19th July 2017
A successful global HR Strategy depends on how well you involve and engage everyone in the organization to achieve business goals. This in turn also depends on how well communications and relations are managed with everyone in this process. It also helps enormously to have the right kind of HR technology tool to enable you in this journey.
In fact, everyone in your company is a stakeholder in your global HR strategy. Everyone is impacted by HR processes in their working lives and should be able to have a say. However, when you embark on implementing a global HR strategy, you will need to initially involve groups of stakeholders that are representative of all members of the workforce before rolling out to others, especially in large organizations. It is in the interest of corporate HR leaders to engage with each group of stakeholders that have different interests and points of view. Only then can corporate HR design and implement a global strategy that stakeholders can feel to be theirs.
Global and local interests
All your stakeholders in the company will be aligned to either a global or local focus, or even a regional one, depending on the nature of their jobs within the organization. Ideally, these perspectives should be included in the global HR strategy.
Many multinationals have implemented a global model, where the corporate department centralizes and sets policies, procedures and tools to ensure business interests are achieved across the organization.
In reality, companies often grow by expanding into new local markets through mergers and acquisitions or by setting up a local branch. Success may depend more on addressing local cultures and business needs. In such circumstances, global HR practices set by the corporate office may not always be suitable. Your global HR strategy should be flexible enough to integrate these differences comfortably and smoothly to satisfy everyone. This is in addition to legal and compliance requirements that are addressed as mandated by the country and the parent company.
Key stakeholder groups
As different groups of stakeholders will have different views and needs, your goal is to bring out the most of each one’s knowledge and skills, ultimately to achieve the best alignment with the strategic plan.
There are a variety of communication tactics you can use for this purpose. Regardless of the tactics chosen, you need to encourage your stakeholders to voice their views, listen to them, get feedback from them and incorporate what makes sense for local and global practices.
The best means of communicating with these groups may vary under different circumstances. Here we describe each of the key stakeholder groups in an organization alongside the key goal to achieve through communication:
Local HR departments – share responsibilities and practices
Avoid reinventing the wheel by finding out what knowledge and best practices are already available in different markets and geographies that can be used for global HR and shared with other regions and countries.
By sharing responsibilities with local HR departments and embracing their input and feedback, you are making them feel as if the global HR strategy is theirs too.
CEOs and senior executives – pitch benefits and secure backing
Top managers are the ones who can drive the initiative and mandate decisions to go ahead. They themselves have a vested interest to extracting a global view of their talent worldwide in order to better manage the company strategically and financially.
These are the ones who will sponsor you if they can see the benefits for the company. Pitch correctly to these at high-level and high-impact meetings.
Employees – create a visible, proactive and collaborative experience
Employees are the largest group of users of your global HR system and should be involved from the beginning. Showing how HR can support and help them will go a long way to engaging them. This way, you will be able to build a healthier organizational culture of openness, trust and transparency which benefits the business.
Take a collaborative approach where HR communication becomes much more visible and proactive. This creates a more positive, inclusive ambience and a richer employee experience. Employees are far more likely to become more compliant and engaged.
Managers – make it easy for them to do people management
As line managers possess decision making powers that affect the day to day lives of their teams, securing their endorsement and support is already half the battle. They will be your change managers leading their teams hands on.
Open communication channels are crucial, especially when managers do not work out of HQ. Start conversations in formal and informal settings to address their people management needs and show how they can develop their teams.
Next week we will be publishing an article on the 10 tips to keep in mind to involve all stakeholders in a global HR strategy so that they all at your side all the way. Watch this space!