People issues are increasingly at the top of managers’ agendas, but this is
not enhancing the standard of the HR department, according to the Institute of
Research carried out by the institute found the changing nature of work is
pushing managers to focus on developing their people and their teams.
Nearly nine out of 10 of the 470 managers questioned said their top priority
is developing leadership and teamworking skills. More than three-quarters (77
per cent) see coaching and mentoring as vital.
They also believe creativity and innovation will become more important, with
almost half saying they expect to see initiatives to encourage this in their
organisation in the next year.
Four out of 10 think mobile and flexible working will be introduced in the
next year. However, the respondents, who were mostly senior managers, did not
think the focus on people would enhance the position of HR.
Fewer than one in five 18 per cent think the HR director job will become a
strategic role in the next year. Only 21 per cent think HR will gain a
strategic presence in the next five years.
Mark Hastings, head of policy at the Institute of Management, said HR’s
central role is acknowledged but that more responsibility for people issues is
being devolved to line managers.