One of the talking points of the HR year is Personnel Today’s annual line-up
of the profession’s movers and shakers – the top 40 HR power players. The list
is our view of the most high-profile and influential people in the HR arena.
This year’s list is, as always, a barometer of the HR climate. The presence
of several supermarket HR chiefs reflects the performance of those companies
and the big role played by HR in achieving that.
The heads of equal opportunities bodies are prominent too, following a year
when equal pay and work-life balance issues were rarely out of the news.
Some of our ranking may seem provocative. Putting Work Foundation chief Will
Hutton ahead of CIPD leader Geoff Armstrong, for example, might seem
controversial. But we feel Hutton has done more to set the agenda for the
workplace on the national stage in the last year than Armstrong has, whatever
the latter’s other achievements.
We urge anyone in a junior HR job to read through the achievements of the HR
power players. They may seem remote from you now but their stories may give you
tips about how to get your foot a little higher up the ladder.
One way to raise your profile is to enter the Personnel Today Awards this
year. Success could be a big step towards a higher profile job and, over time,
a place in our power players’ list.
HR jobs and salaries may have taken a dip but the power players list tells
us that the longer term future of HR is robust. As Oracle HR head Vance Kearney
says: "HR is where the action is going to be for the next 10 years."
Anybody who doesn’t want a piece of the action is in the wrong profession.
You could try accountancy, perhaps.
By Noel O’Reilly