Do you think HR is a puppet in hands of management?

HR as Puppet

I don’t know how many HR professionals would like to answer this question. But I think, I should put it back in front of you once again and think through. I have no second opinion about this. HR is actually a puppet in hands of management. HR cannot do what they wish to do, if management do not support them.

This does not mean that management of every company is same. It is the mindset of top management which decides whether company will be HR friendly or not. HR of the company only takes management views ahead and implements the same.  Companies who understand value of human resource do take initiatives which helps in company growth. There is no doubt that today many companies have recognized the value of human resources hence the reason that HR is considered as business partners now.

HR participates in company future plans so that human resources of the company can be directed to achieve company’s short term and long term goals. HR plays its role in both good and bad time whether at the time of expansion of business or downsizing. HR has to ensure timely and right hiring when company is in expansion mode-HR Challenge-How to identify right fit for your company?- and should know its role at the time of downsizing-Role of HR- at the time of downsizing.

What Kind of company is likely to be HR friendly?

Companies which are owned by a single director (who is most likely to be owner of the company) are more expected to be less human friendly. It is up to one person who decides policy of company. Bad or good.

Companies with board of directors who are actively involved in company operations are more likely to be human friendly.

Well, I am not giving any formula to identify HR friendly companies but this what I have seen till date. Exceptions are always there.

What should HR do if management is not HR friendly?

If you going to ask me, I would say that company where top management is not HR friendly and do not understand value and power of human resources in today’s competitive world will not grow. There growth is limited to a certain extend. As a HR professional, I would never like to be part of such organization. Such management do not want HR professionals, they simply look for personnel department professionals who can take care of administrative part and should not go beyond that.

Even as an employee nobody wish to be part of such organization as there is no personal growth. It is the wish of top management what to do and how to do. No logic works. This kind of environment gives rise to office politics and people waste their time in showing other down rather than being productive.


  1. Chandan Singh September 17, 2013 1:27 pm  Reply

    I do agree with your opinion that HR is actually a puppet in hands of management. There may be slight different in the thought process of management from organization to organization but ultimately all are almost same. HR in Indian organizations is just functioning as one way traffic, management is using HR as a tool which can be used as per their convenience…There are hardly companies where HR is empowered to take an action or decision at their own…apart from the laid down procedures of company which are also designed by them under the guidelines of management, Not fare many times… Not only Indian companies even MNCs also where Bosses are Indian are working on same system…….HR is basically surviving upon the mercy of management……

    • govindsinghnegi September 17, 2013 3:54 pm  Reply

      Dear Chandan

      Appreciate that you have shared your views with us. Thanks

  2. Lipsa September 18, 2013 4:50 pm  Reply

    true in most organizations , but then i think , now HR is evolving and has to try to make the management understand about the real value of a HR function. and this can happen if more and more HR practices and contributions can be quantified to show how it adds value to business.

    • govindsinghnegi September 19, 2013 3:57 am  Reply

      Dear Lipsa, Do agree.

  3. Vinaya September 18, 2013 5:37 pm  Reply

    thanks for sharing good info, Its true

  4. govindsinghnegi September 19, 2013 3:57 am  Reply

    Dear Vinaya, Thanks for your appreciation.

  5. Megha September 20, 2013 6:42 am  Reply

    I totally agree with what all have shared and its true that still many organizations take HR dpt. as a Cost Center but now it’s our duty to make them realize that Top Mgmt. is unable to operate in the absence of HR as indirectly HR professional works to manage the entire Staff (human resources) who brings revenue to the organization and ultimately the organization gets paralyzed in absence of HR functions like Recruitment, HR Strategies Policies, Payroll, Grievance Handling, Retention Practices,Talent & Appraisal Mgmt. etc..

    • govindsinghnegi September 20, 2013 7:09 am  Reply

      Do agree Megha. There are many organization which have understood the same and started asking their HR heads to work on HRD than HR operations.

      Thanks for sharing your views.

  6. AJAY September 23, 2013 11:45 am  Reply

    DEAR GOVIND, I am new to this as I am not in the corporate world but in the army as of now, my view is that the handling of the HRD by different companies or organisation is primarily based on the type of ownership. since major part of the ownership in the present time in India is still Family owned businesses the view of the owner is generally restricted to short terms, of course there are exceptions but they are due to the changes in the type of governance that has been taken up by the organisations. an organisation with true corporate governance model will always give more weight-age to HR as they tend to take a longer term view of the policies. correct me if I am wrong

    • govindsinghnegi September 23, 2013 12:20 pm  Reply

      Dear Ajay,.

      Appreciate your views. I do agree with you. Corporate governance model do respect human resources.

  7. Gary Ockunzzi September 26, 2013 12:43 pm  Reply

    Absolutely. They should have an award today for the person in this “profession” who can best hide, disguise, or creatively “spin” downsizing when it is really unjust enrichment.

    • govindsinghnegi September 27, 2013 5:38 am  Reply

      Dear Gary

      HR should do what they feel is good for both employee and organization. Thats what i feel

  8. Jasdeep September 28, 2013 4:03 am  Reply

    Very nice article Govind… harsh but very true…

    • govindsinghnegi September 28, 2013 4:09 am  Reply

      Dear Jasdeep, Thanks for spending time in reading this article. truth is bitter.

  9. Vibha September 28, 2013 12:43 pm  Reply

    Very True.. But i think now the mindset is changing, that is why the role of HR as a business partner has evolved as mentioned by Mr. Negi. One of the important change in the organizational development field i think. i have seen in many companies that they are providing many options and freedom to HRs (T&D) to go for any training or development activities they are willing to go for. One of the reasons is change in the attitude of HR Professionals also.. now a days HR Professionals are also demanding and very much open & clear in sharing their views. And it must be..

  10. janani February 15, 2014 7:26 am  Reply

    Dear Govind,

    Thank you so much for your updates.Person who come forward and sharing his/her ideas in a competitive world is really superb.i am obliged for such thoughts.
    Thanks again for sharing your knowledge…..

    • govindsinghnegi February 16, 2014 5:35 am  Reply

      Dear Janani,

      Thanks a lot for your appreciation.

      • rushali April 26, 2014 11:26 am  Reply

        Very true, as we all HR’s facing the same issues more or less the same way but some where i feel if we come up with more deliberate and smooth ways of handling the company through mgmt point of view and try to win their confidence and make a win -win situation there will be more happy days instead of underestimating.

        • govindsinghnegi April 28, 2014 4:27 pm  Reply

          Dear Rushali,

          You are absolutely correct.

  11. Vimal balsara October 19, 2015 6:08 am  Reply

    Agree with the article, medium size or small scale industry are not hr friendly.the mnc and large size organisations understand the hr and more hr driven

Leave a Reply