Human Resources

Putting the human back into HR

14 December 2011

Many of the traditional roles of Human Resources are becoming automated or ‘self-serviced ‘and as this happens many HR managers in Dubai are seeing a shift in their roles from administrative to a more strategic one. Successful companies recognise that HR professionals have a very relevant role to play in today’s knowledge economy as stewards of a business’s most important asset- their human potential. The best HR talent in the region will (if they already aren’t) be positioning themselves as talent evaluators/analysers, performance coaches and linking their departments firmly to organisational strategy. Challenges in today’s fast paced market mean that companies have to innovate and respond quickly to change in order to be sustainable. Building employee competence, to achieve organisational objectives is a mainstay of competitive advantage and HR has a primary role in championing the fulfilment of a company’s human assets.

No longer reactive to staff issues they must proactively make sure they understand the links between employee motivation and organisational performance. A key factor in employee motivation is development of talent through informal and formal training, providing opportunities for cross-training in other roles, challenging employees with new responsibilities and creating a culture of learning within the organisation. While ensuring that there is access and funding to  industry specific training and soft skills, 21st century imperatives in training such as building creativity and technological skills cannot be ignored. Mentoring, coaching or team teaching are possible in-house solutions.HR is also responsible for ensuring this training is followed up with opportunities to practice and that it is quantitatively evaluated for effectiveness. Although the choice of training is aligned to company strategy, employees that can select their own developmental direction embrace the opportunity to become self-managers and are  more engaged, active learners – an asset for any company.

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