As the CEO of an HR technology company, friends often ask “when is the right time to hire HR”, and my answer is always “quickly”.
Despite my view that HR is a critical role within any business, one that enables critical thought regarding business operations and helps empower teams to do their best work, Humi recently crossed sixty employees with no dedicated HR leadership on our own team. Many of those same friends have said that I’m a hypocrite, telling them to hire early while waiting - quite long - to make the same hire at Humi.
However, this decision was by design and not one that we’ve taken lightly. While I firmly believe it is best practice to hire HR early in almost any business, for us, it would have been training wheels that I fear may have never come off. Lacking internal HR, our team was forced to become a group of distributed HR experts, and forever will be. Everyone from Sales, Customer Experience and Product needed to skill up quickly to help our clients, and in turn we ended up helping ourselves.
Without true HR leadership in place, we constructed extensive performance management and culture building practices that have led to outstanding results. We’ve had only one employee quit (quite amicably) in the last two years, despite massive changes, challenges, and workload heaped across the entire team.
In a way, not having internal HR was our own version of training wheels, and today they are ready to come off. The culture of valuing HR, learning it for oneself, and always putting best practices in place will forever live in our blood. But as we scale and see new, more complex challenges on the horizon, the need for singular and pronounced HR leadership is clear.
With great excitement, I’m thrilled to announce that we have officially hired Andrea Bartlett as our new, incredible Director of HR.
Andrea joins us having built and managed HR teams and people projects across Canada, the US, and Latin America. Much like Humi, she’s risen quickly. In 2017 she was named an HR Rising Star by HRD Magazine, and was also named a Top 10 in the Last 10 Alumni at the Ted Rogers School of Management. Before joining Humi, she held Director roles in both private and publicly traded companies, bringing with her deep experience and a commitment to creating exceptional employee experience. We couldn’t be more excited for her to share this extensive knowledge and passion.
Andrea’s work at Humi will be relevant to every Humigo (Humi employee) but also every customer, and the Canadian HR community at large. A big piece of why we’ve added bench strength in this department is to enhance our ability to deliver meaningful insight and assistance to everyone in need of it.
We know that supporting your people, especially now, is tough work.
That’s why one of Andrea’s first initiatives includes the launch of a monthly newsletter, Think with Humi. Written by Andrea, this newsletter is designed to give you insight into relevant and raw people challenges, and give you the tools to enable you to continue to shape the future of work. You can subscribe here.
So while I very well may be a hypocrite, I expect Andrea to be our hero. To follow along on her journey as we forge ahead, please subscribe to her brand new newsletter, follow her on Linkedin and Twitter, or reach out directly to chat.
Simon, Co-CEO at Humi
Simon is one of two CEOs at Humi. He spent years working at an investment bank throughout the last financial crisis before shifting to tech in 2012; a founder at OneLocal before co-founding Humi in 2016. Through both businesses, he has focused on everything from sales to finance, and spends his time trying to navigate changes and challenges like COVID-19 at Humi.