The Chief People Officer (CPO) is a blend of the more traditional Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) role, with a modern, employee-centric approach. The role requires an individual with elite people skills and emotional intelligence to recruit, retain and engage talented employees, as well as business and financial acumen to assist with the organization’s long-term health through change management, scalable structures and processes, and corporate strategy. This blog outlines the growing need for CPOs and the essential duties associated with this business-transforming role. We’re seeking to answer the question, “What does a CPO do?”
The Rising Need for CPOs in Every Organization
Smart executives and HR leaders have realized the value of happy employees and are looking to Chief People Officers to enhance the traditional employee-HR relationship. According to research from the University of Warwick, happy employees are approximately 12% more productive than unhappy employees. Furthermore, a Gallup study found engaged workforces outperform their peers by 147% in earnings per share. The bottom line is employee satisfaction correlates with productivity and profitability.
What Does a Chief People Officer Do?
The Chief People Officer (CPO) is an executive leader who enhances the traditional HR role with an emphasis on company culture, employee satisfaction and long-term organizational health. The CPO’s unique set of responsibilities are outlined below:
- EPO – Employee Performance Optimization
- Organizational Development and Design
- Building Company Culture
- Attaining the Very Best Talent
- Creating and Implement Learning Programs
- Executive Coaching and Development
- Designing Programs to Effectively Recruit, Train, Motivate and Maintain the Workforce
- Change Management (referred to as RTMM)
- Enhancing ROI by Investing in Employees
- Strategizing and Leadership for People-Programs
- Creating a Sustainable Employee Training Program
Who Should Become a CPO?
Not everyone is cut out to be a Chief People Officer (CPO). For the role to be successful, it should blend both people and task orientation, and consider both hard (financial) and soft (engagement, morale, culture ) challenges. The CPO should see the relationship between every dollar spent on employees and the company’s overall health and well-being. Additionally, they must know the financial implications and return on investment when it comes to dollars spent on employees.
Vetting the right CPO for your organization is no easy task, but the competitive advantages, impact on ROI, and increased productivity and profitability, outweigh the time and resources spent identifying the proper individual to fill this increasingly popular role.