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The HR function is getting more attention in the boardroom, amid a new commercial awareness of the business side of hiring staff and keeping them contented. What had been previously seen as a more softer set of skills, has given way to number crunching and analytics as HR executives start to demonstrate their value and how they are contributing to the business revenue.

The theory is pretty basic in that if you can increase employee engagement, it follows that staff retention will be higher and with less turnover then production can be increased. Human Resources teams have started looking to influence this equation through the adoption of employee rewards programs by partnering with local businesses and provide rewards on a monthly or annual basis. It’s a win-win all round as the businesses offer discounts while promoting their brand and happy, rewarded staff are more engaged and more productive.

Various methods are used to track employee productivity, which by necessity becomes more of a focus, as HR becomes more commercialised. Taking employee salary and onboarding costs along with training and development into account, savvy HR managers are demonstrating increases in revenue, new client generation or a reduction in errors.

In order to achieve greater professionalism in the HR function, a trend toward outsourcing has been evident. This can involve the full range of HR services from onboarding and drafting internal policies to staying compliant with regulations and the related task of producing employee handbooks. It’s often worth spending the time here to make sure the handbooks are user-friendly and jargon-free, so that staff can actually understand them and know what they are getting from their employers.

In addition to outsourcing the onboarding process, there has been notable interest in both salary administration and related market analysis over pay rates, in order to make sure offers are attractive to potential employees. Other related activities, in line with the trend to engage and motivate staff, including employee satisfaction surveys, bringing more data to the picture, as well as other benefits and corporate wellness programs such as gym membership.

Bringing a greater degree of professionalism to the HR department also includes getting a better handle on safety procedures. Many companies simply don’t recognise the importance of proper health and safety protocols and operating in the Caribbean also brings the need to be ready for hurricanes with a robust preparedness policy.

Cutting-edge software applications can help improve HR operations as well as increase efficiency in the department. Technology solutions like BambooHR are both simple to deploy and user-friendly for staff to update. Keeping employee files all in one place, recording absence and providing an approval mechanism for time off through such systems is effective and transparent, offering significant business benefits.

Introducing a level of professionalism in the HR unit will not just help set expectations in this regard but can be the key to a happy, stable and productive workforce.

Visit to find out more about how we can help your HR function or speak to Jakub Jahnl at


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