HR: projects

What do we mean by an HR project?

Typically, a discrete piece of work, with a start date and a finish date, for which an HR team lacks either the time or the confidence to do themselves.

And what exactly does that mean in practice?

Here are some recent examples (no client names, since we respect client confidentiality agreements for all work undertaken on a consultancy basis, but references available on request):

Performance management: This is a particularly strong area for us and a number of organisations have enlisted our support in reviewing their approach to performance management and making recommendations for improvement. In most cases the organisation has then asked us to train their managers in the new approach.

Competency frameworks: Another strong area for us (Cyrus Cooper had a case study published on the subject) and we have undertaken a number of projects of varying sizes, for organisations varying from a few hundred to several thousand staff. The scale of each project varies enormously, depending on whether we are tasked with the development of a complete framework, or to modify an existing framework in some way, or to put together a relatively basic framework to be used as the foundation of a customised 360° review. For one client we undertook a complete project involving focus groups around values, production of a DVD around the values, development of a competency framework, design of a new performance management system and training for all line managers on the new approach. For another client, we have recently developed a post-acquisition strategy to bring the acquired staff into an existing performance management framework.

Facilitation: Sometimes a helping hand is all that is required. We have facilitated one-day sessions for HR teams, sometimes to help them set a course for improved professionalism and efficiency (often based around our HR team identity day), sometimes to help them develop a new strategy to deal with a particular issue such as wellbeing or change management or stress management.

Benefits: and rewards A highly specialist topic, but then we work with a wide range of specialist associates, so when one of our clients asked if we could help them review their senior management pay and benefits structure we had just the right person for the job.

Safeguarding: Another highly specialist topic, so we were able to help a client recently who had had a safeguarding incident. Our consultant reviewed the incident with them, identified actual and potential failings with their current approach, revised the policy documents, wrote an information poster and held a one-to-one development session with the Safeguarding Officer.

HR policies: There is sometimes a very thin line between training and consultancy and this is where we regularly cross that line. We deliver a lot of training to line managers and staff, ‘rolling out’ various HR policies. This very often involves giving the organisation feedback on the policies before we design and deliver the training. Sometimes, of course, we are asked to look at the policies as a separate project. One such example recently was where an NHS Commissioning Support Unit had inherited a number of legacy policies from a range of NHS Trusts as a result of a reorganisation and needed existing policies to be reviewed and new ones drafted on, for example, retirement, Working Time Directive, gender re-assignment, family leave, dress code, reasonable adjustments for employees with disabilities, etc.

For a no-obligation discussion about whether and how we could help you with an HR issue, please just give us a call on 01582 714280 and we’ll happily put you in touch with a consultant, so that you can discuss it directly with them on a ‘no obligation’ basis.