Leveraging “HR” for a Strategic Advantage

By Michael J. Dobert, S.P.H.R. SHRM-SCP –

Human Resources, “HR,” plays many critical roles in an organization including from a compliance perspective, although “HR” also has an opportunity to build further as a strategic partner. HR must be in alignment with an organization’s strategic direction – “HR” must be a true “business partner,” meaning HR must work in a way that supports the organization’s goals and strategic objectives.

While many organizations ensure a Sales and Marketing Strategy, Financial Strategy and/or an Operational Strategy, they should also look to “HR” for a Human Capital Strategy (HCS) identifying specific actionable and measurable plans related to talent acquisition (attracting and onboarding the best possible talent), talent development and readiness, including succession planning at all levels optimizing the talent depth and total rewards. Total rewards should include compensation design driving organizational goals and outcomes, but it is also important to evaluate other incentives which may motivate employees, such as additional Paid Time Off (PTO). One trend is additional PTO for the specific purpose of community volunteering, such as at a local non-profit. This is a particular trend with millennials and other young professionals interested in giving back to their community.

Another strategic consideration organizations have is the opportunity to leverage work space design. I’ve seen many clients and organizations rethink the work space to promote creativity and collaboration. With millennials comprising the majority of our workforce by 2025, as well as the leading edge of Gen Z “Digital Natives” becoming another source of great talent, organizations may find that the traditional cubical and chair or individual offices may not be the most productive design.

Educators are doing a tremendous job to prepare our students optimizing their talent. This comes in part through rethinking the traditional learning environment to promote the same creativity and collaboration organizations are looking to optimize in their talent. The question may be:  Is your organization aligned with the same talent optimizing environment as educators are preparing the next generation of our workforce?

Fort Bend continues to be the destination supporting technology and innovation with an overall favorable business environment through its workforce readiness, talent availability, economic development and overall quality of life with a strength in its diversity.   In an area rich in diversity, it is important for organizations to leverage that strength creating diverse teams with inclusionary practices. Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) programs must be well designed with strategic objectives to include, but not limited to:

Developing Organizational Awareness and Assessment

Strategic Planning – Identifying Strategic Objectives   

Developing, Implement and Executing D&I Programs  

ROI: Measuring for Organizational Outcomes

Organizations such as the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce are bringing focus and value to the business community with its ongoing Diversity Action Team providing a resource as advocates for business, a benefit to not only businesses but to potential employees as well.

Michael J. Dobert, S.P.H.R. SHRM-SCP is the owner/principal of HR in Alignment, LLC and has over 25 years of Human Resource and Business Strategy experience.  Dobert is a frequent guest lecturer for the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce, and he supports the community serving on non-profit boards.