HR Processes: Description and Management
The clear end-to-end HR Processes are the foundation of the modern HR Management in the organization. Each modern HR Organization does not structure itself around people in the function; it structures itself around HR Processes and around the approved HR Model that acts as a decision-making tool putting the process into a correct function within Human Resources.
The proper design of Human Resources is not based on processes to be executed, but the story starts with the business vision and the HR Strategy. Each plan sets priorities and key goals for the team to be attained. The strategy of Human Resources has the same purpose. The management team translates strategic priorities into actionable pieces and structures the team the way that allows smooth and non-stressful achievement of all priorities in the right order. Still, no HR Processes mentioned. That is why the processes always follow the strategy and model.
The HR Model (see HR Essentials for details) sets the basic roles and responsibilities in the HR Organization. It defines overall responsibilities of Human Resources and assigns them to functional areas within the function. Many HR Departments operate without the HR Model, and they suffer from many process inconsistencies they cannot repair. Each process oriented HR Function has to start with the clear definition of the operating model that is based on the underlying strategy of Human Resources.
Most HR Organizations structure HR Processes into following functional areas:
- Recruitment and Staffing;
- Talent Development;
- Organization Design;
- Compensation and Benefits;
- Performance Management;
- Training and Development;
- Leadership Development.
However, the HR Processes are not isolated in functional areas. Majority of HR Processes are multifunctional. They start in one functional area and employees from other functions in HR contribute. This makes the HR Process Management critical for the success of the HR Organization.
Each HR Management team needs to start with high-level descriptions of processes within Human Resources. They need to assign critical HR processes to the HR Model. They have to appoint one manager who is always accountable for outcomes. They should also assign responsible job positions and other jobs who can contribute with inputs. They should identify the client of the process. If there is no client, there should be no process.
Each process requires a proper set of KPIs and measures. The team has to understand how process works and what is the current performance level. Just with KPIs defined the team can identify weak processes in Human Resources. Moreover, the team can report improvements into the organization. Employees need to see real data and real outcomes; otherwise they will perceive that Human Resources Department is the poor function in the organization.
The good design of processes makes data, and process flows smooth inside Human Resources. The proper definition of HR processes allows to make job roles and responsibilities clear to employees. They know how the data flow through the function and what outcomes they can expect. They can find what inputs they can use and what is the format of input data. It makes a job design in HR simple and understandable. Without a clear job design, it is difficult to draw the career path in HR.
The modern Human Resources Management depends on strong functional process management of different HR processes. No HR runs just one process at time. It runs many processes simultaneously, and the HR Management has to choose right priorities at the moment. The team has to pick priorities from the underlying HR Model, because it should always identify the process that has to be promoted into the company.
The HR Processes can just work smoothly and efficiently if the HR model and HR strategy set the precise rules for employees in Human Resources. We always forget to create a simple foundation, and we try to fix individual processes. Before designing processes we have to design, approve and communicate our strategy and model.