What is the Role of HR in Best-Run Midsize Companies?

HR and the Best-Run Company

As companies continue to adapt to the digital economy, their HR teams are critical to recruit, train, and retain the talent needed to meet evolving business challenges. The ability to manage its entire workforce is an important differentiating factor for a company’s future success.

Companies of all sizes are moving to become “intelligent enterprises,” and many midsize companies take advantage of software with advanced capabilities such as artificial intelligence and machine learning to leap ahead of larger competitors. Agility and updated processes can make an important difference.

By leveraging all their data assets, advanced technology, and process automation, companies are able to embed intelligence into their operations.

Best-run companies empower employees to focus on higher-value tasks, improve decision-making, increase workforce agility and employee engagement, explore new business models, and achieve their goals.

Leading Midsize Organizations Understand the Impact of the Workforce on Achieving Overall Objectives

HR executives in best-run midsize companies take the lead in aligning the workforce through the use of modern technologies. Through digital transformation the workforce, is more effectively sourced, trained, and deployed.

IDC conducted a survey of 1,957 midsize companies (100–1,000 employees) worldwide to identify key factors associated with business success and progress toward becoming a best-run, digitally engaged company. The respondents were categorized into four groups based on their performance: laggards, survivors, strivers, and best-run.

What Is Driving HR?

HR in best-run companies is focused on strategic initiatives: Finding new ways of doing business, mitigating risk, and implementing digital business transformation.

HR in laggard companies is more focused on the tactical: Containing costs and maximizing profit while maintaining employee productivity.

What is driving business?

How Is Digital Transformation Going?

The ability of HR to leverage digital transformation tools, techniques, and behaviors in the execution of its responsibilities will drive enterprise success.

According to HR executives, best-run companies are, at a minimum, in the early stages of digital transformation, with the majority well underway — if not beyond — with integration.

On the other hand, laggards overwhelmingly have not even begun efforts to transform.
Digital transformation

Driving Collaboration in Midsize Companies: A Tale of Two Perspectives

Driving collaboration

Supporting Innovation: A Leading Factor in Success

Success is often earned by doing things differently. Following a path worn from use does not make a leader. Innovation takes many shapes. Innovation in HR might mean new and creative ways of building teams or ensuring that HR-related activities ft into the natural flow of everyday work.

Use of innovation

Best-Run Companies Embrace Modern HR Technology

Use of HR software

Laggards Don’t See the Benefits of Modern Technology

Benfits of modern HR technlology

Essential Guidance

HR plays a significant role in making a company a best-run company. A company’s greatest asset is most often its people. Attracting and retaining the best people, training them to be their best, and measuring the impact of the workforce are hallmarks of best-run companies. Becoming a best-run company requires investment in developing higher-level enterprise intelligence and associated people, technologies, and practices. IDC recommends that HR in midsize companies focus on the following:

  • Brand isn’t just for product sales. A company’s corporate brand is also a significant factor in attracting job candidates. Everyone wants to work for a winning organization. It is incumbent upon HR to put the absolute best employment brand forward to compete in the new war for talent.
  • Empower employees to innovate: Treat innovation as a competency. Encourage, promote, and reward it.
  • What gets measured gets better: Workforce performance is at the forefront of business success. Excelling at data management and analysis isn’t enough. Invest in people, technology, and processes that result in actionable data for decision-makers.
  • Promote communication and collaboration: Ensure a clear understanding of key metrics, key performance indicators (KPIs), and data across the total workforce (internal and external). A common language is a prerequisite for achieving data-driven initiatives.
  • Invest in modern technology: New, innovative technologies such as artifcial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML) and the Internet of Things (IoT) will form the basis of digital transformation platforms in the future.


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