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How we recruit for HR Projects


In this episode we are going to talk about how we recruit for HR Projects.

Greetings! In this video we are going to talk about some the HR projects that we have and how we handle them because HR is a unique discipline to recruit for. But first, for those of you who have seen many of these videos, you’ll notice I am standing somewhere different.  We thought it might be a good idea to get our awards in the video, so you see we actually have them. There are more on the other wall, but we figured we’d limit it to this. So, thanks for that.

Now let’s get to our topic at hand: Human Resources. About 20% of our projects are for human resources people. Gosh, I’ve been going through human resources projects and working on them since it was a personnel department, sometimes it was a labor relations department.

Human Resources started to appear maybe about 10 or 15 years ago. Now we start to see Talent Development and other phrases. People culture is being used all the time as well. HR projects are challenging, especially the kind we get, because most of our clients are small and midsized companies, maybe up to 2,000 people.

In those kind of companies, unlike large fortune 500 companies, in our kind of client base, HR sometimes means different things in different companies. It could be a very influential department where the VP of HR or the CHRO is at the highest level. It could be a secondary function that is there for a specific purpose. And the first thing we need to do in these kinds of projects is to dive in and understand what the client actually wants from the HR function. What kind of department do they want it to be? How large do they want it to be? That’s important, and we will talk about that later. How much of a strategic focus do they want it to be and how much of a tactical focus do they want it to be?

So that’s an important distinction and is certainly not just a title match. Then we have to go to our candidates and understand their comfort zone. If they’ve had benefits for example in their portfolio, have they managed a benefits department? Or have they managed external benefit providers? Those are 2 very different things. If they want a department and our client only wants them to manage an outside provider and doesn’t want to build a big internal team. Well, that’s a mismatch and we’ve really go to understand that. The same thing with talent acquisition, same thing with wage and salary.

We’ve also got to understand the cultural aspect too. Because at its core, HR is about humans, that’s why the H is there. So, it is a function that is more influential within the organization than other functions. Accounting is defined, engineering is defined, operations is defined.

HR generally is there to influence people, not to command people. Your ability to influence people depends upon two things. How good are you at that? And how good are you at that for the type of population you will be influencing and that’s the culture.

If you have company A who’s culture is very, very confrontational. Where they like having arguments and may the person that has the best idea win. Then if you go into it trying to influence people in a softer way, you’ll get nowhere.  So, they need an HR function that is more dynamic and candidly is more in your face.

However, Company B may be more consensual and for them you need an HR practitioner who’s got the ability to come up to people to engage them in a personal way, less confrontational. So, not only do we need to know our client’s culture, we have to know the culture that the candidate comes from. Because a successful candidate at a confrontational firm will probably do horribly at a consensual client and vice versa.

So, when we approach our HR projects, it’s very holistic. It involves a lot of exploration on our part that is independent of the candidate. For our HR projects we are often reaching out to people that maybe have worked at a company where the candidate has worked and ask them about the culture there. We do a lot more references on our HR projects than we do on the others because it’s such subjective function that requires a lot more explanation

So, that’s a quick overview. If you are interested in engaging us for an HR project, I would urge you to go to the website and you’ll learn a lot more from that. Hopefully, this has opened the door for you and given you an idea of how we approach things.

Thanks again and don’t forget our awards. Have a nice day.

Music by Ema Grace | “Check Them In” http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Ema_Grace/~/Check_Them_In
Creative Commons Attribution License — Changed only to shorten for need.

The right resume on the right desk at the right time.