THE OBJECTIVES OF THIS CHAPTER ARE TO:
REVIEW KEY CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
OBJECTIVE OF THE HUMAN RESOURCE FUNCTION
You will see that HRM actually provides the basis for all kinds of management related activities. However different activities related to businesses may differ significantly. A particular business, aims to become a big hit by producing a really great product, which is different from the products being produced by the other competitors of the market. There are sometimes various niches in the businesses, which can be identified and capitalized upon by the businessmen. The main aim of all businesses is the same. Different activities and strategies are used for making things happen in the businesses so that the entire business would prosper and bring in profit for everyone.
HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT FOR THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY
The definition for businesses is as diverse as the businesses themselves. All sectors that you see around you are a business hub. Right from the obvious ones such as restaurants and shops to places of worship such as churches as well as public service sectors such as doctor chambers, hospitals, schools, universities are actually running businesses in one form of the other. All these sectors are corporate in nature and wish to achieve certain goals staying within the limits of a corporate setup as well as within particular budgets. The human resource sector of these places actually requires to be managed well. There are some people belonging to a company, who may think that the HRM is not that important, however these people could not be more wrong in their belief. These people actually think that the HRD sector limits the actions that people within the company can perform.
The management of human resources actually need reaching a meeting point between the aspirations of the different people of the company as well as looking after the different kinds of monetary demands of the entire business house. There will be times where the balance of power would shift from one sector to the next; there will also be times when this shift has reached towards one sector more than another. Going back to the period of 1960s and 70s, one observed that aspiration sector of the senior most people in the company produced a workforce which was quite big in nature. The amount of resources that the bureaucracy consumed was quite high too as a result of which the business became stagnant in nature. Data showing the profit brought about in a company was determined by the amount of profit being brought about by the company as well as the number of people employed there. The more the profit, the better it was for the company. The different aspirations of the employees, who were of a lower stature, maintained the overall status quo of the company. The effectiveness of the business was actually not determined by benefits that the employees were getting. When the 20th century was about to end, it was observed that different kinds of financial obligations, had caused a furor regarding the reduction in the number of people being employed in a business. This phenomenon was also called downsizing and was committed in order to make the businesses healthier and fitter. Earlier the different businesses worked according to hierarchies. These hierarchies were made to delayer which caused a reduction in the number of staffs. There were lots of functions which the former employees performed, that were made to outsource in order to achieve a simplification in the working of the business. Concentration was brought about more on the different main functions of the businesses and attention was shifted from the peripheral ones. The peripheral functions were used, as and when requested by the specialists running the business. This reduction in the number of employees became quite fashionable throughout the business sectors in order to make the business more and more successful.
The reduction in the number of employees or rationalization began to show some problems too and they became all the more evident towards the beginning of the next millennium. The idea to make the business, lean but strong actually made it thin and weak. The reduction in the costs helped in achieving only short term results. However this formula could not be used one year after another hence disturbed the very survival of the business. The number of problems arising here hence kept on increasing. For example, in Great Britain, lots of large discussions in public places began to take place regarding the shortage that was being observed when it came to presence of skilled workmen who could repair as well as maintain the tracks as well as guards who could perform their duties well.
It was the month of February, the year being 2003. The space shuttle called Columbia was seen to turn into a burning speck of light as it crashed over the Texas area, right after getting into the atmosphere of the Earth. All the crew members present inside had to die. In the month of August, the results of the official enquiry came into light. It was seen that the accident occurred as no solid regard was taken when it came to looking after the safety equipment of the shuttle, the cutting in costs was actually responsible for this. The number of staff members at NASA, was also seen to get reduced from 32,000 to a little more than its half. The budget being allotted was also cut down by 40%. The safety equipment was largely sent to be delivered to the well-being of the Boeing aircrafts. Hence the culture at NASA had become such that the people actually hoped that no accidents would occur and everything would happen clockwise. Not much attention was given to the problems back then.
The different people in HR management require to be fully aware of the various risks that you could associate with this cutting down of the costs. These cutting down can become one of the biggest of culprits when it came to running of the business. The National Health Service in England was always on the wrong side of the critics owing to how ineffectively one could make use of different resources. Hence presently too many managers as well as able administrators have been employed in order to run things quite efficiently. Many of the newbies recruited here, are people belonging to the HR department. These people may be looked down upon by some people of health and checkup to be really expensive controls. The different criticisms being shown here are not always justified in nature, there may however arise situations when they can be deemed as proper criticisms.
Moves are now being made, in order to look for reaching an equilibrium condition. This would be achieved by striking a fine balance between the sustainability of the finance as well as the amount of success it will achieve in the market itself. The human capital on offer, also require to be made maximum in nature.
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