As the nights draw in and we approach the end of another year, many of the businesses that I work with are now starting to think about their plans and budgets for 2020.

For those businesses employing people, a clear HR strategy gives focus and direction to effectively manage, motivate and develop your team. When working with clients, we look at the following areas:

• Business priorities for the next 12 months.
• The products and services you are looking to deliver.
• What are the external factors which will impact on your business such as political, economic, social, environmental, legal or technological issues?
• How will you overcome challenges in these areas?

Recruitment and retention

• How many employees do you need in different types of roles to deliver your products and services?
• What skills, knowledge and experience do they need to meet customer/client needs?
• Where will you find the right people for your business?
• Do you look at the reasons why people leave your company? What can you do to address these to reduce staff turnover?

Development and progression

• Can you develop your existing workforce or do you need to recruit? In a tight labour market, many companies are now focusing on developing their own staff.
• What’s the best way to develop people? This may be through on the job training, external courses, or coaching and mentoring from more experienced colleagues.
• Have you asked your team about their career aspirations? How do they match your plans for growing the business? Who are your future leaders? Talent management and succession planning can help you to focus on the future direction of both your people and the business.

Performance and results

• What do you need the business to achieve next year? Consider a mix of financial, quality, and service objectives.
• How will each team within the business contribute to meeting these objectives? Asking staff and managers to translate business objectives into team goals can help them feel more involved in the planning process.
• Be clear on targets for each and celebrate successes along the way.

Engagement and recognition

• As the business grows, what is the best way to keep everyone involved and engaged?
• How do you keep staff updated on what’s going on? How do they give feedback to the business?
• What do staff value and does your reward strategy reflect this?

Regular reviews

Review your progress against your business and HR strategies on a regular basis. This will help to keep you on track, making any changes as business priorities change.

How can HR Solutions Yorkshire help your business?

With 25 years’ experience in senior HR roles, Sarah Darbyshire and her team work with business owners and management teams across Yorkshire to design and implement successful HR strategies.

To find out more about how we can support your growing business, get in touch with Sarah on 07495 857525, or email

You can also find our website at