HR Management & Compliance

5 Common Human Resources Mistakes to Avoid

Mistakes that happen within an organization’s human resources department have the potential to cost it millions of dollars each year. And while mistakes will inevitably happen regardless of what department you work in, there are certain mistakes that every HR professional should work to avoid altogether.


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Here are 5 common human resources mistakes to avoid, no matter what.

1. Extremely Flawed Hiring and Firing Practices

Having top-notch and well-thought-out hiring practices will ensure your organization routinely selects the appropriate candidates for each role who will remain loyal to your organization.
And having well-thought-out termination practices will ensure most employees leave your organization without ill will—or, at the very least, that your organization doesn’t experience any serious legal or moral ramifications.
Here are some hiring and firing practices you’ll want to avoid:

  • Sharing an inaccurate or incomplete job description with job prospects
  • Never recruiting or hiring internally
  • Hiring too quickly
  • Not hiring soon enough
  • Neglecting employment laws and hiring practices
  • Failing to ask the right questions during an interview
  • Having an interview process that is too arduous and long or not selective enough
  • Deciding not to select interview candidates with diverse backgrounds
  • Firing an employee too quickly
  • Not documenting disciplinary actions and write-ups properly before terminating an employee

2. Subpar Onboarding Practices

It’s imperative that new employees become properly acquainted with your organization, their buildings and equipment, their departments, their direct superiors, and the teams or individuals with whom they’ll be working on a day-to-day basis.
Don’t simply hand out a manual during a 1-hour onboarding meeting and then expect new employees to learn the ropes on their own. Instead, schedule important meetings with people they need to meet, give them a tour of their new office building or facilities, and let them know that you’re fully prepared for their arrival at your organization and that you care that they’re there.

3. Misclassification of Employees

If you misclassify an employee in your personnel system, it will affect his or her pay and benefits and important metrics your organization should be monitoring about its employees. Always make sure salaried, hourly, part-time, full-time, exempt, and nonexempt employees are classified correctly.

4. Misunderstanding or Miscommunication of Compliance and Safety Training

Employees should always be 100% aware of what’s expected of them and what rules, policies, and regulations they must follow. Whenever your compliance standards change, your employees should be made aware and sign a document testifying to the fact that they understand the new standards. And the same goes for new safety standards, protocols, and regulations, too.

5. Having ‘Favorites’

As an HR professional, it becomes easy to bond with certain people you routinely help and develop. However, it’s important to remain professional and to refrain from socializing with certain employees and not others, especially outside of work.
And it’s important to accurately evaluate all employees from a nonbiased playing field, especially when an employee is being disciplined or considered for a promotion. All employees should be treated equally.
Watch out for tomorrow’s post for the eight more common human resources mistakes that you’ll want to avoid.

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