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Human resources is “useless” according to Google, and unfortunately the view is echoed by many. A survey conducted by YouGov on behalf of People Management found HR departments are consistently rated as “not very useful” by 27% of staff.
“The small companies never bother to have a HR department and the big companies only have it because they are obsessed with division of labour,” a netizen commented on discussion forum lihkg.
While it is certainly an unfair thing to say about the profession, the statement seems sum up the impression most non-HR employees have of the department.
In a recent post on lihkg, employees listed the skills they feel HR professionals possess. While not all the skills on the list are necessarily complimentary, they do provide insight into what others think of HR staff members.
HR professionals are great at working with people. They have the ability to understand and connect with others quickly, making them the perfect people to connect the right talent to the right job.
Although cases of candidates complaining about HR staff asking meaningless and stupid questions are well-documented, the HR department still has a reputation of being the best at dealing with people.
Employers love HR professionals who are able to make the most out of their salary budgets. However, things can backfire pretty badly if not done right. The internet is filled with complaints from candidates about HR departments pressuring them into accepting lower salary offers. Budgeting is one thing, but giving candidates a bad experience is a disaster for employer branding.
One of the duties of the HR department is to penalise employees who have broken company regulations. They are also put in-charge of handling conflicts among colleagues. When dealing with these thorny issues, it is easy to be labelled as a meddler.
4. Excel experts
HR needs to process a huge amount of data on a daily basis which makes them an expert in using the software. It is true that there is an Excel god at every HR department to help colleagues resolve all the technical difficulties they have with the software.
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