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  • Miki Ackermann

Fractional Human Resource Support: the SMB owner's secret weapon for all things people

Updated: Mar 14

HR consultant talking to small-mid-sized business owner
Fractional Human Resource Support

Running a small to mid-sized company is no small feat, and for many entrepreneurs, the initial joy of doing everything solo wears off as the business grows. When you're the sole captain of your ship, managing everything from finances to day-to-day operations can be both exhilarating and overwhelming. However, as the team expands beyond 10 to 15 employees, the need for a well-defined organizational structure and effective people management becomes apparent. This transition often leaves business owners frustrated as they grapple with longer work hours trying to tend to crucial people-related duties.


Enter the concept of fractional HR (Human Resources) and OD (Organizational Development) support; a game-changer for entrepreneurs looking to navigate the challenges of growth without drowning in the complexities of managing a workforce. Unlike hiring a full-time HR/OD professional, opting for fractional HR/OD support offers several advantages that can alleviate the burden on business owners and promote a healthier work-life balance for owners. Essentially, fractional support is on-demand HR/OD support. Allow me to explain better.


Flexibility: Get help when you need it, no strings attached. Fractional HR/OD support allows entrepreneurs to access assistance only when needed. This flexibility ensures that resources are allocated efficiently, and costs are incurred only when specific expertise is required.


Cost Savings: Its budget friendly and easier than hiring an employee. With fractional support, there's no need to worry about overhead costs, payroll expenses, or benefit packages. This cost-effective solution enables small to mid-sized companies to access senior, professional HR/OD expertise without committing to the financial burden of such an employee.


Easy Delegation: Pass on the people and HR/OD tasks like a pro; and focus on what you do best. Entrepreneurs can easily delegate HR and OD tasks to fractional professionals. This not only frees up your time to focus on strategic business initiatives but also ensures that HR/OD functions are managed by seasoned experts.


Professional expertise: For companies with existing staff members who shoulder HR duties along with other job tasks (often combined with accounting or office management), the introduction of fractional HR/OD means professional, expert support for these staff members. The external seasoned HR/OD consultant can greatly enhance internal HR capacity. With open communication and effective collaboration, a synergy of effort ensues, which results in stronger overall people and culture management strategies.


Scalability: Grow your business more easily by having fractional HR/OD support on demand. As the company continues to grow, this on-demand support can seamlessly adapt to changing needs. Whether it's hiring a specialized professional or expanding the scope of services, this model allows for scalability without the constraints of a fixed internal HR/OD structure.


Relationship Flexibility: Engage for as long as you need it; no strings, no drama. Entrepreneurs can engage with fractional support on a short-term or long-term basis, depending on their business requirements. This level of flexibility empowers you to tailor the support to the unique needs of your organization.


Risk Mitigation: Avoid HR disasters with the help of a senior, seasoned professional. Fractional support provides a safety net for entrepreneurs by mitigating risks associated with compliance, employee relations, and other HR challenges. Having access to experienced professionals reduces the likelihood of costly errors and potential legal issues. A quick ROI example of fractional HR support is having the expertise to advise you on compliance requirements in a timely manner versus facing expensive fines.


Fractional HR/OD support can contribute significant expertise in critical people issues (such as attracting, retaining, and developing employees) and building out the necessary organizational structures required to operate and grow a business (such as HR policies, job descriptions, performance management, handbooks, recognition programs, culture management, and more).


Beyond these advantages, fractional HR/OD support can be your own problem solver for people and culture issues, and we can act as your professional sounding board. It can be lonely as an entrepreneur and business owner. With fractional support, you have somebody you can turn to for guidance, ideas, coaching, and support. We can be the expert ally you need in your corner.


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