Inspect What You Expect: Human Resources Organization

“To win in the marketplace, you must first win the workplace.” – Doug Conant

In our quest for organizational excellence, we’ve explored the practice of “Inspect What You Expect” within salesmarketingcustomer success and finance. Today, our journey takes us to the foundation of our workforce – the Human Resources Department.

Just as a strong foundation supports and stabilizes a building of any size, HR forms the base upon which an organization of any size can be built. It provides the essential structure, policies, and processes that hold the entire business together. Just as a well-constructed foundation ensures a building’s longevity and resilience, HR’s effective management of talent, culture, and policies contributes to the organization’s durability and success. It’s the cornerstone that, when solid and well-maintained, allows the organization to rise to great heights while weathering the challenges that may come its way. In essence, HR is the architectural blueprint for organizational strength and endurance.

Now, while many different items are thrown under the umbrella of HR, if we had to establish one as its – and most businesses’ – most valuable asset, it would be the people.

With it being the business’s most valuable asset, what areas within HR involve people and would have the most powerful impact on the organization as a whole? This is where we’ll start our inspection.

#1: Recruitment, Hiring & Retention

Recruitment, hiring and retention can take on so many directions, but they all stem from each other.

If this is something that you and the organization are struggling with and are starting from ground zero, the first place you want to inspect is retention. You want to start here as this will inform you if you are hiring the right individuals for your roles and inform you which attributes, skills and qualifications the right individuals possess.

The folks who are doing a great job and staying the longest should help inform you on what to look for in the recruiting and hiring process.

If you fix retention, automatically recruitment and hiring become easier, as you have less holes to fill. Less recruitment is needed, more time is available for hiring, more time can be devoted to hiring, etc.

#2: Employee Onboarding and Development

Employee onboarding and development programs ensure that employees have a smooth transition into the organization and opportunities for growth both initially and throughout their time with the company. This can have an enormous impact on the productivity of the organization by minimizing ramp time and leveling up your employees, as well as having a significant boost to company culture and morale.

Inspecting the onboarding process and helping employees get up to speed to start contributing as quickly as possible is the hard cost saving for the organization. The soft cost savings come in the form of developing your current staff to grow and not having to fill roles externally.

#3: Employee Engagement and Satisfaction

To continue to improve company culture, inspection of employee morale and satisfaction with the company is crucial. Just as customer success teams seek customer feedback, HR should inspect employee engagement and satisfaction surveys to learn where they can improve.

Making improvements to the areas that are most concerning and then highlighting them as company wins are huge culture boosts for any organization.

#4: Performance Management

Performance evaluations and goal-setting should have 2 main areas of focus when being constructed:

  1. Aligned to company objectives. 
  2. Data Driven. 

Organizations whose performance evaluations are tied to company objectives promote consistency. When these same objectives can be defined by data, it removes the potential for biases and makes it more cut and dry.

While not all biases will be able to be removed, taking a step towards removing them as much as possible is a win.

#5: Workplace Policies and Compliance

Staying up to date with industry compliance and policies to remain both compliant and competitive in the marketplace are valuable assets in today’s ever-changing world.

Balancing the need for top-tier talent while meeting their demands for work culture and fit is continuously fluctuating. The solution is as simple as providing productivity and performance metrics to hit and rewarding those who achieve them.

HR organizations are the layer in the organization that company culture starts with. Agile organizations that can provide flexibility in the marketplace and adjust to the market dynamics will give themselves and their organization a competitive advantage for top talent.

Having the right metrics and systems in place to keep the talent is what eventually separates organizations from one another.

The above areas all point towards areas for inspection and what you should look for. In order to have your HR organization humming and up with the latest trends you have to make sure that you have the right technology in place to allow for scale.


If you’re still using spreadsheets for your HR functions, welcome to the 21st century; we’ve been waiting for you. Modern HRIS (Human Resource Information Systems) can automate everything from attendance tracking to performance reviews. Regularly inspect how well your technology solutions are serving your HR needs. Are they streamlining processes, or are they just expensive email generators? Your tech stack should be your sidekick, not your stumbling block.

HR excellence is ultimately achieved through continuous inspection, refinement and alignment with the company’s values and goals.

Let’s get to work.