Passing the buck
Singapore - To ensure that line managers become more serious about the development and retention of their employees, some companies are now passing the costs of employee attrition and recruitment to the business units.
Callan Anderson, Asia general manager of Gemini Personnel says that as economies recover, companies will soon face talent shortage issues again.
In order to reduce employee attrition in the future, companies would need good line managers who have soft skills such as empathy, says Callan. "I think managers hate having empathy because they are the manager and they're setting goals, and it is either 'my way or the high way'. That's no longer practical, not because it is bad practice, but to lose staff is a very costly thing."
And in order to emphasize the need for strong people skills among line managers, Callan says some HR functions are now passing the costs of losing employees and recruitment costs back to business units instead.
"Some companies are working out the costs of each business unit losing staff and bring on staff and that cost is passed on to the business unit in their budgets" he says. Callan adds that this forces line managers to develop their "forward thinking" and helps in ensuring that they look after and develop the staff they have.
While the idea of HR redistributing the costs back to the business unit through internal invoices is still a relatively new concept, Callan says this helps HR to be seen as more than just a traditional cost-centre.
And as business units are given a budget internally which they have to use before they can apply for more money, Callan says these budgets are linked to how well the team is performing. "And [the budget] is linked to how your team is performing, and not just how many widgets you make or how well your sales team is performing. It is about how you manage your own internal structure to support the business as a whole."
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