Monday, October 20, 2008

Value MATTERS Now More Than Ever

You can't turn on the TV or pick up the news paper without hearing more and more bad news. It is enough to make you want to jump out a window. Because companies are under intense scrutiny due to pressures on revenues and expenses, VALUE has to be the new criteria for evaluating almost everything.

1. What is the value the customer receives?

2. What is the value a particular vendor brings?

3. What is the value of this program or process to our bottom line?

4. What value does one employee have versus another?

5. How do we increase our brand value?

HR has been trying to defend its position by trying to prove value for many years now. I believe we have to quit trying and start adding value immediately. With job losses being reported on a daily basis, those that do not add value will be on the downsized list.

How can you tell if HR is adding value? A good first step is to complete an HR audit (see October 13th post). Another good way is to ask your internal customers. By conducting an HR Effectiveness Survey, you can uncover how you are performing in certain areas and determine what is important to your customer. For example, if customers score you high on benefits administration but talent management a low scorer, is what is most important to them, what do you do? Remember value is not determined by the provider but by the receiver. So, if your customer values talent management, you need to get busy focusing on delivering superior talent not benefits administration.

That sounds easier said than done, because HR in reality has to make sure both benefits and talent are handled in an effective and efficient way. By understanding where HR can impact the bottom line, the decision on what to focus on internally is easier. Benefits administration is one area that is very easy to outsource and many times more cost effective. (another opportunity to add value if costs are reduced).

ACTION ITEM: Conduct an HR audit and an HR Effectiveness Survey

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