HR: Beyond ‘Personnel’


In the past few years, the role of human resources in a corporate climate has evolved. The change from the generic label of ‘personnel’ to ‘human capital management’ represents a seismic shift from a simple clerical job to an intricate and complex factor in a company’s strategic plan.

Rebecca Ranninger is in charge of HR for Symantic Corp., the company responsible for Norton and a host of security products. She has been head of the department since 1997. Ranninger recently discussed her responsibility, and the changing role of HR, for Symantec’s CIO Digest.

“HR has gone from an administrative function to a guardian of our human resources,” Ranninger said, “in the same way that finance manages our financial resources.”

Technology is a major force in the transformation of HR. Ranniger sees new software as the best way to streamline operations, do more with limited resources. Revenue savings is also a major motivator to employ web-based HR technology.

“We use Workday for human capital management, Kenexa to manage the hiring process, Globoforce for our employee recognition, and Avature for talent acquisition and management.” Ranninger said. “You don’t move to the cloud simply because it is a fun thing to do. There’s a whole list of reasons for doing so.”

“Every dollar saved on headcount or through improved productivity, Ranninger said, “can be used to develop new products and businesses and to enhance existing technologies.”

Ranninger sees resource savings—more than just costs, but infrastructure as well—as the main reason to move HR solutions to the cloud.

The entire interview with Ranninger can be found at the Symantic website.

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