2016 Round 7 of the Human Resource Competency Study (running since 1987) by The RBL Group and the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, involved over 30,000 surveys ratings, 23 regional partners and around 4,000 HR professionals around the globe.
CEO surveys increasingly point to businesses winning through differentiating themselves through organization and people. This research identified what individual HR professionals should know and do to respond to these business opportunities.
In my opinion, the latest competency model also reflects the increasing complexity and demands on the global HR professional. Here’s a quick introduction to the model and some of my selected notes from the RBL Group HRCS report. The findings have implications for who is hired into HR and the development, promotion and rewarding of HR professionals.
The report shares nine competencies through which HR professionals deliver business value.
Three Core Competencies
1. Strategic positioner – applies knowledge of business context and strategy.
2. Credible activist – builds relationships of trust and influence with key people within the organization.
3. Paradox navigator – navigates the many embedded tensions in business operations.
Six HR enablers
Three of these enablers focus on building a strategic organization:
1. Culture and change champion – makes change happen and weaves change initiatives into culture change.
2. Human capital curator – manages the flow of talent by developing people and leaders, driving individual performance, and building technical talent.
3. Total reward steward – manages employee well-being through financial and non-financial rewards.
Three enablers focus on tactical delivery:
4. Technology and media integrator – uses technology and social media to create and drive high-performing organizations.
5. Analytics designer and interpreter – uses analytics to improve decision making.
6. Compliance manager – manages the processes related to compliance by following regulatory guidelines.
According to the study, some competencies seem more critical for certain stakeholders. Creating value for internal stakeholders, such as line managers and employees, requires being a credible activist. Creating value for external stakeholders such as investors and external customers, however, requires being a strategic positioner.
The study also found that about 50 percent of the perceived performance of HR professionals comes from their competencies. About 35% of the perceived performance of HR professionals comes from their demographics and career histories.
A key overarching finding was that the activities of HR departments as a whole consistently explain more of the department’s performance than the competencies of the HR professionals within those departments.
Activities of HR departments that most impacted HR value creation for key stakeholders
1. Employee performance HR practices: HR activities that help employees develop their skills and abilities.
2. Integrated HR practices: HR activities that offer integrated and innovative solutions to business problems.
3. HR analytics practices: HR activities related to a scorecard for the HR department.
4. HR role in information management: HR role in managing information to make better business decisions.
HR professionals have more impact on key stakeholders when they work as an effective HR department. The report also notes that the old adage, “I like my HR professional, but I hate HR” needs to change because the HR department’s activities have more impact on all stakeholders than individual HR professionals.
For those interested in learning more, you can find Dr. Dave Ulrich’s videos introducing the latest model and competencies here.
(Previously posted on LinkedIn)
1. HRCS Round 7 – Creating HR Value From The Outside-In