HB Legal: Employment Law
(page 3 of 4)
Hawai`i is at a critical point. There are many challenges, but also great opportunities. What should employers do to grow their companies?
Q: What are the key challenges facing Hawai`i employers?
Annaa Elento-Sneed Director
A: Our fragile economy is still the primary concern. But there are other challenges confronting employers. Globalization, advances in technology, increasing consumer expectations and demands, an aging workforce, greater workforce diversity, and increasing government regulations are some of the issues forcing employers to change the way they do business.
Q: What are employers doing to address these challenges?
A: In the past, employers could tackle issues one by one. A new law gets passed, you learn about the new requirements, you decide whether and how it will impact your organization, and then you come up with a strategy to ensure compliance. The “process” was relatively simple.
Not so today. Globalization, technology and regulation are fueling constant changes. Employers cannot afford to wait and react to change, they must be proactive about anticipating changes, envisioning options, planning strategies and implementing solutions. Employers must also accept the fact that some of the business strategies used in the past may no longer be available or as effective in overcoming today’s challenges. Management must be willing to learn new ways of doing business, take risks, and collaborate with others if that’s what it takes to succeed.
Q: What do these changes and “new ways” of doing business mean for human resources management?
A: Today, human resources management is all about effectively managing changes. Like executives and operational managers, HR professionals must be proactive about anticipating how external changes will impact their organizations, investigating best practices, developing HR strategies that will align with their employer’s business strategies, and helping management and rank-and-file employees work together to transform the way they do business.
Managing change is not easy. It requires focus, planning, communication, training, hard work and, above all, patience. In short, HR managers, operational managers and executives must lead their organizations and make them an important part of Hawaii’s future.
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