HR Must Adapt To New Business World

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The landscape of the business world has experienced considerable change in recent times and Human Resource (HR) professionals must adapt in tandem.

This sentiment was shared this morning by Minister of Labour, Social Security and Human Resource Development, Senator Dr. Esther Byer Suckoo, as she delivered remarks at the 16th Annual Human Resource Management Association of Barbados (HRMAB) Conference, held at the Radisson Aquatica Resort.

Examining the conference???s theme, Vision for Modern HR Management ??? The New Normal, Minister Byer Suckoo said that a great part of human resource management involved the process of hiring, paying salaries, creating benefits and approving leave.

But, today, she noted its role had evolved to one of staffing, training, evaluating and helping to manage people, so that employees and the organisation are performing at maximum capacity. ???In today???s business you can???t have the one ??? HR ??? without the other, HR development. That is part of the new normal,??? she added.

Explaining that this ???new normal??? involved globalisation in the market place, new and emerging economies, and new workplace cultures and training, the Labour Minister stated that it also brought issues such as outsourcing, retrenchments and shared time, which would affect the way HR professionals operate.

???One challenge for HR executives is determining how the current workforce can be engaged or reengaged, especially as the labour market changes???It is, therefore, imperative for HR professionals to be alert in order to ensure that the approach to talent is evolving to meet the needs of business today. This means operating in a leaner, more productive structure and capitalising on the development of top talent. HR professionals must help employees find and develop their talents and aptitudes,??? Dr. Byer Suckoo stressed, adding that HR officers must also be employee champions.

HRMAB President, Glenda Gilkes, agreed that creation of opportunities was key and said that adaptation from a dependent culture to a proactive one was critical.

???Our mantra, not only as human resource practitioners, but also as strategic business partners, must be to provide credible guidance and expertise in helping our businesses make these tough decisions, while ensuring that those affected are given the support necessary to accept, cope and function beyond the dreaded green paper,??? she said.

Ms. Gilkes noted that for those who remained, there must be a blueprint crafted by the organisation to allay fears, while at the same time defining and sharing a clear roadmap for the way forward.

nekaelia.hutchinson@barbados.gov.bb

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