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Hard, soft skills every Human Resources practitioner must have

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Human Resources (HR) professionals face a hard truth: their jobs are evolving. There are now more responsibilities and constant pressure, no matter what industry you are in. HR professionals need to develop new skills to improve their workdays and further their career growth.

Retention is one of the hard skills every HR professional must have. The core duty of HR is finding talented employees and keeping them around.

Unfortunately, it is no secret that many companies have found it difficult to keep top talent around. Retention is not just about staying on top of what your employees want. It also involves making sure that you can provide them with it.

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The best way to do this is by creating a great company culture and communicating with your employees. Having the ability to identify and remedy areas where your organisation can improve retention rates is also critical.

Next is recruitment and selection. There is no denying that talent is key to the success of any HR professional. Many companies struggle when it comes to recruiting such talent and, as a result, they can be left shorthanded.

That is why every company needs to have a well-planned recruitment strategy in place. An HR professional can do this by creating an HR career page on their company website, utilising social media platforms and hosting events where they can meet potential applicants face to face.

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They must also have a deep understanding of how their company recruits and what it takes to get a good candidate excited about joining the organisation.

Management of payroll is another hard skill. Paying employees accurately and on time is essential to maintaining a positive work culture. Incorrect or untimely payments can lead to serious issues, such as stress, frustration and even embezzlement.

To prevent this from happening, HR professionals should have a strong understanding of what it takes to run payroll successfully for their company size, as well as a plan to make sure it runs smoothly.

By doing so, they will help their organisations save money and be viewed as an essential resource who can affect the bottom line.

What about soft skills? The last thing an HR professional wants to do is deal with an employment law nightmare. The company could be held liable for various issues, including wrongful termination, discrimination and harassment.

As an HR professional in today’s workplace, you must have a strong knowledge of applicable and relevant laws. They include, but not limited to, the Constitution of the Republic of Malawi, Labour Relations Act, Occupational Health, Safety and Welfare Act, Workers Compensation Act and HIV and Aids (Prevention and Management) Act.

This must be complemented with relevant amendments and government gazettes.

An HR professional must showcase effective communication skills. HR professionals rely heavily on their ability to communicate effectively with both employees and managers. They must be able to engage employees with the employer’s brand, help them understand the company’s vision and goals, and communicate important information regarding their roles within the organisation.

Doing this well requires that such an HR person intimately understands the company’s needs and how best to convey that knowledge to others.

They must also have a strong understanding of different communication styles to create an approach that is tailored to the needs of each audience.

HR professionals are tasked with solving some of the trickiest problems facing their organisations.

Such individuals must devise and implement solutions that benefit the company while still protecting employees who conflict with specific policies or practices.

HR professionals are often stretched thinly, with mountains of work to do in a limited period. A successful HR professional must prioritise tasks effectively, delegate where appropriate, and work quickly and efficiently to get the job done.

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