We Need Agile HR For Happier Employees

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Agile HR looks at how the HR department can apply an agile mindset and various methods within their team. Agile HR has more potential to reinvent the company operational model and help modernize the HR department as well as their operations.

Since 2012, “Agile HR” (Deloitte) has emerged as a popular discipline with the goal of empowering HR professionals to better “manage volatility, enhance adaptability, and strengthen the organization by applying Agile methodologies to their talent-management processes.”

According to the HR Trend Institute, “Agile HR” refers to:

  • a way of working and organizing the HR function that facilitates responsiveness and adaptiveness of activities and structures,
  • facilitating the flexibility in matching workforce fluctuations to demand, and
  • the way the HR function supports the organization in becoming more responsive and adaptive.

With this, the traditional focus on control and alignment has shifted to a more Agile focus on speed of responsiveness and customers. HR department nowadays is no longer just implementing controls and standards. They also have to facilitate programs and strategies that can improve the company’s agility, innovation, collaboration, and enhance decision-making.


  • Employees are given a myriad of opportunities to learn, stretch themselves independent of a specific, job-related goal
  • Organizations invest in their employer brand and cultivate ongoing relationships with talent across multiple channels, including social
  • HR facilitates talent management, which empowers employees to take ownership of their own development. Employees understand and are active participants in talent acquisition, evaluation, and development processes
  • All jobs directly support the mission and values of the organization, and all employees understand how their on-the-job performance supports these elements of the organizational culture
  • Small-scale initiatives are piloted within a specific team, job family, or business unit. Feedback is gathered early and often to determine whether the initiative should be expanded or scrapped
  • The HR function focuses on engaging employees to enhance self-motivation and encourage collaboration. Measuring HR success based on retention, employee satisfaction levels, innovation levels, and organizational goodwill and trust

Agile HR mindset is about how HR see employees as their customer. With this mindset, HR will do its best to help the employees be successful in their job. It also creates a need to design human-centric people practices that employees themselves can validate through direct feedback.

All of this means the Agile HR mindset is more than just Post-it notes, Scrum boards, and a few stand-ups. It is about truly stepping out of the tradition of following HR best practices and embracing a test and learn approach to deliver value.