What is HR Consulting?

Human resource (HR) consulting is a broad term which covers the processes of managing an organisation’s workforce. HR consulting focuses on utilising a company’s personnel to achieve the goals set by the organisation.

HR consultancies may be hired during a merger, acquisition or other specific task when a company’s internal HR department is not large enough or unable to handle the transition. In other cases they can be asked in to an organisation which would like to completely overhaul their HR operations. This kind of project can take anything from a month to a year.

The work

The work involved with HR consulting helps to develop a human resources model that addresses the specific needs of a client business while also serving the best interests of both the company and the workforce.

In order to create this model HR consultants will examine various elements of the business, including:

  • Employee benefits
  • Employee services
  • Personnel recruitment
  • • Diversity and inclusion
  • Personnel administration
  • Human resource and capital management
  • Training and strategies.

As part of a HR model consultants will offer recommendations about some the following areas:

  • Personnel policy
  • Manpower planning
  • Job enrichment
  • Job evaluation
  • Industrial relations.

A HR consultant will work stay with or work alongside a company until their new HR model is in place. They will ensure the whole process runs smoothly and leave the client with a HR department that is equipped with specific procedures and guidelines which can adapt to any situation.

The people

A HR consultant requires a wide range of skills in their role. These include ‘softer skills’ such as people management and communication which are often seen as secondary skills in a business environment. A HR consultant needs to be able to make their recommendations and speak to the heads of companies while still being approachable and understanding of the company workforce.

HR consultants can come from a wide range of backgrounds with a variety of different degree disciplines. Many of those who have joined HR consulting later on in their careers will have worked in either HR departments or managerial roles. It is possible to take specific HR qualifications from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development; however these are not a prerequisite for entering HR consulting.

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