Human Resource Management is a functional unit of an organization that deals is concerned with the management of employees and their welfare. It is composed of a set of policies, programs and practices geared towards the realization of an employee’s potential which will in turn result to increased productivity for the entire organization.
Human resource management has become one of the most important activity of an organization in the contemporary organizational environment especially after the realization that human resource productivity is dependent on its surroundings as opposed to other factors of production.
For an organization to utilize its resources and endowments effectively and efficiently the quality of its human resource becomes of paramount importance. Human resource management improves this quality of employees to ensure that they offer their best to the realization of the organizational goals and objectives.
Role of Human Resource Management
Functions of Human Resource Management
The functions of Human resource management are wide and varied. Among these functions includes the role to ensure equal employment opportunities for all groups of people especially the minority. Management of human resource ensures that employers have in place employment policies and procedures which do not discriminate either in terms of race, gender, religion etc.
This may also be done by formulating or adopting Affirmative actions that are in line with this agenda. When a working organization is free from bias and preferential treatment, employees will feel that they all are a part of the organization, each no better than the other and they have a role to play for the betterment of the organization as a whole.
There is also the creation and development of a mutually respectful environment within the organization and employees are able to voice their personal conflicts with confidence that they will be determined fairly. The secret is in incorporating every employee into the organization not as a lesser important member but for each of them to feel as an integral part of the organization and the success or failure of the organization if in his/her hands.
Another major role of the Human resource is in the planning, recruitment and selection of employees. This is the process by which organization picks the talent they require for the organization to perform properly, (Anonymous, 2011).
An organization which has recruited the wrong people into the organization will not only result to increased labour turnover due to the unproductive employees, but will also negatively affect the overall morale of all the employees leading to poor productivity. Subsequently, the employees will be disconnected from each other since they cannot relate well, more supervision will be required and the good employees may end up looking for alternative jobs.
The human resource ensures prior planning is done before recruitment, the right employees are selected and the process is done fairly. This in turn will result into a good combination of talent and experience in the human resource representing the current labor market enabling them to work as a team leading to increased productivity.
After recruitment of an employees has been done, the human resource team does not end their work there. With ever changing labor markets and technological needs, an organization needs to continuously offer training and educational services to its human resource. Through this, an organization can be sure that its human resource structure is composed of the most competent and qualified personnel in the labour market, and retain its comparative advantage of its human resources for effective competitiveness, (Mohanty, 2010).
More so, human resource development increases the morality of employees where they feel that they are realizing their career development thus feeling that they are where they belong and can work to their full potential for the growth of the organization, the future of which is their future too.
Employees in an organization need to be fairly rewarded every so often in recognition of their efforts and to congratulate good performance. This may come in the form of perks and packages in form of benefits over their monthly salaries. This works to retain experienced and competent employees to continue working for the organization.
It also has a major role whereby employees who are rewarded feel good, their efforts having been recognized and are generally much happier and more productive. Further, other employees who did not perform as much feel obligated to work even harder so that their efforts can show too be rewarded. The result is an overall motivated human resource working towards a common objective of the organization.
The working conditions in a work place also play a major role in the performance of the employees. Everyone wants to work in an environment that safe and healthy to work in. it is the role of human resource management to ensure that the environment in which the workers do their work is clean and free from danger whether physical or psychological (Blessinger, 1999).
When the surroundings are hygienic and free from danger, the employee becomes a much happier being and becomes more productive as compared to when he is always afraid that he may get injured or contract a disease. Further, a healthy working population is generally more productive as compared to a sickly population.
The Human Resource Management also has a role in ensuring that employees belong to a Trade Union or other labour relations. Employees need to have a channel through which they can air their grievances at the work place. This way disputes will be solved much more quickly and in a civilized manner.
With such a channel, the employees will not depressed at the work place not knowing who to turn to but instead will always work their differences in time before the operation of the organization is disrupted. Further, having a trade union gives employees a sense of belonging and sense of safety which will increase their motivation leading to increased productivity.
In order for the role of HR manager to be effective, all this roles must be performed optimally. All these roles are equally important and they all facilitate to the proper achievement of organizational goals. There is no role that is better than the other. They are all elements of the same branch. They all work to achieve a common objective, i.e. helping an employee attain his best performance for the good of the whole organization.
Emerging Role of Human Resource Management
In the traditional past, the Human Resource Management team has always worked under the bureaucratic arm of the executive in performing its functions. This in turn saw the HR serve the interests of the executive form the restricting policies and systems instead of focusing on the employee needs as its primary goal.
This normally left the employees on their own without their concerns being considered and worked upon which reduced their morality leading to reduced productivity for the organization.
In the modern business world and with changing needs of organizations, managers have realized that the overall success of the organization is dependent on high quality and satisfying customer-service. This can only achieved through the employees of the organization and this means the human resource has to put more focus on the needs of its human resource. Thus, the role of the HR is also changing.
In the modern organizations, HR managers should see themselves more of strategic partners (Hearthfiel, 2011). They have the primary role of ensuring that the organization attains its business goals and organizational objectives. They should have a clear understanding of the best work systems and designs which contribute to the optimum performance of the employees.
He should know the strategy of human resource planning that has the greatest impact to the organization growth when used. This is in such areas as recruitment, motivation, reward system, human resource development and appraisal measures etc.
As opposed to the situation in the past, the HR should work more as employee advocates instead of following the executive wishes and demands. He should identify and concentrate on the needs of the employees and should have an understanding of how human mind works to ensure that, he delivers to their expectations.
He should come up with ways of treating employees so that they are always motivated, happy and very productive. This may be in the likes of effective communication, involving them in decision making, creating a sense of responsibility in them and generally making them know that they own the organization and that its failure or success is theirs too and that it lies in their able hands.
The HR manager provide employees with an opportunity for self-development and help them in realizing their personal goals as they work towards the organizational objectives. They may also be involved in profit-sharing or in ownership of the organization and are given a chance to show their adaptability through delegation.
With an ever changing world, the role of HR manager includes not just in acquiring the new breed of labour in the market but also in championing for change within their scope. He should come up with strategies through which he pioneers change not just among the employees but also in the entire organization by using his ability to handle people.
He should know how to prevent people from resisting change and how employee can adapt to change within a short while. He also helps in identifying what the organization needs and help to formulate goals, mission, values and a culture that is geared towards those needs of the organization. His also role includes coming up with measures of to determine how the organization is performing against the overall goals and objectives.
Human Resource Management Learning
HR management learning helps you learn a wide range of skills that applicable in handling human resources today. Career services offered equips one with the skills to identify opportunities in the society to which one can apply the diverse skills learnt.
One gets an opportunity to learn the legal and ethical issues that exist in the business world today in virtually all the industries and how to apply such knowledge to practical experiences. The coursework has been designed to strengthen ones management skills and be able to take up corporate responsibility in an organization.
Human Resource Management in the workplace
In the workplace, HR management skills are of paramount importance. an organization will from time to time find itself faced with the need to make a decision on its staffing needs, for example, when and where to use an independent contractor, or to acquire new employees, how to improve the performance of the employees and how to ensure that the organization’s personnel and management practices adhere to the prevailing rules and regulations.
An organization also requires to determine which approach to adopt in compensating employees and which benefits to offer employees as well as keeping employee records and the various personnel policies.
The role of HR management has also undergone various changes. In the past, it was only concerned with hiring and firing of employees. Lately, organizations look up to the HR manager in playing the integral role of staffing, development and generally managing people which is a central point to the growth and overall performance of the entire organization. Without proper management of the human resource, an organization cannot achieve anything regardless of its endowments in terms of capital and other factors of production.
Human beings will most naturally result to dispute day in day out. If these disputes are not minimized and solved in time, they may cause havoc or even downfall to even a multinational organization. Further, the organization needs to come up with methods of attracting and retaining talent through proper rewarding and development of employees.
Future Career in Human Resource Management
The knowledge accumulated on human resource management is a useful tool for my future career. The management skills learnt will help in time management, organization of files for employees and increased personal efficiency. In addition, the ability to multitask is improtatnt in dealing with different and diverse needs of employees at the same time and keeping composure. It will help in formulating priorities on what is important for the well being of the organization and the employees as well.
Business ethics knowledge will enable keep the secrets and confidential information of the employees as a professional. It will also help in ensuring that employees are treated ethically by the executive and the employees themselves act in accordance with ethical principles laid down.
The strategic orientation acquired will help to e able to influence management’s decision in acquiring new talent for the organization and which strategy the organization is to adopt. It will also help in determining and filling human resource needs for the organization as well as how to manage the staff through compensation, development, motivation etc.
The human relation skills will also help in relating well with employees. Employees can look at you as someone they can talk freely to and as a way to channel their concerns. It will also help in solving disputes among the employees and also between the employees and executive.
In this highly computerized and advanced technology being widely used, we cannot doubt that a machine will remain useless without proper knowledge to run it. Therefore, management of human resource becomes an important part of any organization. Human resource managers help in bringing change and have the ability to acquire knowledge on the basis of experimentation more than in any other career. Human resource helps to coordinate and integrate the performance within the organization with the expected results.
Anonymous. (2011). Recruitment and selection: The importance of good recruitment and selection. ACAS. Retrieved on 8th September 2011 from http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=746
Blessinger, K. (1999). Human Resource Management. Retrieved on 8th September 2011 from http://www.libsci.sc.edu/bob/class/clis724/SpecialLibrariesHandbook/hr_management.html
Hearthfiel, S. M. (2011). The New Roles of the Human Resources Professional, The New York Times Company: About.com
Mohanty, I. (2010). Human Resource Management seeks to achieve: Individual, Organizational and Social Goals. Orissa: Kanak Manjari Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences