Organizations are considered to be the most incentive, social arrangement of today. It’s considered a marvel to know that thousands of people with individual backgrounds, skills and interests are coordinated into various organizations, so that they can pursue their common institutionalized goals and objectives. The historians of the future see today’s organizations as the greatest achievement of our time and era. For example biogenetic engineering have had some breakthroughs.
The Apollo mission to the moon was made possible by the organization called NASA. Even on day to day basis organizations play an important role in our lives. The water we drink to the food we eat or the clothes we wear all comes from different kinds of organizations Human resource is defined by many companies as a combination of the administrative functions with the performance of the company’s employees and their relations along with the company’s planning. Human resource basically develops mostly from industrial and organizational behaviour.
The major function that are included in HRM are recruitment, selection, training and development, orientation, placement, separation, career planning, performance appraisal, salaries and wages, incentives and gain-sharing, benefits, services and security and employee relations and assessment. The term human resource basically refers to the people of the company. The manager of the company engages in HR because the HR activities and tasks are considered to be an important part of the company. It basically helps the company to achieve the goals and the objectives that are set for them by the management.
As you all know that human resource activities also make a large contribution to the company’s success in many ways but the HR activities mostly support the strategies of the organization. The HR department basically exists to support the managers and the employees of the company and to pursue the company’s goal or objectives (Werther & Davis 1996). The major challenges that would be faced by the organization are as follows: – • Population-growth challenges • Global Competitive Challenges • Unemployment Challenges • Social Responsibility Challenges • Medical, Food, Housing Challenges
• Unknown Challenges • Ethical Challenges • Workforce Diversity Challenges The objectives of the HR department are based on societal, organizational, functional and personal goals. It is known that the objectives of the company are not formally stated that is they are not in the written form. The objective of the human resource management not only reflects the intention of the middle and top management but also balances the challenges that are faced by the HR department. Objectives are basically considered as benchmarks against which the actions can be evaluated.
The human resource objectives not only reflect the intention of the management but also balance the organizational challenges, the HR function and the people who are affected by it. If the company fails to succeed in its objectives it would harm the company’s profits, performance and even the survival of the firm. As we know that there are four objectives that are common to the HR management. The objectives are as follows: 1. Organizational Objective: which basically recognizes that the HR management exists and it contributes to the organizational effectiveness.
The HR department basically exists so that it can help managers of the company to achieve the objectives and goals of the company. HR management only supports the managers with the human resource issues. If we put is simply the HR department only exist solely to help assist the rest of the company. 2. Functional Objective: which basically states that this objective solely exists to maintain the department’s input at a level that is considered relevant to company’s needs. A relation exists between the objectives and the HR activities and they are appraisal of the employee, placement and assessment of the employee.
3. Societal Objective: this objective shows that the company has to be ethically and socially responsive to the needs and challenges of the society while the company minimizes the negative impacts of such demands on the organization 4. Personal Objective: shows that the HR management helps assisting the employees in achieving their goals and objectives. And these goals enhance the individual’s contribution towards the organization. To achieve these goals the HR department help the managers of the company to obtain, maintain, utilize and retain the right amount and types of workers.
The objectives of the employees must be met otherwise the employees would not be motivated, retained and maintained by the HR department of the company. And the employees would neglect their jobs, voice their complaints or maybe leave the organization for a better opportunity (Werther & Davis 1996). It is not necessary that all the organization can meet the HR objectives every time. Some sort of trade-offs do occur that stops the company in achieving the stated goals and objectives. When the objectives are net by the department, they make a huge contribution towards the organization’s and employees needs.
And with the help of these objectives the managers are able to see the kinds of activities that are needed to be carried out and why. There is a relationship that exists between the objectives and the activities of the HR. For example, for the societal objective the supporting activities would be legal compliance, union and management relations and benefits of the employees. For the organizational objective the supporting activities would be HR planning, employee relations, selection, training and development, appraisal, placement and assessment.
For functional objective the supporting activities would be performance appraisal, placement, assessment and development of the employees. And for personal objective the supporting activities would be training and development, performance appraisal, placement, assessment and compensation of the employees. The HR activities are considered as actions that are taken by the department to maintain a workforce balance that is considered as appropriate to the organization’s needs.
For example, small companies who do have the HR department have small budgets and small staffs therefore the HR department of such companies only focus on the activities that they consider are important for the company. The functions or activities that are considered important for such companies would be planning, recruitment, and wages and salaries of the employees. The functions that are performed by the HR department of the organization are as follows: – Planning is the first activity that is conducted by the department.
Planning can be defined as the systematic forecast that determines the company’s future and the demand and supply of the employees that would be needed by the organization. HR planning is also known as employees planning which helps the HR department and other managers of the company to develop staffing plans so that they would go along with the strategy of the company. it is important that the company is staffed with the right amount of people so that the strategic operational and functional goals of the company can be met.
It has been realized by a lot companies that the HR plans are very important if the organization wants to have strategic success. For example, companies like Nokia and Apple it is important to have strategic plans because it would help the companies by developing new products and introducing them as quickly as possible in the market. It is only possible when the company is staffed with the right kind of people. Without the right people strategy based opportunities would be lost to a better staffed organization like Motorola and IBM (Werther & Davis 1996).
Recruitment is one of the important activities of the HR department. Recruitment is mostly concerned with attracting and finding individuals who are capable for employment. The recruitment process begins s when the new recruits are sought and this process ends when the applicant submits and application. People who find new recruits are called recruiters. The process of hiring is faced with some limitations like costs, incentives, job requirements, policies of the company, environment conditions, insufficient and scarce resources and EEO legislation etc.
Recruitment is done in two ways 1) internal channel which includes job posting program and departing employees 2) External channel which includes advertising, walk-in and write-ins, employee referrals, state employment agencies, open house, international recruiting, temporary help agencies and leased employees etc (Recruitment Process) Selection is one of the activities of the HR department. Selection is defined as a process that is based on specific steps that are used to describe that which individual should be hired.
This process starts when the individual applies for the job and it ends when the final decision is made by the management of the company. the selection process is also faced with some limitations like EEO legislation, Workforce diversity and external prohibitions etc. ( The Selection Process). The selection process is based on eight steps and these steps are as follows:- • Preliminary reception of applications • Employment tests • Selection interview • Preference and background checks • Medical tests • Supervisory interview • Realistic job preview
• Hiring decision Orientation, Placement and Separation is considered to be an activity of HRM. Orientation can be defined as when the new recruits are given an overview of the company on the first day of work. The orientation program of the company is based on the following goals 1) the pride of belonging to the company 2) creates awareness about the company’s business 3) emphasize on customer focus and service 4) helps to reduce the concerns that are related to the job 5) helps with development of a team member and 6) helps to establish personal growth etc.
Placement can be defined as the work activities that are assigned to a new employee. The role of HR department here is that to advice the managers of the company about the rules and the regulations and it also provide counseling to the employees. Placement is based on 3 classes 1) promotion, transfer and demotion. Separation can be defined as a decision where the individual and the company must part. Separation process starts either the employer or the employee.
The role of HR department is to find a method which is satisfactory for conducting a separation in such a way that it reduces the harmful factors that might affect the company. Training & Development is concerned with that placing the employees in a job does not give the company the surety that the individual would be successful in his or her job. Training and development programs are considered important for all the employees. The distinction between training and development is that training is for now and development is for the future.
For example at Corning Glass there are a lot of learning opportunities that range from skilled orientation training to seminars that deal with development issues, they basically help the managers to face the issues that might arise in the future. The employees of the company are not bothered that the class is intended for training or development. It is only concerned with whether the program has helped the employees and the organization or not (Training and Development). Training and development are based on the following steps: – • Need assessment
• Learning principles • Program content • Training and development objectives There are some challenges that are faced by HR department due to training and development. For example cost effectiveness, desired program content, learning principles and appropriateness of the facilities etc. The role of HR department over here is that it helps to prepare the individuals for future job responsibilities. And it also attempts stops the employees from obsolesce, work force diversity, technological changes, affirmation action and employee turnover etc.
(Werther & Davis 1996) Career planning is one of the activities of the HRM. When the department is doing career planning it is mostly concerned with whether the company’s training and development programs has helped the employees with promotion chances or not. A couple of decades ago career planning was seen as an individual’s problem but now career planning is seen as the HR department’s problem. The HR managers and specialist see career planning as a way to meet the internal staffing needs.
The involvement of the HR department in career planning is increasing everyday due to its benefits like low turnover, satisfies the needs of the employees, personal growth, helps with workforce diversity and decrease hoarding etc. Performance appraisal is one of the major activities of HRM. Performance appraisal can be defined as evaluating an employee’s current or past performances relative to his or her performance standard. In this competitive world companies require a high performance so that they can become dominant leaders in their perspective markets.
And at the same time employees also need feedback on their performance so that it can act as a guide for their future behavior and responsibilities. There are some challenges that are faced by the HR department regarding the performance appraisal like legal constraints, rater’s biases regarding the employee based on halo effect or personal prejudice or even cross cultural biases etc. It has been vied been viewed by the experts that when there is poor performance throughout the company it creates huge problems with the human resource management activities(Grote &Grote 1996).
Wages and Salaries are concerned with compensation. Compensation can be defined as something the employees receive in their return of their input to the organization. Without proper compensation the employees of the company would leave and it would be difficult for the company to hire new recruits. The result of pay dissatisfaction can harm the productivity of the company and can also harm the quality of work life as well. There are some challenges that affect the compensation plan like wage rates, union, constraints by the government and equal pay etc. ( Salary and Wages)
Security, Safety and Health is considered a challenge for the HR experts that how to comply proactively with the minimum costs for the organization and to provide with the minimum of costs for the organization and to provide the greatest of benefits to its employees, whereas in the area of employee security and health companies have taken a proactive action. It is the role of the HR department to face the challenges that arise overtime. The HR is usually faced with 2 kinds of challenges: 1) Internal challenges which are also the organizational challenges.
Internal challenges for example would include union, information systems, organizational conflicts between the company and the employees. 2) External challenges are those problems that exist due to the changing environment and the management has no control over it. Change in the company’s environment actually evolves at different kinds of rates. External challenges would include workforce diversity, technology, economics and government. The HR department has to follow 4 steps so that they can overcome the external challenges. They are as follows: –
• Monitor the environment • Evaluate the impact of the challenges on the company • Take proactive measures that is implement approaches that would help the company to achieve its goals • Obtain and analyze the feedback. It is the role of the HR department to achieve a balance between the trade-offs of efficiency and effectiveness. For example when jobs are under specialized the job design may be simplified by decreasing the number of tasks and if the job is over specialized the number of job tasks can be enriched and expanded by the human resource department.