The Human Resource department acts as a trusted adviser to the employees of an organization along with the management who intend to enter to an M&A deal. The Human Resource (HR) department plays a pivotal role in the process of merger and acquisition between two companies.
HR professionals face a number of challenges during M&As, including:
Attempting to maintain an internal status quo, or to effect change—either to facilitate or thwart (in the case of a hostile takeover) a possible merger or acquisition, as instructed by upper management.
Attempting to provide guidance to upper management from a “people” perspective as to whether organizational goals will be better fulfilled in the form of a merger versus an acquisition, or by making internal changes.
Assuming that a merger or acquisition has been approved, discerning all aspects of the two separate organizations and the one combined organization that will be affected.
Communicating with employees at every step in the M&A process with both an appropriate level of disclosure and an appropriate level of confidentiality.
Devising ways to meld the two organizations most effectively, efficiently and humanely for the various stakeholders.
Dealing with the reality that M&As usually result in layoffs of superfluous employees under the combined organization.
This reality entails coordinating separation and severance pay issues between the combining organizations.