Measure relevance to gain the ergonomic chair

by 20 Oct 2009

Measuring the relevance of each task which every employee undertakes is the best way to build respect within an organisation, Jodi Dickson, the group employment relations manager of Mounties Group said today.

Speaking at the national HR Leadership conference in Melbourne, Dickson said that “relevance” is the one thing that can easily be measured and defined and is a critical tool in building the respect of not just the employees, but the overall company and external environment.

“If you can be relevant to the people you are managing you will always have their respect,” she said. “It’s not easy and you will always have one hand on the horse, but it is very important to keep the respect of the individual employee and the organisation as a whole.”

Dickson said that measuring relevance can be done in four different stages; relevance to the organisation, relevance to the individual department, relevance to the employee and relevance to the legislative environment.

In other words, each task must be aligned to the organisational goals, while at the same time contribute to the individual department’s profit centre. It must also be in line with the individual’s personal job and, lastly, adhere to the legislative environment.

It is HR’s role to ensure this “relevance” is measured and also that it is in line with what the CEO and executive team wants from the HR function.

“When we talk about HR having a seat at the table, we must ask ourselves what type of seat it is,” said Dickson. “Is it a stool that is pulled into the room every so often when times are tough, a bouncing ball that jumps from department to department that is under pressure, a bean bag that is lower down than every other chair? Or is it the best ergonomic chair that everybody else wants? That’s the chair HR have to aim for – the ergonomic one that everybody else wants.”

In order to do that, said Dickson, there is no point in HR just doing what they think is best for the company. Instead, they must find out what the CEO and the company wants and needs from them – and then apply it.

- Sarah O’Carroll

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