This is the first of two articles that offer a challenging and personal view about the role of HR. In this article the reasons for HR’s perceived lack of strategic contribution are identified. In the follow-up article, to be published shortly, Russell Connor proposes a radical alternative as a basis for integrated human resource management on which a strategic contribution can be built.

This is the first of two articles that offer a challenging and personal view about the role of HR. In this article the reasons for HR’s perceived lack of strategic contribution are identified. In the follow-up article, to be published shortly, Russell Connor proposes a radical alternative as a basis for integrated human resource management on which a strategic contribution can be built.

Over many years the rallying cry at all HR conferences has been “let’s elevate the people function so that it makes a strategic contribution”. Post the credit crunch, many leading practitioners have been running the other way, saying “don’t point the finger at me for the creation of a culture that promoted greed and short-termism, HR is only a service function”.

With the

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