7 Human Resources guides every HR Manager should read

19 March 2020
5 minute

HR trends and best practices. When it comes to innovation and dynamism, Human Resources is a business area that never stands still. As an HR professional or a hiring manager, that can make the practicalities of navigating an ever-changing landscape challenging.

In this piece, we’ll take you through seven of the most useful HR guides. Armed with this intel designed by experts in the field, you’ll be better equipped to make solid business decisions based on HR best practices from improving employee relations to increasing job satisfaction, perfecting the hiring process, and promoting company culture standards.

The list of benefits from reading great HR guides is by no means exhaustive. But this curated roundup will highlight some of the best, most beneficial guides out there. So, here’s our 7 Human Resources Guides Every HR Manager Should Read.

7 HR Guides for HR Professionals

1. Guide to Managing Human Resources 

As an overview of recruitment and selection best practices, this guide from UC Berkeley covers all the basics and more. It goes through headline practices on recruiting staff, managing successfully, interaction in the workplace, an overview of wellness, and employee and labour relations.

Each section goes into more detail on the strands that make up the headlines such as health and safety, disability and benefits under the wellness banner. As a comprehensive guide, this is one to have in your canon to share with both HR team members and managers throughout the business.    

2. 7 Human Resources Best Practices  

To set out HR best practices that will create a universally consistent high standard, both HR teams and managers need to have a grasp of the basics. This self-titled mini guide on the subject ticks off the essentials on this list.

In the article, you’ll find practical advice across seven HR best practices, as well as a headline statement on why they are important to any business. Providing security to employees, hiring the right people, self-management for effective teams, performance-based compensation, training, making information accessible, and creating an egalitarian organisation all form part of the guide.   

3. The A-Z of Reward and Benefits

When it comes to staff retention and nurturing talent, employee rewards and benefits are key to HR best practices. Making this guide on rewards and benefits from HR Magazine available to your leadership teams is one way to improve understanding of the subject.

Scroll through to find out more about basic rewards and benefits like childcare vouchers, engagement, and pensions psychologies, to alternative therapies, divorce surgeries and duvet days. Even better, each subsection is written by an expert in the field.

4. Needs Analysis: How to determine training needs

For training and development intel, turn to HR Guide’s Needs Analysis article. A comprehensive look into skilling up workforces in “an efficient and cost-effective manner,” this is a must-read for leaders and HR professionals.

The guide runs through types of needs analysis, from organisational to individuals, and performance analysis among others before taking a closer look at knowledge, skills and ability. Then it summarises techniques and how to conduct different types of analysis before rounding off with a checklist of the entire process to help you stay on track.

5. Reward and pay  

The CIPD has a handy and rather in-depth fact sheet on reward and pay which can help form the basis for staff incentives programmes. From the basics, like defining what rewards are and managing them, it goes into UK legalities and the role of employee benefits.

Perfect for both managers and those in your HR teams, this is a good starting point for building up understanding around staff incentives, the role they can play in a successful organisation, and ideas for how it can be implemented. Whether that’s in base pay and earning, or non-financial rewards.

6. Performing Job Analysis  

Described as a “toolkit” for how job analysis can be used in the workplace, the SHRM Foundation provides a useful guide on key points in job analysis. They include tips on identifying skills, knowledge and expertise before detailing how to establish criteria for selection and promotions, design training programmes, and how to measure performance.

From the overview onwards, it’s an easy and informative read. That makes it ideal for people both in and outside the HR department, especially those in management positions.  

7. Performance Management: an introduction  

Back to CIPD for this guide on performance management. As a key component in HR best practices, this is an important read, and it’s thorough from the introduction onwards. That said, it doesn’t ramble on for pages, and is compact enough to distribute to key people within your organisation as a base document on the topic.

Going through the definition of performance management, to how it works, challenges, objectives, learning and development, and performance appraisals and performance-related pay, this has every essential covered. There’s also a useful video on changing trends in performance management.

Top 7 Human Resources Best Practices

The list of HR practices is both long and always changing. But if we had to sum up the top HR best practices to consider, we would go back to Digital HR Tech to provide a summary [1].

They summed them up as the following:

Employee security – with the unpredictability of life, creating a stable workplace is important for both motivation and job satisfaction.

Selective hiring – the right hiring process will enable an organisation to attract the right people for each job role.

Self-managed and effective teams – “diverse and psychologically safe” teams are the highest performing and nurturing them is the key to success.   

Fair and performance-based compensation – around the idea that as well as hiring the right people, you need to retain them and pay them fairly.

Training in relevant skills – training will boost employee skills sets to keep your teams ahead of the curve in your industry.

Creating an egalitarian organisation – promoting a culture of equal respect regardless of someone’s job role or contribution.

Making information easily accessible – information provides essential support to employees and making this readily available will boost feelings of control and respect.

Follow HR best practice with Thomas

At Thomas, we have the expertise and resources to help you stay up to date with the latest HR trends and best practices. From Succession Planning to Effective Recruitment, and from Change Management to Leadership, we help businesses of all sizes navigate an constantly changing HR landscape.

We have a range of psychometric assessments and tools to provide organisations with vital insights into the behaviours, talents, personality and capacity for learning of potential hires as well as existing employees.

To find out if we can help you with any of your HR or people management related challenges, please get in touch with one of our team


1. https://www.digitalhrtech.com/human-resource-best-practices/#Reductionofstatus