HR is not as stressful as the CIPD implies

Your front page news story about HR being the unhappiest profession in the UK (Personnel Today, 14 June) cites Mike Emmott, head of employee relations at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), as saying that “morale could be low because the HR task is inherently stressful”.

There is much hype about workplace stress, and one factor is that some jobs are more stressful than others.

HR may well share the same workplace stressors as some other professions, but it is not known as an area of employment where the operational stressors are high.

While it may be true to say that certain professions have a greater proportion of operational stressors (ie those that come with the territory, such as the violence that the police are at risk of confronting), and however pressured HR staff might feel, it is ludicrous to claim that their work is inherently stressful.

Perhaps the CIPD should be more careful with its words, lest it unwittingly encourages a spate of stress claims from unhappy HR staff.

Norman Randall
Managing director, Randall Consulting

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