Napthens survey demonstrates 2016 HR challenges

Recruitment and selection of staff are considered to be the most important HR issues to a third of businesses, a new survey has revealed.

The study, carried out by the Employment and HR team at Napthens solicitors, found the following when clients were quizzed about the most important focuses for their HR teams over the next 12 months:

• Only three quarters of the clients surveyed stated they had an internal HR function • Recruitment and selection was chosen as the top ranking answer when clients were asked, ‘what is most important for the business in the context of HR over the next 12 months?’ • 30 per cent of businesses do not consider they are adequately equipped to deal with the HR challenges they hope to target in the next 12 months • The main driver for Napthens’ clients not engaging a service or a professional to assist them with their HR strategy was cost alone.

Nicola Mason, HR consultant at Napthens, said the figures were an interesting snapshot of the HR priorities for private sector businesses getting ready for 2016.

She said: “A HR function, whether in-house or outsourced, can make a real difference to a business.

“We have known for some time that recruitment has been a real issue for many businesses, particularly SMEs, and these results are confirmation that recruiting good talent and individuals who are ‘fit’ for businesses remain a key challenge.

“It’s particularly interesting to see that, apart from recruitment, most of the other big issues highlighted for businesses involve ensuring they are managing their existing talent effectively through performance management, and retaining their workforce through employee engagement initiatives. It is fantastic to see that businesses have these topics on their radar as these are areas that increasingly demonstrate return on investment.

“From a HR perspective, employees are the most important part of any business. These results demonstrate the focus businesses place on making sure that businesses and their employees are working together to ensure they attract and retain their talent in the best way to achieve strategic goals. “Nevertheless, they must not lose sight of the other areas of HR which will also demonstrate a real difference to the bottom line.”