What does HR do?

The role of HR in a business and the value it adds is sometimes misunderstood! 

We see that there are two sides to HR, results-oriented, strategy focused leadership and management of people, (People Operations) and the Legal, ethical and structural organisation of employees and teams (HR).   

The basics

Unless you're a sole trader, you employ at least a few people - maybe dozens or even hundreds. And you owe those people a certain duty of care. 

At its most basic, that means making sure that everyone knows:

  • What their job entails
  • How you will be monitoring their performance
  • What the company rules are
  • What will happen if they break the company rules or fall below expectations in performance
  • What will happen if they have a complaint against someone else in the company
  • What entitlements they have such as holidays, sickness etc

For most companies, this is all imparted to employees in the form of a company handbook. A lot of businesses don't actually have all their rules collated anywhere, leaving managers and employees alike in a state of uncertainty when something goes wrong.

Unless there are clear guidelines in place, small matters can spiral out of hand and you could lose a good employee, or find yourself in a tricky situation which can be expensive and time consuming. Or, you might find yourself with a team member who is not the right fit but it is difficult to manage them out of the business.

A human resources consultant (like Edelweiss HR) will sort all that out for you in the form of a company handbook. That sets the bar for everyone's behaviour - which in turn is the basic level of forming a company culture. Company values can also be included to help everyone understand how you want your business run.

Not everything is plain sailing...

In the last two years the work place has changed as have attitudes to work and how teams and individuals perform best. 

There is a new challenge as we adapt to balancing working from home and returning to the office.

Plenty of people feel happy to manage all kinds of situations themselves, but asking difficult questions is... well... difficult. So this is where an HR professional could work with you. Although HR is sometimes seen as an ally of management (by disgruntled employees in particular) what we try to do is find a solution to a variety of situations that works for everyone. It may be that the person is suffering outside of work, or feels intimidated or harassed by a colleague so it is in everyone's interest to get to the truth and find something that works. That could range from sorting out a staged return to work, liaising with medical professionals, or disciplining the person.

Now I can see from here that you are very smart and capable, but even if you are smart and capable and willing to deal with this kind of thing on your own, you have to make sure you're operating within the letter of the law.

Many companies use a solicitor to try to mitigate against that - and there's nothing wrong with that. But...

  1. Solicitors are very expensive
  2. Solicitors are good when you're in a legal situation, but aren't always in a place to try and resolve matters before they reach that stage.
  3. This isn’t the most personal approach for your employees

In a way then, you might want to think of HR as a buffer' between you and potentially expensive legal situations. Dot the I's and cross the T's and you significantly reduce your chance of exposure to legal action.

The nicer things

The People Operations side of HR can also help you to make a happier workplace. 

At Edelweiss HR we believe that by establishing the right company culture and values teams work better, more effectively and less problems arise.

We think creatively about how to rewards excellence.

It could be in the form of structured bonuses paid on the achievement of certain targets. Or it could be that you have a generous holiday entitlement. Or, increasingly, things like in-office perks such as flexible working hours, or away days to build team morale.

Again, perhaps you might be thinking: "well I could do that myself!" and you could be right - but like a lot of things in business, you might consider delegating the introduction and management of these things to either someone in the business, or an external consultant, like Edelweiss HR, you can then focus on other areas to grow your business.

About Edelweiss HR

At Edelweiss, we believe that people are the most important asset in any business. We provide a bespoke service and offer pragmatic, creative advice and support, entirely appropriate to your business needs. Sustainability is a core value of ours. It affects our business both internally and externally, we try not to travel unnecessarily, and we are embracing social marketing helping us move towards a sustainable business, by building a better online presence and by building our online community.

There are loads of things that Edelweiss HR can do for you, but hopefully this gives you some idea of the scope of what we can do for your business. What give us a call to chat about what we can do for you.

Edelweiss HR Ltd

Cirencester Business Park
Tetbury Road
Cirencester 
GL7 6JJ
© Copyright 2022 Edelweiss HR Ltd. All Rights Reserved


  • "The team at Edelweiss HR have been efficient, extremely professional and have completely taken the burden away in helping us set up the Human Resource needs for our newly established charity. We will continue to work with them on a regular basis. I would highly recommend them to anyone looking for Human Resource support."



  • "Quick, comprehensive, flexible and great value for money. I no longer have to worry about HR, Anna's got it covered!"


  • "Edelweiss has been guiding Cripps & Co for the last two years around HR matters to do with its c500 employees. Anna Gage has grown to know the Cripps group fairly intimately over the period and has become an important and supportive friend."


  • "Anna has been our retained HR advisor for almost three years. She started working with us when we hired our first employee, and she remained an invaluable support to us as the organisation has grown. Anna is responsive, experienced and gives good advice. I I would strongly recommend working with her to anyone that needs HR support as they grow their business."
  • "Anna and collegues at Edelweiss have been a huge help to Fermoie in the year since we started working together. As a small business, growing quickly it seemed the right time to seek external assistance to ensure we were following best practice and properly advised where needed. Anna has been brilliant in all areas, helping to prepare a comprehensive handbook for our team, reviewing contracts and advising on specific issues. We could not recommend her business more highly."
  • "We have been dealing with Anna Gage as our HR consultant for the last two years, during which time Anna has provided us with great support in the areas of recruitment, return to work of sick employees and the resolution of numerous internal disputes with successful outcomes. Anna has also provided excellent support to our young and inexpereienced managers and provides relevant, timely and practical advice on how to proceed with HR issues. I would confidentely recommend Anna Gage as an HR consultant for your company."
  • "I thought Anna's course regarding how to tackle difficult conversations and tricky situations very helpful. Covering a range of typical and not so typical situations that we all deal with on a day to day basis, this course was a perfect mix of content and interactive exercises between the group, which kept the learning fresh and easy to follow. Its great to know we are not alone! Thank you Anna I would highly recommend this course."
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