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Why you need to have a happy workforce

21st January 2022

One in three UK employees find getting help from HR “hard or nearly impossible”, study finds

Patrick Crowder

How well do you know your Human Resources department? According to a new study, about half of you should answer, “not at all”. 

Research by the HR software company Cezanne shows that only 55% of employees would definitely be able to recognise members of their HR teams if they passed in the hall. 27% of the group surveyed said that they definitely wouldn’t recognise any members of their HR teams, and the remaining people were unsure.

This seems to represent a problem. We know that many companies have HR departments which offer solid support to their employees – that is not in question. However, the results of this survey show that some HR departments are lacking in engagement. In addition to that, one third of respondents found it “hard or nearly impossible” to get help from HR.

The pandemic has caused a major shift in the way that people work and interact with colleagues. It has also been a time of anxiety, uncertainty, and depression for many people, so HR departments have recently had to play a much larger role in ensuring the mental wellbeing of their employees. 

Cezanne’s study shows that, on the whole, employees were at least satisfied with their HR departments’ handling of the pandemic. In response to the question, “Do you trust your HR team more or less now than before Covid-19,” 32% of respondents said that they now have more trust in their HR departments than before the pandemic.  This is a good sign that a good number of companies engaged with their employees and helped them through the pandemic. 

54% were indifferent, saying that their trust in HR had not changed. This may seem lacklustre but maintaining an existing relationship of trust in the face of adverse circumstances and unknowns is no easy task.

Of the employees surveyed, 14% said that they trust their HR team less now following the pandemic, demonstrating that there were companies which mismanaged HR since 2020 leading to a drop in employee satisfaction.

Overall, the pandemic could have been handled much worse by HR teams across the UK, and a relatively small drop in trust during that time is understandable. However, it is also clear that some HR teams are not doing enough to be accessible, understanding of, and helpful to employees. 

HR is paramount to running and maintaining a healthy business, and the mental health needs of employees are of more concern now than ever before. The HR departments which excel often go well beyond expectations, and it’s up to those departments which are lacking to catch up fast or risk being left in the dust.

Credit: Cezanne HR

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