Remember the first time you worked for a startup as its sole HR professional? As a one-person HR team, you would have had significant responsibilities and various priorities that occasionally conflict with one another.
Besides being a recruiter, you also wear many hats in the HR department like payroll executive, human resource generalist, and many more.
Meanwhile, manual, daily tasks from recruitment - like managing CVs from different sources, scheduling interviews and paper documentation - might take up the bulk of your time and energy.
At a company’s growth stage, recruitment becomes a key driving factor and is, unsurprisingly, one of the main functions that enable a company to scale. Let's look at what typically happens during the recruitment process.
When a department has a position to be filled, they would normally give you the job descriptions for the role. Then, you do all the due diligence and post the job advertisement on all platforms that are available to you.
As you receive application forms and resumes from applicants, you may need to key in all their data manually into spreadsheets like Google Sheets or Excel. Understandably, owners of startups and small businesses may feel that recruitment software is not needed just yet, simply because they don't need to do mass hiring. But, in the long-run, this strategy would prove to be impractical and unsustainable for the business.
With recruitment software, you - as the sole HR person who also manages other functions - can quickly filter thousands of applications to find the right candidate. Investing in technology ultimately makes your recruitment process faster and more efficient, which allows you to focus on making sound, data-driven decisions around candidates.
HR Professionals to Employees Ratio
As you can see, it's not an easy job to do when the responsibility falls on your shoulders alone. Hence, this begs the question - how many HR professionals should the department have for current and future employees?
Well, the widely-accepted rule of thumb is that for every 100 employees, there should be one human resource professional. However, it typically applies to larger organizations with a well-equipped HR department.
Let's dive in further about this HR-to-employee ratio matter. In a small business or a startup, the ratio typically decreases when the number of employees increases. So, it's not surprising that small businesses generally have higher HR professionals to employees ratio.
The average HR staff-to-employee ratio for all companies is roughly 2.57, whereas small businesses have the highest, averaging 3.40. Medium businesses follow this ratio of 1.22, and large companies with a ratio of 1.03.
The standard rule, however, is that for every 100 employees, there should be 1.4 HR personnel.
Understanding What HR Departments Do
While some have had formal education in human resource management and have been trained to take on these responsibilities, others may have jumped into the HR field with basic, working knowledge of the function. Hence, working as an HR professional with limited resources and formal training can be quite challenging.
On that note, because you don't have much experience in human resources, you might face these issues:
- Attracting quality talents
- Scheduling interviews
- Keeping up with new technologies
- Employee disputes
- Managing their benefits
- Processing payroll
- Tracking employee personal and sick days
Also, when talking about what people in human resources typically do, we think about employees seeking someone from HR when they want to lodge a complaint or have concerns over matters such as salary package, overtime, or job descriptions.
So, in a way, it's safe to say that you, as a human resource professional, are a middle person between employees and the management.
Reasons Behind Having a Heavy Workload
We get it. It can be overwhelming for a one-person HR team to get everything done. But, with a small business, there are few employees for you to manage. However, it's still a daunting task to do for a person.
Heavy workloads can happen to anyone in any industry at different times. It can lead to employee inefficiency, burnout, and stress when it happens. So, you need to understand when your workload is too much and learn how to handle them.
Generally speaking, you start experiencing a heavy workload when the responsibilities have become too much over your role. You'll probably face it early with a small company where you encounter unexpected demands, systems, or when the management decides to create a new department.
Now that you know why a heavy workload happens, you must know the negative effects to establish your limits. Knowing how to recognize and handle them can enable you to set expectations and achieve a better work-life balance. A high workload may have the following negative consequences:
- More errors at work
- Significant levels of anxiety
- Workplace burnout
- Lack of work-life balance
- Easily irritated at work and home
- Lack of commitment at work
- Workplace dissatisfaction
How to Manage Your Workload As A One-Person HR Department
Managing an HR department as a one-person team has its drawbacks. You would have to juggle many tasks at once and maintain compliance with various rules and regulations. Basically, your days in the department are never the same because you are supporting employees on a daily basis.
But, there is a silver lining to being a one-person HR team. For starters, as a one-person show, you don't have to worry about sticking to a typical HR departmental structure, and you can design your own system that works for you. There are also fewer procedures to deal with when it comes to implementing new regulations or trying out new technologies.
Still, workload management methods can assist you in working more efficiently and achieving job objectives.
Here are some strategies for balancing a heavy workload to get through the day. Keep reading on how you can tackle all HR challenges like a boss!
1. Schedule Your Breaks
It is fine to take breaks in between working hours. Take short breaks to rest and bounce back whenever you feel overwhelmed with work. Meaning you maintain productivity and resume your work with a positive attitude.
All you need to do is use any available resources to schedule breaks during the day. Depending on your tasks and responsibilities, try to arrange a 15-minute break for every 1 hour of work. During each break, you can take a walk outside or do stretches.
2. Keep Multitasking to a Minimum
Multitasking seems like a good way to get things done at the same time. However, research shows that our brain isn't as good at multitasking as we think. In fact, research shows that multitasking can impede your productivity by lowering your understanding of tasks assigned to you, attention, and overall performance.
It's possible to break the habit of multitasking. Take a brief assessment of the numerous tasks you're attempting to complete when you're thinking of handling them all at once. Then decide which task you should tackle first. Make an effort to:
- Limit the tasks that you want to complete to one.
- Use all the attention you have on a job for 20 minutes before switching to other tasks.
- Batch similar tasks together and set a time to handle them.
- Find a quieter place to work or switch off your phone.
3. Get Help From Technology
It's crucial to spend time figuring out your particular skills and limitations. Because recognizing them enables you to develop a strategy for achieving things once you realize that your limitations are your strength. Hence, identifying a heavy workload can also assist you in striking a healthy balance between work and personal life.
So, use the technology at your disposal because automation is a blessing! Investment in recruitment technology can be the best decision you can make as a one-person HR team. With the right technology, you can reduce time spent on administrative tasks by up to 50%.
Accelerate Your Recruitment Process With ATS
Handling recruitment as a one-person HR team is a daunting task. You need to advertise an open position on social media, job boards, email job alerts, and career pages. Then you start collecting and storing applicants’ data and ultimately selecting the suitable candidates for interviews.
An effective applicant tracking system allows you to publish job opportunities on various premium job boards, boost company branding, and regularly keep in touch with candidates. As a result, you'll be more active and involved.
The system enables you to find suitable job candidates from various sources, funnel resumes into a single platform, and track and manage candidates. Thus, it raises the hiring quality. Before hiring, you can collect more information from candidates and give comprehensive assessments using an ATS. You can also spend more time engaging with candidates during the selection process by automating administrative activities.
Consequently, the organization acquires a competitive edge in terms of employer reputation. However, the recruiting applicant tracking system (ATS) allows for more in-depth candidate screening and connects your job opportunities with the best candidates.
Decision-making improves over time, resulting in more desired results in the long-run. Ergo, you'll be able to save hours on the screening procedure.
Also, the ATS provider is responsible for keeping the system up-to-date and doesn’t have glitches. Furthermore, since it’s cloud-based software, you can access the platform from anywhere and use more than one device.
Because the cloud stores all of your data and contacts, you can access them from anywhere with an internet connection. As a result, you will be able to connect with candidates regardless of their location, ensuring they do not miss important dates or appointments.
Find Ways And Tools To Get Things Done
When working in a small organization, you can expect to do tasks beyond your job description. As mentioned before, dealing with a heavy workload can happen to anyone in any industry and organization of all sizes. It can affect your productivity due to fatigue, stress, and burnout.
Therefore, you need to know when you feel your tasks have become too much for you to handle. Look for ways to manage all your workload so it won’t affect your productivity.
There are varieties of methods you can use to get things done. Take a break between jobs if you have to complete multiple daily tasks. Don’t feel guilty about taking a walk or doing stretches at your desk.
Plus, it is tempting to finish many tasks at once, but you'll feel overwhelmed and stressed at the end of the day. So, limit multitasking and decide which task you want to tackle first.
Lastly, you must remember that you are human and have limitations. Once you know that your limitations are your strengths, you can design a strategy for accomplishing your goals by recognizing your limitations.
So, take advantage of our SaaS recruitment platform to accelerate your recruitment process. Invest in an applicant tracking system to discover suitable candidates from a variety of sources, pool resumes into a single system, and monitor and manage applicants.
Since it’s cloud-based software, you can access the platform from anywhere using any device such as a smartphone. Plus, all your data and information are stored in the cloud. So, you can connect with candidates no matter where they are around the globe.
Go ahead, sign up for our 14-day free trial and discover how it can improve your HR experience.
Manatal ATS platforms have been adopted by all types of businesses around the world, and if you want to tap top talent in the O&T sector earlier, we invite you to sign up for a 14-day free trial to see how our solutions manage leads, clients, and candidates seamlessly, effortlessly and in-line with your budget.