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Common Challenges in Human Resource Management September 13, 2011

Posted by Darwin in Applicant Tracking System, HR Tips.
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Human Resources departments today face different challenges than they did even a few short years ago. Personnel pools are larger, jobs are scarcer, and people are willing to do almost anything to secure gainful employment. The technology is more advanced also, for both the job searcher and the recruiter. Cloud-based ATS applicant tracking software is used by most human resource departments. If yours doesn’t have it, your competitors have an edge. That’s something you’ll want to correct.

Budgets are typically lower because profit numbers are down across the board. No matter what industry you’re in, you’ve been affected by recent economic events and have to work with less to achieve more. This means that your advertising and recruitment efforts need to be more targeted. Once again, a top-of-the-line applicant tracking system can help you. The best applicant tracking applications register where each hit comes from when the potential employee first contacts you. That information will be extremely valuable when you run your next recruitment campaign.

Benefits administration is another area that has gone from a part-time consulting basis to a full time job. With the rules on health care changing regularly and funds for 401-Ks and pension programs fluctuating wildly, its essential that a human resource department have someone in place to answer employee benefit questions when they arise. In some instances, companies are so inundated with these questions that benefits administration has become an entirely separate department.

Fielding questions and solving problems related to employee rights and privileges are the responsibilities of Human Resources, too. When an employee feels they are mistreated or discriminated against, the HR department needs to step in and document the entire situation for possible later action. This is perhaps one of the most uncomfortable and difficult tasks that a human resource employee performs. No one wants to deal with what is considered one of the ugliest areas of employment law, but someone has to watch out for the rights of employees. When discrimination rears its ugly head, it’s your job as an HR employee to bring attention to it.

Fair compensation is a question for management, but when it’s lacking it can become an issue for human resources. Part of the job of that department is to keep track of changes in wage laws and required cost of living increases. These change frequently, so staying on top of those changes is important. If the minimum wage goes up, the rest of the employees at your company may be entitled to a raise, including the folks in your department. You wouldn’t want to miss that would you? Of course not.

If you’re managing a human resource department, make your job easier by upgrading your applicant tracking system before you do anything else, then check the latest employment laws for any changes or issues you should be aware of. Assign a person or two to deal strictly with benefits and another to deal with employee complaints. Once all of that is done, you can focus on your main responsibility – finding quality employees.

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