Four Big Challenges of an HR Shared-Services Transformation (Part 4)
Transitioning to shared services can help HR organizations transform into more strategic functions that provide maximum value to the business. Part 1 of this post discussed the first of four key insights into this process, the importance of successfully building expectations and an appreciation for shared services with stakeholders throughout the business. Part 2 covered the need to integrate implementation of the entire shared services model rather than individual components in isolation. In Part 3, we explored how to find the delicate balance between a global service model and local requirements.
Part 4 discusses the fourth and final insight:
Manage the HR shared services talent
Maintaining high levels of customer service and delivery quality depends on the competencies, experiences and engagement of the HR shared services center (SSC) staff. So it comes as no surprise that staff turnover is one of biggest hidden costs within shared services. As the SSC model evolves in terms of a providing a broader scope of services and serving a more diverse customer base, the acquisition, development and retention of talent are pivotal to success.
The reality, though, is that attracting the right employees can be difficult at best. Staff fluctuation remains high but is a little more stable due to the economic downturn. Reasons behind the fluctuation include highly industrialized work conditions combined with strong performance controls; little room for creativity; and the negatives associated with ‘call center’ jobs. Here the challenges are clear: They require a firm commitment to creating a culture which elevates HR shared services positions above low-skill jobs and offerscareer opportunities within and beyond HR shared services.
Increasingly, an effective and efficient HR service model will depend on HR shared services as an absolute necessity for success. At the same time, the quality of HR shared services—often the most visible component of HR—will determine the perceptions and reputation of the entire function. To that end, HR must get the basics right before pursuing a strategic agenda. And even more importantly, existing HR shared services concepts must continue to evolve based on the changing requirements and opportunities of our rapidly changing world. Lessons learned from pioneers and early adopters will help others achieve operational excellence, especially those setting out now on the path to HR shared services transformation.
- Sylvain Buhler