Why is the global economy and increased competition changing the role of HR departments? What tactics might HR departments pursue to better communicate with employees? How might HR build closer relationships with mangers?
The global economy and increased competition are affecting the role of HR departments in various ways. First of all, HR departments always have to look to cut costs because of competition, but because of globalization, there are many opportunities to do so. HR managers must make sure to balance the benefits of lowering costs by outsourcing to cheaper labor markets with the benefits of hiring world-class human capital, for example people with first-class educations that in cheap labor markets are harder to find. HR departments should be sure to communicate clearly with employees, especially about the expectations of the company. Employees need to understand what is expected of them in a competitive marketplace because if this is not made clear and they are fired for underperforming, other employees may blame the HR department for treating workers like disposable objects. If everyone understands that the people fired did not meet clear expectations, however, then other employees will not blame the HR department. HR departments also need to make sure that managers understand HR alternatives like outsourcing, because then managers will be able to report about whether the company should stay with the current workforce or outsource.