HR staff must not go into denial when status quo is challenged

I found R Gilmour’s response (Numbers don’t add up when you are dealing with people, Letters, Personnel Today, 12 June) particularly sad in that s/he could find nothing positive in Nicholas J Higgins’ thought-provoking and challenging article (HR profession: To Be or Not To Be, Opinion, Personnel Today, 22 May, see right). Perhaps s/he is too fully immersed in the ‘litigious environment’ or reacting to the lack of interest shown by the managing director.

I welcome articles that challenge the way in which HR operates and find it frustrating that a sizeable number of my fellow CIPD members still appear to go into denial and bring out the 20 year-old ‘I’ve been in HR’ bit.

I’m not sure whether Gilmour actually fully understood Higgins’ article. My take on it was that it was actually focused on far more than measurement, and at no point did it purport useless metrics or ‘navel gazing’. As for the scientific bit, I use psychometrics/behavioural analysis tools – all of which use conjoint analysis.

So yes, there is actually quite a bit of science involved in HR – no matter how hell-bent some people are on dumbing it down.

Eric Welburn, Powacoach

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