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IMA Human Resources Blog

HR Competitive Advantage Trends for the Middle Market

The Overture Group is an IMA Member

Middle market search and recruiting is constantly changing, but The Overture Group’s mission is to provide our clients with the expertise we have gained with years of experience. In recently completed VP of HR/CHRO* searches for clients with 100-1000 employees, a clear trend we have been seeing for years was illuminated. Many middle market companies have shifted their view of HR from an administrative cost center to a value-added strategic function of the business. This is a crucial advantage for those companies attracting and retaining top talent.

The emphasis on HR as a strategic function of the business has been happening for decades, but the trend has recently accelerated by of number of factors including the adoption of mobile and cloud-based technology along with shifts in what employees value. Regardless, when interviewing HR leaders it is easy to see the shift over the last 10 years from administrative leadership to strategic leadership.

The trend is further codified by the fact that the background of these leaders varies. The leaders came from organization that were

  • similar sized mid-market company with an innovative HR philosophy
  • a blend of large and small companies
  • hand-on leadership roles at large companies eager to bring top processes and polices to a smaller company.

There is one clear common trait; all of the top candidates were able to clearly articulate a winning culture and how their company was working to facilitate that culture.

The bottom line is that the right HR leader will guide their company’s executive team to understand and anticipate the organization’s talent needs. In the middle market that leader also needs to be hands-on enough to build and implement a strategy and culture that lands the right talent. In addition to talent acquisition, HR leadership must focus on the developing and cultivating the company’s current employees.

If you’re a company leader, regardless of the size, you should be asking is your HR how to bring strategic value to the organization.

 

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