The Human Resource department is the backbone of a company. With many changes over these past couple of years, HR departments are working a lot leaner; whether that’s due to department budget cuts, reduced HR staff, or both. So, how do you keep a company running without burning out your remaining HR staff? Likely, it means having to learn to do more with less.
Here are some areas to do just that.
Your department is the voice of the company. With the shift to a hybrid or remote-only landscape, communicating effectively becomes even more challenging. However, it highlights the need to use multiple communication channels – especially when it comes to Open Enrollment.
We conducted a survey earlier this year to evaluate how employers planned to communicate during Open Enrollment. We found that employers are using more channels to communicate to ensure their messages are not getting lost. The most popular options are email (used by nearly 9 out of 10 respondents) and web pages/portals (used by 75% of respondents).
Web pages are a great way to create a central repository of documents, information, and resources. When combined with email, you can use email to communicate the key action items and leverage a portal to clarify details and supplemental resources. Video/phone conferencing is another great way because it keeps people engaged and listening in a virtual environment. Most employers have access to these communication methods already, so there’s no additional cost.
Recruitment -> Employee Retention
Anyone who works in the Recruitment area of HR knows that it can be a challenging process. And in recent years, even more so.
Experts agree that the cost to retain employees is far less than the cost to hire someone new. It’s not surprising when you think about it: there are costs associated with recruiting, onboarding, and training. Then you also have lost productivity, damaged employee morale/engagement (especially if your turnover rate is high), and increased errors that happen under new employees. It adds up quickly!
Here are some things you can do to keep your current employees happy and engaged:
- Take employee complaints seriously and try to get to the root of the problem(s) whenever possible.
- Ensure your managers aren’t scaring away staff (remember that most people don’t leave bad jobs; they leave bad managers).
- What do your employees want out of this job? Conduct regular surveys to find out. For accurate results, keep these surveys anonymous (we all know there are often ways to tell; if you let employees know that by reacting as such, they will stop answering honestly!). Then, make organizational changes based on the results you get.
- Address and fix organization inefficiencies. If your department is struggling due to this, it’s likely others are too. By working to address these things through automation and process improvements, you’ll help employees reduce their workloads – thus, decreasing chance of burnout and turnover.
Compensation & Benefits Administration
One of the biggest time sucks for an HR department is payroll and employee benefits. When you do this yourself, you have to:
- Ensure that payroll and payroll deductions are processed accurately and on time each pay period
- Identify, select, and negotiate rates with carriers
- Answer individual employee questions and assist in advising on their unique situations
- Process any claims for pre-tax and fringe benefits
- Communicate plan changes to employees
- Maintain compliance with COBRA, HIPAA, ERISA, etc.
- Stay up-to-date on all legislative updates affecting payroll/benefits (then, make any necessary changes needed to comply with those updates)
- Complete reporting and documentation as required by federal, state, and local laws
- Handle everything regarding the Open Enrollment process (documentation, presentations, promoting your benefits, educating employees, enrolling them in their benefits, etc.)
- …and so much more.
That’s a LOT!
Factoring in all of the time and effort it takes to handle all of the above, it makes sense for most organizations to partner with trusted third-party payroll and benefits administrators who can do the heavy lifting.
Not sure where to start in your search? Check out our blog ‘Evaluating a TPA? Consider Asking These 5 Questions’.