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Hiring an HR Professional


Having a human resources (HR) professional is vital to ensure your club gets the most out of its employees. According to Courtenay Casaccio, the vice president of people experience at Midtown Athletic Clubs, if you own or operate a club, you need HR.

HR administrative duties can consist of payroll and benefits, I-9 employment verification, company policies, employee issues, and hiring and firing, etc. These tasks may be carried out by one person or multiple people in your club.

Some factors to consider when it comes to having an HR professional are club size, employee count and strategy. “Are you looking to grow?” asked Casaccio. “Do you have more than 15 employees? Will you be doing a lot of hiring? If any of those answers are ‘yes,’ then you may want to consider an HR professional, like an HR generalist or business partner role. The larger a club gets, the more likely it will need to adhere to federal and state employment laws, some laws even have a threshold of 15 employees.” 

Another consideration is the cost of hiring a full-time employee versus the cost of outsourcing. There are many vendors that can manage a portion or all of your HR needs. Casaccio explained there are also options to partner with law firms that specialize in employment law to keep your club’s practices compliant and help with any tricky employment issues.

If your club is ready to take your talent roadmap to the next level, Casaccio suggests implementing a team that can focus on strategies such as succession planning, individual development plans, leadership development, workforce planning, onboarding, total rewards, and talent acquisition.

If a system to manage and provide insights for all your employee data — recruiting, onboarding, turnover, performance, compensation and learning programs — is more up your alley, Casaccio suggests a Human Resource Information System, which can support all your HR system needs.  

Casaccio has this final piece of advice for clubs considering a HR professional:

“If you are unsure where to start, I would recommend starting with your business strategy first. Determine short-term and long-term goals, and how will you get there. Also, look at your back-office roles and see who is doing what as far as HR goes. Then you can determine if you need to start formalizing your HR roles within an HR department. One thing is certain: a strong HR business partner or generalist will have a business mindset and be an expert in how to get all the HR work done. They will be able to help create a strategy around if and when you need to grow your department to meet the business priorities. People are the true secret sauce to any great company, and if you get that right, you will be well positioned to meet your business goals.”

Taylor Brown

Taylor Brown is the assistant editor for Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at taylor@peakemedia.com

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