Increase Employee Engagement and Retention… by Outsourcing HR

Engage Employees with expert HR tactics to retain your employees

Employee Engagement and Employee Retention Are Hot Topics and Hard Concepts

Finding employees is still ridiculously hard and keeping them can be harder. Engaged employees are retained employees.  Better Human Resources standards and practices can help.  Better than just policies and programs are real live HR experts who facilitate their success.

High turnover costs companies an average of 1.5 times the gross annual salary of the position in lost productivity and then time and money for recruiting, hiring, and training new employees.

Disengaged employees lead to lower productivity and profits. You want to do everything you can to keep your best people and have them fully committed to your company's success. One strategy that can help is outsourcing your HR functions to an expert provider.

How do you create and maintain employee engagement?  Are you wearing the HR hat?  Do you have an HR department of one [overworked or underqualified] employee?  Is your HR function just maintaining the status quo but not getting results?

A quality Human Resource Outsourcing Service can allow top companies to tap into specialized expertise and technology that an internal HR manager likely can’t match. This article  explores what might seem a contradictory concept: the benefits of outsourcing your HR Department in order to increase retention and engagement. We’ll look at how outsourcing improves recruitment, onboarding, performance management, benefits administration, compliance and more. Read on to see how working with an HR partner can create a better employee experience and stronger business results.

A Note On Displacing a Competent HR Professional

Before we dive in to just how an Outsourced HR Service can help, we want to make certain you understand the approach.  If you have a competent and knowledgeable HR professional or a whole department of HR professionals who actually provide high levels of service to your employees, we highly suggest you hold onto them.  Perhaps you can outsource HR projects or specialized pieces like benefit administration or compensation planning.  Some top-notch HR Service companies also will come alongside and support a harried HR department or HR leader. 

However, good HR people are hard to find.  Our HR Consulting and Outsourcing Firm never seeks to displace or subvert a good professional doing HR internally.  What we find more often than not, is someone who was labeled “HR” but really is not.  We find incompetent non-professionals acting like the HR department is their own gossip hive.  Or we find overwhelmed administrators who fell into HR simply because there was a need, but they don’t really know what they are doing. 

Unfortunately, when non-professional HR practitioners fill an HR role, it makes all of HR look bad.  It is no wonder there are books and magazine articles with titles like, “Why We Hate HR.”  So, where these situations are clogging up HR operations and lowering your company’s productivity or morale, we seek to make it right and save the reputation of HR nationwide. 

That is what the rest of this article will discuss.

Better Recruiting and Onboarding

Recruiting and onboarding are crucial for bringing in talented people who will stick around.  Utilizing true HR experts is going to do that in ways you haven’t even considered.  How so?  First and foremost, HR will be transformed into a service.  No longer viewed as the gossip department or compared to waiting in line at the DMV, your employees and manager will actually have structures and processes to lean on.  Employees will trust more and utilize the expertise and helpfulness of an outsourced HR function.

Morale goes up across the board.  The HR outsourcing service can identify and uproot problems and landmines that were never dealt with correctly before.  Assisting and training your managers in personnel issues is a big perk.  Removing obstacles like poor management or disincentivized compensation structures won’t hurt either. 

When all of this magic happens through a virtual HR service, it will be exponentially easier to find recruits.  Your employees will essentially become recruiters and cheerleaders for your company.

Additionally, many businesses lack the HR infrastructure to excel at talent acquisition. When you outsource the actual function of recruiting, you gain access to:

  • Expert sourcers to identify and engage qualified candidates
  • Sophisticated applicant tracking systems to organize hiring
  • Skilled recruiters who can sell candidates on your company
  • customizable onboarding programs to integrate new hires

With outsourced recruiting, you can fill open positions faster with great hires who have higher retention rates. Onboarding programs created by HR providers ramp up new employees for success quickly so they feel engaged right away.

Improved Performance Management

Ongoing performance management is essential for nurturing talent and aligning your people behind business objectives. Outsourced HR providers and virtual HR experts offer performance management solutions including:

  • - Goal setting features to create alignment
  • - Real-time feedback tools managers and employees can use year-round
  • - Performance review automation with customizable templates
  • - Data-driven insights into employee productivity

With these tools facilitated by your HR consultant, you can frequently recognize top performers, coach struggling employees and boost engagement through great management.

Better Benefits and Perks

Benefits administration and incentives are tricky, time-consuming parts of HR. When you outsource them, you get can realize better benefit plan designs and management suited to your budget and the  employees' actual needs. 

Not to mention:

  • Assistance selecting the right benefit plans and rates
  • Enrollment and communication of benefits to employees
  • Administration of open enrollment, changes, reporting and more
  • Compliance guidance on regulations like HIPAA, ERISA, COBRA, and more.

One of the greatest advantages of an HR outsource service is widening your exposure to new and innovative benefits and incentives.  Pet insurance, Employee Assistance Programs, and specialized plans like employee discounts are just a few of the incentives your current HR person hasn’t had time or knowledge to explore.  Since an HR service works with many different employers and industries, the HR experts there are often on the cutting edge of benefits and incentive trends.

By outsourcing benefits and incentives, you provide comprehensive and competitive benefits that make employees feel valued. And you ensure legal compliance to avoid fines and lawsuits.

Speaking of compliance…

Compliance with Complex Employment Laws

Staying compliant with employment laws is crucial for any business, but these days the laws change frequently and lawsuits that make their way through the courts are hard to keep up with.  HR law intricacies can be hard to navigate for a busy HR professional but even moreso for someone who is not really an HR expert. There are numerous federal, state, and local laws that dictate how employers must treat employees in areas like:

  • Discrimination - Title VII, ADA, ADEA, and local laws protecting certain groups
  • Leave time - FMLA, state sick day and family leave laws
  • Pay equity - Equal Pay Act, FLSA, and state pay laws
  • Workplace safety - OSHA regulations
  • Hiring issues - E-Verify, ban the box, background check laws
  • Benefits - ACA, COBRA, and HIPAA regulations
  • Unemployment insurance -Complex state UI laws

Even simple areas like overtime and expense reimbursement have legal nuances that are easy to overlook. Just one misstep could result in audits, lawsuits, or costly government penalties.

Partnering with an HR services firm gives you access to a team of actual HR experts who make it their business to keep up with legislative and best practices compliance. They stay on top of frequent regulatory changes so you don’t have to. Trusting HR to knowledgeable professionals ensures you meet all requirements, no matter how obscure or complicated. With true HR pros handling compliance, you can avoid legal pitfalls that could destroy a company.

Improved Employee Experience

All of the outsourced HR functionality above combines to create a better daily experience for your people. Employees who are well-recruited, onboarded, managed and supported are much more likely to be satisfied and engaged.  Other ways outsourced HR can improve the employee experience include:

  • Employee self-service portals for quick access to info
  • Convenient access to HR reps
  • HR Help desk support when employees have questions
  • Internal communications to keep everyone informed
  • Handbooks, manuals, and policies to establish standards

Complaint and reporting avenues to voice concerns securely

By partnering with an HR provider, you show employees you care about their needs and development. This, we know, drives retention and engagement.

HR is Really About Your Bottom Line

HR is Really About Your Bottom Line

 As a business leader, you have finite time and energy. Outsourcing HR allows you to focus your efforts on the business of YOUR business, not HR administration. With an expert partner managing HR, you can focus on customers, service delivery, production, sales and the core business mission.

In the end, outsourcing HR functions like recruiting, onboarding, performance management, benefits, and compliance can provide powerful advantages. It gives you access to expertise, technology and capabilities that likely aren’t feasible internally. Employees enjoy a far better HR experience that keeps them satisfied and engaged. This leads to higher retention, productivity and profits. If you’re ready to transform HR at your organization, consider outsourcing your HR department. You can create an exceptional employee experience that retains your top talent.