Changing Role of HR Management

Published 11 Jan 2017

The need for a more efficient, economical and equitable management of the human resources in business and industry has never been as pronounced as it is today. This need has been brought about by factors which inevitably affect not only the established structures and ways of doing things within the personal area but also by the more meaningful and substantial task of managing the organization’s most important asset – the human resource (Levinson, 2004; Read, 2004) .

Among these factors are: stiffer competition in business; rapid changes in technological, competitive and economic environments such as the explosion of outsourcing (Levinson, 2004); the explosion of technical and managerial knowledge; spiraling wage and benefit costs; increasingly complex government intervention in running the business through laws and regulations; the growing strength of labor unions and the felt need in many businesses to find better ways to manage rapidly changing tasks involving the coordination of many perse specialization (Kottila, 2001).

These factors have no doubt been responsible for the emergence of the personnel function as a vital area in the implementation of corporate strategy. Increasingly, business firms are experiencing a very real change in attitude regarding personnel activities. As a consequence of these developments the personnel management practitioner is no longer regarded as a mere administrator of personnel policies and regulations, but also a planner and manager of the human resource “assets” of the firm. Beyond his necessary and useful housekeeping function, his job is now expected to register an impact on the major strategic issues which affect the firm’s survival and growth. The systems which he now evolves should be responsive to today’s challenges (Berry, 2003, p. 14).

Developments in the practice of personnel management worldwide have been adopted in many countries. The influence of behavioral science has resulted in a humanistic orientation for personnel management that is geared toward attainment of organizational objectives. Traditional functions in personnel such as hiring, wage and benefits administration and record keeping are still being performed. However, the scope of personnel management has been expanded to include strategic concerns such as, among others, career planning, and organizational development and community relations. This linking of personnel management with the process of achieving the organization’s strategic goal defines the qualitative leap into human resource management (Berry, 2003, p. 14).

Scientific management

Scientific management is a type of management which is characterized and guided by the use of scientific approaches to the solution of managerial problems in business and industry. Scientific management aims to discover what particular management procedure is applicable in a given situation by carefully examining the job, determining what is to be accomplished and then designing the tools and methods to accomplish the task. Scientific management requires that both workers and management join in the search for the least waste in materials, working time and efforts through systematic ordering of operations. In the final analysis, improvements in production could best be achieved through effective leadership by the supervisor and the manager (Rose, 1998).

An example of the application of scientific management was the studies made by Frederick W. Taylor on shoveling. He established that the optimum weight that a worker could most efficient shovel was 21 pounds. By designing different tools labor productivity was improved by 270 percent. Another example was the study conducted by Frank B. Gilbreth on time and motion on bricklaying. By reducing the number of motions required to lay a brick from 18 to 5 and practically eliminating all bending and stooping, labor productivity increased tremendously by 200 percent (Berry, 2003, p. 14).

The effects of outsourcing and globalization to the American people and its economy.

Since globalization has become the common trend among nations when it comes to trading different products catering to different needs of the global community, it is expected to be at the forefront of any business dealings around the world. Because advertisements of lifestyles as well as foreign products are frequently watched and read and heard in the media, nations that were separated and estranged from other nations three or four decades ago, are now made into one global community largely because of the current advances in technology (Jana, 2001).

Today, gadgets, clothing, and accessories being used by celebrities can now be possessed by the general public. As business magnates have been keenly aware of the worldwide clamor of people for certain products, they automatically had taken advantage of the opportunity and made use as well of the international man-power that is readily available to meet this universal market. Imagine the discrepancy when it comes to the cost of work done by an American citizen regarding IT work: US$ 100 an hour, as to an Indian counterpart worth only US$20 per hour (Overby, 2003). No wonder, owners of many IT companies, in many cases, bring the job elsewhere rather than give it to people at home.

The system approach assumes that the organization desires knowledge oriented, skills competent and human relations effective workers. Lynch defined a system as a set of parts coordinated to accomplish a set of goals (Human Resource Development in Asia and the Pacific In the 21st Century Issues and Challenges for Employers and their Organizations, 1996).

In essay (The most important figure then is the Human resource manager or the people who are concerned with taking charge of this task. Whether he/she enlists outside analysts or people within the ranks to assist in creating changes will depend on the prime movers. What is imperative is that goals toward these changes are clear based on the initial stages of implementation. It is unavoidable that there will be mistakes and even additional problems cropping up during the implementation stage. However, many of those who are in this line of responsibility find out that much learning are derived from these mistakes. It is hoped that these mistakes may not be very costly.


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