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5 Essential Questions to Guide Your Strategic HR Plan

5 Essential Questions to Guide Your Strategic HR Plan

At the heart of the matter, HR professionals have only one purpose: increasing employee performance and delivering on organisational goals.

Whether that means sourcing and hiring the best talent or creating an environment in which talent can thrive, every plan and every step that HR takes must deliver on the mandate above. 

Consequently, since the goal of every organisation is to generate profit, HR must design strategic plans that help organisations meet that overarching goal.  

Therefore, strategic human resource management is a future-oriented process of developing and implementing HR agenda that address and solve business problems and directly contribute to major long-term business objectives. 

As an HR leader, what is your strategic HR plan for the year? As the business climate continues to evolve amid the pandemic, have your HR best practices evolved alongside? 

If you’re ready to get your organisation ready for the future, here are five crucial questions you must initiate to determine a winning strategic HR plan for your organisation 

5 Crucial Questions to Determine Your Strategic HR Plan 

1. How has the concept of being employed at our organisation evolved with the times? 

Since the pandemic, a lot has changed. For instance, as we well know, remote work is no longer considered a perk.

Depending on the unique situation in your organisation, your work site may have shifted fully to a remote arrangement or a hybrid working model.

Or perhaps, how your business interacts with customers has changed how your employees work.  

Some questions to guide your strategic HR plans include: 

  • How will these factors continue to evolve? 
  • How do we intend to stay ahead of the competitors in fostering the ideal work environment in our organisation? 
  • Are there aspects of our customer and employee experience that must be retained? 
  • Is the work environment that we have provided enabling for our employees? How can we be sure? 

2. What will influence our company’s culture significantly in the future? 

It is expected that as an organisation grows and evolves, so should its culture. Likewise, as times and strategies change to reflect the needs of the business, so must the organisational culture.  

Therefore, to keep your organisation ahead, it is strategic to explore how to proactively shape your company culture in new ways amidst the changing workplace. 

 You may wish to ask the following questions: 

  • How will we communicate to our employees what matters most to the company at every given point in time? 
  • How can we encourage our people to bring those values into their interactions with customers and each other? 

You may wish to consider creating or updating a blueprint for bringing your culture and values into your recruiting efforts, hiring, onboarding and training practices.

You may also need to get creative with translating rewards, employee perks and events into meaningful virtual contexts.

3. How can we leverage our HR information to become more proactive? 

People analytics as a discipline and function is growing and becoming a major part of many organisations’ strategic HR plans.

All indices show that business leaders that focus on data-driven HR insight and take action in the direction this data points in will be ahead in the days to come. 

Please pay careful attention to what data says in areas such as employee retention, turnover, cost-per-hire, benefits participation rate and equity, and take on the challenge to connect the insights and what they mean for your company’s bottom line. 

Commit to being objective with your people analytics and incorporate it into your HR strategic plan.

In the coming days, when making people-related business decisions, don’t work solely with your instincts, learn to get comfortable with using metrics as your guide. 

 4. How will we capture and retain institutional knowledge?

How will we capture and retain institutional knowledge?

Understanding where your company is most vulnerable to institutional knowledge drain in the future is the first step to retaining the vital information that keeps your company successful.

For instance, if you have a significant number of tenured staff who can likely retire simultaneously, mechanisms, procedures and processes should already be in place to capture and preserve the vital knowledge that these employees possess. 

In addition, if your people analytics predict a significant turnover owing to factors such as employees’ growing desire for remote work, then it is best to develop your succession plan with your leadership team and ensure future leaders have been identified. 

Other ways to retain institutional knowledge for a viable and strategic HR plan include engaging current employees with personal and professional development opportunities and establishing mentoring infrastructures

5. How will we access information on evolving employee expectations and respond effectively? 

Unlocking employees’ evolving expectations by regularly soliciting feedback using surveys and focus groups to get a deeper insight into specific HR concerns and uncover workable solutions is a proactive way to stay on top of the people’s side of things. 

Companies that maintain this culture of continuous listening will be more likely to enjoy greater loyalty, improved retention rates, and better employee engagement than companies that don’t. 

When combined with HR analytics and instincts, employee feedback will prove to be a transformative strategic HR tool as long as you respond to the feedback as transparently and quickly as possible. 

How to Stay Focused on Your Long-Term Strategic HR Plan 

The more aligned HR is with the organisation’s overall business strategy, the better the company’s ability to anticipate and respond to changes in the business environment, including the ever-changing need of customers.

Ultimately, strategic HR is a fundamental source of competitive advantage for an organisation. 

As an HR leader, the question is: how do you intend to stay focused on executing the long-term strategic moves that matter most to your organisation right now and in the future? 

For many organisations, the answer lies in combining HR outsourcing and technology to streamline the tactical and high-volume aspects of human capital management.

This frees up time and enables HR leaders and their internal teams to focus on their higher-order strategic concerns. 

To find out how HR outsourcing can help your HR team stay focused by taking over the routine but essential HR tasks, please read our article on HR functions that can be outsourced to free up time for more strategic HR tasks.