Introducing HRAnswerLink’s New President, Nathan Christensen

It’s an exciting time at HRAnswerLink! We’re planning to expand our business and Portland offices this year — and we’ve expanded our executive team, as well. We’re excited to announce the appointment of Nathan Christensen as HRAnswerLink’s new President and co-CEO, a role he will share with Dennis Abraham, the company’s founder and now co-CEO.

Christensen will draw on his previous leadership positions with HRAnswerLink and other firms in guiding HRAnswerLink’s expansion. As HRAnswerLink’s former Director of Strategy, Christensen oversaw the launch of the HR Support Center in 2005, and he’s served on the HRAnswerLink Board of Directors for nearly 10 years. He’s also practiced as an attorney with the Perkins Cole law firm and as a management consultant with the Boston Consulting Group.

Christensen is well prepared to lead HRAnswerlink into the future, says Abraham. “Nathan knows our business and partners, and he has a vision for how to use technology to change the way businesses access HR services,” Abraham says. “His blend of business, legal, and leadership experience are the perfect combination to take HRAnswerLink to the next level.”

HR Affiliate Link recently spoke with Christensen, who talked about his vision for HRAnswerLink and some changes that affiliates and their clients can look forward to.

HRA Link: Much has changed in the HR world since HR Support Center was launched in 2005. What kinds of information and services do your clients and end users need today compared with what they needed almost 10 years ago?

Nathan Christensen: Our services have evolved in three important ways. First, the employment environment and best practices have changed significantly in the last 10 years, and our services are constantly updated to address these changes, including, for instance, providing tools and information related to the Affordable Care Act. Second, we have implemented the latest technology to deliver our content in the most efficient and actionable way possible. And third, human resources has evolved from primarily a risk management practice to one that builds positive value for companies — fostering happier, more productive, and more efficient employees. We’re constantly developing new tools and services to help our clients use HR as a vehicle for optimizing their workforce and workplace.

HRA Link: What inspired you to return to a leadership position with HRAnswerLink after having worked outside the company for a while?

NC: Ten years ago, I helped launch the HR Support Center, our signature product. It was easy to see, even back then, the potential the product had to help small and mid-size businesses address the HR issues they face every day, and to help our affiliates strengthen their client relationships. Since then, I’ve served on the board of directors, and I’ve seen the company — and the need for its services — continue to grow. Now the company is at a very exciting time: It’s got an exceptional team, a loyal group of affiliates and end users, and a toolkit of technologies that will allow us to deliver HR services in entirely new ways. When I was presented with the opportunity to return to HRAnswerLink and help it pioneer the next generation of HR solutions, it was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.

HRA Link: What is your vision for HRAnswerLink? How do you see the company evolving over the short-term and long-term?

NC: Dealing with HR is often the worst part of the day for small business owners and managers. It’s an increasingly complicated field, and owners and managers don’t have large executive teams or internal departments to advise them. Our vision is to change the way business owners and managers experience HR. We want to use our technological and HR expertise to make HR simple, engaging, collaborative, and proactive — [a vehicle for] building value, not just managing crises. HR is at its heart a very positive part of managing a business’s most important assets: its people. And it should feel that way.

HRA Link: At a high level, what upcoming changes might clients and users expect to see in HR Support Center?

NC: Our affiliates will see new ways to deliver branded HR solutions to their clients. Our end users will see an expanding portfolio of tools and resources that will help them build a compliant, efficient, and productive workplace.

HRA Link: In your view, what are your customers’ greatest needs? In what ways is HRAnswerLink uniquely qualified to address those needs?

NC: Our affiliates are in search of a solution that helps their clients succeed and at the same time strengthens their relationships with those clients. Meanwhile, our end users are in search of a way to navigate the world of human resources and implement the best practices available. By being both an HR company and a technology company, HRAnswerLink is perfectly situated to address both those needs. We’ve been in this industry for nearly 10 years and have a team of HR professionals that not only know how to give practical, actionable advice and build practical, actionable tools, but who truly love doing it. We see the difference we are able to make in our users’ businesses, and it’s very inspiring.

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