chapter  1
16 Pages

What Is Lean HR?

ByCheryl M. Jekiel

Human Resources (HR) is in the best position to redefine job roles to ensure that all the elements of how people work align with higher-level lean skills and the company’s vision, mission, and goals. Understanding why HR is held in such low regard and seen as only tangential to lean transformation efforts is critical to implementing Lean HR. People often assume Lean HR means applying lean principles and practices to HR to make the department itself more efficient. Many HR professionals find themselves buried in paperwork and other tasks that prevent them from focusing on more critical business needs. Companies that leverage Lean HR will move beyond improvement projects to achieving new ways of thinking and adopting new behaviors, and ultimately, to developing a sustainable lean culture. Disappointment commonly surrounds the HR function. People outside HR are often frustrated with how removed the HR team is from the primary aspects of the business operations.