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Talent Management

5 Things Every Great HR Manager Knows

June 15, 2017
5 min read
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Performance Management, Supercharged


This article on HR Leadership was originally published in June 2017. All relevant statistics and copy were updated as of December 2020. 

An HR manager is hired to be a leader in a department responsible for both the organization and the employees in it. This is a big responsibility with several moving parts, but an efficient HR manager can perform multiple roles to fill the gaps. How do HR pros who seem to “do it all” manage everything without skipping a beat? They know these crucial things:

Clear Communication

86% of employees and executives cite a lack of collaboration or ineffective communication for workplace failures. HR managers know communication with employees, other departments, key stakeholders, and execs is one of the most important aspects of keeping everything running smoothly.

74% of employees have the feeling they are missing out on company news due to a lack of #communication in their organization. @ClearCompany breaks down the need for accountability while working #remotely:

Collaborating with each department head individually to learn what their needs are and what they expect from HR is one of the best ways to prevent workplace failures. Keeping lines of communication open is the best way to get HR ideas and practices accepted and implemented in your organization. HR Managers who know this are often proactive in their communication, exploring processes, teams, and departments before problems arise.

HR managers can also teach other leaders more effective communication strategies through collaboration. 74% of employees have the feeling they are missing out on company news due to a lack of communication in their organization. The simple act of opening up those lines of communication and creating a central space where people can discuss issues is the first step.

Clear Thinking

Successful HR managers think strategically which helps lead their own department and align company goals with those of the teams, departments, and individuals they serve. This is done by ensuring employees at all levels know their part of the big picture the company is trying to achieve. In fact, employees who say their organizational values are “known and understood” are 51 times more likely to be fully engaged.

Strategic, clear thinking is much simpler to do when everyone knows what the goals are throughout the organization. When a great HR Manager creates a plan of action, he or she can easily point to the goals it helps to achieve and the rest of the company can get behind it. The first step is articulating company goals and breaking them down through department, team, and finally, individual.

Clear Trust

Many employees come to HR managers when they’re having a problem, whether with their own manager, someone on their team, or something personal. Because HR touches every department in the company, there is inherent trust in the position. It’s important to let employees know they can feel comfortable addressing these issues with HR managers in order to get them resolved. Without trustworthy HR managers, individuals at an organization may never take action to get issues cleared up and could start looking elsewhere for employment.

#DYK that employee turnover can cost 1.5-2x the annual salary of an employee? @ClearCompany highlights what every great #HRLeader needs to know to retain their top talent:

Trust is something great HR managers cultivate because if they don’t, things like harassment, unequal pay, and workplace bullying may go unreported, take root and destroy company culture. The first step is ensuring you have a solid confidentiality clause that your employees can access. Great HR managers also create a process whereby they process and then resolve complaints. A digital performance management and compliance system can help make this even easier.

Clear Motivation

40% of American workers said they would be motivated to work harder if their efforts were more frequently recognized. HR managers know encouraging managers to recognize employees regularly can keep them engaged and working towards organizational goals as a whole. Studies have estimated the cost of losing an employee can range from tens of thousands of dollars to 1.5-2x their annual salary. This is a hefty amount for an organization to spare on a replacement if the employee could have potentially stayed and progressed with the company with a little bit of recognition.

When HR Managers understand recognition as a means to motivating the team, they can train other managers in how to approach setting up their own recognition and reward systems. It’s a small investment for a big payoff! The first step is identifying individual competencies and motivators for the individuals on your team.

Clear Development

When it comes to top non-financial motivators, many employees are highly interested in career development opportunities. Making career development a top priority as an organization is a win-win for both the employer and the employees. Employers get the chance to keep top performers around all while helping them further their careers. Great HR managers understand this because it’s something they want in their own careers.

Answering the question ‘What’s next for me in this company?” and recognizing when employees are out of alignment with their progress OR have changed career goals is key. The first step to understanding where your employees are and where they want to go is to start measuring Quality of Hire.

While the workforce is constantly changing and companies are always evolving, the priorities of HR managers may rotate. These 5 things may flux in order or importance but should always stay top of mind for any great HR manager. Need help getting your HR department up to speed? See how ClearCompany’s Talent Success University can help you and your organization! To take a tour of our robust Talent Management Platform, reach out to one of our experts to sign up for your free demo.

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