Introduction to the Human Resources department
Introduction to the Human Resources department

The following In-house Advisor practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Introduction to the Human Resources department
  • Overview of the HR department
  • Typical legal issues
  • Questions to ask of your HR department

Overview of the HR department

Depending on the size and structure of your organisation, your HR department may be responsible for anything from recruitment, training, performance management, and talent management. It is key to understand their responsibilities and, if they do not manage all these aspects, how they fit in with those who do. For example, within smaller organisations, it may be that external agencies and suppliers take a lot of the responsibility for recruitment and training, leaving the HR department to focus on internal policies, performance management, day to day HR queries from employees and managers, etc.

Typical legal issues

  1. an employee has made a data subject access request under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and wants to see a copy of their HR file. Do we have to supply them with the whole file? See Practice Note: Data subject rights—access

  2. an employee mentioned something to me in passing about someone being bullied in their team. No official grievance has been raised. What should we do, if anything? See Practice Notes: Dealing with a grievance and General requirements for discipline and grievance procedures

  3. we want to target ethnic minorities in a recruitment campaign for a role we are trying to fill. Can we do this? See: Protected characteristics—overview

  4. a pregnant emp

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