Choosing the best HR consultant is an important decision that can change the direction of your business.
HR functions are critical components of any business, regardless of size.
Here are my tips for establishing the credentials, credibility and expertise of any HR consultant:
1. Is the consultant qualified?
Most HR practitioners are active members of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. Grades of membership depend on practical HR management experience and exam success. When choosing a consultant you should ensure that, at a minimum, the consultant has 5 – 10 years’ post-graduate HR management experience and is a Chartered Member (Chartered MCIPD) or a Chartered Fellow (Chartered FCIPD) of the Institute.
2. Is the consultant experienced?
The consultant you choose should have significant HR management experience gained across at least 3 industry sectors. There is no way to gain the knowledge, expertise and understanding required to provide HR consulting services without having previous and substantial experience of operating at a senior management level in industry.
3. Can the consultant provide credible references from previous and current clients within your industry?
Always check a consultant’s credibility by asking to speak to previous and current clients. Ask questions about the consultant’s approachability, responsiveness, attention to detail, expertise and ability to produce deliverables.
4. What should you expect when you deal with a HR consultant?
An experienced HR consultant will challenge you when you tell them you want something and attempt to determine what you really need. They will not try to sell you an unnecessary service, nor will they suggest a simplistic off-the-shelf solution to your business issues. If you find that you can easily influence a consultant, then you’ve got the wrong person. Good, experienced HR consultants will not ‘sugar-coat’ the truth or tell you what you want to hear.
5. What exactly are you signing up to?
You should always check the fine print on the agreement and be clear about what exactly you are signing up to. Remember it is important to be able to terminate the arrangement easily and without litigation if services are not satisfactory. Some HR consultants lock clients in to long-term rolling arrangements which can prove virtually impossible to extract yourself from.
In summary, take steps to ensure that you choose a consultant with an established reputation and track record.
At Insight HR our team of fully qualified HR consultants will always be happy to help you and to answer any questions you may have regarding our own experience, expertise and track record.
If you’d like to arrange an initial consultation, entirely free of charge or obligation, please call Mary Cullen or Liam Barton on 056 770 1060 in confidence.