How to empower your managers to handle employee relations issues

Lizzie Buxton

Written By Michael Campbell, Commercial and Product Director, AdviserPlus

13th May 2021

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A straw poll of our LinkedIn followers working in the HR profession recently revealed that the biggest challenge / objective for HR teams was ‘Empowering managers to handle employee relations issues’.

68% of our followers agreed, placing this priority above other workplace challenges, which included:

  • Accessing MI and insights
  • Reducing sickness absence
  • Digitalisation of ER case management

Given the conversations that we have with HR leaders daily, this result doesn’t surprise us.

The challenge for HR

HR leaders are understandably still grappling with the implications of COVID-19 on their organisations, which continue to present a clear challenge: how can HR devote enough time and resource to the key strategic issues, while also ensuring that those on the frontline – the line managers – feel supported and empowered to handle employee relations issues with confidence?

Though managers are the front line of ER delivery, HR is ultimately on the hook for how people matters are handled in their organisation. In order to empower managers and give them greater ability to deal with people matters, they need to have the skills and resources to deliver confidently and consistently.

The solution

This is a vision that the product development team at AdviserPlus has had for the past few years, and it’s why we have developed empower®. At the heart of our empower® proposition is our own innovative HR technology that takes line managers on guided journeys through people processes.

Making the solution entirely configurable was a key requirement, enabling AdviserPlus to wholly embrace a client’s policies, processes and procedures in clear, sequential steps that guide a manager through exactly what they need to do and when. Capturing key pieces of information along the way and supporting the tasks that arise during the process, for example generating a letter, makes it really easy for the manager to do the right thing at the right time.

The solution recognises that managers do not necessarily encounter issues of conduct, performance and grievance daily, and so the process flows guide the manager through the journey.

This drives a consistency of approach and, with every click, decision and supporting document recorded, creates a robust audit trail providing assurance for HR functions.

Key to what we’ve developed is the recognition that each organisation is at a very different stage in its HR transformation journey and each has a very different starting point in terms of manager capability and HR’s confidence in managers taking greater ownership of people matters. This is where empower® really comes into its own.

Its huge configurability means it can expose as much or as little control to the manager as an organisation wants and, crucially, this can easily be adjusted. And the empower® model gives an organisation complete flexibility over its people contribution, they can retain the ER case adviser contribution in-house, outsource to AdviserPlus or, as a number of clients do, enjoy a hybrid model.

Find out more about the power of empower® to enable your managers to handle employee relations issues here. Or if you’re ready for a demo, get in touch:

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