Officially published in DAWN Advertiser written by Zeeshan Lakhpaty
Globally, HR has expanded its scope to include a host of functions, including performance management, leadership development, employee engagement, talent management, succession planning and employee retention.
However, for the most part, HR departments in Pakistan have been unable to make a substantial impact in the above-mentioned areas and are still viewed as departments that primarily deal with an organisation’s administrative functions such as payroll.
To remedy this perception, here are four areas HR practitioners in Pakistan should focus on.
1. Understand and communicate. To add value to their functions (such as hiring competent talent), HR practitioners must stay in regular contact with top management, line managers and employees in order to understand their requirements. To do so effectively, HR managers should be aware of the organisation’s business, products, revenue, sales statistics, competitors, market share and strategies.
2. Champion employee issues. One of the most important roles of HR is to be accessible and act as service providers for employees. Therefore, HR personnel should not be confined to their workspace and must spend time with employees to remain in touch with their needs and grievances. Only then can HR ‘champion’ employee rights, and be in a position to customise company policies and procedures to facilitate and ensure employee productivity in the best possible way.
3. Partner with line managers. There is a famous saying that “every line manager is an HR manager”. Therefore, it is very important for HR to train line managers in acquiring critical skills that can enable them to retain talent, develop employees, appraise performances, prepare successors and provide a good working environment.
4. Adopt technology. To perform at optimal levels, HR personnel must be tech-savvy. Being able to effectively use human resource information systems and software such as Workday and PeopleFluent to carry out day to day functions is a good way to start.
– Zeeshan Lakhpaty
The writer is a professional corporate trainer. zeeshan@
First published in the Careers Section of The DAWN National Weekend