The Futurist: Innovation challenges for HR – Human Resources Online

Posted: July 5, 2017 at 8:40 am

HR has the opportunity and responsibility to hire capable, diverse people with ideas and the capacity to think out of the box, says Lelia Konyn, head of human resources and corporate affairs at Shun Shing Group.

Companies increasingly call for innovation to stimulate growth, update business models, increase performance and appeal to customers.

The logic is simple: companies need to innovate to stay current, compete and create value and many are grappling with the realisation that what got us here will not take us forward. Hence, the need to engage employees and create processes conducive to business innovation overall.

Enter HR. As the custodian of people strategy and processes, HR has a tremendous opportunity to hire capable, diverse people with ideas and the capacity to think out of the box. HR is also the custodian of organisation design, and is often put in charge of corporate culture. People, organisation and culture is all it takes to foster innovation.

So why isnt there more innovation about? Because the very aspects that offer HR tremendous opportunities offer significant challenges:

Integration means embracing the company culture and the way things are done. Fitting in. Divergent ideas challenging the status quo are suppressed or watered down. The comfort of groupthink sets in.

Most companies are systemically not built to facilitate, sustain or nurture innovation. Few are the hierarchies in which bosses ideas, decisions or processes can be questioned and debated openly and consistently as a process.

Matrix organisations increase complexity: numerous functions, business units and locations often operate in silos with poor co-ordination, information flow and slow decision-making.

Corporate culture defines the acceptable way to act and work within an organisation. Complacency, lack of process to speak up and debate, fear of making mistakes in a blame culture, change aversion, endless emails and meetings are not conducive to innovation.

So what can HR do?

The June 2017 issue of Human Resources magazine is a special edition, bringing you interviews with 12 HR leaders, with their predictions on the future of HR.

ReadThe Futuristor subscribe here.

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The Futurist: Innovation challenges for HR - Human Resources Online

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