Leveraging a Remote-First Approach in Human Resources

The human resources (HR) landscape has always been an evolving field, and today it is witnessing another significant shift, driven by the pervading impacts of the pandemic and the rising tide of digital transformation. One particular issue that’s been headlining today’s news is remote work and how it is revolutionizing the ways businesses and their HR teams operate. In this context, the remote-first approach is becoming a central tenet for companies worldwide. Let’s explore this concept and how it’s changing the role of HR.

The Remote-First Approach

The remote-first approach is a business strategy that prioritizes remote work above traditional office-based work. This doesn’t necessarily mean the elimination of physical office space, but rather making remote work the default and offices supplementary. The approach acknowledges that the advantages of remote work—flexibility, autonomy, and global access to talent—are not just temporary benefits during a crisis but are essential attributes of a more resilient and inclusive future of work.

HR and the Shift to Remote-First

With businesses embracing this remote-first strategy, HR departments are at the forefront of driving this change. Their role has expanded and transformed in several key ways:

  1. Policy and Infrastructure: HR teams now have the crucial task of revising company policies and building infrastructures that facilitate effective remote work. This includes crafting comprehensive remote work policies, ensuring appropriate equipment and software for remote work, and fostering an environment that supports the mental and physical health of remote employees.
  2. Recruitment and Onboarding: The remote-first approach has opened up global talent pools. HR professionals now have the opportunity (and challenge) to hire talent from anywhere in the world. Consequently, onboarding processes have been transformed and virtualized to welcome and train new hires regardless of their physical location.
  3. Training and Development: HR is responsible for enabling continuous learning and professional development in a remote-first setting. Online learning platforms, mentorship programs, and virtual collaboration tools are increasingly used to support this.
  4. Performance Management: Performance evaluation in a remote setting requires a shift from assessing input (like hours worked) to output (like goals achieved). HR professionals need to rethink their performance management strategies to ensure fairness and objectivity.
  5. Culture and Engagement: Building a strong company culture and maintaining employee engagement in a remote-first environment is a challenging yet crucial task. HR teams are leveraging digital tools and innovative strategies to foster a sense of belonging and maintain the organization’s culture in a remote setting.

Navigating Challenges

While the shift to a remote-first approach is progressive, it does come with its own set of challenges. These include managing employee wellbeing, preventing feelings of isolation, ensuring clear communication, maintaining work-life balance, and ensuring compliance with different employment laws in various jurisdictions. HR professionals must strategize to overcome these challenges, making use of digital tools, data analytics, and innovative thinking to ensure the success of remote-first strategies.


In this new era of remote-first work, HR professionals are not just adapting to change, they are driving it. As the boundary between work and home becomes increasingly blurred, the role of HR is more crucial than ever in ensuring that employees feel supported, engaged, and fulfilled. The remote-first approach is not just about working from different locations—it is about restructuring work in a way that prioritizes human needs and capabilities. The HR of the future will be marked by more flexibility, digital innovation, and a people-centric approach, steering businesses towards a more resilient and inclusive model of work.

Outsourcing Accounting, Bookkeeping, and HR: A Smart Move for Small Businesses

By: Rachel M Slone- SHRM-CP

The strength of a small business lies in its flexibility, nimbleness, and its ability to keep the focus squarely on its core operations. However, as the business grows, certain functions like accounting, bookkeeping, and human resources (HR) can start to consume a significant amount of time and resources. That’s where outsourcing comes into play. By hiring an external firm to handle these aspects, small businesses can gain numerous benefits. Let’s delve deeper.

Reduced Costs

Arguably, one of the most significant advantages of outsourcing these functions is cost reduction. Hiring full-time staff to handle accounting, bookkeeping, and HR can be expensive when considering salaries, benefits, taxes, and the overhead associated with additional office space. External firms, on the other hand, can provide these services on a contract basis, which can lead to substantial savings.

Access to Expertise

External firms specialize in their respective areas. They employ experts who are updated on the latest trends, regulations, and best practices in accounting and HR. By outsourcing, small businesses can tap into this pool of expertise, which they might not have been able to afford otherwise.

Improved Compliance

The world of finance and HR is heavily regulated, and non-compliance can lead to severe penalties. An external firm specializing in these areas will ensure that your business remains compliant with all the relevant regulations, thus mitigating any potential risks.


As your business grows, your accounting, bookkeeping, and HR needs will evolve. External firms can easily scale their services to match your growing needs. This is not only cost-effective but also ensures that your business operations run smoothly during periods of rapid growth.

Enhanced Focus on Core Business

Outsourcing these functions allows business owners and employees to concentrate on what they do best – the core business operations. This can lead to improved productivity, efficiency, and ultimately, business growth.

Access to Advanced Technology

Most external firms employ advanced technologies and software to provide their services, which might be cost-prohibitive for a small business. By outsourcing, you can benefit from these advanced tools without having to invest heavily in them.

Better Decision Making

Accurate and timely financial information is crucial for making informed business decisions. External firms provide regular, detailed reports and insights, which can help you make better strategic decisions.

Enhanced Data Security

Accounting and HR data is sensitive, and any breach can lead to serious consequences. External firms have robust data security measures in place to protect your data, providing you with peace of mind.


While outsourcing accounting, bookkeeping, and HR functions is not a one-size-fits-all solution, it offers significant advantages for small businesses. It’s an investment that can save time, reduce costs, and allow for a sharper focus on growth. Ultimately, the decision to outsource should align with your overall business strategy, and it’s always a good idea to weigh the pros and cons before making a decision. But for many small businesses, hiring an external firm can be a game-changer, freeing up valuable resources to focus on the core operations that drive business success.

Employee Development: The Key to Unlocking Employee Potential

By: Rachel M Slone SHRM-CP

As a boss or manager, it’s your responsibility to provide a supportive and empowering environment for your employees. One of the most effective ways to do this is through employee development. By investing in the growth and learning of your team members, you can unlock their full potential and help them reach new heights within your organization.

But why is employee development so important, and how can you make the most of it? In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the benefits of employee development and why it’s a crucial aspect of effective management.

Why Employee Development Matters

There are many reasons why employee development is so important, including:

  1. Improved Job Performance: By investing in your employees’ development, you can help them acquire new skills, knowledge, and experience that can be applied to their work. This can result in improved job performance, greater productivity, and higher-quality work.
  2. Increased Engagement and Motivation: When employees feel like their employer is invested in their growth and success, they are more likely to feel engaged and motivated in their work. This can result in increased job satisfaction, reduced turnover, and a more positive work environment.
  3. Career Advancement Opportunities: Employee development can also provide opportunities for employees to advance in their careers. For example, they may be able to take on new responsibilities, receive promotions, or pursue new career paths within your organization.
  4. Better Retention: By providing opportunities for professional growth, you can help your employees feel valued and secure in their jobs. This can result in better retention and a lower risk of turnover.

Counting on Employees Even If They Aren’t There Yet

One of the biggest challenges of employee development is that it often requires a leap of faith. You may be investing in an employee who isn’t quite ready to step up to the next level, but with the right support and guidance, they have the potential to get there.

Here are some tips for counting on your employees, even if they aren’t quite there yet:

  1. Be Open and Honest: Be transparent about your expectations and goals for the employee’s development. Explain what they need to work on and what they can expect to achieve.
  2. Set Clear Goals: Work with the employee to set specific, measurable goals that will help them reach their full potential. This will give them a clear roadmap for their development and provide motivation to work towards these goals.
  3. Provide Feedback and Coaching: Regular feedback and coaching can help employees identify areas for improvement and stay on track with their development. Encourage open communication and be available to answer any questions or provide guidance as needed.
  4. Provide Opportunities for Growth: Offer opportunities for professional development, such as training, workshops, or mentorship programs. Encourage employees to take on new responsibilities and pursue new projects that will challenge and stretch their skills.


Employee development is an important aspect of effective management and a crucial investment in the growth and success of your organization. By counting on your employees, even if they aren’t there yet, you can help them reach their full potential and achieve great things within your organization. So, be proactive in investing in your employees’ development and watch your team reach new heights of success!