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While some of their work may be less visible than others, the human resources manager is a fundamental element of a company. The truth is that a company only works well  if it manages to hire the right people. This means, not only the people who have the right skills and competencies, but also that possess the social and moral qualities to be a supportive, helpful and enthusiastic member of the team. But it doesn’t stop there. Even if a company managed to hire the perfect employee, it’s extremely important to make sure that they are continuously supported to do their best work. The HR manager must therefore consider the workplace, the kind of projects he/she is given to work on, fellow employees, and so on. In other words, without a good HR manager and a positive culture, it’s really difficult for a company to perform efficiently and obtain the right results. So what does a good HR manager do?

Finding and hiring the right people

This is the first thing that comes to mind when one thinks of a HR manager. To accomplish this extremely important task the HR manager must be up-to-date on the most recent techniques and tools, which involves a great deal of automated technologies.  Nowadays HR processes are highly digital based. The digital and tech aspect is so important in the work of today’s HR managers that there are now dedicated courses, like the Digital HR Master, to allow people already working in this field to acquire the core competencies they may lack.

Providing career growth and continuous education 

Once the right person has been found it’s crucial not to lose them due to the lack of support, benefits or incentives. One of the most important parts of anyone's role is the perception that there is space to grow inside the company. The HR manager must think of personalised but defined pathways for each individual that give them a perspective on a possible career path. The HR manager must also help employees to acquire skills and competencies they need through continuous opportunities for education and training.

Payrolling and monitoring

This is the less fascinating part of the work of a HR manager, but it’s one of the most important tasks. Each employee must of course be paid according to the contract they signed but also encouraged with other benefits or bonuses, something which is connected to performance and the impact of the employee’s work. This last point should not be interpreted in a disciplinary way but on the contrary as a means to support employees through a process of continuous improvement. Bonuses and rewards for reaching goals can help employees feel connected to the value they are bringing to the organisation. 

Building the HR department

Of course - unless we are speaking of a truly small company - an HR manager cannot accomplish all the above tasks alone. So one of the main responsibilities is building a solid HR department with the right expertise.  The HR department is in charge of managing the entire employee lifecycle (hiring, onboarding, training, monitoring, firing, administering benefits) so if it does not work properly it can be damaging to the entire company. It’s up to HR to build the company’s culture. If a HR department is “toxic” and not supportive, it’s likely that this ethos will filter down to the employees. So, in an ideal world the HR manager should build a HR department which is supportive and truly cares about the well being of the employees, because this attitude is going to reflect on the entire company. 

Taking care of the workplace

Last but not least, the HR manager (and the HR department) should oversee all aspects of the workplace ensuring that the environment is safe, that the office is well equipped and that it is a comfortable place to meet and work. In other words, HR should provide the employees with an environment that facilitates and encourages high quality work and a positive team spirit.
Article updated on: 09 August 2023
Talent Garden
Written by
Talent Garden, Digital Skills Academy

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