Prevention Is Better Than Cure: The Importance of a Quality HR Function

Erasmus once said that ‘prevention is better than cure’ and this is a concept which we can apply to virtually any aspect of our lives whether it be our health, our finances or our business. However, how can you apply to this to your business and specifically, your HR practices?

Here at Altum HR, we appreciate that when establishing a new business, understanding HR compliance can be tricky. You’re focused on the daily running of your business, your products, and your customers. The minefield of HR may feel like something you can put on the backburner for a rainy day when you have some free time. You may simply be struggling to understand the various ins and outs of legislation and need some extra help but have your hands tied by a lack of cash flow. Although you may like to outsource your HR requirements, you shelve it for the future when you have some additional spare capital to invest.

We also understand that for established businesses, it is frustrating when legislation changes and HR practices need to be updated. You may feel that the existing systems you have in place have been effective in the past and that there is simply no need to update them. If it isn’t broken, is there a need to fix it when you have so many other business decisions to manage?

Despite this, it is vital to understand that having effective HR systems in place is essential for many reasons and that prevention planning can save you an immense amount of time and money.

Ensuring that your workplace is compliant with health and safety regulations future proofs your business from a range of possible complications:

  • Situations in which staff are injured through unsafe working conditions could result in extremely costly tribunal processes.
  • Often these could have been entirely preventable had HR practices been effectively embedded or if HR consultants been approached in the first instance.
  • Similarly, ensuring that your contractual procedures are correct and modified when changes come into effect, will mean that your business and your employees are protected exactly as they should be, averting any possibility of future tribunal involvement.

HR practices can also help hugely with the effective running of your business on a day-to-day basis. They help ensure that your employee’s productivity and effectiveness in their roles is an asset to your company at all levels. Proper HR procedures and practices will ensure that your workers are well-qualified, aware of their responsibilities within the workplace, and motivated to succeed. It has been estimated that disengaged employees cost businesses between £52-70 billion a year. Preempting this and building strong training programs, clear line management systems, and effective appraisal schemes will go a long way in ensuring that your company is not contributing to these losses. Having these in place from the get-go rather than having to embed them when a problem arises, actively WILL save you a considerable amount of time and money and help towards the prevention of unnecessary situations arising.

Failing to fully take account of HR practices, believing yourselves to be too busy, assuming that your current policies are ‘good enough’, or merely thinking that ‘it won’t happen to me’, leaves you and your business wide open to possible serious outcomes which could have dire financial implications. There are no shortcomings when it comes to effective human resourcing.  It truly is the case that embedding comprehensive practices, policies, and documents will prevent a substantial number of issues which could arise at a later date. Quite simply, it isn’t worth the risk because you may find that the ‘cure’ you are looking for after an event is not viable and prevention really is better than cure.

If you would like to take the stress out of ensuring you have adequate policies and procedures in place, get in touch. Let us do the hard work for you leaving you to do what you do best – running your business!

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