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Run your own SME with The HR Dept

Written by: Jennifer Jackson
Published on: 8 Jul 2022

HR Dept

Are you an experienced HR generalist looking for a more autonomous role? We spoke to Briony Kloet, Franchise Recruitment Coordinator at The HR Dept, about the team culture and senior HR roles it’s recruiting for.

Briony Kloet

Briony Kloet, Franchise Recruitment Coordinator at The HR Dept.

Briony, tell me about The HR Dept and how you work

We are the UK’s largest network of HR professionals and our franchise business model enables highly qualified and experienced HR experts to set up their own businesses without the worry of going it alone. Our licensees help SME businesses get the expert advice they need at a fraction of the cost of having an in-house HR professional. We work on the principle of offering a local and personal service and work with them to prevent people problems in their businesses.

How would you describe the working culture?

Working at The HR Dept is very varied and our licensees often say that no two days are the same. The working culture here is very collaborative, rather than competitive, as we share opportunities, resources and expertise willingly throughout the network.

What kind of clients and exciting projects do your HR teams work on?

The clients our teams work with can range from start-ups through to flourishing medium sized businesses with more strategic issues. They could be working on anything from a recruitment process or contract, through to TUPE transfers, restructuring and more. As well as the HR work they do, each of our business owners and their teams strive to help and be present in their local communities, such as charity work or appearing on the news to comment and advise on topical HR issues in the media.

Are you recruiting at the moment? 

We are always looking for experienced, senior-level HR ‘generalists’ to join our network. We would love to hear from anyone that would like more autonomy in their work, a refreshing break from the corporate lifestyle, and to be part of a collaborative, successful and versatile team. Our licensees are completely in control of their businesses; whether they want to operate on their own or to conquer the world and have multiple territories and teams - we are here to support them at every stage.

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What kind of challenges are your HR directors likely to face in their role?

Challenges could include knowing when it’s the right time to employ their first staff member or grow their business further – it sounds simple, but it can be daunting for a new business owner.

Another challenge licensees might face is adjusting to the SME world if they come from corporate backgrounds to becoming SME business owners, as any issue has a direct effect on their business and often needs to be solved much more quickly and compassionately than in a large corporation.

How can they develop their skills?

We continually run training sessions and CPD opportunities for our licensees and their teams, from TUPE training through to sales and networking workshops. At our annual National Conference, we offer the whole network workshops to upskill themselves or refresh the basics. Last year we had a customer service workshop, recruitment session, a panel to advise on working with the education sector and more! We also provide new licensees with a business and sales coach to help them in their first six months.

HR dept

What employee perks do you offer?

One huge benefit is the network – nowhere else in the UK can you find such a large, collaborative and experienced group of HR professionals that celebrate each other’s successes. A better work/life balance is another perk of running your own business with us - once you’re up-and-running you can evaluate how much you want to get out of your business and how it can fit your lifestyle. For example, you may want to work 9am-3pm to be able to pick up children from school. Our Employers Indemnity Insurance offering also adds security and peace of mind for licensees and their clients.

What do you think makes a ‘wonderful workplace’?

Somewhere that makes you feel comfortable, valued and free to share ideas. I joined The HR Dept this year and within a day of joining I already felt part of the team. One thing I think is important in a ‘wonderful workplace’ is motivation. You want to work somewhere that motivates you to achieve your goals, or even surpass them and to have people there to support and congratulate you – and you definitely get that with The HR Dept.

Feeling motivated to start your own HR SME? Click here to find out more and apply.

Apply now