In the majority of US companies, the most senior HR executive now reports directly to the chief executive or company owner according to new research by XpertHR.
The survey — of US-based employers — showed that HR officials now have a direct line into the senior level of an organisation.
While 61 per cent reported directly to the CEO, 13 per cent reported to the chief finance officer, 10 per cent to the chief operating officer and 8 per cent into a senior-level company-wide manager.
XpertHR surveys editor Andrew Hellwege says: “The survey results show that at a majority of organisations, HR has a direct line to a topmost company executive, rather than needing to go through an intermediary such as the CFO, which is probably a reflection of the importance employers place on human resources in today’s complex working world.”
The research also showed the median ratio of HR staff to employee headcount is 1.5 full-time equivalent HR staff for every 100 workers.
However this figure varies considerably depending on the size of the organisation.
While employers with fewer than 250 workers reported a median of 2.2 full-time equivalent HR staff for every 100 workers, this figure drops to 1 for firms with 250 to 999 employees and to just 0.9 for organisations with a staff of 1,000 or more.
Hellwege adds: “The inverse relationship between workforce size and the HR staff-to-employee ratio highlights economies of scale, as larger organisations are able to achieve necessary HR results without needing the same proportion of HR staff as smaller companies.”
The survey also found that larger companies were more likely to have separate budget for HR departments.