Your human resources department is the key to achieving your company’s strategic aims


A company’s Human Resources division can play a critical role in a firm’s strategic planning. Its knowledge of a workforce’s skills and its role in establishing a company’s values and culture can make a major contribution to a company’s bottom line, says Dean Kuri of Lae’s Bonn HR Consulting.

Bonn HR Consulting's Dean Kuri

Bonn HR Consulting’s Dean Kuri

The major challenge facing Human Resources (HR) personnel today is the need to support corporate productivity and efforts to improve performance.

So, it is logical that HR professionals must be more involved in designing—not just executing—the company’s strategic plan. This is because they can identify the human issues that are vital to defining and achieving that business strategy.

Perhaps most importantly, they can conceptualise and execute organisational change, which often fails—usually because executives fail to understand the human dynamics involved with implementing change. Organisations which know how to engage their human capital, from strategy development to strategy execution, are surging ahead and will continue to do so.

Competitive advantage

Superior human resources and people management practices are an important source of competitive advantage but this is only true if the human resource is used in the right way and for the right reasons.

There are a number of ways in which HR departments can help senior management formulate strategy, including:

  1. Supplying competitive intelligence that may be useful in the strategic planning process;
  2. Supplying information regarding the company’s internal human strengths and weaknesses;
  3. Building a persuasive case that shows how—in specific and measurable terms—the firm’s HR activities can and do contribute to creating value for the company.

‘Organisations which know how to engage their human capital, from strategy development to strategy execution, are surging ahead and will continue to do so.’

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For its part, a competent HR Division will continually ask itself a series of basic questions:

  1. Is our HR policy comprehensive and conclusive?
  2. Does our policy comply with statutory and legislative standards?
  3. Is our staff discipline and code of conduct policy adequate?
  4. Is our HR and payroll system automated and integrated?
  5. How effective is our performance management system?
  6. How fair and rewarding is our remuneration structure?


A HR Department is usually assigned the role of developing behavioural competencies: that is, ensuring that staff skills, knowledge and behaviours are in alignment with the company’s values.

It’s a great way to ensure that staff time and effort is not wasted and productivity is maximised.

So, it is necessary that HR staff monitor the ‘health’ of the company’s corporate culture, and also to assess the relevance of those values, which often change and should reflect the prevailing economic and social climate.

That means defining values, and this is an area that trained HR staff are uniquely qualified to help senior executives define and describe for all staff.

A well-defined and thoroughly described set of values, endorsed by the Executive Team, provides a powerful basis for creating the desired type of corporate culture.

Dean Kuri is the Principal Consultant of Bonn HR Consulting in Lae. This article is based on his presentation to the recent annual seminar of the Lae Chapter of the PNG Human Resources Institute.

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