· Insights

The duality of capital – how to unlock the combined power of HR and finance

"There is huge potential to be unlocked," argues MHR's chief HR officer

HR and finance people may appear to have different views on just what ‘capital’ means: on one side, human, on the other, the bottom line. But bring them together and you have an unbeatable combination.

Imagine if you will, a Venn diagram. One of the circles is HR and payroll. Here capital stretches beyond uniquely monetary considerations. Within this circle we’re talking about the human potential, the aspirations of every employee, their individual and collective talent, and the invaluable wealth represented by each and every heart and mind.    

For HR and payroll teams, capital signifies people – the driving force behind every success; the essence of every visionary pursuit. Here, human capital is held dear. Nurturing it is the cornerstone of organisational greatness. It comprises diverse experiences, talents and ambitions.

In the other circle is finance. The finance team perceives capital as fiscal resources: a means to fuel aspirations and spur progress. It encompasses monetary assets, investment potential and financial strategies, serving as the currency driving innovation, expansion and sustainability.

What happens at the confluence of these two circles, where these two views of ‘capital’ come together? On the outside they may appear to be very different in nature, but in purpose they are very much united towards the very same goal: uplifting the organisation and its people, and by that means promoting a united approach which values both human and financial capital. 

Collaboration and convergence

So, while on the outside we are looking at potentially very different views, there is huge potential to be unlocked in that intersection of the two circles. If we can bring together these two distinct domains, find ways to nurture links between both of these forms of capital, and synchronise their different attributes, we can unify them and create a blend of ideas which further propel any organisation towards even greater success. 

Take, for example, planning people costs: working together to both understand and streamline such issues as recruitment and retention, headcount, and the impact of these on turnover in both the short and medium term. Enabling both sides to share data truly unlocks the combined potential and talent in each discipline. It’s a powerful idea.  

But can that idea be translated into a reality? How can you seamlessly integrate HR payroll and finance? And do it painlessly? The good news is that integration can be achieved. MHR already has a proven track record in this area, enabling businesses to not just think about the power to be unlocked within the circles where HR and finance meet, but to make it happen.

Different ideas about capital but a shared vision of how those different ideas can be best applied for the benefit of the business and those who work for it. It’s not just an attractive thought: it’s a possibility whose time has come.   

Jeanette Wheeler is chief HR officer of MHR

To find out more about how MHR can help you to unlock the collaborative potential of your HR, payroll and finance teams, click here now.