9 Functional Areas of Human Resources

Human Resources

9 Functional Areas of Human Resources

Rochelle van Rensburg | Nov, 6 2020

The 9 Human Resource Functions That Are Essential for Business Growth


The main responsibility of a Human Resources (HR) department is to create administrative procedures to support employees. However, they must be aware that they are there for Human Resources management and ensure the company’s long-term success by allowing employees to be effective in their roles. There are many key areas Human Resources is involved in, for example, health insurance, employee discipline, and staff recruitment.

List of 9 Functional Areas of HR

1. Recruiting and staffing

2. Employee benefits

3. Employee compensation

4. Employee relations

5. Health and safety

6. HR compliance

7. Organizational design

8. Training and development

9. Human Resources information systems (H.R.I S) and payroll

Effective human resource management is crucial for business growth. The nine essential HR functions include recruitment, training and development, performance management, compensation and benefits, employee relations, compliance with laws and regulations, HR information systems, workforce planning, and strategic HR planning. Each function plays a vital role in hiring, developing, and retaining talent, ensuring compliance, and aligning HR strategies with business goals. Together, they contribute to building a motivated and skilled workforce that drives organizational success and sustainability. Integrating these functions optimally can lead to enhanced employee engagement, productivity, and overall business performance.


1. Recruiting and staffing

As soon as a new position becomes available, the HR representative writes out a job posting that fits the hiring manager’s needs. Human Resources sift through job applications to find a list of suitable candidates, they forward to the hiring manager for further review. When the interview candidates have been chosen, Human Resources set up an interview with each of them.

Upon selecting the successful candidate, the necessary paperwork is compiled, and all other materials relevant to the position are provided by HR. It is also their responsibility to show the new employee their new workspace, give them an orientation of the workplace, and to ensure that they are enrolled in the company’s benefits program. Now that we understand what recruiting and staffing are about let’s look at employee benefits.

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2. Employee benefits

A good benefits package helps attract talent in an organization. Employee benefits, amongst other things, include vacation time, sick leave, and health insurance. Human Resources must know what benefits the company offers and ensure that the plans are compliant with federal laws. What about employee compensation and employee relations?

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3. Employee compensation

Salary and benefits are within the scope of human resource management. They determine performance bonuses and raises and inform the Payroll department if vacation pay is due or if a bonus has been issued. Human Resources compiles benefits packages offered to candidates while maintaining employees’ salary structure through all business levels.

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4. Employee relations

Employee and labor relations are crucial areas of personnel management. Human Resources must adhere to procedures, whether their employees are in a union or not. Collective bargaining must be understood by Human Resources for union employers, while non-union employers may have contracts or employ subcontractors. Whichever is applicable, Human Resources has to draw up contracts, monitor compliance, and be skilled in the negotiation process.

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5. Health and safety

Productivity and loyalty are enhanced if a business promotes its employees’ well-being and health. Sick people are more likely to be less productive and more absent from work. For example, basic needs are reasonable temperature in the workplace, comfortable working space, feeling safe, and access to food/water.

Some industries, like mining and building, are inherently more dangerous than others. Employers must ensure their workers’ safety by ensuring the relevant safety regulations are followed, and that equipment and structures are in good condition.

We now know that health and safety are essential for productivity, but what about compliance?

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6. HR compliance

One of the biggest challenges of HR compliance is remaining compliant. The law is continually updating and changing, and it is the responsibility of Human Resources to stay up to date with everything. Compliance is the commitment of your business to follow working standards as set out by law.

This affects your policies and procedures, day-to-day responsibilities, and documentation. The role that HR plays is vital and can have measurable impacts on company performance.

Apart from compliance, what other roles do Human Resources have?

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7. Organizational design

Human Resources’ primary role in organizational design is to partner and cooperate closely with top management to analyze the entire organization. If changes are necessary, Human Resources can suggest management recommendations to create paths for existing employees, decrease employee turnover, and promote individuals who have reached the required standards.

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8. Training and development

The HR Training and Development Manager is responsible for the organization’s staff career development needs, programs, and training requirements. They administer and plan training seminars, manage conflict resolution, team building, and supervise staff training.

Also Read: Survey Questions to Improve Your Company Culture


9. Human Resources information systems(H.R.I S) and payroll

When determining the company’s reputation and if clients buy from them, working conditions are vitally important. In addition to monitoring payroll activity, Human Resources is responsible for keeping track of the company’s working environment.

Employees must also provide them with feedback on their working environments to determine if they can do more to service external clients. Keeping this in mind, Human Resource professionals must take inventory of what needs to be upgraded in the building in which they operate and what systems can help employee productivity- they have to confer with management on the budget available to make the necessary changes and motivate the benefits the company will receive.

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Human Resources serves as the administrative hub for matters focusing mainly on employee training, hiring, and compensation. They are also responsible for creating procedures to support employees by developing key areas such as health insurance, payroll, staff recruitment, and employee discipline.

Coggno has a wide range of Human Resources and online corporate training courses.
You can have a look at our free courses here and our course catalog here.


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