The Human Resource department is suited in two ways for Six Sigma projects. One is implementation of a project in the HR activities, and the second is the involvement of the HR department in carrying out some of the activities in the execution of Six Sigma project at the organizational level.
It has to be understood that though HR is not a huge department of the organization, it has a huge effect on every organization. Human resource is human capital and has to be considered for good returns on investment. The processes have a major impact on the employee's efforts for delivering services or product.
They can handle the responsibility of retaining the employees while balancing the financial needs of the company.
There are various compensation and benefit areas which are taken care of by the HR department, such as payroll administration, time and attendance management, leave policy, stock options and so on. Projects such as automating the paycheck deposition process, faster performance review systems and eligibility study for ESOPs can be considered for the betterment of these activities of the HR.
With regards to human resource management, they have payroll information services and others to be taken care of. There could be a need for projects like integrating multiple payroll systems for remote locations and consolidation of employee information database.
The most important area that HR personnel have to take care of is labor relations, with regard to employee absenteeism, dispute resolution, health and safety issues, union negotiations, interpersonal communication and discrimination and harassment issues.
There could be projects undertaken to address the discrimination and harassment by way of monitoring and compliance audit, systems for improved communication among employees and executives and DFSS process design for termination and dismissal.
There could be projects aimed at overall organizational development with regards to the career and succession planning, leadership issue, change management, workplace planning and organization, performance improvement and communication programs.
Staffing, Training and Retention
One basic responsibility of the HR department is staffing, background checks, selection and training and retention of employees. They have to design and schedule training and development programs for new employees, as well as existing ones.
They also have to handle employee contracts for permanent and temporary employees and smooth the process of relocation and outsourcing of employees. They have to manage the retrenchment issues and exit interviews. There can be projects like creating self-learning and evaluation modules for the employees.
Projects to improve the hit rate for job postings followed by quick responses to the applicants, reduction in unnecessary security checks and so on can be undertaken by the HR department as part of the Six Sigma project.
If you review the above listed projects, you will understand very well what impact the Six Sigma projects in the HR department will have on the other processes. It will surely lead to improvement of the human capital, thus ensuring good returns in the form of improved productivity and efficiency in the activities they carry out.
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solutions - Six Sigma Online ( http://www.sixsigmaonline.org ) offers online six sigma training and certification classes for six sigma professionals including, lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.