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HR's Role and Functions

Human Relations professionals deal with people and the relationships between people and teams within organisations. In a professional context they instigate HR strategies, on boarding of staff, training of staff, organisational feedback and look out for the general wellbeing of employees.

There are five key function areas of importance that come into play when working in HR, these are:

1. Human Resource Strategy

2. Feedback, Performance Management and Retention

3. Employee Relations and Risk Management

4. Learning, Development and Career planning

5. Recruitment, Selection and On Boarding

These five key areas were ranked accordingly in a recent 360 degree feedback survey that was instigated to investigate the current priorities and practices of Australian HR Professionals.

The study also showed the strengths, opportunity and highly contested areas in Australian HR. The strongest ranked area was employee relations and risk management. Feedback, performance management and retention were also marked as an opportunity area, whilst most surprisingly the previously #1 ranked Human resource strategy was labeled a ‘highly contested area’.

The survey found that whilst respondents identified that Human Resource Strategies were important to organisational success, respondents also stated they felt that People Leaders within their organisation have not always actively supported the HR Strategy.

People Leaders within an organisation are key players in the success of HR strategies and activities. People will follow their lead and take an interest in their interests. The support of a People Leader also identifies the importance of the task to other employees.

As a HR leader, it is important that you carefully identify your key function areas, particularly your HR Strategy, and evaluate the best way to implement them within your organisation.

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About the Author: Fiona Lang

Fiona Lang
Fiona Lang is an experienced human resources consultant, line manager and financial controller. She has designed and delivered feedback, training and development programs for organisations in the government, non-profit and corporate sectors. She has worked across Australia in management positions for ANZ bank, Citibank and the National Australia Bank Group. She holds a B.A. (Psychology) and Dip.FP.

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