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This essay presents evaluation of human resource management in an organization with an explanation of whether or not effective human resource

management leads to high organizational performance. An introduction to human resource management is presented which is followed by background or emergence and applications of HRM in an organization. In addition, I have tried to present the theories, relevant literatures and some research findings in the field of the HRM which will further help to throw light on key issues of this essay. Moreover, throughout this essay it will be clear that why I agree that the effective HRM leads to high organizational performance. Human resources are the valuable assets of any organization without which various operations and activities within the organization is not possible to be executed. Human resources and the potential they possess are the key drivers for an organizational success. It is the manpower or the human resource that carries out almost every activities of an organization. For instance, production function, managing cash flows, making business transaction, communication and media dealing etc. are all carried out by the employee of an organization. Even though the business world has seen the automation and technological advancement, it should be noted that it is human resource that operates or handle such technology with their skills and knowledge. Such a valuable resources or the human capital of an organization should be managed in best possible or in an effective way that ensures the increased productivity, long-term growth and enriched organizational performance. Thus, in simple words the process of managing the human resources of an organization in order to deliver high performance is known as the human resource management. In management terms, HRM is defined as the process of acquiring, training, appraising and compensating employees and of attending to their labor relations, health and safety and fairness concerns. However, most organizations continue to arrange their people in organizational structure that inhibit and limit their employees participation. Many organizations have tried to move away from a traditional rigid organizational structure to a more flexible one, but the results were not as expected (Attaran and Nguyen 1999). Today, human resource managers do not have the luxury of operating and performing in a stable, predictable environment as external changes are affecting all organizations and their human resource management activities (Zeffane, 1994, Watson and DAnnunzio-Green, 1996). In this highly competitive economic context employees and the way they are managed acquire greater importance because many other sources of competitive success are less powerful. But to achieve

competitive advantages through people involves changing in the way of thinking about employment relationships (De Saa-Perez and Garcia-Falcon, 2002). The future success depends not only on changes in the structure but more important on changes in the whole culture of the organization, incorporating the changes in the internal and external factors. Attaran and Nguyen (1999) posited that empowerment is the exercise of joint responsibility by both management and non management people and that empowerment is the growing acceptance of responsibility, not one time event. To deal on further issues, it will be wise to discuss little about the historical milestones in development and emergence of human resource management. Frederick Taylor, known as the father of scientific management, played vital role in the development of the personnel function during 1890-1910 A.D. Taylor developed his ideas in scientific selection of workers based on qualifications and also argues for incentive based compensation system to motivate employees. Many companies established departments devoted to maintaining the welfare of workers. The discipline of industrial psychology begun to develop. Industrial psychology, along with the advent of World War I, led to advancements in employment testing and selection. The interpretation of the Hawthorne Studies' started to have an impact on management thought and practice. Greater emphasis was placed on the social and informal aspects of the workplace affecting worker productivity. Increasing the job satisfaction of workers was cited as a means to increase their productivity. In the U.S., a tremendous surge in union membership between 1935 and 1950 led to a greater emphasis on collective bargaining and labor relations within personnel management. Compensation and benefits administration also increased in importance as unions negotiated paid vacations, paid holidays, and insurance coverage. The Civil Rights movement in the U.S. reached its apex with passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Three trends dramatically impact HRM. The first is the increasing diversity of the labor force, in terms of age, gender, race, and ethnicity. HRM concerns evolve from EEO and affirmative action to "managing diversity." A second trend is the globalization of business and the accompanying technological revolution. These factors have led to dramatic changes in transportation, communication, and labor markets. The third trend, which is related to the first two, is the focus on HRM as a "strategic" function. HRM concerns and concepts must be integrated into the overall strategic planning of the firm in order to cope with rapid change, intense competition, and pressure for increased efficiency.

The Hawthorne Studies, which were conducted in the 1920s and 1930s at Western Electric, sparked an increased emphasis on the social and informal aspects of the workplace. Interpretations of the studies emphasized "human relations" and the link between worker satisfaction and productivity. The passage of the Wagner Act in 1935 contributed to a major increase in the number of unionized workers. In the 1940s and 1950s, collective bargaining led to a tremendous increase in benefits offered to workers. The personnel function evolved to cope with labor relations, collective bargaining, and a more complex compensation and benefits environment. The human relations philosophy and labor relations were the dominant concerns of HRM in the 1940s and 1950s. HRM was revolutionized in the 1960s by passage of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and other anti-discrimination legislationas well as presidential executive orders that required many organizations to undertake affirmative action in order to remedy past discriminatory practices. Equal employment opportunity and affirmative action mandates greatly complicated the HRM function, but also enhanced its im (biju, 2009)portance in modern organizations. As discussed more fully in a later section, these responsibilities continue to comprise a major part of the HRM job. Finally, changes in labor force demographics, technology, and globalization since the 1980s have had a major impact on the HRM function. Research in the area of HRM has much to contribute to the organizational practice of HRM. For the last 20 years, empirical work has paid particular attention to the link between the practice of HRM and organizational performance, evident in improved employee commitment, lower levels of absenteeism and turnover, higher levels of skills and therefore higher productivity, enhanced quality and efficiency. This area of work is sometimes referred to as 'Strategic HRM' or SHRM. Within SHRM three strands of work can be observed. Best practice, Best Fit and the Resource Based View (RBV).The notion of best practice - sometimes called 'high commitment' HRM proposes that the adoption of certain best practices in HRM will result in better organizational performance. Perhaps the most popular work in this area is that of Pfeffer who argued that there were seven best practices for achieving competitive advantage through people and 'building profits by putting people first'. These practices included: providing employment security, selective hiring, extensive training, sharing information, self-managed teams, and high pay based on company performance and the reduction of status differentials. However, there is a huge number of studies which provide evidence of best practices, usually implemented in coherent bundles, and therefore it is difficult to draw generalized conclusions about which is the 'best' way

(For a comparison of different sets of best practices see Becker and Gerhart, 1996. Best fit, or the contingency approach to HRM, argues that HRM improves performance where there is a close vertical fit between the HRM practices and the company's strategy. This link ensures close coherence between the HR people processes and policies and the external market or business strategy. There are a range of theories about the nature of this vertical integration. For example, a set of 'lifecycle' models argue that HR policies and practices can be mapped onto the stage of an organizations development or lifecycle. Competitive advantage models take Porter's (1985) ideas about strategic choice and map a range of HR practices onto the organizations choice of competitive strategy. Finally 'configurationally models provide a more sophisticated approach which advocates a close examination of the organizations strategy in order to determine the appropriate HR policies and practices. However, this approach assumes that the strategy of the organization can be identified - many organizations exist in a state of flux and development. The Resource Based View (RBV), argued by some to be at the foundation of modern HRM focuses on the internal resources of the organization and how they contribute to competitive advantage. The uniqueness of these resources is preferred to homogeneity and HRM has a central role in developing human resources that are valuable, rare, and difficult to copy or substitute and that are effectively organized. Overall, the theory of HRM argues that the goal of human resource management is to help an organization to meet strategic goals by attracting, and maintaining employees and also to manage them effectively. The key word here perhaps is "fit", i.e. a HRM approach seeks to ensure a fit between the management of an organizations employees, and the overall strategic direction of the company (Miller, 1989). While Miller (1987) suggests that HRM relates to: ".......those decisions and actions which concern the management of employees at all levels in the business and which are related to the implementation of strategies directed towards creating and sustaining competitive advantage. Considering all this fact about the emergence, theories, studies and literatures related to HRM, it is crystal clear how important is HRM. Had not been essential and important, the necessity and such gradual development of the HRM would not have been felt by the most of the organization. HRM consist of all the activities undertaken by an organization to ensure the effective utilization of employees toward the attainment of individual, group and organizational goals. While most firms have a human resources or personnel department that develops and implements HRM practices, responsibility lies with both HR

professionals and line managers. The interaction between managers and HR professionals leads to effective HRM practices which in turn help in high organizational performance. The nature of these roles varies from company to company, depending primarily on the size of the organization. This discussion assumes a large company with a sizable HRM department. However, in smaller companies without large HRM departments, line managers must assume an even larger role in effective HRM practices. HR professionals typically assume the following four areas of responsibility: establishing HRM policies and procedures, developing/choosing HRM methods, monitoring/evaluating HRM practices, and advising/assisting managers on HRM-related matters. HR professionals typically decide (subject to upper-management approval) what procedures to follow when implementing an HRM practice. For example, HR professionals may decide that the selection process should include having all candidates (1) complete an application, (2) take an employment test, and then (3) be interviewed by an HR professional and line manager. Usually the HR professionals develop or choose specific methods to implement a firm's HRM practices. For instance, in selection the HR professional may construct the application blank, develop a structured interview guide, or choose an employment test. HR professionals also must ensure that the firm's HRM practices are properly implemented. This responsibility involves both evaluating and monitoring. For example, HR professionals may evaluate the usefulness of employment tests, the success of training programs, and the cost effectiveness of HRM outcomes such as selection, turnover, and recruiting. They also may monitor records to ensure that performance appraisals have been properly completed. HR professionals also consult with management on an array of HRM-related topics. They may assist by providing managers with formal training programs on topics like selection and the law, how to conduct an employment interview, how to appraise employee job performance, or how to effectively discipline employees. HR professionals also provide assistance by giving line managers advice about specific HRM-related concerns, such as how to deal with problem employees. Line managers direct employees' day-to-day tasks. From an HRM perspective, line managers are mainly responsible for implementing HRM practices and providing HR professionals with necessary input for developing effective practices. Managers carry out many procedures and methods devised by HR professionals. The development of HRM procedures and methods often requires input from line managers. For example, when conducting a job analysis,

HR professionals often seek job information from managers and ask managers to review the final written product. Additionally, when HR professionals determine an organization's training needs, managers often suggest what types of training are needed and who, in particular, needs the training. The Human Resources Management (HRM) function includes a variety of activities, and key among them is deciding the staffing needs of an organization and whether to use independent contractors or hire employees to fill these needs, recruiting and training the best employees, ensuring they are high performers, dealing with performance issues, and ensuring your personnel and management practices conform to various regulations. Activities also include managing your approach to employee benefits and compensation, employee records and personnel policies. Usually small businesses (for-profit or nonprofit) have to carry out these activities themselves because they can't yet afford part or full time help. However, they should always ensure that employees have and are aware of personnel policies which conform to current regulations. These policies are often in the form of employee manuals, which all employees have. Apart from above mentioned applications of HRM, it has also some other functions that can be listed in the points:

1. Human resource or manpower planning. 2. Recruitment, selection and placement of personnel. 3. Training and development of employees. 4. Appraisal of performance of employees. 5. Taking corrective steps such as transfer from one job to another. 6. Remuneration of employees. 7. Social security and welfare of employees. 8. Setting general and specific management policy for organizational relationship. 9. Collective bargaining, contract negotiation and grievance handling. 10. Staffing the organization. 11. Aiding in the self-development of employees at all levels. 12. Developing and maintaining motivation for workers by providing incentives. 13. Reviewing and auditing manpower management in the organization

14. Potential Appraisal. 15. Role Analysis for job occupants. 16. Job Rotation. 17. Quality Circle, Organization development and Quality of Working Life. To conclude what I can say is that effective human resource management is the life blood of an organization without which any other functions of any organization whether small or large will find them hard to sustain in the ever changing business environment. For competitive advantage, an organization can develop the humane only capital that is possible through effective HRM. Thus, effective HRM leads to high organizational performance.

References: Dessler, G. & Varkkey, B., 2009. Human Resource Management, 11th edition, Dorling Kindersley, India Pvt. Ltd. (HRM)