Who is a Functional Expert?
A functional expert is defined as a specialist who is an expert in a particular domain. A functional expert is an essential differentiator in a company. He is the one who is a specialist in one topic and knows everything about it when it comes to that subject. He can be considered as a rescue person in every such situation wherein his knowledge can be utilized.
A functional expert is an essential person in every organization. A functional expert is critical in handling the technical difficulties which are faced by customers regarding a product. However, an expert can also be an expert on different topics like career development, talent acquisition, reward management, etc.
Qualities of the functional expert
The following are a few of the essential qualities which are critical for a functional expert. They are as follows:
1. Knowledge of the domain
A functional expert is expected to have complete and in-depth knowledge of his domain. Whenever anyone in the organization has doubts regarding that particular domain, the respective functional expert should be the one that they should contact without hesitation.
2. Experience in the relevant field
The expert should have ample experience in the relevant field. It does not matter the experience which he will be having in different fields, but it is crucial to have practical knowledge in the subject matter of expertise.
3. Training and development skills
The functional expert would be continuously required to impart knowledge to people throughout the organization. Challenging situations occur most of the time, and in such cases, the functional expert must have the capacity and required skills to train and develop an employee or a colleague.
Interacting with everyone to impart technical knowledge, he must have impeccable communication. He should be able to convey his thoughts with the use of proper words and pass the message. Communication plays a vital role in a functional expert job profile.
Importance of functional expert
Functional experts are masters in their subjects and will come to rescue whenever needed. In modern organizations, the HR department has become one of the crucial departments of the company.
Many vital decisions of employee engagement, motivation, employee welfare, payroll administration, etc. are decided in the HR department. An organization faces many risks, internal and external, and to cope with such uncertainties; it is essential to have a functional expert.
There are multiple functional experts in an organization that can take up separate works, or in the case of startups, a single expert can take up the roles of multiple domains. The important objective here is to come up with a solution and help the organization whenever they’re facing any challenge.
Functional expert helps to avoid risks in many uncertain business scenarios. Having a functional expert itself is a relief for solving challenging problems.
2. Employee engagement
A functional expert helps in improving employee engagement. Since the employees’ problems are addressed at a functional level, organizations can expect enhanced employee engagement with different departments for building relations and other business purposes.
Functional expert helps to collaborate between different departments. He may also help in improving employee interaction and building the relationship of the employee with the senior management.
Therefore experts are directly involved in enhancing collaboration between different departments and people in the organization.
Since the collaboration increases, teamwork also improves, which improves the productivity of the organization. Common issues like conflict, inter-organizational competition, dispute, insubordination, etc. are avoided.
- One of the most common disadvantages of having a functional expert is constant disputes among the differentiators themselves. The conflict may be due to the inter-differentiator misunderstandings in which different differentiators will have to engage with themselves and each other. This may lead to altercation and conflict.
- Ego clashes between fellow differentiators are also a common thing in functional experts, which can lead to conflicts.
A functional expert is an essential part of an organization. He is required to handle many technical challenges which the organization may run into. Apart from that, he may also be required to handle common challenges related to his domain and should be able to provide guidance as well.