Business owners today realise how dependent they are on the talent and motivation of their employees to help their business grow and succeed. However, many small to medium enterprises (SMEs) leaders still wear many hats – at what cost?
We spoke to Paul Watson from West Perth firm Pascoe Partners Accountants and asked him about the challenges Pascoe Partners was facing when they decided to start outsourcing their HR needs.
“Pascoe Partners were going through a period where the market was very heavily weighted towards the employees…commerce was on the rise and it was getting harder and harder to attract and retain quality workers. One of the initial triggers in regard to looking into our HR activities was reviewing our hiring agency costs. We found this amounted to roughly $100,000 in that year, with very few outcomes to show for this expenditure.”
Whilst your business may not been hiring as many staff in recent years, exposing your business to potential legal and compliance risks with inadequate or incorrect HR can be costly, while managing people issues can be extremely time consuming and distract managers from core business objectives.
Paul shared the four key signs you should consider obtaining HR help
- Are you recruiting and retaining the right employees?
This is one of most common challenges SMEs face, recruitment is both time-consuming and the use of agencies is costly. As Paul shared above, spending up to $100,000 per annum did not guarantee hiring and retaining the right staff in the business.
- Are you spending valuable time managing people problems?
SME managers often find themselves spending all their time “putting out spot fires” instead of completing planned tasks. Paul commented: “we were dealing with near on 80 employees and HR was becoming a fairly significant and complex role that myself and the other directors couldn’t keep taking on. Bringing in support really helped with those headaches you may not have time to deal with.”
- Do you understand all of your HR legal regulations and compliance?
Legislation and regulations are constantly evolving. Paul mentioned this was one of Pascoe Partners’ priorities when they started looking for HR support. “We had concerns about staying up to date with current and changing legislation in regard to our employees. Making sure we were legally compliant and ticking all the right boxes was very important to us.”
- Do you have in-house HR expertise?
For some SMEs this could mean the HR Officer is lacking certain skills and expertise. For other companies, like Pascoe Partners, it could be the HR function has fallen upon someone who had to pick up HR responsibilities as part of their broader role.
For Pascoe Partners, one of the highlights of outsourcing their HR was knowing that various situations, from poor performance, through to terminations and redundancies, would be dealt with promptly and correctly. Paul said it was most valuable having someone give them “guidelines in relation to the necessary steps to take, so we knew we were ticking the right boxes and doing the right thing.”
Many organisations such as Pascoe Partners have chosen to outsource all or partial HR activities to specialist providers. Arecent survey by national representative body Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI) found 53 per cent of respondents either fully or partially outsourced some of their HR activities.
Pascoe Partners is a leading mid-tier accounting and business advisory firm, centrally located in West Perth. Paul joined Pascoe Partners in 1997 and has been a Managing Partner for the last 15 years, leading a team of dedicated professionals who take pride in forming relationships with their clients and providing them with the very best accounting services and results
Contact WCA – People & Culture Solutions if you require any assistance with your Culture, Human Resources and/ or Industrial Relations requirements on (08) 9383 3293 or firstname.lastname@example.org