HR OKRs (Human Resources Objectives and Key Results) provide a framework that businesses can implement to establish objectives, monitor progress, and achieve desired results within HR processes

Objectives are ambitious goals that motivate employees to stretch above and beyond their performance plateau. Objectives should be time-bound, executable, and improve the quality of a process or product.

Key results are performance indicators that exhibit quantifiable success as a team progresses from point a to point b, measured through a numerical value or percentage. 

HR OKRs enable HR leaders to track progress while keeping an eye on their objectives. HR leaders use OKRs to enhance HR processes. For instance, to create more effective learning and development opportunities, HR leaders may identify building an employee mentorship system as their objective, and their key results as aiming to boost:

  • Job satisfaction from 20% to 50%
  • Work progress by 40%
  • Employee participation from 30% to 60%

Why should HR leaders care about OKRs?

OKRs help employees work productively by fusing employees’ goals with the companies’ business objectives. HR OKRs encourage employee involvement in establishing challenging yet achievable goals that:

  • Ignite motivation and engagement
  • Promote a shared purpose
  • Clarify priorities
  • Offer a results-driven approach 
  • Increase collaboration  

What can HR leaders do to implement HR OKRs?

HR can effectively integrate an OKR system through these tips: 

  • Provide training. Training should define OKRs, explain the cycle, instruct how to build successful OKRs, and support individual, team, and company goal achievements. HR can appoint an OKR coach to work with employees on mindset strengthening to maintain motivation, poise, and resiliency when facing setbacks.   
  • Practice. Before opening up OKRs on a large scale, HR leaders can initiate a trial run with a smaller group of people. Once other teams join the OKR initiative, HR can expect approximately a six-month adjustment period for employees to get used to the system. 
  • Get the C-suite on board. For OKRs to be effective, senior managers must accept and commit to the endeavor. Executive support is fundamental to ensuring that the enterprise can smoothly cascade down to every level within the company. 
  • Establish OKRs for teams. OKRs can provide quantifiable results that improve HR processes and impact the entire company. HR leaders can leverage OKRs to motivate teams to achieve goals for an ultimate company objective. 
  • Be specific. OKRs should include explicit objectives and five or fewer key results to avoid overwhelming people with ambiguous intentions and too many priorities. Remember to be flexible. It’s okay to misfire when setting objectives and realign OKRs halfway through the process.  

How can OKRs improve company culture?

Successful incorporation of OKRs is a process that can help firms move from stagnancy to growth. OKRs can ignite individual and team motivation, boosting autonomy and empowerment. Ultimately, nurturing employee and team growth through setting and monitoring specific goals can build a dynamic, thriving company culture.