Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Guest Post: Perceptions of HR

Author: Monika Manchanda

Thanks for the honor of asking me to write a guest post. It’s a great feeling and whatever else I wanted to say here…Prateek stole it from me! I am telling you guys it’s like he read my thoughts and then put them in the introduction to this post. Just kidding…

Let me get down to the business of writing the post.


When I started to write a guest post for an HR blog my first thought of was does the term HR mean to a person in any organization. If you run a poll in an organization, 80% of them consider staffing or recruitment as the HR’s primary function. This isn’t what I think. I personally think staffing or recruitment should only be a part of HR.

Off course, every working person’s bible - Wiki has to say about HR:


Human resources is a term used to refer to how employees are managed by organizations”

What role does HR play during an employee’s tenure with his/ her organization? I think the real HR work begins after a person is hired. Day to day activities like helping them settle down on the first day, legal formalities taken care of and introductions to the team made are things that a newly inducted employee looks forward too. They say first impressions count! The HR team must be able to handle the non technical trainings and most importantly handle the all important ‘Career Development’ aspect of an employee’s future in the company. According to me, the HR person must be able to gauge and understand a new employee’s goals’ and aspirations. They must be able to seamless integrate the candidate’s plans and the company’s plans. Over time a manager will have a clearer view of a person’s capability and determine their future goals within the organization but, the hope must be kick-started by a staffing expert.

Unfortunately, in reality a person sees the HR twice – the day we join a company and during the appraisal period. It always helps having a friend in the HR department! Or so it seems.

In most of the organizations I have worked in a career spanning over 9 years, I have noticed that all of them have only taken the hiring aspect of HR seriously. This creates a negative attitude towards HR in most of the employee’s minds; which is not necessarily true. However, one of my previous employers did a brilliant job in segregating and defining the various functions of HR. To say that it was helpful would be an understatement.

So, I will conclude this post with a simple expectation. I believe HR is the only section in an organization which has the capability of being transparent and communicable to an employee even before joining, to the day we leave a company. They are the face of a company.

About the Author:

Monika is a technology professional with over 9 years of work experience in the software industry. She has currently taken a break from corporate life and is enjoying time with her son, gardening, traveling and writing.

6 comments:

mindspace said...

Hey Monika!
I agree..
Hiring is only a small part of what HR does overall but still its one of the most critical activities that is/should be done by both business and HR, hand in hand. Once the right kind of hiring has been done, HR touches an employees life at so many points. I believe "being available", "giving the right kind of information" and being people's person is what makes an HR professional a great friend for any employee.. But besides that HR can be a great business partner and provide great value in a company's growth and success.. Companies where HR is considered more than just a support function and is involved at business level in the appropriate way eventually goes a long way.
I love being an HR person.. when employees sent me 'thank you' card, I accepted them as my best reward!
Enjoyed ur post and went down the memory lanes for even I have not been working for a year now, like you..

umsreflections said...

WOW, Brilliantly written, Monu. Loved the way, you've defined HR and related roles. :)

Swaram said...

Well said Monika ..HR can create a better picture about themselves in the minds of the people!

'I think the real HR work begins after a person is hired.' So true! Nw if only they thought so too!

Meira said...

True. Though HR's come a long way, from being 'salary generators' and 'Admin people' to 'Human Capital Management'. It is encouraging to see that most companies in India have started taking HR seriously. Even PSUs and Govt. organizations. (I'm into HR Consulting and lot of our clients are PSUs!).
The next challenge for HR? Getting into the boardroom. Very few HR peoplpe make it to Top Management.

Vidooshak said...

Great post, Monika!

Would like to see your host comment on these thoughts, since he is a pucca HR guy himself. Luckily, he belongs to the utopian HR department you've asked for :-)

@Meira, excellent point about HR not making it to boardrooms. That's the tragedy of HR: they are the "face of the company" but their hands and feet are often tied up.

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