When thinking about choosing the right HR Consultancy for your business, it can be useful to consider the differences. In this article we set out to compare the differences between the different options available.
Businesses in the HR and Employment Law sector do differ. Here are some main differences:
- Smaller firms can be sole traders, ‘one man/woman bands, who have left full time employment to set up as HR Consultants. They may work with clients on an adhoc or retained basis. The Principal Consultant will normally have many years experience, and qualifications to support them. They will access associates (or self-employed HR Consultants) when they are busy. You will speak to the same person when you call, unless they are unwell or on holiday. They will close on Bank Holidays and during their annual holidays. They will often operate locally rather than nationally.
- Medium sized HR practices tend to employ up to 10 and have a Principal Consultant, many of whom will have started the Company. They will have been established for some time in order to grow their business to this size. The HR Consultants/Advisors that work with them will be experienced and possess CIPD qualifications. They may work from an office and be able to welcome you if you wanted to visit. They will possess professional indemnity insurance, public liability insurance and employer liability insurance. You will be supported by a small team, often they will work alongside each other so will get to know your case. The business will often operate a Client Relationship Management (CRM) system to keep track of clients and the advice given. They will close for Bank Holidays, and many will have an annual shutdown between Christmas and New Year. They will operate regionally or nationally.
- Larger sized HR and Employment Law Consultancies will be big businesses often owned by venture capitalists. They will operate nationally and have a Head Office as well as satellite offices. They will employ Account Managers to win your business and have a commission-based Sales Department. You will be advised by paralegals, newly qualified solicitors, those with law degree and in some cases experienced HR professionals who have left corporate jobs to specialize in Employment Law. They will work in a call centre and operate a ‘taxi rank’ system whereby you are served by the next available advisor. They will be able to offer you Legal Expenses Insurance as part of their package. They will operate 24/7 and contract you for periods of 3, 5 and in some cases 7 years. The monthly payment will be reflected in the duration of the contract. Watch out for small print as you will need to give notice to terminate the contract. In the case of some contracts, it’s 6 months’ notice in writing or it will rollover for another 5 years.
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