HR professionals are better equipped than ever to shape the businesses they work in, despite the monumental economic and leadership challenges they face, according to opinions shared at an annual HR conference and exhibition held in the UK.
The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) hosted the 2011 expo from 8-10 November, and CIPD President Gill Rider told the opening session of the conference that profound shifts in the HR space are underway.
“I see a real shift in emphasis in what is required of great HR – more important than ever is our ability to lead and drive performance,” Rider said in her welcome address.
Demographic changes are leading a geographical shift of skills and talent and this, combined with the economic storm and the crisis of trust in leaders, has presented severe challenges for organisations. However, HR is uniquely positioned to help organisations through, Rider said.
“In HR we are all change agents - we have a crucial role to play in addressing this crisis,” Rider said, adding “These issues are not, in themselves, new. But what strikes me is the exceptional pace of change; the extent to which we are having to adapt, to be agile in our organisations.”
Rider said she had sensed an “acceleration” in the requirements and demands on HR and a greater “urgency” from the profession.
Rider commented that the demands on HR have grown, and as a profession HR needs to recognise that no other occupation has the same range of levers as HR to deliver and drive the change required.