Human resources are the people whose labor is used to run a company. These people are generally referred to as the staff, faculty, or employees. A human resources center acts as an employee services department. As a customer service department is where customers go to ask question and resolve disputes, a human resources center is where employees go for the same services when issues arise regarding their jobs and benefits.
The first time that an employee is likely to visit the human resources center is before or at the time that she is hired. In some cases, an employee will be interviewed by management personnel in the sector where she is applying to work. These people may make the hiring decisions. At other times, a person may be interviewed and hired by human resources staff.
In either case, before a person starts working, she generally has to visit the human resources center to complete necessary paperwork such as tax and health insurance forms. A new employee may be required to read and sign certain material pertaining to her job, such as a training manual or list of duties and responsibilities. These materials are also usually received and filed by human resources personnel.
Once a person begins working, if questions arise concerning her duties, she may raise these concerns with human resources personnel. Issues that the human resources center may handle include grievances from an employee who is asked to perform tasks that are outside of her job description. They may have to access the situation when part-time employees are asked to work more than a certain number of hours. This is also where complaints regarding sexual harassment are often handled.
It is generally the responsibility of human resources personnel to ensure that everyone is informed of policy changes, such as new staff parking rules or new time clock procedures. If a company makes changes that affect employees’ benefits, such as switching insurance companies or adding free memberships to a fitness center, the human resources personnel typically need to spread the news and have answers for questions that may arise.
The human resources center is generally a part of the company where it is found, although in some cases, the human resources center may be an independent company that is contracted to provide these services. In either case, the money to run the department and pay the staff typically comes from the company who wants to provide these services for their employees. This does not mean, however, that the paying company is always deemed right.
One of the primary roles of the human resources center is to ensure that a company operates responsibly, within the law, and ethically. Human resources personnel often find themselves at odds with their employers because they have to reprimand senior managers. Sometimes human resources personnel must demand that policies be changed in favor of the employees.