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Navigating the complexities of HR and employment law can be a daunting task for any organisation. Whether you are a solo HR function in a small company, a growing business without a dedicated HR team, or a large corporation looking to outsource specific HR tasks, choosing the right HR support is crucial. The right partner can make all the difference in fostering a productive, compliant, and harmonious work environment. By managing the various aspects of the employee lifecycle —from recruitment to retirement— effective HR support ensures that the organisation operates efficiently and effectively, ultimately contributing to its success.

And we get it.

Firstly, we know all to well about the abundance of employment law changes in recent months and years, and the scale of the HR to-do list. And secondly, we get it because we listen to each and every one of you within the HR community, our clients, and experts, about the challenges you face in not only in managing the workload and objectives, but also the challenges you face in finding the support you need, when you need it most.

“As a business owner who has set up and grown a company, I found it challenging to find the professional support I needed—not just at the beginning, but throughout our journey to where we are today. I required expertise in areas such as marketing, sales, finance, and IT. And I believe many business owners share this experience. While I have the HR expertise, I understand that HR is no different; businesses of all sizes and levels of sophistication need professional HR support that understands commercial realities. I know how crucial it is to receive the right support when you need it and how rewarding it feels when you do. That’s the purpose that drives the team here at Insight HR: to add value to organisations, understand the challenges teams and businesses face, and support HR professionals when they need a helping hand.” Mary Cullen, Managing Director at Insight HR.

Understanding our clients’ preferences and concerns is at the heart of what we do. Listening carefully is one of our core values, as we always take the time to truly understand our clients’ needs and continuously strive to support them.

It’s a shame that sometimes we hear “I’d love your help, but we’re stuck in a contract with another provider and can’t get out of it.” This should not be the experience for anyone who is simply trying to get the right support, and do the right thing for their organisation and people.

So, in this guide, we’ve leveraged this listening approach, incorporating insights from our clients to provide practical advice and real perspectives on selecting the ideal HR support for both individuals and organisations. Our goal is to empower you with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions about your HR needs.

P.S If you’d like to get some help in the form of a free webinar, discussing the standout employment law and workplace-related cases from recent months, with Barry Crushell and Liam Barton sharing their insights and key takeaways, then click here!


Understanding Your Needs

Before you start looking for HR support, it’s essential to understand your specific needs. Are you looking for assistance with day-to-day HR tasks, compliance issues, strategic HR planning, or workplace investigations? Knowing what you need will help you narrow down your options and find a provider that can meet those needs effectively.

And of course, if you think you need HR support, then chances are, you do.

Many HR professionals or business owners may take on a challenge only to realise that their course of action, through no fault of their own, either didn’t solve the issue, or more often than not, made the situation worse.

Our first and most important piece of advice…

Do not be afraid to seek external support on tricky HR and employment law matters. Dealing with a difficult or obstructive employee can create significant problems for a business. Do not be afraid to seek external support on tricky HR and employment law matters. Ten minutes on the phone to an employment law expert could save you hours on the other side if things go wrong. Whether it’s contracts and handbooks or a workplace investigation, or anything in between, gain some clarity and confidence by speaking to those in the know before you jump in!”  Joe Thompson, HR Consultant, Insight HR.

Once you have a clear understanding of your needs, the next step is to evaluate potential HR support providers.

Understanding The Business

When choosing HR support, always be wary of those who will try to sell you a pre-made solution, before aiming to fully understand what the problem is, how your organisation works, and what you actually need.

Yes, it may understandably seem reliable and efficient to call up an advisor, pitch your problem, get a quick solution that sounds logical, all within the space of a few minutes, but that process ignores one very important reality – that every organisation is different.

We often get asked “what can Insight HR do for me?”

But we don’t answer with an answer, as such. Firstly, we listen.

So, ensure that your HR support can provide a listening ear, can understand how your organisation operates, journey to the root of the challenge, and provide unique solutions to your unique circumstances.

We know how frustrating it can be to not get the same support every time you need it, especially when you’re dealing with a graduate with little real-world or HR experience and receiving differing advice each time you ring your HR provider. With us, you’ll only ever get either your dedicated HR consultant or HR advisor, who will cultivate a deeper understanding of your business and provide simply better support for you. When you encounter any challenges, your HR team will possess comprehensive knowledge and be better equipped to address your needs.”  – Megan Power, HR Consultant.

Understanding The Value


While cost is an important factor, it shouldn’t be the sole determinant. Consider the value the provider brings to your organisation. As mentioned, a phone call or strong support at the outset can prove priceless in solving a challenge before it snowballs into something bigger (and more costly)!

And although you may be able to get some quick answers for a small recurring fee, that more often than not, isn’t the kind of advice that can add real value to your organisation. And how familiar does that (adding value) sound to those of you who work closely with the CEO (or similar)?  As the only saying goes, “pay peanuts and you’ll get monkeys” so do consider the quality that goes with the price tag.

Navigating the landscape of HR providers can feel like a blindfolded stroll through a maze. You might stumble upon one, thinking it’s the perfect fit, only to later realise that trust was a missing piece of the puzzle. It’s disheartening to find yourself unhappy with your HR provider, especially when you’re trapped in an arrangement or contract you didn’t fully scrutinise. The lack of trust can cast a shadow over every interaction, leaving you feeling stranded in a partnership that doesn’t serve your needs.

One lesson learned the hard way is the importance of checking the small print.

We all know that no matter how reasonably priced, experienced and responsive a HR support service is, you won’t need them forever. So, keep an eye on the terms of the agreement, as you may be locked into a rolling contract for far longer than you need the support in place.

That innocuous clause buried deep within the contract could hold the key to your discontent. Perhaps it’s the absence of promised services or the unexpected limitations on support. Whatever the case, it’s a bitter pill to swallow when you realise you’re stuck in a situation that doesn’t align with your expectations.

Transparent pricing is paramount in any business relationship, especially when it comes to HR support. Hidden charges lurking beneath the surface can erode trust faster than you can say “surprise invoice.” Nothing sours a trusted relationship quicker than feeling blindsided by unexpected costs for services you didn’t receive.

In the end, transparency and trust are the cornerstones of a successful partnership with your HR provider. Without them, you’re left adrift in a sea of uncertainty, unable to navigate towards a happier, more fulfilling arrangement. So, before you sign on the dotted line, remember to read the fine print, ask the tough questions, and ensure that trust isn’t just a buzzword but a guiding principle in selecting your HR partner.

What’s in the small print with Insight HR? Don’t worry, there is none. No lock-in contracts, no hidden charges, and no inconsistency.

“Our promise to clients, is that they will receive a customised, consistent, and customer-focused service from the team here at Insight HR. Unlike other providers, we are not interested in lock-in contracts. Our priority is giving you, the client, the best quality support when you need it most, and for as long as you need it.” Liam Barton, Senior HR Consultant at Insight HR.



Look for providers with a proven track record in your industry. They should have experience handling similar challenges and possess the expertise to offer sound advice and solutions.

Consider the difference in support you would get from a junior advisor as opposed to someone who has walked in your shoes, has management and commercial experience in-house, and can provide you with an answer that isn’t given from a seat on the fence, but from a seat at the table, that you can bring back to your organisation to make a real and long-lasting difference.

And equally as important, evaluating experience is key if you need HR support for a particular specialised project or issue. Yes, they may be world class at finding answers to common HR queries, but they may be far less experienced in other areas of the HR world. Take for example, a workplace investigation into bullying – does your HR support provider specialise in this? From interviews, to terms of reference, to assessing credibility and providing quality reports, certain challenges such as investigations require specialist skills and sensitivity to give you the quality service you need.

“Running a workplace investigation is complicated and can be intimidating. We completely understand this. From the moment we engage with you, we completely immerse ourselves in the facts of the complaint. This means we thoroughly review all evidence, decide who needs to be interviewed, arrange and conduct the interviews and produce a weighty investigation report which may be used as proof of following due process. Trusted, impartial and quality support, guaranteed.” Rebecca Bowman, Head of Workplace Investigations, Insight HR.

Did you know we have a dedicated workplace investigations team headed up by a Barrister here at Insight HR? Our team of highly experienced investigators conducts independent and objective investigations, producing robust investigative reports that can withstand external scrutiny.


Making the Decision

Choosing the right HR support provider is a strategic decision that can significantly impact your organisation’s success. Take the time to evaluate your options, consider the factors outlined above, and choose a partner that aligns with your values and needs.

By choosing Insight HR, you can be confident that you are partnering with a team that is dedicated to your success. We offer customised, consistent, and customer-focused HR support, ensuring that your organisation is well-equipped to handle any HR challenges that come your way.

So, whether it’s reviewing policies, updating contracts and handbooks, managing workplace investigations, providing in-person or online training, working with you on HR strategy or HR projects, or providing on-demand advice via our HR support line, the team here at Insight HR will give you the support you need, when it you need it most, and for as long as you need it.

Book a call with the team, contact us via email at or pick up the phone and dial 0567701060 to learn more about how we can support your HR needs and help your organisation thrive.

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