A good article by Alison Green last week discussing the difference between what many employees believe is the role ofHR and the reality of what function actually serves in a company.

Here are her main points:

  1. HR isn’t there to be your advocate. 
  2. HR isn’t obligated to keep what you tell them confidential, even if you ask them to.
  3. HR knows things that they aren’t telling you. 
  4. HR’s job is to support the company’s managers, not to help employees.

Green’s points are right on.  Employees must remember that while in many circumstances they need to take workplace issues to HR, it should not be assumed that HR’s sole role is to be their friend, advocate or trusted advisor.  Nothing could be further from the truth. The human resources department’s function is to serve the needs of the business. Its loyalty and responsibilities are to the company.

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