The Missing Focus for HR - MConnected Communications

Being in HR can sometimes feel like you’re stuck on a never-ending hamster wheel. Is what you’re doing making a difference? Do employees care? Will you ever move past being the department that gets blamed instead of recognized for the shifts you’re making with culture and engagement? Will the bottom line ever stop interfering with big ideas?

It can be frustrating and demotivating. And it will continue to be so… because no matter what you do, HR will continue to be a function that constantly fights the good fight unless your focus shifts – and shifts quickly. With AI becoming a reality for many HR roles, companies starting to pull back on their previously touted “HR transformations,” now is the time to refocus your energy and efforts on HR investments that have the biggest payoff.

This doesn’t mean that you need to invest a million dollars in the next best HRIS – but instead, it’s your focus and energy that can be invested in work that may not appear to be “HR-sexy,” but will win you big gains now and down the road.

So what is this shiny object that will be the backbone of your company’s H(R)evolution?

Employee communications. Followed by a close second with HR metrics and of course partnering with the business.

But let’s focus on employee communications first.

There seems to be a huge gap between what HR wants to do and how we can achieve it. We want to “increase employee engagement,” so we focus on surveying our employee population to see where things are… then hope leaders implement/address what the results showed.

We want to encourage employees to be healthcare consumers, so we focus on offering new medical plans and benefits that help employees save money and invest wisely… then hope employees figure out what a great investment the company has made and enroll in the right plan for them.

Essentially, we focus on the outcome we want, without understanding the core of how to get people there. We know how to create employee engagement surveys, share results, suggest best next steps, and create comprehensive benefits packages – for example.

We focus on the outcome we want, without understanding the core of how to get people there. #HR #HRComms #employeecommunications Click To Tweet

But that’s where we stop.

When it comes to sharing the what, how and why – we either rely on what we did last year (hello to rinse and repeat); slap a communication together haphazardly; or let someone else create a plan/message without really knowing us.

We’re letting the most important part of our HR program’s success – stop short. Over and over again. Leaving us scratching our heads as to why engagement didn’t really improve. Or why people still aren’t enrolling in that new HDHP plan.

Communicating to your employees in a strategic and thoughtful way, is the only way to create a connection with them. With connection, comes engagement. With engagement, comes positive actions and outcomes.

Communicating to your employees in a strategic and thoughtful way, is the only way to create a connection with them. With connection, comes engagement. With engagement, comes positive actions and outcomes. Click To Tweet

Instead of focusing solely on the HR activity – it’s necessary to focus on how you are telling your employees about it.

I know that you’re likely in one of two camps at this very moment – camp 1: our employee communications are just fine, I don’t need to worry about this… or camp 2: whoa, it’s time to put communications on my list.

Either place is fine – but know this: revisiting your employee communications, particularly related to HR messages, can only increase your results positively. It’s not a reflection that what you’ve been doing is bad – but it’s an opportunity to go from good, to great.