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CHRO Perspective: Taking Action in Uncertain Times

Time to shine

Tom Morrison, Principal, Human Capital, Deloitte Consulting LLP

When it’s time to rein in costs, companies look to their chief human resources officers (CHRO) to do a lot of the heavy lifting. You can play the hero in this environment, but it will require a longer view than your colleagues might be pressuring you to take. The key will be coupling short-term cost containment with a plan to safeguard the talent resources the company will need for growth.


By now you’ve likely gone through a workforce reduction, a compensation adjustment, or both. Hiring and campus recruiting have cooled off. Who is looking at your surviving talent mix to ensure it fits the model for your company’s recovery? Even in a cost-cutting environment, you want the right people in place — and you want to continue making smart investments in their training and development.


If the last year has poked a lot of holes in your org chart, the HR function can provide value by reassessing the organization’s design model. This is also the time to deploy data analysis and performance management tools so you can make quick, informed decisions as the business evolves. It’s also a time to make sure you have an accurate map of where your critical talent lies — and a plan to keep them on board and working harder than ever.


The current crisis gives CHROs more license to take on strategic changes that might have met resistance before. This is an opportunity to showcase the real value your department offers to the business.

Learn more about taking action in uncertain times in “Here Today. Where Tomorrow?”

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