HR Competency Study

Preliminary Results from HRCS Round 8 are becoming available.

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One of the areas of particular interest is Diversity & Inclusion. Our initial data suggests that companies across the globe have taken a strong line on directly and unequivocally addressing discrimination and harassment. At the same time, the broader goal, and resultant business impact, of ensuring everyone has equal opportunities to succeed remains elusive.

Organization Diversity & Inclusion Items
Global Average
The leaders of my organization have made it clear that harassment will not be tolerated in this organization, regardless of who you are. 4.4
At my organization, harassment of any sort is taken seriously and dealt with appropriately. 4.4
If I had a concern about harassment or discrimination, I know where and how to report that concern. 4.5
People from all backgrouns have equal opportunities to succeed at my organization. 4.1
The leaders of my organization emphasize the value of diversity in creating a stronger organization. 4.0
It really feels like everybody is on the same team at my organization. 3.7
There is an atmosphere of trust at my organization. 3.8

Digging closer to home, HR managers appear to be better at fostering inclusion and explicitly valuing diversity than non-HR managers. Meanwhile, HR professionals are more critical than non-HR employees regarding how senior business leaders are communicating the business imperative for diversity and inclusion.

Organization Diversity & Inclusion Items by HR and Non-HR
HR Non-HR Difference
My manager welcomes and encourages differences of opinion. 4.2 4.1 0.09
My manager values people with different talents, skills, and backgrounds. 4.3 4.2 0.06
My manager emphasizes the value of diversity in creating a stronger team. 4.2 4.1 0.05
The leaders of my organization emphasize the value of diversity in creating a stronger organization. 3.9 4.1 -0.17

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The research from HRCS Round 8 will help HR professionals and business leaders gain a deeper understanding of what individual HR competencies drive business success and how HR practices impact the business’s ability to win in the marketplace.

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For 30 years, the HR Competency Study has defined the competencies of HR professionals.

HRCS is the largest global study on HR with over 87,000 ratings spanning 30 years. Round 8 of this study seeks to answer the questions, “How can you as an HR professional standout in your business? How does the maturity and sophistication of the HR department impact business performance? What competencies are most important for your professional development, and how do businesses build capabilities?

Download a copy of the HRCS Round 7 Report.

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Dave Ulrich

Frequently Asked Questions

  • When will the full results of the HRCS Round 8 be shared?

    The final HRCS results will be published in late Spring or early Summer when the full study analyses are completed. Final results will be published in papers, articles, and later, a book.

  • What are the objectives of the HRCS?

    Our ongoing objective of the HRCS is to evaluate how HR competencies are changing and how those competencies drive business performance. In this round of the study, we will focus on:

    1. The maturity and sophistication of the HR department. Does the maturity and sophistication of the HR department impact business performance?
    2. Business impact. Is it the practice or the outcome of the practice that has the business impact?
    3. Practice. How do businesses build capabilities? Do business processes, systems, technologies build capabilities?
    4. Change. Does the environment for the business change what it needs from HR?
  • Who is conducting the HRCS?

    The Human Resource Competency Study is sponsored by the Ross School of Business at the University Michigan and The RBL Group with assistance from regional partners around the globe. The HRCS is directed by Mike Ulrich, Patrick Wright, and Erin Burns with collaboration from Scott DeRue, Dave Ulrich, and Wayne Brockbank. These individuals have combined to write dozens of books and hundreds of articles about the field of Human Resources that have shaped the role of HR professionals for over 30 years.


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Please note, all study participants will receive their individual reports directly from the HRCS team.