HR issues you must get to grips with this year

Here we explore some of the most common dilemmas facing HR teams in the UK

HR policies tend to vary and evolve from company to company; however, there are some universal issues that anyone in the HR sector is bound to come across during their career. Here we explore some of the most common dilemmas facing HR teams in the UK and identify the best way to resolve them.

Retaining and recruiting staff

A good workforce is the backbone of any company, with retaining existing staff usually a number one priority for HR teams. The experience and knowledge that long-term staff hold is invaluable in keeping productivity levels high and day-to-day business ticking over smoothly. A good HR team will recognise that skilled staff are an asset and will work hard to meet their needs in terms of incentives and remuneration without infringing on the wider interests of the company.

On the other hand, recruiting fresh new talent is important and finding candidates to complement and slot into an existing team can be a tough and time-consuming job. Using a high-quality software system allows HR teams to analyse and compare the details of candidates with ease; in addition, their details can be stored for future reference should new vacancies arise. Having candidate information to hand in this way can reduce the time and costs associated with advertising the role.

Productivity and training

HR is not just about making up the numbers but also about ensuring that the people behind the numbers are performing in the optimum manner. If productivity levels appear to be slipping, HR needs to investigate whether more training, guidance or investment needs to be rolled out in these areas.

Organising and recording the training and development of employees also comes under the HR remit, along with keeping track of any training payments, arranging cover and ensuring everyone is up to date with key training, such as fire training. Communicating with senior managers is a good way to keep abreast of any productivity or performance issues within the company.

Health, safety, diversity and discrimination

Demonstrating that these types of training have been carried out is particularly important should any issues or disputes arise within the company. It is the responsibility of HR to ensure that employees have been given the correct training to enable them to work safely and respect one another. Failing to prove this can result in legal ramifications.

Keeping up-to-date records via HR software systems is a good way to demonstrate the relevant training that employees have received in the event of a health and safety or personnel incident.

Disciplinary procedures

Disciplinary investigations can be arduous and time consuming. Not only will evidence need to be gathered but also a clear and thorough account of the whole procedure will need to be recorded, such as minutes from meetings, agreed outcomes and trade union involvement.


Employee pay is usually managed between a designated payroll department and HR. To keep this balance running smoothly, HR software that links directly to the accounts information is recommended to help avoid any incorrect payments being submitted. This also enables information to be electronically recorded and updated, removing some of the manual work from HR teams.

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The British Institute of Recruiters is the Professional Body operating The Recruitment Certification Scheme

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