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More than Forms and Handbooks, HR Influences Business
Sheila Smith, HR Strategies

February 2017

Educator. Architect. Trusted advisor. Business partner. These are some of the words that Sheila Smith uses to describe her professional role as President and Chief Solutions Officer of her company, HR Strategies.

A boutique consulting firm specializing in “custom, culture-focused HR services,” HR Strategies is poised to celebrate its fifth year in the Baltimore region. Founded by Smith to communicate to small and medium-sized companies just how influential HR can be to their organizations, HR Strategies has evolved into a trusted business partner that designs complete, personalized HR programs for its clients. “We listen to our clients, understand their objectives and business plans and offer workable, sensible solutions, resources and tools created specifically for them,” Smith explains. “Our work is custom and it is scalable. We do nothing boilerplate. We have a passion for what we do, and this is reflected in the finished products we deliver to our clients.”

HR Strategies LLC
P.O. Box 29
Finksburg, MD 21048

Our goal is to help business owners and leaders understand HR’s scope of influence and to educate them about the impact strategic human resources can have on the organization’s effectiveness.

5 Key Roles of HR in
Business Strategy:
• Change Steward
• Talent Manager
• Architect
• Operational Catalyst
• Business Partner

HR Strategies Services:
• Policy Development
• Custom Handbooks
• Jobs Analysis
• Job Descriptions
• Performance Reviews
• Exit Interviews
• Separation
• Open Enrollment Support
• Benefits Education
• Niche Recruiting & Onboarding
• Background Checks
• Candidate Behavioral Assessments
• Merger and Acquisition Support
• Educational Lunch ‘N’ Learns
• Smart HR for Emerging or Businesses in Transition

Risk Management
• HR Audit
• Compliance
• Lawful Interviewing and Separation
• Employment and HR Law
• Employee Relations Issues

HR Strategies provides policy and procedure development, employment and HR law education and training, employee handbooks, guidance through employee relations issues, jobs analysis and design, internal HR gap assessments, performance management, recruiting, and onboarding best practices. The company also supports existing HR departments with everyday challenges. Smith says because her team’s combined expertise includes firsthand roles in organizations, they bring a unique blend of experience and education to the table that few other HR professionals can offer. In addition, the relationships that HR Strategies fosters with clients enables them to be highly successful in recruiting the most suitable long-term employees for clients, because they already understand the client culture.

“We work as an integral part of your business team. We can often see obstacles or challenges that you aren’t anticipating, and we can help you solve them or take advantage of business trends in a timely manner,” Smith says.

She notes that outsourcing HR is making more sense in today’s business world, due to rising costs and shrinking budgets, less time and complex employment regulations. “Outsourcing enables businesses to convert fixed costs into variable costs so they can invest capital in revenue-generating activities,” Smith explains. “It also allows them to reduce costs for expenditures that are necessary for early operations of the business. Small companies will realize economies of scale through the outsourcing firm’s cost structure, and they also get the resources of a full-spectrum HR network.”

In addition, Smith says outsourcing HR allows business owners to go back to doing what they do best – running their business. It’s not just about forms and process; it’s about taking care of her clients. “When clients understand the impact HR has on their business, then good things start to happen. I love to see that. You can have all the forms and a handbook that sits in a drawer, but if you don’t know how to use them, it may be even more problematic.”

Not only does Smith want her clients to succeed, she wants to help those who don’t have access to employment resources. HR Strategies partners with My Sister’s Place, a women’s center in Baltimore City, on a job readiness training program designed to prepare women for independent living. Smith and her team provide the skills and products for a job search, including seminars on resume writing, interviewing and confidence-building.

Before opening HR Strategies, Smith spent 10 years as vice president and director of Human Resources for Colliers Pinkard (now Cushman Wakefield) commercial real estate in Baltimore. She now specializes in compliance, leadership advisory, policy development and managerial training. She says her goal is to take the fear and pain out of HR for business owners and managers, and to advise and guide them through constant changes. Smith holds a bachelor’s degree from Notre Dame of Maryland University with a triple concentration in Human Services, Social Science and Business Management. She also holds the designations of PHR and SHRM-CP. When not focusing on her business, Smith and her husband, Jeff, enjoy spending time outdoors with their chocolate lab, Pete.

With locations in Finksburg, Bel Air and Hunt Valley, Smith says HR Strategies is looking forward to continued growth going into its fifth year. “Our goal is to educate business owners, leaders and managers to understand HR’s scope of influence and its strategic effectiveness. We become their trusted advisors.” I95 Content Marketing