Five tips to implement an HR transformation plan

CHIEF OF STAFF FIVE: It’s often said that the role of HR has transformed in 2022, as these key professionals now have to juggle a wider array of responsibilities.

Technology is a bigger component in HR today than ever before, requiring HR professionals to know at least a little bit about digitisation, analytics, and how to streamline interactions.

Besides the technological aspects of the job, HR leaders are also responsible for managing the skills shortage, devising new talent management and retention strategies, and rethinking the employee value proposition.

The dramatic transformation nevertheless requires a dramatic, but thoughtful implementation strategy.

1. Come up with a transformation plan

Failure to plan is planning to fail. For any transformation plan to succeed, planning must remain an essential first step. HR professionals must have goals in mind for their department, and these will help serve the business’ overall purpose.

It is a good idea to check in with leaders from different departments to understand the biggest challenges in the way of them achieving their goals for the business. Success metrics must be devised, and stakeholders for each step of the way must be considered.

Each transformation plan must also be accompanied by a step-by-step guide throughout the process, including the tools, processes and stakeholder action necessary to make that happen.

HR leaders must then ensure that each stakeholder, be they executives or leaders in other departments, is given a thorough understanding of what is going to happen during the transformation.

2. Get leaders involved

Any change in the HR’s role won’t just impact the people, it may also touch on a variety of business functions. Therefore, leaders across the board must sign off on any changes to ensure a smooth transition, from C-suite members to team leads.

In fact, higher ups should be included and encouraged to share their ideas and feedback from the start. If their priorities and concerns are taken into consideration from the get go, they will welcome the upcoming changes.

3. Prioritise people

People are at the core of any successful HR undertaking and it is no different when it comes to HR transformation. Without the support of the employees in a workplace, any transformation effort is doomed to fail.

Therefore, it’s important to take an employee-centric approach to get them comfortable with the new role HR is going to play. People are naturally resistant to change, so it’s important to get their input before going about any major changes.

Ensure that employees have an opportunity to provide their input, address their concerns, and seek feedback. Be deliberate about building a plan that provides communication and support throughout the transition, and ensure they know what is coming next.

4. Choose the right technology vendors

While it may be tempting to go for the most popular or the most cost-effective option when it comes to automation, the goal should not be about digitisation, but rather creating a more streamlined organisation.

An honest, thorough deep-dive of current pain points is essential to understanding the issues in the company that can be smoothed with technology. Equipped with a baseline, HR is better equipped to consider which software will be crucial for the approach selected.

This will help keep service fees low, while making way for desired add-ons, as these factors can lead to the company paying more than it bargained for. Some technology solutions to consider are those that will automate and streamline manual data processes, solutions that help reduce time to hire to nearly zero, and the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to create better experiences for prospective hires to employees alike.

5. Make data-driven decisions

HR departments should already have a wealth of people data such as demographics, skills, project outcome, workforce training, pulse surveys, performance ratings, etc. Combining existing data with other business data, HR leaders can identify opportunities for transformation that can create the best impact for the huge undertaking that is underway.

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