Is it Time to Hire an HR Professional?

HR may be the most underappreciated role in a business, but the role is huge. As a tiny startup, a full-time HR manager may not be necessary, but when will it be? The short answer is, later than you may think. Let’s talk about why you may not need an HR pro yet, and when you probably should consider hiring one.
Is it time to Hire an HR Professional EddyHR

What's the Root Issue?

You probably found this article because you’re drowning in HR type tasks that are becoming too much to handle, so you asked, “When should I hire an HR person?” Keep in mind that not having an HR person isn’t necessarily the root problem.

Business News Daily has published an excellent article that lays out reasons to consider hiring an HR professional. If you read this article with a slightly different lens, you’ll see that these are certainly all signs that your HR efforts need to change. They do not necessarily mean that you need an HR professional.

There’s another option—HR software.

The reasons that Business News Daily gives to consider hiring an HR person are:

  1. Roles start to become specialized
  2. Your business grows to a certain number of employees
  3. More focus on revenue over HR tasks could boost the bottom line
  4. There are risks of operating without an HR expert

Let’s dive into these reasons and discuss if they’re true signs that you need an HR pro, or if HR software is a viable option. 

As a disclaimer, our discussion applies both to businesses who are considering hiring their first HR pro, or subsequent HR pros. 

1. Roles start to become specialized.

As your business grows and you hire more employees, your company is able to be more of an organization of specialists as opposed to generalists.

Business News Daily argues that these areas of specialty will eventually grow into departments and this is a great time to organize an HR department as well. That makes perfect sense, and if you’re in the financial position to build an HR department, then go for it. 

On the other hand, there are a lot of young businesses out there that are running on their bootstraps and can’t afford that expense. For these companies, an HR software solution like EddyHR is the answer. 

HR type tasks can be handled by operations or office administrator type positions. This puts more responsibility on your office admin or operations pro, but with a small company and a powerful tool, it won’t take much time from their primary responsibilities.

EddyHR is a great option if this is the way you want to go. It provides user-friendly tools to manage all of your HR needs from recruiting to PTO and lets you handle administrative HR tasks in minutes not hours.

2. Your business grows to a certain number of employees.

The argument here is similar to the one we just mentioned. When your company gets big enough, HR tasks become too time-consuming to handle the way you have up to this point.

Biz Brain advises hiring an HR pro once your business reaches 16 or 17 employees. This is definitely a good threshold for creating a more robust HR program, but you could probably delay hiring a full-time HR pro with the more inexpensive option of a good HR program.

This will save you tens of thousands of dollars every year, while drastically reducing your HR-related workload.

3. More focus on revenue over HR tasks could boost the bottom line.

Time is the most valuable commodity we have, and no matter our resources, we can’t buy more of it. Bill Gates has the same 24 hours a day that we do.

As a small business owner, operator, or employee, you don’t have time to do everything. Success comes from careful allocation of the time you do have.

If your company spends time on HR tasks to the point that your bottom line suffers, something needs to change. 

A full-time HR manager is definitely a potential solution to this problem. Keep in mind, however, that we’re trying to protect that prized bottom line. The average HR manager will cost you about $60,000 per year. That’s definitely not chump change for a small business!

If you can meet your HR needs by buying an HR software solution, do it. It costs far less, and it could meet your needs just as well at this stage of business.

4. Risks of operating without an HR expert.

Running a business is risky both from internal and external factors. External threats put you in danger of going out of business, internal threats put you in danger of being sued.

It’s the CEO’s job to worry about the external factors, but it’s HR’s job to worry about the internal ones.

External risk factors

  • Competition
  • New laws
  • Technological advances

Internal risk factors

  • Workplace unfairness
  • Legal compliance
  • Employee Turnover
  • Inconsistency in rewards and discipline

There’s a lot more to HR than holding interviews and the occasional performance review. It’s a very technical and delicate industry, and it can be intimidating for someone who isn’t trained in it.

EddyHR helps you fulfill all of your small business HR needs with confidence. From hiring guides that help you stay legally compliant, to onboarding tools that help you reduce turnover, EddyHR can help you skirt these risks.

Okay, but when should I hire an HR person?

We’ve been laying out reasons why a scrappy startup might not need a full-time HR professional. At the same time, we understand just how important a role HR plays in an organization. 

There are definitely many benefits that a good HR pro brings to the table that even the best software never could. EddyHR wouldn’t be EddyHR without our dedicated HR manager. 

Here are a few of the many reasons to hire an HR manager even if you have awesome HR software.

You want an amazing culture.

At EddyHR, our product team and engineers are the best in the business. Our sales team is the most charismatic group of people out there, and our marketers think they’re pretty cool too 😉. 

We have a great workforce, but none of us could fill our HR manager’s shoes when it comes to injecting fun and culture into our business. Our HR manager focuses on keeping the business a place we all want to be so we can focus on our jobs to keep the business running.

Check out the “Culture” section of our resource center to see what a great HR manager can do for company culture. With everything from holidays to activities and everything in between, there’s too much that goes into it to discuss here.

You're swamped even with the help of HR tech.

Eventually, despite your slick hiring and onboarding process and your easy employee management tools, the job becomes too much for you to handle alone. If your primary responsibilities are beginning to take a back seat to HR responsibilities, it’s time to hire some help.

There’s not much that’s more exciting than watching your business grow; however, with that growth comes growing pains. As your employee base increases, so do your PTO requests, job interviews, and recruiting needs. 

When these tasks begin to affect your productivity in other areas, it’s time to consider hiring an HR pro (or another HR pro).

You’re not exactly a people person.

We can be totally honest among friends, right? As amazing as HR is, It’s not for everybody. If you’re reading this post, you already understand the importance of the HR role, but the boot may not fit. Let’s say you’re a CEO that just doesn’t want to deal with the human side of business quite this closely, you should hire somebody who lives for that stuff!

Smart businesspeople hire people smarter than themselves to fill roles in which they’ll excel. If you don’t love HR, hire somebody who does; they’ll probably do a better job anyway. No offense.

"Smart businesspeople hire people smarter than themselves to fill roles in which they’ll excel. If you don’t love HR, hire somebody who does; they’ll probably do a better job anyway. No offense."

Conclusion

HR plays a vital role in any business. Wherever there are people, there’s a need for HR. The question is whether or not you need to hire somebody to do it. 

Even if you’re feeling some growing pains on the HR side of things, you don’t necessarily have to hire somebody to take care of it. With the right HR tool, handling HR is a lot easier than it otherwise would be. 

That said, there are definitely situations that require a dedicated set of hands to manage your HR tool and support your employees. So before you go and do something rash, look at your business. Evaluate whether an HR pro is something you need, or some quality HR software could do the trick.

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