Curiosity is a great trait and we want to encourage plenty of it. So if you’ve ever wondered what strategic HR really is, what a trusted people expert actually does, or are confused about why we’re talking about fractions all the time, you’re in the right place.
Do you have a question we haven’t answered? Just drop us a line at [email protected] and we would be happy to reply.
Our People Directors are our trusted people experts. We are told time and time again by clients how much they value having a trusted advistor at their side, working within the business to help align strategy and people planning. Our People Directors are among the most experienced strategic HR Directors and CPOs in the UK so you can be confident you are getting service and advice you can really trust.
Our People Directors work with our clients to understand your business at the most fundamental level and work with your leadership team to identify, design and deliver the right interventions to help your business, and your people, to thrive. Ultimately, this enables business transformation, at whatever point of your growth journey you are.
Your People Director works within your business on a part-time basis to optimise your employee experience, attract and nurture talent, and align the people plan with your business strategy. They can and do have enormous impact and can help you build the right organisational structure and strategy to sustain ongoing growth.
You may have heard the term “fractional” HR Director. This is another term for part-time HR Director – an external consultant who works part-time but long-term within your business to help you deliver strategic objectives. The use of fractional consultants is increasingly common among smart, ambitious businesses who want to access top-tier talent on a flexible basis to suit their budgets and requirements, without the risk of a full time hire.
In practical terms the differences may vary as little or as much as an individual company chooses – though a CPO (Chief People Officer) sits at Board level where an HR Director may not. But the rise of the CPO in organisations signals a bigger cultural shift towards people and culture within a company in a broader scope than traditional definitions of “Human Resources” would generally indicate. As People Directors, the remit is generally more strategic and visionary, aligned with the overarching business strategy, delivering growth, commercial performance and cultural alignment through well embedded people plans. The increasing move towards the CPO or People Director perhaps signifies the growing recognition of businesses that a robust people strategy is as vital for continued success as any financial or operating plan.
Our People Directors usually work part-time with clients over a longer term period, often between 18 months and 5 years, though that will vary from client to client. However, we can also undertake project-based or interim appointments on an ad hoc basis.
Our People Directors are based throughout the UK so we are likely to have someone near you. Your Regional Director will introduce you to the Director best suited to the work you are looking for but of course there will be opportunities to meet up front and ensure there is a good fit. You will often have a choice of multiple People Directors depending on availability and the type of work you require.
Our People Directors all work on a portfolio basis, meaning they work part-time with multiple businesses concurrently. Every member of our team is an experienced, established HR Director and there will not be a conflict of interest across clients and confidence is always assured. Working with multiple businesses gives our People Directors a breadth and depth of experience most individuals cannot match, and ensures the most current, up to date thinking and experience available anywhere in the UK.
Any business experiencing growth or planning for a successful future will benefit from a strategic people plan at the heart of the business. From creating a compelling employer brand to ensure you attract, develop and retain the best talent, to creating a long-term succession plan, designing the structure of your organisation to be future-ready or to attract or optimise investment, having a strategically-minded HR Director on board often proves to be transformative for our clients.
Most smaller and mid-tier businesses either don’t want, don’t need or can’t afford a full time HR Director – especially one with this level of experience. They will, however, benefit from the insight and expertise one can provide. Therefore, bringing in a fractional or part-time HR Director of this calibre gives you access to the ultimate competitive advantage, setting your business up for present and future success without the risk and expense of a full-time hire.
We don’t specify a minimum contract term so there is very little risk. Usually our People Directors work with clients anything from one or two days per month up to three days per week, and often for 18 months or more. Many of our clients have been with us for over five years and love the flexibility of being able to dial up or down on the requirement to suit them.
The cost will vary depending on how many days per month you require a People Director to work with your business. Consultancy at this level is a business investment and the work our People Directors do with our clients is genuinely transformational, with impact on the productivity and profitability of the business as a whole.
It is also worth bearing in mind that because our own recruitment standards are so high, you are guaranteed the highest calibre of Director, who has worked at Board level with proven expertise and impact. There are therefore no lengthy recruitment processes or costs, no training or onboarding periods, and the commercial impact can begin from day one.
Please give us a call or send us an email to discuss the costs in more detail as they will vary depending on your requirements.
People Puzzles HR Directors are industry-leading experts, highly skilled in what they do. From a culture-fit perspective, we always take time up front to make sure everyone is happy with the match to ensure our clients get the very best experience every time. During the Discovery phase of the relationship we take a deep dive into your business and ensure everyone gets to know each other well. Our Regional Directors are also available for clients as additional support.
Yes we do. Developing effective leadership in individuals, team and organisations is a core part of our role in helping businesses to thrive. Our trusted HR Directors will work with each client business to assess, design and deploy the most appropriate people plan, which can often include leadership development training. If you would like to find out more, please do get in touch for an informal chat.
Yes. Executive coaching, team coaching and leadership coaching are just a few of the people development interventions our People Directors are skilled in. Coaching can be a very powerful way to develop your people and is often used by our HR Directors to help our clients achieve their goals.
Absolutely. An experienced HR Director is an essential, guiding hand through any merger or acquisition. They can help you to:
- Prepare your business and team for a sale, merger or acquisition
- Integrate teams and define team or organisational structure
- Build the best talent pipeline to prepare your business for the future
- Provide training and leadership development to equip your managers and leaders for change
- Align business strategy with people plan to keep everything on track
If you would like to discuss how we can help support your business either planning for, or going through, a merger or acquisition please give us a call or email us and we would be happy to set up a 30 minute complimentary consultation with a trusted people expert.
We don’t have minimum or maximum terms for our People Directors so every appointment is different. As long as your HR Director is not already committed elsewhere, there is usually the opportunity to work with them for as long as you need to.
Yes! Our network of HR Directors is spread across the UK so we are very likely to have an experienced People Director close to where you’re based (or close enough to travel to). Check out Our Team to see who is based in your area. We are always on the lookout for new People Directors to join our growing team so this list will change frequently.
We are not a recruitment agency. However, we can support you with creating and enhancing your recruitment strategy and recruitment processes, including talent attraction, onboarding processes, talent development and retention. You may wish to develop these skills and competencies in-house in the longer term to save money and we can also help with building up that capability in your team.
All our People Directors have a deep understanding of employment and contract law, as well as governance and compliance regulation as it relates to people in the workplace. That said, we are not a legal advice service; we do, however, have a legal service sister company which is available to our clients on a referral basis in cases where our own HR legal understanding would benefit from additional external support.
Ensuring that our clients are all working to legally compliant employment standards is a fundamental responsibility of our working partnership and one which we always take seriously. Our People Directors all undergo continual professional development to ensure they are working to the latest regulations to keep all clients fully compliant.
Supporting our clients with every aspect of HR is part of the service we provide. We do not usually undertake ad hoc work solely of this nature but it is always worth a conversation to find out if we would be able to help. Depending on your circumstances we may be able to offer ad hoc advice or recommend a particular course of action for you to take so please do get in touch if you would like to discuss this further.
We provide strategic HR consultancy services provided on a fractional basis. Our People Directors work with your business on a flexible, part-time basis from as little as one or two days a month. Our work is very much in the same arena as traditional HR Consultancy, but because of our longer term partnerships with client businesses, it is a slightly different model. Our clients tend to find that having an experienced people expert embedded in the team for the longer term is a real benefit, so they have the same person assessing, designing and delivering the right processes and interventions, working as a trusted advisor alongside the senior team or business owner.