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HR Consultant

Professional HR consulting services.

Whether your business needs coaching support across all areas of HR, or ‘done for you’ support on a specific HR activity, or simply need a fresh perspective on a specific HR challenge or topic, I can guide and deliver across a wide range of HR topics.

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HR consulting services

Stop drowning in the headache of people challenges, or worrying if you should be doing something different with your HR consulting strategy. I can be there for your business whenever you need, to give you an honest view on what you need to focus on to get the best out of your people.

Whether you need senior HR expertise to provide guidance and support, or to more tactically take a key people project off your plate, I’ll roll my sleeves up and get it done. I’ll diagnose the challenge, develop the best approach, and make it happen.

You don’t need a big HR consulting team to get results – instead add some tactical, short term HR expertise to make a real impact – fast.

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Who is HR consultancy for?

HR professionals new to the role of leading the people function

Established HR professionals who need an extra pair of hands

Global HR teams that are growing and underprepared

Anyone responsible for HR decisions in the business, who needs experienced help

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Senior HR support for fast-paced scaling businesses

When small businesses experience rapid growth, the person who assumes the role of Head of HR is often not deeply experienced in all aspects of HR.

Does that sound like you?

I help HR professionals in small and medium sized businesses to prioritise what HR frameworks are needed, and provide a much-needed senior HR sounding board that larger businesses can offer their HR teams who are growing and developing their HR careers.

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What areas of HR can I help with?

HR Strategic Planning

By establishing a clear, relevant people strategy, you can achieve growth, boost performance and morale, and attract and retain the best and brightest people for sustainable future success. I love helping businesses achieve their goals and what sets me apart is my dedication to really getting to know your business first.

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I help YOU to create HR consulting strategies that are bespoke to your needs encouraging you to take an integrated business strategy approach, starting with an honest assessment. I ask questions like ‘What kind of company is this?’ and ‘How would we describe the kind of people who work here?’ and ‘What makes us different from others?’ before tackling the more usual strategy question of ‘Where do we want to get to?’. This approach helps to set high performing organisations apart from others.

I believe the organisation’s leadership profile, company culture, and people’s talents should all drive and impact business strategy.

‘The HR Strategy you developed is so good I could cry!’

DR, Company Director
DR, Company Director

HR Reward

The complex area of reward is considered a dark art by many. And for good reason. It can be highly technical, analytical and structured, and yet also needs to be innovative, relevant and flexible.

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Reward and recognition is integral to the wider HR consulting strategy, in particular employee engagement and performance management, and often it’s hard to know where to start. And with Gender Pay Gap Reporting now front and centre on the agenda for every company over 250 employees, the link to diversity and inclusion has become ever more prominent. Frankly, there has never been a more critical time to get this important area right.

‘Gemma has the ability to think strategically and influence senior leaders.’

Rosie Ranganathan, HR Director, England & Wales Cricket Board
Rosie Ranganathan, HR Director, England & Wales Cricket Board

Employee Engagement

How would your employees describe your workplace culture? Having engaged, positive, happy employees makes sound commercial sense.

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Disengaged employees will create an atmosphere of negativity, talent will leave and customers won’t get the service they deserve. Simply put, creating a great place to work has a direct impact on business performance and profitability. And yet very few organisations have a stated employee engagement strategy.

‘I am quite sure that Gemma’s strategy was integral to our achieving a place on the Sunday Times Top 100 list twice in a row’

Director, Technology Company
Director, Technology Company

Leadership Development

Leadership is no longer about sitting in an oak-panelled room controlling the finances and making decisions behind closed doors. Modern leaders have to collaborate, and be transparent, engaging and receptive. They need to lead with impact and presence and yet retain humility and authenticity; make clear decisions and yet consult and listen; be bold, and yet build trust and be aware of their impact on others.

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Building leadership capability is a challenge that is critical to overcome for business to succeed. I can help you to equip your leaders with the skills, tools, and confidence required to lead by example and inspire those around them, through a blend of coaching and training. Together we can build and deliver leadership development programmes across all levels, or bespoke training to suit the needs of the leadership population.

‘I’m really pleased with what we managed to achieve with the Leadership Team. I found Gemma’s perspective on our issues hugely valuable and I’m convinced what we covered together will help us in future.’

Ian Hillary, Director, Pfizer
Ian Hillary, Director, Pfizer

Talent Development

Competition for talent is hot. Developing and retaining talent is critical to the success of any organisation.  It’s important to know where your talent is, what development they need to truly excel, and how to keep them motivated and interested while delivering the day to day requirements of the business.

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bespoke training & development framework will ensure that talent at all levels will build on the core skills needed, and accelerate progress and performance to support the future plans of your organisation.  An important feature of the development I can help you with is continuity of learning and practical opportunities to apply and embed the newly acquired skills.

One such development framework I have previously evolved and implemented was shortlisted for the CIPD Annual Award for Best Learning & Development Initiative.

‘The programme produced a step change in the way our employees position themselves to clients, and was directly aligned to our business strategy to change how we position ourselves in the market.’

Director, Technology Consultancy
Director, Technology Consultancy

Change Management

Long before we had the natty acronym VUCA to describe our world (Volatile, Unpredictable, Complex, Ambiguous), Darwin had already pointed out that the species most adaptable to change is most likely to survive. For me, the corporate world is no different.

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Whatever the cause of the change – restructure, acquisition, culture change, or other change initiative – it can often feel difficult, unsettling and risky. If handled incorrectly, emotions can run high, resulting in an unnecessarily disruptive and costly exercise.

I help you to ensure any change management initiative in your organisation is conducted fairly, meets all legal requirements and allows your business to emerge positively and with its reputation intact. I can guide the process from start to finish with practical hands-on help to navigate through a potentially difficult and emotional time for your organisation allowing you to achieve the best results for both your business and your team.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Strategic HR consultant?

It is important to differentiate between Operational HR and Strategic HR, as these differ in a number of ways:

Operational HR primarily focuses on governance and tactical people processes, such as contract administration, policies, payroll, benefits, and employee relations. It deals with the practical aspects of managing a workforce and ensuring compliance with policies and regulations.

In contrast, Strategic HR involves long-term planning and alignment of HR practices with organisational goals. It concentrates on talent acquisition, talent development, reward, engagement and retention strategies, as well as workforce planning to support the company’s overall strategy.

While both operational and strategic HR are crucial, my services focus on strategic HR consulting, as outlined above, rather than operational HR activity.

What does a Strategic HR consultant do?

A Strategic HR Consultant is typically engaged once basic operational HR processes are in place. The main role of a Strategic HR consultant is to provide a wide range of services including the following services:

  • People strategies
  • Talent development
  • Workforce planning
  • Employee motivation and wellbeing
  • Pay and reward frameworks
  • Attraction and retention

Why choose an HR consultant?

HR is important in any business. Often considered the driving force behind many businesses looking to boost employee morale, optimise performance and  identify and solve problems related to employee turnover, performance, and other HR related issues.

With this in mind, all businesses, regardless of their size should recognise the importance of hiring an HR consultant.

Why use a Strategic HR consultant?

Engaging a Strategic HR consultant is invaluable for organisations looking to maximise the potential of the people they employ and drive long-term success. 


Strategic HR consultants specialise in aligning HR practices with the overarching business strategy. They provide expertise in areas such as talent management, leadership development, and workforce planning, helping companies achieve sustainable growth and success. By leveraging their insights and experience, organisations can make informed decisions regarding recruitment, talent retention, and employee development, ultimately ensuring that HR initiatives directly contribute to achieving strategic objectives. 

If you’re seeking guidance in these strategic HR areas to elevate your organisation’s performance, a Strategic HR consultant can provide tailored solutions to drive your business forward.

What to look out for when choosing a Strategic HR consultant?

When selecting a Strategic HR consultant, it’s essential to focus on specific criteria to ensure you’re choosing the right partner for your organisation’s needs. 

  1. Consider their track record and expertise in strategic HR areas, such as talent management, organisational development, and workforce planning. Look for consultants with a proven history of helping businesses align their HR practices with their strategic goals.
  2. Seek out consultants who either understand your industry and the unique challenges it presents, or have proven their skills in adapting to different industries quickly. 
  3. Check for client references and testimonials to gauge their past performance and client satisfaction. A consultant’s ability to communicate, collaborate, and tailor their approach to your organisation’s culture and objectives is crucial.
  4. Ensure the consultant’s focus aligns with your needs for strategic HR consulting rather than operational HR tasks. This distinction will help you avoid any misalignment in expectations and ensure that you’re getting the strategic expertise you require to drive your organisation’s success.

When should I hire a Strategic HR consultant?

Hiring a Strategic HR consultant is a choice made when your organisation has most of its operational HR needs covered (or a plan to address these needs) and it is ready to take a strategic approach to people and culture. 

You should consider it when:

  1. You need to temporarily inject some CPO level expertise to focus on strategic HR initiatives, while your less experienced HR person or team is in place taking care of the day-to-day.
  2. Specialised expertise is required, especially for niche HR areas such as pay and reward.
  3. Significant changes (mergers, acquisitions, restructuring) demand more experienced HR guidance.
  4. Your internal HR team is stretched thin, and additional expertise is necessary for projects or initiatives. 

Why use an external HR company?

One of the main benefits of using a HR company is that you don’t have to worry about the cost of  hiring a full-time HR Director or CPO to manage your strategic HR needs. 

Using an external company to handle your HR strategy also means that you will be able to establish a strong people proposition, and target the right resources in the right places to maximise your employee performance and engagement.

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