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practical HR issues business owners
and managers encounter every day

December 2005

How Arlene
Can Help

Sometimes it’s best to get a second opinion of how your Human Resources are operating. That’s where HRx truly becomes Your Prescription for Human Resource Xcellence.

Here’s how an HR Audit works:

  • I provide you with a list of items to collect for our audit meeting. This includes: handbook, sample job descriptions, employment ads, performance appraisals, offer letters, …
  • Then we meet for several hours to discuss your primary HR concerns and issues, as well as walk through a questionnaire regarding your methods and systems for:
  • recruiting, interviewing and selection
  • new hire administrative handling and orientation
  • personnel files
  • communication and employee relations
  • policies and employee handbook
  • disciplinary, documentation and termination
  • performance systems
  • employee and management training
  • compensation compliance
  • employee benefits
  • HR laws and postings
  • HR strategies
  • The result is a detailed report identifying the gaps in your HR operations and doable solutions for bringing your systems and policies into compliance and making them easier for you to manage.
  • So, if you Ought To Audit, give me a call!

If you’re not
having fun
with your
human resources,
call Arlene today
at 952-996-0975


Everyone plans to start off the new year with a clean slate.However, we also know that starting off the year anew is not as easy as it sounds. So, while you’re creating new year’s resolutions for your self (or more fun, for someone else), I’m going to ask you, “What you can do differently with your human resources in 2006?”

If your responsibilities are managing the human resource function in your organization, this is the perfect time of year to reflect back on what you accomplished in 2005, pat yourself on the back, and look ahead to 2006.

  • What are your HR priorities for 2006?
  • What services are your employees looking for that you can offer them?
  • What have you placed on the back burner that you really need to resolve in 2006?
  • What services or systems have your management team been asking for?
  • What resources do you need to accomplish your challenges?

If you’re working on a team, take the time to develop the list of accomplishments together. Then celebrate your successes. Whether you accomplished large goals or survived being inundated with unique employee issues throughout the year, celebrate your wonderfulness!

Now create a fantasy HR to-do list for 2006.And be sure to answer the key question: “What can I do to make my HR life easier and my employees’ HR lives easier?”

Copyright (c) 2005 Arlene Vernon, HRx, Inc.


Take a step back to study whether your HR practices are working.It’s important to identify any gaps and take steps to fill those holes. One of the services I perform for clients is a Human Resource Practice and Compliance Audit, where I take a fresh look at an organization’s HR systems, tools and methods.

You can start the process yourself. Here are some questions to ask:

  • Employment: Am I recruiting the right people? What results am I getting? Are my recruiting techniques effective? Are the right people doing the interviews? Are they trained on the legalities of interviewing? Are there checks and balances in the process — or just a gut approach? Are the interviews scripted?
  • Orientation: Once we hire employees, are we welcoming them appropriately? Are we giving them the core information to set them on the right path? Are we only doing HR orientation or are managers also following a planned orientation?
  • Training: Are you assuming employees can do their jobs? Or are you evaluating skills and setting employees on a course geared for success? Are you offering a variety of in-house, classroom, on-line, mentoring, peer-to-peer, computer-based, and external training options so that the different types of learners are learning effectively? Do your supervisors have the training they need to succeed?
  • HR Tools: Is your employee handbook up-to-date? Can you make solid decisions using it, or is it missing key answers? How is your performance management system working? Are the forms user friendly? Do they reflect the actual job or are they too generic to be beneficial? Are your benefits and compensation competitive with your market? Do you have innovative ways to contain costs?
  • Employee Relations: What’s going on in your organization? Lots of turnover or no turnover? Lots of celebrations or lots of problems to solve? Are you having fun and are your employees having fun? Is it exciting for people to come to work or is it just another job?

Whether you perform an informal audit of your practices or I help you perform a more formal compliance and practice audit with you, take this year-end opportunity to assess the quality and comprehensiveness of your HR operations and set some clear goals for how to jump ahead in 2006!

Have a wonderful new year!!

Copyright (c) 2005 Arlene Vernon, HRx, Inc.

About Arlene Vernon

Arlene Vernon, PHR, partners with small businesses as their Human Resource Xpert to create their HR systems and solve their HR problems.

If you have gaps in your HR operation, have an employee problem to solve, or want to enhance your managers’ skills, call Arlene today. Learn
how HRx can save you time and help you avoid costly HR mistakes. HRx, Inc., 574 Prairie Center Drive #135/285, Eden Prairie, MN 55344, 952-996-0975,

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