Strategic HR a bottom-line must (Editorial)

By John Hobel
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/12/2001

Too often, the HR profession finds itself having to justify a place in the executive suite. Unfortunately, the advantage of having a skilled HR professional capable of redesigning organizations and effectively deploying personnel as needed is overlooked by many CEOs and business leaders.

Advice for HR practitioners looking to join the senior team usually focuses on the ability to show how HR has a bottom-line impact. This aspect of selling HR is relatively straightforward, involving demonstrating the measurable costs of replacing employees lost because of workplace issues that could have been solved through better HR policies. Poor retention means incurring recruitment and training and development costs for new hires, and lost productivity when experienced staff leave. And then there's the high cost of inattention to healthy-workplace issues that could have been addressed through strong HR programs. But strategic HR is about more than measurable operational efficiencies.

It's about getting the biggest bang for your labour buck, and without HR at the executive table, overcoming barries to organizational effectiveness is more difficult.