What is Agile HR?

Before reading any further, you may want to check out my post “great sources of Agile HR“. I will update that blogpost regularly, when coming across something useful on my quest to understand all this.

In this post, I have tried to summarize what Agile HR means for myself right now. I’ll keep the option open to revise my view anytime it seems flawed, insufficient or non-valuable. I would build any agile people practices on the following values:

  • Trust people to be able and willing.
  • Transparency; If you can’t be open about it, don’t create it.
  • Value adding for the customer (or value adding for the work employees are daily doing to create value for the customers).
  • Decision making with the customer, or as close to the customer as possible.
  • Continuous learning and adapting.
  • Blank – Fill in yourself with a couple of more after deep thinking

What is Agile HR, then?

Creating adaptive people practices, valuable for the customer

Tailored, adaptive and transparent people-related guidelines, methods and agreements that support the Agile organization to create value for its network, customers and colleagues. (I shy away from the words “HR-policies” and “HR-processes”, because their main function is to control and/or standardize people issues).

Creating the people practices with the people, through using Agile methodologies and modern tools

Agile HR is about using agile development methodologies yourself to create the Agile people practices. This means incremental planning, experimentation, verification and adaptation loops with the employees. The HR Tech scene is bustling with new HR tech to support creation of people practices. It is like a candyshop…!

Removing silos between support functions

Seeing all development as business support/business development. If it does not bring value to the end-customers, don’t establish it. Using cross-functional teams to create great service where it makes sense (HR, Finance, IT, Comms…). At least always cross-check with the other functions to get their view on the emerging people practices.

Constantly reviewing and updating of the emerged people practices.

Ongoing maintenance of the people system is necessary. With this pace of change, we can’t expect that something we created together in 2014 will be valid in 2020, or that something created in a company with 50 employees could be useful when if company has grown to hundreds of employees.

 … Let’s get to work, then!

…Agile HR network in Finland is starting on Friday 4th April 2014 with a core team workshop around what we’d like to achieve. There are HR’s and Bz Dev people from front-row Finnish Agile organizations and associations. Excited!

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