HR: outsourcing v in-house

Outsourcing an HR function is increasingly popular, and can complement in-house teams, explains Nicola Mason, HR consultant at Napthens solicitors.

HR is one of the most popular areas of a business to be outsourced, and the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel Development) found through its winter 2014-15 survey that a third of SMEs reported outsourcing complex advice. There are many reasons why businesses turn to outside help for HR functions.

SizeSome businesses are simply not big enough to have a dedicated team internally, and need to consult with a third party provider leaving the management to get on with the day-to-day running of the company and focussing on business development. It is also very common for HR consultants to work on a project-by-project basis for a business, working at a fairly strategic level, developing an HR strategy and ensuring it matches up with the company’s business plan.

Specialist advice

SensitivityIn some cases, teams may be called in to handle sensitive issues such as a disciplinary issue against a business’ HR team itself. Management is not always trained or skilled enough to deal with these types of situations. Having an independent HR advisor can give additional credibility to the process.

Cost

Whatever the reason for outsourcing, it’s important to remember that where there is an existing HR team in place within a business, they should not feel threatened.

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