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Things to know before you start a career in HR

Before now, the role of human resources was seen primarily as that of a ‘paper pusher’. HR professionals kept employee files and records, they fielded occasional employee dissatisfaction and complaints, and they signed off on employment and termination of employment. Today however, HR departments play an essential role in the long-term development strategy of a business.

As much as the roles of HR vary, the primary task of the department is to maximize the output of employees. Below are a couple of positions that can help you get best results from employees.

Fully understand the ‘human’ side of human resources

Beyond complying with policies, HR professionals must resonate with the human aspect of HR. This is the part that requires them to understand how to read souls and emotions, understand various personalities, and put people in positions where they are best suited to perform. When you develop good relationships with the business leaders and the employees, you get to understand what the leadership wants and the issues the employees face while trying to achieve the goal of the leadership. By this, you get to create a system whereby everybody works in synergy towards actualization of the company’s objectives.

Think about your legacy

The best HR leaders have a burning desire to positively impact lives. If you’re keen on impacting lives, you must realize that the lives of your employees are one of those you’re aiming to touch. Hence, having empathy and truly caring about your employees should be your legacy. 

Be strategic and credible

As an HR personnel, you will have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of employees. A lot of the organization’s growth would depend on you. Hence, you should build your credibility and strategy such that you’re positioned as a partner to the leadership of the organization. You should also endeavour to have widespread knowledge about your industry.

Technology

If you aspire to pursue a career in HR, it is essential for you to be technology savvy. Forever gone are the days when everything was done manually. As an HR, you must be privy to information about trendy technology tools that can help make your work easier. For instance, OutsourceHR is an HR software that helps to ease the load of work that HR people face. 

With the click of a button, a recruiter can schedule an invite with thousands of employees on OutsourceHR. Beyond recruitment, OutsourceHR has a module for onboarding new staff in your organization. As though those aren’t enough, the software boasts of the capacity to cater for staff management, appraisal, leave management, payroll and lots more. In short, OutsourceHR helps to manage your staff right from the process of recruitment; up till the point of disengagement.

Trust and respect are key

In every interaction you have with people, you are either building up your level of trust and respect, or you’re tearing it down. As an HR person, you must be able to earn the trust and respect of the leadership, management and staff of your organization. Only by that will you appear as a helpful partner. Then, you can have a positive impact within the organization and in the lives of its employees.

Understand the realities of the position

The position of HR is an administrative position, and sometimes has to do with transactions. However, employees should not visit the office of the HR every day. If they do, then the HR personnel are not doing their job as they should. The HR should put structures in place to ensure that employees are motivated and hence, productive.

Take advantage of every opportunity you have to develop your career

To become a good HR, you should have a mentor or a coach who is an authority in the field of human resources. You should also aspire to join professional bodies to help increase your network. Within these bodies, you would also get to learn the ethics and best practices of your job. 

Find your avenue

There are a wide range of responsibilities that are expected of HR personnel, depending on the organization. In some organizations, HR responsibilities are split among people within the department. In another organization however, one person might have to wear many hats and carry out various responsibilities. Hence, you should research the many different areas of HR – like payroll, onboarding, recruitment, employee relations and so on – and see which suits you best. You should have a clear understanding of the various job roles before deciding which one to settle for.

Make sure you’re there for the right reasons

The driving force behind pursuing a career in HR should be because you have a passion for helping people. While a couple of roles fall under the umbrella of HR, the ultimate drive should be the desire to work with others, while helping them achieve their goals as well. Helping others achieve their goals is the core of every HR job. Therefore, if you don’t feel a sense of satisfaction by helping others, then HR is probably not your space.

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