Clearly stating the Human Resources Department’s mission statement is an act of strategic importance, as it will allow the Chief HR Officer to translate your company’s organizational values into words, and thus structure his/her vision. This statement will indeed express the strategic orientation that will have to be impulsed to the HR Department, in order for them to achieve the company's strategic goals in terms of Human Resources management.
The next step will consist in outlining the policies that will set the rules as to how these resources should be acquired, managed and developed. This set of policies will serve as a reference framework for all the procedures and methods that will have to be implemented to perform all Human Resources processes (guidelines). As a consequence, these policies will have to be supported by a Business Plan and followed up using a so-called "management cockpit".
More often than not, the company has already written a mission statement for its HR Department. Yet, it often comes closer to a to-do list than to an actual mission statement, the aim of which would be to position the roles of the HR Department in a more global context. It should thus include human aspects and reflect the company’s organizational values.
Please note that this statement should also directly derive from the organizational mission statement and that it represents a potent tool of organizational communication, whether it is addressed to a public inside or outside of the company.
The HR Department's mission statement is thus based on the following elements:
The mission statement of the HR Department should thus depict the final purpose of its action within the organization. Moreover, it should be presented in a synthetic way, so that anyone reading it may be able to understand what it is actually about. The following schema is taken from the Management of Processes by Coaching (MPC) methodology. It illustrates the implications of any given sub-entity's mission statement on its environment inside and outside the organization (illustration).
The mission statement of an HR Department should thus be built up around 3 strategic axes:
Its formulation, just as that of any mission statement within your company, should follow the following principles and contain:
It is true that such a mission statement will be much longer than the ones generally used. It will, however, present the advantage of being more exhaustive. It will also be deeper-rooted in organizational life. As a general rule, a maximum of 3 sentences should be used (i.e. one sentence for each strategic axis).
In order to illustrate what has just been said, here is an example of what the formulation of the HR Department’s mission statement could be like: