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Bersin by Deloitte Research Showing "Distributed HR" Allows Business to Keep Pace in an Increasingly "Glocalized" World to be Unveiled at IMPACT 2013

Bersin by Deloitte analysts to introduce "distributed HR" structure, new research on developing leaders in China, performance management, talent acquisition, HR and technology

OAKLAND, Calif., April 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Bersin by Deloitte, a leading provider of research-based membership programs in human resources (HR), talent and learning, today announced that at IMPACT 2013: The Business of Talent®, it will unveil "distributed HR," an emerging structure that empowers HR leaders to make front-line decisions and respond faster to the unique needs of global businesses adapting their products and services to the local markets they serve. IMPACT 2013, an industry-leading research-based executive conference for HR, learning and talent leaders and their teams, takes place April 22-25 at the Marriott Harbor Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

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Business today finds itself on a continuum of globalization; some leaders struggle to maintain control while others allow units to function independently, jeopardizing performance alignment. Still others have developed a hybrid structure, giving design authority to a centralized function but distributing the responsibility to deliver to local offices. Bersin by Deloitte research shows that increasingly, some organizations are blazing a new trail. As their business grows ever more global and their product lines become more locally-focused and varied, HR finds itself adapting a structure that is similar to that of business. 

"We call this new emerging structure 'distributed HR,'" said Dr. Brenda Kowske, Bersin by Deloitte senior analyst, human resources, Deloitte Consulting LLP. Dr. Kowske will present her findings at IMPACT 2013 in a presentation titled The Strategy and Structure of High-Impact HR.  "With this structure, HR leaders house HR within the business and shift much of the decision-making authority from corporate to the front lines. Armed with strong HR infrastructures and a network of experienced HR professionals, HR designs and delivers its programs from within the business unit."

The research, based on analysis of 280 senior HR leaders' survey responses, aimed to determine the structural characteristics most indicative of HR, managerial, leadership and organizational performance. It shows a need to newly define the role of HR business partners, often called "HR generalists."  Until now, the role of these executives was to "serve" and "support" business leaders and staff, using the expertise of the Centers of Excellence for support.

"Our research and many conversations with clients show that successful organizations do things differently, distributing HR so that front-line HR professionals are empowered to make decisions and both design and deliver programs," said Josh Bersin, principal and founder, Bersin by Deloitte, Deloitte Consulting LLP. "We call this high-impact HR."

Distributed HR is the structure revealed when high impact characteristics are expressed in one functional organization chart. High-impact HR organizations exhibit several important behaviors. For example, these organizations:

  • Distribute a greater degree of authority and intelligence into HR teams within the business. This means a different structure and more "authority" and "expertise" within each business unit. It breaks down the traditional "center of expertise" structure.
  • Create "networks of expertise," not only "centers of expertise," and let senior talent professionals relocate into the business where needed. This creates an external intelligence function that helps HR continuously improve and evolve as new talent solutions are discovered.
  • Spend more time and money building the skills of the HR team. Every HR professional should have a development plan to deepen their expertise in the disciplines of HR as well as the business itself. High performing companies indicate that the new HR professional should have 50 percent MBA skills and 50 percent HR skills. These professionals are supported with a strong HR practice infrastructure.

Bersin by Deloitte analysts will provide a preview of findings from several recent and upcoming published studies through their presentations at IMPACT 2013. These include:

An on-site Sponsor Showcase will feature nearly 20 solution providers with technologies and solutions for a variety of HR uses, including talent acquisition, assessment, e-learning, learning, performance management, talent management, and talent measurement.

Full details, including the conference agenda, session descriptions, speakers and information about the workshops are available at Bersin by Deloitte research members may register for IMPACT 2013 for $1,295. Non-members may register for $1,495. Special hotel room rates are available through April 5 on a space-available basis.

Those interested in learning more about Bersin by Deloitte or its WhatWorks® membership may email [email protected] or call (510) 251-4400. 

About Bersin by Deloitte
Bersin by Deloitte delivers research-based people strategies designed to help leaders and their organizations in their efforts to exceptional business performance. Our WhatWorks® membership gives Fortune 1000 and Global 2000 HR professionals the information and tools they need to design and implement leading practice solutions, benchmark against others, develop their staff, and select and implement systems. A piece of Bersin by Deloitte research is downloaded on average approximately every minute during the business day. More than 5,000 organizations worldwide use our research and consulting to guide their HR, talent and learning strategies. For more information, please visit or

As used in this document, "Deloitte" means Deloitte Consulting LLP, a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting. 

SOURCE Bersin by Deloitte

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