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Unleash HR Capabilities

Ensure HR development doesn’t drop off the radar; help your HR team take flight with a simplified process.


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  • Heidi Allen, HR and Transformation Leader
  • Anonymous, Senior Director, Leadership Development Services
  • Anonymous, Senior Director, Research and Advisory Services
  • Trent Burner SHRM-SCP, ‎Founder of Global People Solutions, LLC and Former VP of HR at Walmart Stores, Inc.
  • Anjana Dhaliwal, HR Systems Manager − HR Transformation, Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG)
  • Carol Ann Malinowski, ‎Vice President of People Operations, Analytics and Rewards, Vitals
  • Michael Messier, Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Excelitas Technologies
  • Megan O'Brien, HR Business Partner, Vale Canada Limited
  • Joanne Renaud, Manager− HR Business Partners, Bruce Power
  • Robin Schooling, Vice President of Human Resources, Hollywood Casino Baton Rouge
  • Dr. Cecile Schultz, Senior Lecturer and Academic Section Head, Tswhane University of Technology
  • Andrew Spence, HR Transformation Director, Glass Bead Consulting
  • May Tran CHRL, SPHRi, HR Transformation Lead, Walmart Canada
  • Sandra Wallace, Human Resources Officer, City of Brandon
  • Jennifer Wenzel, ‎Senior Director, People Services - International Operations, Canadian Red Cross
  • Sherri Wimes SHRM-SCP, CEC, Human Resource Consultant, Human Resource Innovations, LLC

Your Challenge

  • Today, the requirements of HR are in a state of flux: responsibilities that were traditionally HR’s are being dispersed among managers, the rate of automation is increasing, and the HR:FTE ratio continues to decrease (McLean & Company, Trends Survey 2017, N=444). The role of HR is constantly evolving.
  • However, HR teams rarely have time to focus on their own development. Today, only 6% of organizations are implementing programs to develop HR in non-traditional areas (McLean & Company, Trends Survey 2017, N=444).

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Keep it simple. All too often, HR’s own development falls to the wayside because of competing priorities and capacity constraints. Use a simple, straightforward process to assess and address gaps and increase the likelihood of adoption.

Impact and Result

  • Use McLean & Company’s three-step process to identify the capabilities that are key to delivering on departmental priorities, assess the HR team against these capabilities, and develop a plan to address gaps.
  • Be transparent. Involve the HR team as early as possible through clear, frequent communication.
  • Weigh time and budget when determining how to address capability gaps: develop the current HR team, hire new talent, reduce less valuable responsibilities, or if appropriate, move current team members.

Research & Tools

1. Identify future capability required to deliver on HR departmental priorities

Assess HR capacity to deliver on departmental priorities and select competencies for each role.

2. Assess current HR capabilities

Select an assessment method to evaluate competencies (HR Capabilities Workbook or 360 Degree Feedback Diagnostic).

3. Plan and address HR capabilities gaps

Develop an action plan to address HR capabilities gaps.

Guided Implementations

This guided implementation is a nine call advisory process.

Guided Implementation #1 - Identify future capabilities required to deliver on HR departmental priorities

Call #1 - Identify departmental priorities and evaluate capacity to deliver.
Call #2 - Discuss key communication mediums and messages.
Call #3 - Select strategic competencies and discuss how to define role segments and select competencies for each role.
Call #4 - Review selected competencies and proficiency levels.

Guided Implementation #2 - Assess current HR capabilities

Call #1 - Review assessment options and select which one you will use. Discuss how to customize the selected assessment tool.
Call #2 - Identify key communication touch points and create an assessment timeline.
Call #3 - Review assessment results and identify areas of strength and areas of improvement.

Guided Implementation #3 - Plan and address HR capabilities gaps

Call #1 - Review the HR Competency Development Guide and brainstorm potential development opportunities.
Call #2 - Discuss techniques to address capabilities gaps and develop an action plan to simplify the process.

Onsite Workshop

Discuss This Workshop

Book Your Workshop

Onsite workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.

Module 1: Determine HR Department Priorities and Evaluate Capacity

The Purpose

  • Understand the benefits of developing HR capabilities.
  • Plan a communication strategy.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • A deeper understanding of current situation and needs.
  • Evaluation of HR capacity.




Determine HR departmental priorities.


Evaluate capacity to execute on priorities.

  • HR departmental priorities and capacity to deliver

Create a communications plan.

  • Initial communications plan

Module 2: Identify Strategic and Role-Specific Competencies

The Purpose

  • Create HR competency requirements based on identified organizational priorities and HR feedback.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • HR competencies and roles are outlined.




Select key strategic competencies.


Define role segments.


Select role-specific competencies.


Define proficiency levels.

  • Refined strategic and role-specific competencies and proficiency levels

Module 3: Prepare to Assess the HR Department

The Purpose

  • Customize assessments and determine an assessment timeline.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Assessment process is determined.




Determine which competency assessment tool to use.

  • Appropriate competency assessment chosen

Customize the assessment.


Customize the HR Competency Development Guide.

  • Customized development guide

Establish an assessment action timeline.

  • Finalized details for assessment launch

Assign accountabilities.

Search Code: 76242
Published: October 20, 2014
Last Revised: October 2, 2017