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How HR Can Be the Healthcare C-Suite's Secret Weapon

Lena J. Weiner, for HealthLeaders Media, March 3, 2014

HR is traditionally not considered a source of strategic organizational power, but HR teams within hospitals and healthcare systems are uniquely equipped to lead healthcare organizations through this unprecedented time of transition.

Whatever your role in healthcare, you're keenly aware that the industry is experiencing great amounts of change right now. Legislative reforms and new regulations are pushing the business of healthcare forward at an unprecedented pace. In many cases, the industry is moving into uncharted waters, and employees are along for the ride, whether they want to be onboard or not. In such a situation, it is absolutely necessary to have strong leadership.

But who should be leading?

Human resources is uniquely poised for this role, being well-versed in employment law, and attuned both to the organization's staffing needs and the needs of its staff as well. While HR is traditionally not the place organizations turn to for strategic ideas, HR teams within hospitals and healthcare systems are uniquely equipped to lead and to influence other leaders through the difficult transitions the industry is currently facing.

Not Just Paper Pushers
Long gone are the days when HR staff simply administered the hiring process, worked to get payroll turned in on time, arbitrated employee disputes, and made sure the cafeteria was a pleasant place to eat lunch. Since the early 00's, however, HR's job throughout many different industries has been moving toward a more consultative role.

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1 comments on "How HR Can Be the C-Suite's Secret Weapon"


Michael (3/6/2014 at 7:04 PM)
Organizations are being challenged through this time of massive change in the health care industry. It is pivotal that organizations have strong leadership teams in place to make this transition as smoothly as possible for the organization and its employees. Many people do not have a great enough understanding about what the health care reform means or how to change with it to make informed decisions about there personal insurance coverage. This article makes strong cases for why HR managers are in a strong position to be this guiding light for organizations and their people because of the backgrounds associated with HR. Many are well educated in employment law and all are very aware the organizations staffing needs as well as the needs of the staff. This will be more successful when people start viewing HR as their partner instead of a place where discipline occurs. They can act as trusted informants for their staff and as a reality check for the employers who may not know what they can do about this transition from a legal, and a strategic stand point.