How to Manage HR in a Small Business: A Guide


Where large businesses have large HR departments which manage everything from the payroll to employee mental health and wellbeing, smaller businesses often do not have even a single HR professional – because there are simply too few employees to justify hiring an individual to help manage their working lives. But HR tasks are nonetheless important and can often go overlooked in small businesses, to their detriment. As such, this article seeks to inform small businesses about the best ways in which they can support an HR capacity without breaking the bank.


Your first port of call should always be outsourcing, if you don’t want to hire a full-time employee to work within your organization. You can look to firms that provide smart payroll outsourcing, or those that are more interested in helping your workers thrive with mental health benefits, away days, and other team-building exercises.

When you’re looking for a firm to outsource to, make sure you pick from the best of the best. You get what you pay for in the world of HR outsourcing, and it’s worth shopping around to find those outfits that have been reviewed by other small businesses for their provisions. Ultimately, you’re looking for a firm you can trust to do the job well and to your schedule.


There are other ways in which smaller firms can balance the need to provide HR services with the need to save money, time, and effort on hiring an HR professional. One of these comes through technology – the wide-scale automation of various HR tasks so that your business can operate without extra staff members.

Again, you’ll find that there’s plenty of options on the market – with more emerging all the time. Most of the finest apps will plug into your own digital backend, interoperable with your other HR apps or employee management services. So, at least with certain processes, you’re able to easily automate HR, sit back, and enjoy the feeling that you’re saving on the kind of expansive HR teams that larger firms support.

Personal Touch

When you’re working in a large organization, it can feel a little like you’re a cog in the machine. The CEO may well not know your name, and even fewer senior managers won’t appreciate what you bring to the job and what skills you could bring to bear in a more senior position. Smaller companies don’t have this problem: they’re intimate, which means you can tend towards a little more humanity in your human resources approach.

Not only does this mean that your workers will feel more appreciated and valued, but you’ll derive important insights from these conversations – about where they see their career heading, what positions they’re most interested in occupying in your firm in the future, and any qualms or issues they’re experiencing that you can directly impact and negate. Because of this, your small business HR can be far more valuable than that provided by large firms.

Bringing HR capabilities into your small business is easy: you can outsource, bring in technology, and issue the human touch to your workers.

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