Queen's University IRC

Advanced HR

The Human Resources Business Partner

The Human Resources Business Partner

The Human Resources Business Partner (HRBP) is a popular designation for many human resources professionals in today’s Canadian organizations. However, there seems to be no consistent definition of this role and its responsibilities. This article will attempt to describe the most common organizational structures or models used by HR departments to incorporate HRBPs and will review the strengths and challenges of these models. It will also illustrate the duties and the necessary skills of the fully competent HRBP and make recommendations for organizations considering creating HRBP roles.

HR And Manager Partnerships: Building Accountability In The Workplace

HR and Manager Partnerships: Building Accountability in the Workplace

Rayna had just received an interesting request. J.B., a recent addition to the front-line management team, had come to her following the division wide quarterly town hall update. The division president, Anne, had given a talk on accountability. She’d been firm in her resolve to increase division wide understanding of what it meant to be accountable at work. J.B. wasn’t questioning the directive. He was struggling with the meaning. What did accountability mean for him as a manager?

Building Trust and Increasing Employee Engagement in the Workplace

Building Trust and Increasing Employee Engagement in the Workplace

Ben was concerned. Emma, a manager new to his group, had just received her employee engagement scores. They were not good. Emma had been a rock star in her previous individual contributor role. She was seen as talent for the future in the organization. As her HR Business Partner, Ben had watched her struggle as a first-time manager. Now, it appeared that her employee team was willing to put those struggles on paper in the form of not so good engagement scores.

How Leaders Can Use it to Their Advantage

Emotional Intelligence: How Leaders Can Use it to Their Advantage

Ever catch yourself thinking, “Why did I just say that?” or “I didn’t handle that discussion as well as I could have.” We are all human and can make poor decisions in the heat of the moment. Afterwards, we are often left wondering how managing our emotions could have made a difference in the situation. But for leaders, reacting emotionally can have a negative impact that ripples through the organization. We can all become more effective by understanding emotional intelligence and learning how to strengthen our own emotional intelligence.

The Making of the Super CHRO

The Making of the Super CHRO

Today CHRO’s are judged on what they deliver and how they get things done. Aligning talent, fostering engagement, enabling common shared vision and values are critical elements in their toolkit. The CHRO has a vital role in shaping the direction of the organization and ensuring business success for all its shareholders. A tall order for sure but one that I believe we are fully equipped to deliver. This article gives more detail on strategic business planning and HR alignment.

5 Questions to Help You Sell the Value of HR

5 Questions to Help You “Sell” the Value of HR

We have created a checklist of 5 Questions that you need to answer as you work to be heard and have impact. They are essential questions to test yourself against at the start of every project. As you read through this for the first time, we suggest that you identify a critical HR initiative that you are responsible for getting your senior management team (or your boss) to support.

Aligning HR Strategies to Create Business Success

Aligning HR Strategies to Create Business Success

I have personally witnessed HR’s evolution from the back room to the board room, from tactics to strategy, and to assuming ownership of the business and its outcomes.  The HR profession has advanced dramatically since the days when I began my career as a recruiter, and we certainly have come a long way from the days of the “Personnel Department”.

Does HR Really Want to Professionalize?

Does HR Really Want to Professionalize?

Do we really want to professionalize? That is a really good question—but there are layers to that question.  For some years, the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) asked the following question on its annual member survey: ‘Do you agree that the professionalization of HR is, or should be, an important issue for the profession?’

Are You Concerned About Global Privacy? You Should Be!

Are You Concerned About Global Privacy? You Should Be!

You likely believe that your organization’s data – operating, financial, human resources – is a key resource and you have policies and processes in place to mitigate any risk. Whether or not your organization operates in just one province, or just within Canada, you should understand that the principles and guidelines of data management are not grounded in geographic jurisdiction. 

Managing Emotional Reactions to Organizational Change

Top 5 Queen’s IRC Articles from 2015

Here are the most popular articles Queen's IRC released in 2015. 1. Managing Emotional Reactions to Organizational Change. 2. Workplace Bullying and Harassment: Costly Conduct. 3. An Inquiry into the State of HR in Canada in 2013: Executive Summary. 4. The Tough Work of Managing Change. 5. Human Rights and Human Wrongs: Our Continuing Need to Teach

Would Roger Martin consider HRM to be a profession?

Would Roger Martin consider HRM to be a profession?

To be frank, the academic literature on what makes a profession is not very accessible. Here is something of a different take on the topic. For some time, there has been an ongoing debate in the Harvard Business Review as to whether business management is, or should be, a profession. The debate started with an article written by Khurana, Nohria, and Penrice in 2005 entitled Is business management a profession?

The Next Tsunami of Environmental Disasters in the Workplace

Managing Under the Microscope: The Next Tsunami of Environmental Disasters in the Workplace

There is a new wave of environmental disasters that are just beginning to splash onto our daily news feeds. Workplace cultures are the next targets that will be publicly examined and debated in excruciating detail – just ask the CBC, Amazon, or the Lance Armstrong “company machine.” All the dirty laundry of inappropriate behaviours and unacceptable people practices are flooding out in the wash, and every detail is being hung out on the public line to view.

Grow Your HR Career by Helping to Grow Your Organization

Grow Your HR Career by Helping to Grow Your Organization

In my teaching and consulting practice, HR professionals often recount stories like this.  Someone, somewhere, makes a disparaging remark about human resources as a “dead end”, “non-value add” or “being the department that just gets in the way. Here’s the news. This is no longer truth. This is wonderful time to be an HR professional. It’s time to grow into a true business partner. It’s time to be seen as someone who “gets it.”

What Can We Learn From Forsyth & Danisiewicz (1985)?

Successful Professionalization: What Can We Learn From Forsyth & Danisiewicz (1985)?

In this article, we take one of the more interesting and useful models of professionalization and apply it to the Human Resources field to see what insights can be had. There are a number of models of professionalization, and of those one of the more interesting and useful models is that of Forsyth & Danisiewicz (1985) . What makes this model so interesting and useful is that unlike other models it has a functional approach rather than a descriptive approach—that is, it looks at the process of professionalization (see figure 1).

Is your compensation strategy actually strategic?

Is Your Compensation Strategy Actually Strategic?

Employee compensation typically consumes 40 to 70 percent of operating costs for Canadian employers. For most firms, compensation is their single largest operating expenditure. Last year, according to Statistics Canada, employers in Canada spent nearly a trillion dollars on wages, salaries, and benefits – imagine a stack of $100 bills more than 1,100 kilometers high!

Building Trust in the Workplace

Top 5 Queen’s IRC Articles from 2014

Here are the most popular articles Queen's IRC released in 2014. 1. 5 Steps to Build Trust and Change the Culture in an Organization; 2. Building Trust in the Workplace Recognizing Employee Engagement in the Workplace; 3. Building Trust in the Workplace The Head-Down Theory: How Unfairness Affects Employee Engagement; 4. The Need for Lean HR: Reinvent or RIP HR; 5. Strategic Grievance Management in Today’s Unionized Environment

An Inquiry into the State of HR in the Caribbean - Survey results from Queen's University IRC in collaboration with the Cave Hill School of Business

An Inquiry into the State of HR in the Caribbean

This report summarizes and analyzes the results of a survey of HR practitioners from the Caribbean conducted in 2012. More specifically, the results of the survey provide insight into several key aspects of Caribbean HR practitioners’ working lives. These include the demographic characteristics of practitioners, their roles and responsibilities, the nature of the organizations for which they work, their education and career development, the knowledge and skills required to thrive in the Caribbean, and of course, their perspectives on important issues, innovations and challenges in the HR profession today.

Learning the Art of Painting the HR Landscape - Teaching HR Professionals to Communicate Up

Learning the Art of Painting the HR Landscape

It’s Saturday morning in cottage country. You’re hugging a cup of coffee on the porch. The mist is just clearing from the lake. The view from the deck is stunning. The geese are feeding at the shoreline. A hawk circles above the pines in the distance. Waves lap the deck, reminding you that you promised your cousin a kayaking lesson later this morning. He’s coming with your Aunt Sally on the train as part of the adventure. Aunt Sally recently discovered plein art painting. “Bring the SUV to the station,” she said. “I have the easel.”

RIP HR

The Need for Lean HR: Reinvent or RIP HR

RIP HR. That will be the tombstone on the HR profession if we don't get our act together soon. Sadly it seems we just cannot agree on a unified national approach on the professional association front, or even in some provincial regions. It's no wonder that we lack the ability to move HR to the next level in business. What's most unfortunate is that as a profession that should be recognized for leadership, vision and collaboration, we are setting a very poor example. We've been talking about the same old tired things for years, if not decades.

Is HR Ready to Respond?

Global HR Trends: Is HR Ready to Respond?

This article is written for HR leaders and explores the global human resources trends, the human resources function’s readiness to respond, and the associated implications for the HR leader. It draws upon insights from Deloitte’s 2014 Global Human Capital Trends report and the Corporate Education Board’s Global Workforce Insights Q3 2014 report and relates the trends identified to the evolution of the human resources field.

Lori Aselstine

Inside HR at the Ontario Public Service

In April 2014, as Lori Aselstine began her retirement from the Government of Ontario, she sat down with Queen’s IRC to talk about her career, the HR profession and practising HR in an environment that is 85% unionized. Lori talks candidly about her experience rising through the ranks in the Government of Ontario, as well as the challenges and opportunities that come from working in labour relations for the government, which often plays the role of the employer and legislator.

What does 'professionalism' mean for HR professionals?

What does ‘professionalism’ mean for HR professionals?

The desire for HR professionals to be accorded the respect and status of being true professionals is a theme that goes back many decades; and there is no evidence to suggest that this desire has waned over the years. In 2013, the Human Resources Professionals Association asked the following question on its annual member survey: "Do you agree that the professionalization of HR is, or should be, an important issue for the profession?"—89.4% of respondents agreed with the statement.

Playing to Win in HR

Enhancing Your Strategic Value as a Human Resources Professional: Playing to Win in HR

The notion that Human Resource (HR) professionals need to be strategic and aligned with their organization’s strategy is not by any means new.  In their book The HR Scorecard published almost fifteen years ago, Professors Becker, Huselid and Ulrich noted that “traditional HR skills have not diminished in value, but simply are no longer adequate to satisfy the wider strategic demands of the HR function” (Becker, Huselid and Ulrich, 2001).  Since then strategy frameworks and the language of strategic management have evolved.  The question is has HR kept up with these, especially in the past year or so?   

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