Ever wonder just what it is a Human Resources (HR) Manager or Specialist does? Well, maybe your haven’t, but even so understanding the job better can help your business run more smoothly in a number of ways. Learning to manage HR functions more professionally can make the whole process of hiring, firing, supervising and compensating employees more efficient.
According to the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, the job of an HR specialist s to “recruit, screen, interview, and place workers.” Typically, such employees (whether on an administrative, financial, management or other business level) also oversee the company’s relations with employees, coordinate and implement employee training, and manage benefits and payroll.
In many small companies, the HR “specialist” is often the administrative assistant or office manager who processes time sheets, maintains insurance records and tracks employee leave. While a degree isn’t necessary for such positions, it’s always helpful that the HR representative have at least a working knowledge of human resources practices.
There are a myriad of available courses online that provide generalized knowledge and background training for those with little or no experience in the industry. eCourses on benefits management, dealing with employees, performance evaluation and more will increase the confidence of anyone who is placed in the position of managing HR as only a part of their overall job description.
An important aspect of managing HR like a professional is looking at the bigger picture of the HR function in the company. Not only are pay rates, paid leave and insurance policies important, but there are many other aspects of human resources management that can positively, or negatively, affect a company.
Consider employee diversity, for instance. Diversifying your team brings a broader knowledge base to the company. Hiring folks with different skillsets and different backgrounds is a plus. Too often, however, the topic of diversity is never broached in small companies, let alone by an HR rep whose “real” job is to manage the office or support the sales staff. Understanding and applying some of the principles of diversification can be helpful and effective.
There are a number of other aspects of HR management that are overlooked by someone who serves only as a part-time HR rep because there is no one else available to do the job. Such things as added benefits, employee perks, improved performance training and more are often overlooked by employees whose HR responsibilities are only part of their job function.
Recognizing this tendency allows managers, and the HR representatives themselves, to dedicate more time to learning the position more fully. And it can help them build upon their limited talents to become more professional HR managers. Even if the job title will never match the task of managing the company’s most valuable asset to their human resources.