The 5 critical things Dave Ulrich never told you about HR business partnering

The 5 critical things Dave Ulrich never told you about HR business partnering

When Ulrich launched the model to the world in 1997…the 3 legged stool became the ‘holy grail’ of HR excellence. Shared services, centres of excellence and hr business partners became the foundations of a new era of HR…or so we thought. Where then was the instant recognition of the strategic value that HR could add?  Or the free flowing adoration of senior business leaders who gushed at the very mention of an HR strategic intervention? Hail! The new dawn of an era of people centred organisational culture had finally arrived…or was it just hot air and white noise?

Yes, it’s perfectly possible to create something like, if not entirely matching, (76% of organisations customise the model) the dream that Ulrich envisioned, but you need to watch out for these CRITICAL success factors if you truly want to make a difference with the model.

The 5 critical things Dave Ulrich never told you about Business Partnering …

  1. Implementation isn’t as easy as it seems and it takes at least 2 years (depending on HR functional maturity) to embed it culturally and make it work
  2. You don’t become strategic business partners over night
  3. The organisation (line managers particularly) gets suspicious/resistant of what is going on, i.e. more hr responsibility was coming their way, if you don’t communicate your vision from the start
  4. Strong communication processes are the only way to keep all 3 legs of the stool together
  5. You have to engage and involve the organisation if you want to act as true ‘partners’

As you can see, the Business Partner model, whilst being a great framework, left so many doors open and unanswered questions free in the wind, it made the implementation process potentially disastrous.

In our next business partner masterclass, our expert masterclass leader takes you through the solution to all of these issues.. and more. Why not join us and explore how you could make business partnering work better in your organisation - find out more information right here: