Well, is it??
A company needs human resources (people, talent, etc.) to survive. It does not, necessarily, need Human Resources (the department). The challenge for HR, then, is to become the real expert and leader in those things positively impacting the organization’s human capital — creating value, improving productivity, increasing returns, etc.
If HR’s sole claim to fame is compliance, they’ll generally be seen as a barrier, and can be replaced by a $50 CD. Equally, if they simply act as a broker of others’ efforts (vendors, consultants, outsourcers, etc.), this adds minimal value.
Much of HR is “blocking and tackling.” Decidedly UN-strategic. It still must be done — the question, then, is who to do it, and how, to best serve the organization?
The real value — in my opinion — that HR leaders can provide is melding human resource efforts of the organization with that organization’s plans, goals, and objectives. Things like:
** Real talent management
** Leadership development (all levels)
** Planning (functional &/or corporate)
** Culture maintenance/exploitation
** Successful change leadership & implementation
** Organizational development & design
Not all of these are applicable, all the time, with all organizations. SOME, however, ARE applicable ALL the time to ALL companies.Not all HR leadership roles require these specific, personal skills, either. Some require being AWARE of the NEED for the skills, and leading the implementation via other means.
The key, of course, is providing value that OTHERS can see; not simply doing what some may think is the “HR thing to do…”
But that’s just me…