the answer is simple.
If we are talking about the HR as a distinct department, about HR as a separate office with a separate team, the answer is NO.
If we are talking about HR as a series of functions, the answer is absolutely YES. Even if we don’t have a person designated for this department only and even if the functions may be split between different people doing other different tasks too or even outsourced to a third party company or consultant, a company no matter how small can’t survive without HR.
Not being able to survive without HR may sound critical and it really is if we consider the various list of tasks connected to HR, tasks that need to be done, no doubt about it. These are roughly listed:
- Recruiting new employees should we have new positions or leavers;
- Organizing trainings for employees – internal or external;
- Promoting the company on the local labor market;
- Creating all the huge amount of employee related paperwork: contracts, certificates, contract changes, contract terminations, clearance forms, various statistics and reports;
- Calculating the employees’ salaries and additional benefits.
The above are only basics HR tasks which happen in all companies no matter how small, but if we consider a bigger company even more critical HR tasks are added to the list:
- Succession planning;
- Competency analysis and developing training plans to improve required competencies;
- Employee performance evaluation;
- Communication – internal (towards employees) and external (towards state institutions or media);
- Employee satisfaction surveys and action plans;
- Salary and payroll analysis, salary surveys, alignment to the market;
- Employee motivation;
- Internal audit;
- HR indicators (attrition, sickness leave, hires, leavers, regretted leavers, training hours, productivity) analysis and improvement plans;
- Client presentations;
- Coordination of health and safety trainings;
- Creation of company policies;
- Risk analysis in the area of people management;
- And many other smaller daily tasks and requests from employees and management…
To sum up, HR is a mediator between the employees, one vital resource of the company, and management. No company can survive without a human resources function, no matter if this is performed by a dedicated team or split between employees dedicated to other functions.