CIPD blames generation gap for disaffected HR parents

A generation gap may be causing HR practitioners to keep their children away from careers in the profession, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

A poll by consultancy Hudson last week revealed that three in 10 HR practitioners would tell their children to steer clear of the profession.

While more than half of the 250 HR professionals surveyed would recommend the career to their offspring, 28% would not. A lack of opportunities, money and flexible working put many parents off.

But Vanessa Robinson, manager of organisation and resourcing at the CIPD, said HR had evolved a lot since many HR parents joined the profession.

She told Personnel Today: “HR has become more business-focused, and maybe that’s the reason some people would not recommend it to their children.

“HR professionals now need to have more financial, IT and business skills. Perhaps a generation ago people just wanted to work with people.”

Robinson said HR offered great variety, a chance to operate at the heart of business, and the opportunity to deal with people on a daily basis.

“If people are purely driven by money then there are professions that offer more for them, but in terms of job satisfaction, it comes down to what the individual wants,” she said.

She said she was “surprised” that people saw HR as a less than flexible profession.

Andy Rogerson, chief executive of Hudson UK, said the findings of the poll were “very disturbing”.

“Trying to keep frustrated employees motivated and upbeat will be one of the key challenges for businesses in these tougher economic conditions. Ignoring employees’ concerns will not be an option,” he added.

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