Holi is the time which makes us all think about colours. Colours which are associated with our lives, colours which are associated with our friends, and for professionals, the colours which are associated with our workplace. In many organizations in India, the HR, who is armed with talent management solutions and best workplace practices, is the most poised to add colours in our work life. But how many employees think that the HR actually makes their life colorful at the workplace? People Matters reached out to its extended community to know whether they thought HR was making their life colorful at the workplace, and if yes, then in what way.
The responses we got were a mixed bag. A lot also depends on what people thought was 'colourful' in the context of an organization. Some thought that having resources and workplace technology which complements the job that they perform makes their life colourful. While others said that if you really want to associate HR with the festival of colours, then why not also reflect on the philosophical aspect of the celebration: forgiveness. So, is the HR doing enough in ensuring that conflicts are peacefully resolved between individuals and departments in the organization? How closely is the HR working with the other departments to ensure that the workforce is aligned towards the purpose espoused by the organization, and also feels engaged with the work that they do?
HR makes our lives comfortable
Ramya Raman (name changed on requested), who identifies herself as a millennial and works at one of the smaller IT organizations in the Gurgaon Cyber City, said that it pained to see the HR in her organization so overburdened. She reflected that though she worked in an IT company, the HR processes were not fully automated. Plus, the HR was also expected to take care of administrative duties in the organization.
However, simply because the HR was empathetic in her company, they did everything under the sun to make their lives comfortable at the workplace. "So yes, definitely for me, the HR makes my life colourful, " said Ramya.
We are all on the same team
Another interesting anecdote was shared by a Sanjay Sharma (name changed on request), who works at a small startup, and he talked about how the company had adopted a pup which was part of the HR department of the organization, and his designation was that of 'Chief Happiness Officer'. And because they were too small a company, the only single HR person, like all other employees in the organization, was involved in other functions like marketing, product development and so much more.
"Anyone in our organization can suggest any change that would benefit the employees, and we all sit together to understand if it can be executed within the small budget we have," said Sanjay.
So, they all worked together towards ensuring that their work lives were colourful, and not just the HR.
They fired my HR
Apparently, though the HR tries her best to make the lives of other a comfortable experience in the organization, sometimes the times are just not good for them. During one downsizing activity, as shared by an ex-employee, Sushila Sehgal (name changed on request), of an online education company headquartered in Mumbai, the management relieved the HR guys themselves from their duties.
"The HR in my organization did not have a voice of their own, and the HR policies were dictated by the management. It really came as a shock to us when almost all of them were asked to leave during downsizing," said Sushila, "Not much addition of colors then."
My HR is invisible but amazing
What really stood out though was a response from an ex-employee of NetApp India. He talked about how during his time in the organization, the employees had absolutely zero interaction with the HR department. The system and processes were integrated over a global platform which they could access and it performed all the functions for them. They received almost no emails or reminders from the HR department to fill up the forms or provide data or any information to them.
"An amazing example, perhaps, where the HR functions so smoothly that it is invisible to the larger workforce," he said.
Let us know your thoughts
In all organizations, dependent on the management policy and the organizational culture, the HR comes in many colors and shapes. If you have interesting anecdotes to share with us about how your HR is making your organization colorful, then let us know the same in the comment section below. We would love to hear your thoughts.