Should I… hire an HR manager?

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Pros: A good HR manager will ensure a growing company is properly staffed, and that its employees are properly looked after

Cons: if your company is still reasonably small, an hr manager is not necessary and could be a waste of money

What’s the point?

Good question. Many people actually wonder what HR managers do. And whether it’s worth paying them to “do something rather vague”.  But once your organisation starts to grow, it’s worth thinking about.

But shouldn’t I being doing all the recruitment myself?

Initially yes, especially for a small sized company you need to be totally in control of who you are bringing in.

At what point should I get one then?

You need to really have at least 30 staff on the books before this becomes an issue.

And after that the HR manager does recruitment?

No, entrepreneurs generally keep control of the recruitment side of the operation.  HR is however much more than recruitment – it is about putting systems and practices in place, about taking an interest in the welfare of employees, and all sorts of related issues such as medical insurance.

Shouldn’t I be doing that from day one?

You should, but as the company grows you should quickly start putting better systems in place. Many successful businesses have grown very fast to around 100 staff in a year, and been completely caught out – in some cases nearly brought down – by the lack of HR systems.

How much will it cost?

A competent person to begin with shouldn’t set you back more than AED16,000 a month. After that, if the company grows, you will need to invest more.

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Posted by: Roger Pio

On average every 40-50 employees or so in any organisation will need one HR person to administer . You start with a generalist and then when the enterprise grows you need to beef up the HR departnment with specialists and install a system in place. When the organisation is small, the owner of the business or CEO does the HR job with the help of his PA. When the enterprise grows he must hire a professional and hand him full authority of the HR function. Unfortunately in certain cultures like the Arab world CEOs keep interfering and influencing HR decisions no mater the size of the enterprise has become. Such interfenence creates grey areas where it becomes difficult for HR professionals to operate properly.

Posted by: Jonathan Smith

Yes - attention to effective administration is needed, but where the real VALUE-ADD comes is in bringing professional attention to questions of high people performance. As any organisation grows or adapts it is easy to give inadequate attention to people issues. A champion for good communication, leadership, staff development and motivation will ensure sustained commercial results through the precious human "capital". This person can partner (not take over from) each manager in the business to coach and guide, from CEO down, and ensure that these questions are addressed well, and the organisation retains a positive dynamic team and corporate community life.

This should in my opinion include partnership in recruitment, where a true HR professional can bring insights and tools to optimise that process too. Much as I agree that the line manager needs to be fully involved, and take full ownership of the decision, and subsequent people management of their own staff.

Posted by: Jim Gilchrist

Small business will typically initially hire a generalist than can handle a number of HR related administrative functions and outsource specific activities - like recruitment- to specialist companies.

In hiring an HR person it is like any other role in that - a good one will help you and a bad one will hurt you. So hire carefully.

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