HR professionals play an important role in the development of the organization. Companies usually have quite similar lifecycles that consist of the period of establishment, maturity, and end (Boxall & Purcell 2011). The period of maturity is characterized by various changes that take place on different levels. The HR specialist contributes significantly to the successful implementation of the change. It is possible to consider some experiences of a hospital that has gone through certain changes to understand the role HR professionals play in the process.
The hospital I work for is quite a big healthcare facility that employs over 1,000 people. Clearly, HR professionals focus on such aspects as hiring, retention, and the development of staff. Long, Wan Ismail, and Amin (2013) note that HR practitioners often become change agents, which has a positive effect on the development of the organization. It is necessary to note that changes take place on different organizational levels. For example, the change can be strategic or operational, and the latter often has a considerable impact on employees who may need to adapt to some changes in their daily procedures (Armstrong 2006).
The hospital needed to adopt a new knowledge base that presupposed the use of new software. It has been acknowledged that employees usually resist any changes as people are fearful or simply reluctant to meet something new, even if it may seem an important change (Cameron & Green 2015). The employees in the hospital were also unwilling to accept the change. The use of the method developed by Lewin employed by an HR professional proved to be effective. Lewin’s model involves three stages: unfreezing, changing, and freezing (Armstrong, 2006).
Thus, the HR leader initiated a discussion of various issues employees faced. The discussion was implemented through the hospital’s network and a number of meetings. The employees discussed numerous issues, and it turned out that a large proportion of problems was associated with inefficient software utilized. The unfreezing stage was successfully implemented as the healthcare professionals acknowledged the need for change. They were eager to change some aspects of their work.
The stage of change was associated with some problems as people embraced the change quite slowly. One of the reasons for that was the HR professional’s inability to categorize employees. Blackmore and Sachs (2012) note that the change agent should properly categorize the staff. The HR professional should develop or guide the development of effective teams. Clearly, all people respond differently to the change, and it is crucial to make sure that all the active employees are the core of the change team (Blackmore & Sachs 2012). The HR practitioner simply assigned some employees without much consideration concerning their commitment to the change. It is also clear that the leadership style was chosen incorrectly. Kool and Van Dierendonck (2012) state that the use of servant leadership, as well as non-authoritarian styles, is beneficial as employees are specifically vulnerable in the period of change.
In conclusion, it is possible to note that the HR professional plays a major role in the process of organizational change. The HR leader should use the most appropriate model of change that can be applicable in a particular setting. It is also clear that HR practitioners should be change agents who are ready to take an active part in the process.
Armstrong, M 2006, A handbook of human resource management practice, Kogan Page, London.
Blackmore, J & Sachs, J 2012, Performing and reforming leaders, State University of New York Press, Albany.
Boxall, P & Purcell, J 2011, Strategy and human resource management, Palgrave, London.
Cameron, E & Green, M 2015, Making sense of change management: a complete guide to the models, tools and techniques of organizational change. Kogan Page, London.
Kool, M & Van Dierendonck, D 2012, ‘Servant leadership and commitment to change, the mediating role of justice and optimism’, Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 25, no. 3, pp. 422-433.
Long, C, Wan Ismail, W & Amin, S 2013, ‘The role of change agent as mediator in the relationship between HR competencies and organizational performance’, The International Journal of Human Resource Management, vol. 24, no. 10, pp. 2019-2033.