The HR Car Park

This is a blog about inter-professional envy, wishful thinking and possible unrealistic, if not downright fanciful, aspirations.

A few weeks ago, our Estates and Facilities Director pressed the start button for car park expansion works to begin. There had been a certain amount of trepidation leading up to this point, and a fair bit of dread about disruption during the works. I certainly felt this personally. A commute of 1 hour and 10 minutes at best (not enough hours in the day to accommodate public transport if I want to have a job and a life) had meant anxiety for the final stretch. Would I be able to park when I arrived? Would my working day start well, therefore? Or would I feel flustered (no spaces) and take some time to feel that I’d got off the back foot before I felt fully functional and productive?

To his eternal credit, the works went really smoothly. The contractors delivered on time, work was phased, disruption was minimal and my colleague communicated exactly what was happening at each stage really clearly. The end result was a significant number of additional spaces within the same area available. Parking is now a dream. Lots of colleagues are very (in my case extremely) thankful and impressed with 1) how quickly this was achieved 2) the minimum amount of disruption 3) the communication and 4) the pleasing end result.

The Estates and Facilities team has achieved a boost to employee well-being and morale that HR can only dream about. (By the way, morale was pretty good before – this has just improved things for those of us who have to come to work by car.)

So, this got another colleague and I thinking -  What could be our metaphorical HR car park?

Is there anything that can be achieved:
  • In a short space of time (about a month)?
  • With help from prompt and reliable contractors, willing to work evenings and weekends?
  • With little disruption?
  • With regular, clear communication about what to expect?
  • Within an existing space or allocation of resources?

That achieves:
  • Long lasting and tangible results?
  • A contribution to well-being that is on offer every day?

I have to admit, I’m still trying to think of something. So much of the people centred work HR leads is hidden, can’t be shared, is intangible and dependent on many complex factors – human behaviour and the immense power of feelings and perception at the top of this list. It can also take a long time for outcomes to become evident. By the same token, so much of our work is rewarding, stimulating and endlessly interesting and challenging. (Sorry, Estates and Facilities, I’m sure some of your work is too…) So my next question is:

Do we need quick wins in HR?

Answers on a postcard please.


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