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Queen's University IRC

HR Profession

Navigating the Curves

The Art of Mountain Driving: Navigating the Curves

Driving mountain roads can be very tricky. With the exception of those who drive a super-powered something able to negotiate a significant vertical climb, mere mortals learn that reaching the top of the mountain requires learning the skill of turning switchback corners. Go too slowly around the curve, and you run the risk of the vehicle stalling in the climb. Go too fast, and it can be a kissing-the-guardrail moment, or over the edge you go.  

Executive Summary

The State of HR in Canada: 2011 Survey Results

In February 2011, the IRC surveyed HR professionals across Canada to glean their perspectives on HR, the challenges and priorities for HR departments, and the kinds of skills and knowledge that are perceived as critical for the practice. This article provides a synthesis of some of our data. Please note that a complimentary copy of An Inquiry into the State of HR in Canada: Executive Summary is available for download from the Queen’s IRC website.

Paul Juniper, Director, Queen's IRC

Beyond the CHRP – Raising the Bar on HR: Insights and Reflections

Throughout my career, which spans over thirty years as an HR professional, I have been a keen observer of our profession. I now find myself in a position where a large volume of information about the development and changing nature of HR crosses my desk, and I have the luxury and time to consider, reflect on, and speak about my experiences and insights on the future of the HR profession.

Executive Summary

An Inquiry Into the State of Labour Relations in Canada: Executive Summary

In November 2011, the IRC launched a 37-question survey, "An Inquiry into the State of LR in Canada." The purpose of this survey was to describe the state of the labour relations (LR) profession in Canada, based on the perspectives of practitioners. This Executive Summary presents an overview of the aggregated survey data. This practitioner-focused research complements our 2011 exploration of the state of the human resources profession in Canada, and builds on the IRC’s 2009 labour relations survey.

The HR Professional's Role in Building Organizational Success (Or...this hitchhiker's guide to an interesting galaxy)

The HR Professional’s Role in Building Organizational Success

At some point in his or her career, a human resource (HR) professional will encounter the notion of "earning a seat at the table." This overused buzz phrase is fraught with meaning and can result in a serious case of consternation. Sitting at "the table," from this writer's perspective, is all about understanding the management systems of the organization, the organization's relationship with its external customers, and the organization's approach to change.  

Alison Hill, Queen's IRC Research Associate

Exploring the HR Profession in Denmark

In August 2011, I moved from Kingston, Ontario, to Copenhagen, Denmark. I've been fortunate to continue working remotely for the IRC while living in Europe. The past five months have been a learning experience, as I've continued to transition and adjust to work and life in a foreign country.

A Western Canadian Perspective on the HR Profession in Canada

Todd den Engelsen is currently the Director of Organizational Development with Canyon Technical Services limited. He is Chair of the Human Resource Institute of Alberta (HRIA). Queen’s IRC Research Associate, Alison Hill, spoke with Todd to hear his perspectives on the role of the HR profession, and the challenges that lie ahead. Todd believes that …

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Talent Management, Beyond the Buzzwords

Talent Management, Beyond the Buzzwords

The ubiquitous term "war for talent" was coined in 1997 by management consultants McKinsey & Co. The consultants had conducted a year-long study and had concluded that the most important corporate resource over the following two decades would be talent. The demand for smart, technologically savvy, and globally astute businesspeople, they said, would outstrip the supply.

Executive Summary

An Inquiry into the State of HR in Canada in 2011: Executive Summary

Recognizing that the state of the human resources (HR) profession is changing, in Canada and around the globe, Queen's IRC sought to explore both quantitatively and qualitatively how Canadian practitioners view their profession. In February 2011, we launched a 53-question survey, "An Inquiry into the State of HR in Canada." The purpose of the survey was to describe the HR profession in Canada, based on the perspectives of practitioners.

Measuring the Practice-Research Gap

There is yawning chasm between practice and research. The gap is twofold: HR practitioners are generally not aware of the latest HR-related research findings that impact on their work; and HR practitioners and researchers are interested in different issues. Researchers Diana L. Deadrick and Pamela Gibson (Old Dominion University) wanted to determine how consistent that …

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The Current and Future State of Human Resources Leadership

In December 2008, Hilary Sirman of Queen’s IRC spoke with Antoinette Blunt, President of Ironside Consulting Services Inc. and President of the Human Resources Professional Association of Ontario, about the current and future state of the Human Resources profession. Amidst increasing global competition, wars for talent, economic uncertainty and generational differences in the workforce, human …

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Strategic Human Resource Management: A Practitioner’s Point of View

As an HR practitioner dedicated to the profession, Debbie Bennett, CHRP, currently serves as Vice Chair of HRPAO, having previously served for three years as Chair of the Professional Standards Committee where she was instrumental in the adoption of national standards. Debbie chairs the Governance Task Force and regularly attends the meetings of the Audit …

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Outsourcing and the ‘New’ Human Resource Management

Once believed to be strictly an administrative function low on management's priority list, the human resource function is increasingly involved in strategic management decisions. Intense competitive pressures are forcing it to reexamine its structure, the services it provides, and the competencies it requires. As a result, HR is looking at outsourcing as a way to reduce its workload and concentrate on strategic core functions. Interviews with nine HR executives reported in this study provide a snapshot of how Canadian organizations and their HR functions are changing to cope with the new economic environment.

Developments in Industrial Relations and Human Resource Practices in Canada: An Update from the 1980s

This study was undertaken as part of the Structural Change in Canadian Industrial Relations project at the Centre for Industrial Relations, University of Toronto. The Canadian industrial relations system has followed a course of incremental change and adjustment over the past decade that leaves intact the basic institutional framework and relationships among labor, business, and government. Thus, the system, while changing in ways that are similar to employment relations in other industrial nations, has not undergone any dramatic transformation.

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