How Can I Improve My HR?

By Matthew Reymes Cole
20 May 2022

Looking for simple steps you can take to improve human resources in your business? Look no further.

It doesn’t matter whether you have a full dedicated HR team, a one-man band, or you’re taking on HR responsibilities yourself, every business needs HR to run effectively. You don’t need to invest ridiculous amounts of money in HR solutions to improve your department. To demonstrate this, we’ve put together a few HR tips you can begin implementing today.

How to improve my HR department

1. Put the “human” back in human resources

Don’t think of HR as a box-ticking exercise. We understand, ticking boxes is fun. Sometimes, you have to get that little shot of dopamine in your day. But, if that’s all you are doing, you’re doing HR wrong.

HR is fundamentally about people. Despite this, the HR department in most businesses keeps its distance from the rest of the workforce. To function effectively, HR should engage with your staff at their level. A great, if slightly unconventional, way of doing this is to have HR sit with another department for the day. Have them perform a role different to their own. The effect of this is twofold:

One, it demystifies the HR department. They are no longer the ominous team who only show up for disciplinaries and redundancies. Now, they are actual people the rest of the business can approach. Forbes advocate strategies to increase employee faith in HR, you should too.

Two, the HR department gains a deeper understanding of how the business functions. By sitting with the people who are delivering your service, or making your product, they can make decisions with them in mind. They may gain insights that’ll help you increase retention and improve staff morale.

Try it and see.


improve my hr


2. Implement reward schemes

HR is as much about rewarding people as it is managing them. If you’ve already got a reward scheme in place, great! Were the employees involved in the creation of the scheme?

Ask yourself the question: “What is it that my staff want?”

While a pay increase is always welcome, there are other ways to reward staff. After having conversations with your employees, you may find that they don’t feel recognised enough. Easy fix—start an employee of the month scheme. Recognise their good work and praise them for it. Do staff members feel tied down by current working hours? Offer increased flexibility or remote work after a certain length of service.

For more ideas on retaining staff when there’s no money for a pay rise, take a look at this article.

Whatever your approach is, make sure you’re making decisions based on their feedback. Creating initiatives is great, but doing so without the approval of your staff could lead to resentment and demotivation.

3. Review, review, and review

When was the last time you reviewed your staff handbook? How about your contracts? Your pay and reward schemes?

It’s easy to assume once a policy is written, it’s done. Employment law doesn’t change that often—right?

Sometimes there is a legal change that means we need to dust off the binder and rewrite some clauses. However, you shouldn’t wait until a compliance issue forces your hand. Conduct regular reviews to see if you can bring your policies in line with how your company runs today. You might even find glaring errors that just don’t make sense.

Sometimes it’s helpful to perform a review as if you’re building your HR function from the ground up. This way, you can make sure your department is achieving your business goals. They could be:

  • Improving company culture
  • Increasing staff retention
  • Making departments more cost-effective

Whatever your goal, HR is crucial to achieving it. If you’re uncertain what you’re looking for, you can always book a policy review with our documentation team. Find out more about this part of Croner’s service here.


how to improve my hr department


4. Map the employee journey

Where do you see yourself in five years? Or, more importantly, where do you see your employees?

In today’s employment market, staff retention is uncertain. But, with a map of the employee journey, you can see where they’ll be in five years—and so will they.

Career progression isn’t top priority for all individuals. But all staff members will appreciate seeing how they can progress within the business. The more detail you can provide the better. Are there multiple avenues for progression? What will their salaries look like at a higher level? What would their responsibilities be?

Knowing this information in advance makes progression tangible. This makes it easier for employees to make decisions about their future. It’ll also mean you can plan ahead financially and build your teams more effectively.

Back your plan up with training, support, and heavy involvement from line managers. They’ll shape the journey, so involve them in your planning and check in regularly.

5. Use technology to streamline HR processes

In the modern age there is no need to rely on files full of paperwork. In fact, there’s no longer a need to rely on spreadsheets and word documents. There are solutions out there specifically designed to make your HR function seamless.

Naturally, we’d recommend our own software partner, BrightHR. This package comes with a range of tools that’ll make your life easier. For example, Blip allows you to manage clocking in and clocking out at the touch of a button. PoP lets you approve or decline business expenses. The BrightHR system will keep all of your HR documentation secure in one place—and that’s not all! You can manage annual leave, meeting notes, and even access 24/7 HR advice from experts via the service.

You can access a free, no-obligation trial of the software today by calling 01455 858 132.

About the Author

Matthew Reymes-Cole

Matt joined Croner in 2007 as an employment law consultant and has advised clients of all sizes on all aspects of employment law. He has worked within management positions since 2017 and currently overseas a team within the litigation department, whilst continuing to support a number of clients directly.

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