Opinions divided on HR’s progress to the executive suite

HR people must learn language of business to be treated like business partners
By David Brown
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 09/13/2004

For years now HR professionals have heard the call: Become more business savvy or risk becoming irrelevant. So how is it going? Depends on who you ask.

Some, recalling either personal successes or the successes of professional acquaintances, see great strides. HR is at the table and making important contributions to the bottom line. In some cases the CEO, CFO and COO recognize the importance of good human resources management and call the HR leader to the table — easy victory for HR.

For others, the struggle continues. Human resources departments are doing transactional work and are not a strategic factor. HR is still on the wrong side of the door waiting to prove its value to skeptics who depend on the function only to make sure employees are paid every two weeks.