Three years ago, FORTIS began nurturing a relationship with a transportation and distribution company with a strong sense of loyalty to their employees, which created difficulty when deciding whether to replace an underperforming HR leader. This unwavering allegiance posed issues when it became evident that, as the company’s workforce and revenue expanded, there were pronounced gaps in their operations and competencies from a human capital perspective.
While the tenure of the existing HR Director was noteworthy, the quality of their output was, in a sense, just getting by. Crucial areas, such as presenting pivotal information to the leadership team, managing workers’ compensation, leaves of absence, and overall employee motivation, revealed gaps in her leadership. The challenge was not merely about finding a replacement but educating the company about the vast potential and efficiency an adept HR professional could bring.
Strategy & Execution
Our first task was extensive dialogue with the CFO, outlining the vast spectrum of skills and expertise an adept HR professional could offer. This was more than just a recruitment process; it was a teaching moment to underscore the value that expert HR personnel could add.
Upon establishing the role’s scope and addressing skills gaps, FORTIS set forth on the search, shortlisting four qualified candidates. The final choice was a high-caliber individual with a stellar career trajectory, eager for a fresh challenge, and ready to ascend in their professional journey. Transitioning to the Director role, they had the opportunity to broaden their horizons and apply expertise to a new industry.
The aftermath of this recruitment was beyond gratifying. In a follow-up with the General Counsel, the feedback was overwhelmingly positive. They realized the profound difference the new HR Director brought in contrast to what the company had settled for previously. Risks were meticulously managed, the entire employee base was invigorated, and most notably, the HR department underwent a transformation, evolving into a more structured, professional entity.
So what exactly set the stage for this new HR Director’s eminent success? FORTIS cites the following factors:
- Beyond Recruitment: Sometimes the role is not just about filling a position. It’s about guiding clients, showcasing what they might be missing, and elevating their expectations.
- Quality Over Tenure: Longevity in a position does not always equate to competence. Recognizing this is the first step toward transformative change.
- Immediate Impact: Sometimes the right candidate doesn’t just fill a role; they redefine it. The revamped HR department stands as testament to this.
In a world where change is the only constant, settling for “good enough” is a perilous strategy. Through this recruitment, FORTIS not only bridged a skills gap but also catalyzed a cultural shift, underscoring the importance of quality, expertise, and forward-thinking in the HR realm.
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