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How we help the HR role

HR has a key role to play in the following strategic imperatives within strategic portfolio management.

HR is an often-overlooked strategic function in organizations.  But without an effective and strategically aligned HR function, the ability of any business to consistently deliver at an optimum level is severely compromised.

HR Role Summary

At the most fundamental level HR is concerned that the right people with the right skills are available in the right part of the organization at the right time.  But optimizing resources in this way is increasingly difficult.  As plans become more fluid and adjustments become necessary, the lead time to find, secure and train resources is compressed, leaving HR less time to support an optimal people environment. The specific imperatives in which HR plays a role include:

  • Optimizing resource utilization
  • Support strategy and enterprise roadmaps to optimize performance
  • Modeling the impacts of decisions and portfolio analysis
  • Contributing to cost transparency

HR is integral to the planning process

To address this, HR must be an integral part of the planning and decision-making process.  HR executives can use roadmapping tools to help understand the overall organizational strategic plan. Working with every line of business, HR can ensure that effective plans are in place to meet the resourcing implications of every element of that roadmap.  That includes everything from decisions around hiring, training, outsourcing or contracting to timing of resource changes and the determination of how people strategies will be implemented.

A key to orchestrating change.

As part of this, HR can also use what-if scenario planning tools to model the impact of key strategic decisions.  This must consider not just the resources required to deliver the work, but also the work needed to support the implications of that work – the new products and services, the enhanced business capabilities and the shifting operating environment.  It must also consider organizational change management and the concepts of change fatigue.

Understanding all the costs.

All of these areas come with cost implications attached – not just the cost of the resources themselves, but also recruitment and training costs and organizational change management costs.  HR can use cost management tools to factor in the overall value calculations, ensuring cost transparency. Finally, HR is a business function in its own right and the head of HR must consider all of the strategic imperatives that apply to every other LOB executive as they apply to HR initiatives and investments.

HR only succeeds with strong relationships.  Those relationships must span the strategy realization office, LOB executives and domain PMOs.  In all cases they must not only provide support to current resourcing needs, but plan for future resource demand and supply changes as well as skill transitions. Strategic portfolio management is the common denominator that helps bring all of these roles together.