On October 14, 2021, HRPA’s Mara Berger, Associate Registrar, and Emily Sully, Policy Analyst, presented “Preventing Risks to the Public Before They Happen”, a session on risk-based regulation at the 2021 Canadian Network of Agencies of Regulation (CNAR) virtual conference.

And it was a huge success. Many people tuned into this impactful session that offered a lot of key insights and valuable tactics for attendees to take away.

In case you missed it, here are the main highlights from this presentation:

The practice of HR is not without its risks

The session kicked-off with some illustrations of the risks that workplaces, employers and employees are exposed to when HR professionals don’t live up to the highest standards of practice:

● Ruined careers (leading to a whole host of other issues)
● Physically unsafe workplaces
● Psychologically unsafe workplaces (toxic workplaces, harassment, bullying)
● Exploitative work practices
● Loss productivity
● Employees’ rights violated
● Violence in the workplace

Risk-based regulation can protect workers and workplaces

Probably the most illuminating part of the presentation: HRPA’s Risk-Based Regulation Backbone (as seen below).

During this part of the session, Mara and Emily explained what risk-based regulation looks like in action. Basically, HRPA conducts environmental scanning using our complaints data and reviewing hundreds of HR-related tribunal cases and media stories, other complaints and disciplinary data from regulatory bodies and relevant research articles and presentations. HRPA also goes out to our membership and employers and employees (using methods like surveys, interviews and focus groups) to understand what kind of risks workplaces, employers and employees potentially face when HR misconduct happens.  

We then develop measures to mitigate or prevent those risks through tailored interventions such as professional guidance documents, continuing education, training, and more.

Finally, we communicate this to our membership and the public, and then monitor the effectiveness of our regulatory responses in reducing these harms.

(Read to the end of the blog for more information on an upcoming webinar that explores the Risk-Based Regulation Backbone in detail.)

Well-run businesses are essential to a thriving society

HRPA experts, Mara and Emily, wrapped up the session by underscoring the necessity of risk-based regulation for workplaces and communities.

“People go to work every day expecting to be treated fairly, to learn and grow in a safe and productive work environment. But some employees are mistreated, rules and safety become diluted and leaders sometimes look the other way. This can have a huge impact on workers and communities,” says Emily.

“HRPA’s role, as the regulator of the HR profession, is to ensure the highest level of professionalism and capability with our registrants so they keep workers and workplaces safe, fair and effective,” adds Emily. “Risk-based regulation is one method that helps us to do that.”

To dive deeper into this topic, on November 24th, HRPA will be hosting “Protecting Workplaces, Employees, and Employers from Risks of Harm: HRPA’s Shift to Risk-Based Regulation.” During this webinar you’ll learn more about HRPA’s pivot to a risk-based regulation approach and how we’re partnering with our members and the public to ensure HR professionals do better so businesses and employees can be better.

Click here to register for “Protecting Workplaces, Employees, and Employers from Risks of Harm: HRPA’s Shift to Risk-Based Regulation” Webinar.