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From the ground up: Secrets to starting an HR department

The human resources field as it exists today is newer than most people realize. Far from simply hiring and benefits, the HR department sets the goals for employment practices and guides the vision and ideals of the company. Some companies, indeed, don’t even have a modern HR department and building one from scratch can seem like a very daunting prospect. Here are the secrets and steps to starting an HR department from the ground up.

Meet with the Manager

The manager of the business will have an expectation of you as you build the new HR department. It is vital to be clear about these expectations and outcomes so that you can effectively create a business plan to move forward.

Learn Systems and Processes

How does your company handle hiring, firing, evaluations, employment practices and benefits without an HR department in place? What works? What doesn’t work? How are workers paid? You are going to have to answer a lot of questions both from management and staff. You need to understand existing policies before you can evaluate how they need to be evolved or changed under the umbrella of a new HR department.

Create an Employee Handbook

Take what you know about current policies and strategies and create a detailed employee handbook outlining how your new HR department will work. This handbook is a vital part of your new HR policies and procedures. It will ensure that you are consistent in your application of rules and regulations and that you are in compliance with all major laws.

Recruit Well

Recruiting HR professionals is vital to your new department. Make sure that you are hiring the right people for your HR practices. You want people who will fit with the company’s vision and culture, who have experience in working under pressure and implementing HR policies and procedures, and who have general management talent and strong software skills.

Offer Benefits and Compensation

Benefits and compensation are vital to your success and competitiveness. When we talk about benefits in this context, we’re not talking about your staff, though maintaining staff does rely upon this. Rather, we are talking about compensating and providing benefits to the HR workers you are recruiting.

The better able you are to pay and provide outstanding perks to your new HR staff, the better able you will be to draw the best professionals to your new HR department. Such perks as gym memberships, flexible schedules, an adaptable work environment, kitchen and fun company outings are great additions to standard vacation, sick time and medical benefits.

Handle Paperwork

The paperless office is a dream, but it’s one that probably won’t happen for a long time. You are going to be inundated with paperwork related to payment, benefits, foreign workers and personnel. It’s vital to have a strong system for filing and organizing this paperwork, which may require a strong administrative professional or two.

Scanning paperwork and keeping it in a secure electronic location will form a vital backup and help with your efforts to go paperless, but keeping your physical files in order is also important. This way when you need to access information it will be right at your fingertips.

Build the HR Foundation

Building a new HR department relies upon being organized, knowing your company culture and vision and drawing the best professionals. With patience, persistence and drive you can create a new human resources department that will improve your business and keep you competitive in an increasingly difficult climate. For a review and evaluation of your efforts, check out our HR services and get in touch with us today!

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