Ep 151 – How to Use Agile in Human Resources #hrtechconf

how to use agile in human resources

We’re all interested in being more productive, effective, and nimble in our jobs no matter what the role. Agile is an philosophy and a methodology that can help us get there personally and professionally. Agile is a common practice in IT with Harvard Business Review reporting over 80% of companies adopting it, so I thought it was time to talk about all things agile and how it can be applied in HR.

Episode 151: How to Use Agile in Human Resources with Reese Schmit

The spotlight is on HR and our processes, not to mention our technology adoption, support, and implementation. Reese Schmit is an Agile Coach and her voice lights up when she talks about agile. Reese explains that agile is a mindset that allows us to respond to change. It allows us to adapt to our environmental needs by sharing feedback loops to empower our teams, create visibility, and drive continuous improvement. Reese also walks us through a rapid-fire list of terminology for podcast listeners to become familiar with when it comes to agile. Those include ScrumMaster, framework, scrum, and Kanban board.

How Agile Can Elevate and Improve HR and Recruiting Processes

Agile methodologies are usually used to build things in an iterative or incremental way. The idea is to build a small thing and try to figure out just enough to start moving forward and iterating. Reese sees agile being leveraged in so many HR processes such as employee performance reviews, recruiting processes, technology implementations, and planning for events as simple as your fall team meeting or complicated career fairs.

Using #agile for engagement creates more investment and credibility. Teams working together collaborating. There's safety in smaller groups and teams allowing everyone to contribute. - @reeseandassist #podcast #hr Click To Tweet

Additionally, agile allows HR and recruiting teams to collaborate and engage across teams or with other departments within your organization such as IT departments that are typically using agile in their workdays, planning, and strategy. Reaching out to these teams is a great way to not only build relationships with those outside your department but also get into the agile mindset, which is certainly helpful when recruiting, hiring, and engaging  STEM and technical workers.

In this fast-paced business world where talent is so critical to the profitability and functionality of an organization, agile can really help HR and recruiting teams organize, anticipate, and adapt to changes not just in their technology but in the business, not to mention the small markets and company locations where small nuances can really impact that one facility’s profitability and success.

Reese believes that agile is for everyone. She says it’s perfect in order to more effectively meet deadlines and variable scope. In her work and life, she has found it universal for everyone, not just those who work in technology and software.

Reese has an obvious passion for all things agile. I think in this competitive talent market we can’t afford not to look at ways to become more flexible and effective in what we do. Leveraging agile also provides us an opportunity to get outside our silos and tap into process improvement expertise within our organization. By collaborating, we build relationships and help drive effectiveness for everyone.

Connect with Reese Schmit.


– Survey Data Shows That Many Companies Are Still Not Truly Agile

– The Agile HR Guide for Human Resources and Recruiting

– “Agile HR” Means Looking Ahead

– How HR Can Become Agile (And Why It Needs To)

– How to Build a Truly Agile Human Resources Function

– Can HR Become Agile?

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*A special thank you to my production team at Total Picture Radio.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.

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