Are you a people person?

Talented “people people” are increasingly taking a seat at management tables across the country as companies deal with an ageing workforce, rapid technological change and the challenge to stay competitive.

Human resources (HR) personnel are now seen as an integral part of a company’s health, and demand for their services is expected to grow over the next 10 years.

Australian Institute of Management WA chief executive Gary Martin said notions that HR staff were blockers or gatekeepers responsible only for industrial relations, leave forms and getting people paid on time were outdated.

He said they were also traditionally associated with health and safety issues and administrative tasks. “There has been a major makeover in terms of what HR professionals now do, ” Professor Martin said.

“The HR professional is at the table for every important management decision that involves re-engineering the business. In times of uncertainty and ambiguity, the HR professional has come into their own.”

The profession had transformed itself to keep pace with rapid changes and could have a major impact on a company’s success by recruiting the right staff and creating a productive culture.

“Most organisations now accept that they can’t keep still for too long if they are to remain competitive – that’s where the HR professional plays a huge role, ” he said.

“HR teams can be a very important resource in helping to guide an organisation through a process to improve, restructure or reinvent itself.”

Modern organisations were recognising that effective workplace cultures offered flexibility with strong learning and development programs, and both were strongly linked to enhanced productivity.

“In recent times, companies have been looking at delivering more flexible working conditions for its people, ” Professor Martin said. “In many cases, it’s been the HR professional working behind the scenes who has supported their development and delivery. As the operating environments of organisations become more complex, more ambiguous and more challenging – the demand for effective and experienced HR practitioners is set to soar.”

Effective HR professionals had a passion for supporting and developing people and were very comfortable with uncertainty and change, he said.

Chief executive of the Australian Human Resources Institute Lyn Goodear said the ability of businesses to respond to rapidly changing market trends was critical.

“Whether in good times or tough times, managing your human resources effectively is critical to business success, and can be a differentiator as to whether a business survives the tough times and thrives in the good times, ” Ms Goodear said.

“Being able to adjust and adapt the workforce to respond effectively to these changes is where HR can make a great contribution. HR plays an important role in creating a shared responsibility for the outcomes of the behaviours and actions of individual employees, managers and owners.”

Former Brazilian journalist Nadia Heisler said she had chosen to study in the field because of the growing number of opportunities it offered. Ms Heisler completed a diploma of human resources at Challenger Institute and used it as a pathway to study human resources management at Murdoch University.

“I love people and I’m really interested in their development and motivation, ” she said. “I chose HR because of the work opportunities. I love it and I have been working at Crown Perth to develop my skills.”

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Are you a people person?
human resources – Yahoo! News Search Results
human resources – Yahoo! News Search Results


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