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Human capital and its associated principles of talent management: this is the process of acquiring and nurturing talent by the anticipation of required human capital the organization needs at the time, then setting a plan to meet those needs (Armstrong, 2006); are sound platforms on which to leverage a company's fundamental resources to attain corporate goals (De Guzman, et al., 2011). There are, however, considerable differences between the current Human Resource Management (HRM) functions as practiced and the ideal HRM functions.
2.2a Models of Human Resource Management - The Role
The conventional model for HRM has been to organize it as a staff function that works indirectly, through provision of policies and tools for managing people and through education of line managers (Worren, 2008). An alternative model is to give HRM the responsibility for managing people who are organized in a company-wide competence centre or resource pool (Worren, 2008). The result for the company as a whole is to increase flexibility and improve the ability to organize talent across internal boundaries. For the HRM function, it implies a significant shift in that people managers are made directly accountable for resource allocation and competence development (Worren, 2008). However, the HRM function is still a support function in most companies, with only indirect accountability for human resources (Worren, 2008).
In practice, it is very difficult for Human Resource (HR) managers to undertake all these activities. They tend to administer human resources rather than strategically manage it. Hence, it becomes a case of inconsistency between what HR managers do (practice) and what they would like to do (ideal) (De Guzman, et al., 2011).
2.2b Tasks and Activities
Strategic HRM creates a clear connection between the goals of the organization and the activities of the people who work there (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). All employees should see the link between their daily tasks and achievement of a purpose or goal. HRM can be viewed in one of two ways. First, HRM is a staff or support function in the organization. Its role is to provide assistance in HRM matters to line employees, or those directly involved in producing the organization's goods and services (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). Second, HRM is a function of every manager's job. Whether or not one works in a formal HRM department, the fact remains that to effectively manage employees; all managers must handle their activities (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010).
HRM activities consist of:
Training and Development
Communication (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010)
2.2b (i) Recruitment
Contacting a pool of qualified applicants is one of the most critical aspects of recruiting, which helps give line managers more choices. Organizations must have a well-defined reason for needing individuals who possess specific skills, knowledge, and abilities directly linked to specific jobs.
2.2b (ii) Employee Selection
Once applicants have been identified, a human resource manager matches available human resources to jobs (Armstrong, 2006). Selection helps thin out the large set of applications that arrived during the recruiting phase and to select an applicant who will be successful on the job. Hiring good people is challenging in this age where most organizations are technology based and they require a unique brand of professional skills (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010).
2.2b (iii) Training and Development
The goal of training and development is to have competent, adapted employees who possess the up-to-date skills, knowledge, and abilities needed to perform their current jobs more successfully (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). If that is attained, HRM turns its attention to finding ways to motivate these individuals to exert high energy levels (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). The training and development function tends to be a continuous process. The fact is that few of the newly selected employees can truly come into an organization and immediately become fully functioning performers (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). First, employees need to adapt to their new surroundings. HRM plays an important role in assimilating employees so they can become fully productive. To accomplish this, HRM typically embark on four areas in the training and development phase: employee training, employee development, organization development, and career development (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010).
2.2b (iv) Motivating
Human behavior is complex, and trying to figure out what motivates different employees has long been a concern of behavioral scientists (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). One's performance in an organization is a function of three factors: ability, willingness and opportunity to do the job (Jiang, et al., 2012). Thus, from a performance perspective, employees need the appropriate skills and abilities, motivation and the opportunity to adequately do the job. Motivating employees also requires a level of respect between management and the workers; by involving employees in decisions that affect them, listening to employees, and implementing their suggestions where appropriate will earn respect (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). HR managers must be sure that the performance evaluation system is designed to provide feedback to employees regarding their past performance, while simultaneously addressing any performance weaknesses the employee may have (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010).
2.2b (v) Communications
HRM communications programs are designed to keep employees informed of what is happening in the organization, knowledgeable of the policies and procedures affecting them, and provide a place to vent frustrations (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). Employee relations programs should ensure that employees are kept well informed: through such things as the company's e-mail, voicemail, website, bulletin boards, town hall meetings, and video conferencing (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). Such a system builds trust and openness among organizational members that helps withstand even the sharing of bad news. However, this process is difficult to implement and maintain, but the rewards should be such that the effort placed in such endeavors is justified.
Task for P3:
3.0 Evaluate the role and responsibilities of line managers in human resource practices.
First line managers generally supervise production on line tasks in the manufacturing business, and typically consist of positions such as foreman, shift boss. First line managers are an important source of information about worker satisfaction for higher management to take into account in their organizational planning process.
Line managers help HR to implement new rules and regulation amongst the lower staff.
3.1 Line Managers Play their Role in HRM
Typically the management responsibilities carried out by line managers might include:
Day-to-Day People Management
Managing Operational Costs
Providing Technical Expertise
Organization of Work Allocation and Quotas
Monitoring Work Processes
Dealing with Customers/Clients
Measuring Operational Performance.
Line managers in many organizations also carry out activities that have traditionally fallen within the remit of HR such as providing training and assistance, undertaking performance appraisals and dealing with discipline and grievances. They also often carry out tasks such as recruitment and selection or pastoral care in conjunction with HR.
3.1 (a) Selection
Organizations must have a well-defined reason for needing individuals who possess specific skills, knowledge, and abilities directly linked to specific jobs; line managers help HRM in making this decision.
3.1 (b) Disciplinary Handling
Discipline in the workplace begins when a line manager sets out his expectations with his team. These expectations may be supported by policies and procedures produced by the HR department. However, the line manager's promise to enforcing the rules is more likely to influence employee performance and behavior than any polished employee handbook. If a line manager is seen to break the rules, he will struggle to enforce them with his team. If he needs to take formal disciplinary action against a team member, his own behavior will be cast back at him.
3.1 (c) Absence Management
Line managers can reduce the absenteeism in an organization by deducting the pay of the worker who does not show up for work, and as a motivator he can try to find out the reason of why s/he did not show up for work and try solving it (if possible). Line managers can use overtime pay as a motivator for workers to meet their goals.
3.1 (d) Training
The training and development function tends to be a continuous process. The fact is that few, if any, new employees can truly come into an organization and immediately become fully functioning performers. First, employees need to adapt to their new surroundings. Line manager plays an important role in assimilating employees so they can become fully productive line manager acts as someone to look up to like a mentor or role model.
3.1 (e) Appraisal
Human behavior is complex, and trying to figure out what motivates different employees has long been a concern of behavioral scientists, Ability, willingness and opportunity to do the job. Motivating employees also requires a level of respect between management and the workers, Involving employees in decisions that affect them. Managers must be sure that the performance evaluation system is designed to provide feedback to employees regarding their past performance, while simultaneously addressing any performance weaknesses the employee may have.