Role That the HR Department Is Playing Term Paper

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¶ … role that the HR department is playing now in the process of organizational strategic planning is generally due to the contemporaneous approach to the human resource. For centuries, organizations have functioned without placing interest on their employees, but starting with the 18th century, both companies as well as the specialized literature have pointed out the vital role of the human resource. Alongside with other organizational resources, employees insure a company's survival, development, competitive position and success. Furthermore, economist Michael Armstrong states that an "organization's most valued assets are the people working there who individually and collectively contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the business."

Keeping in mind this approach to the human resource, its is only just that the HR department plays an increasing role throughout the organizational and strategic planning processes. In setting a goal for the company, the HR department has to conclude whether the company possesses sufficient personnel in order to solve the tasks, whether the existing personnel is qualified enough to handle the tasks or whether the personnel is motivated and productive enough to complete the tasks. All these features determine the outcome of the organization's project and explain the tremendous role of the HRD within the planning process.

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Communicating a sector's contribution to the profit margin to other areas in the organizations should pose no difficulties and it should make use of all communication channels available within the company. However, assessing the actual contribution might prove tedious as managers might have difficulties in implementing the measurement tools or identifying the actual revenues realized by his or her department, the adherent costs and all parameters that influence costs, revenues and productivity.

Term Paper on Role That the HR Department Is Playing Assignment

2. In order for the organization to achieve high productivity, the human resource department has to approach the issue from two different angles. First of all, they need to insure the organization with workforce that possesses adequate skills, capabilities, education and experience. The second approach to increasing productivity is that of motivating the employees to be productive.

Insuring the company with skilled personnel is an ongoing activity that begins in the recruiting stages and continues throughout the entire collaboration between employee and employer, generally taking the form of trainings. Motivating the personnel to be productive can be realized in numerous ways. Generally, all employees desire a pleasurable work environment that accordingly rewards their efforts; an environment that promotes fairness, equity and equality. But aside from these general incentives, employees also need personalized incentives to motivate them. For instance, some employees are motivated by financial rewards, others by recognition, others by a sense of belonging to their team, others by the possibility to prove their worth and others by the chance to reach their full potential. (Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs)

Considering that a company already possesses qualified and motivated personnel, they could increase productivity even more by improving their training programs, their inside and outside communications, identifying and resolving any performance problems and by constantly administering employee surveys.

For a HR program to increase productivity, it must consider the changes in the external environment as these changes influence the company's success. For instance, if the national economy registers a period of growth, this growth needs to be reflected in the employees' wages. Furthermore, if the it industry comes up with improved communication gadgets, the organization should purchase them and insure better communication amongst the personnel.

3. During the incipient forms of human resource management, all decisions regarding the personnel were taken by a special unit within the organization, the human resource department. This department viewed the personnel as a whole and developed programs based on generally accepted information. However, not all these general data could be undoubtedly applied to all employees. People have different acknowledgments, skills, educational and work background, different view points and are motivated by different incentives.

In order to make the best decisions regarding HR programs, the human resource department would have had to reach a high level of familiarization with all employees, a rather time consuming and difficult to achieve goal. An efficient alternative to this problem was that of implicating the operating managers in the process of developing human resource programs.

The direct implication of the operating managers brought about the main advantage of a close relationship between the manager and the employee. By knowing the employee, the operating manager was able to make more suitable decisions regarding the HR programs to be implemented. To name but a few advantages of a close relationship between manager and employee, one could point out the following:

the operating manager can easily evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of his/her employee;

the operating manager can identify the areas in which the employee needs more training and can suggest the type of training suitable for the employee;

the operating manager can identify the areas in which the employee excels and can delegate him to pass on his knowledge to other fellow workers;

the operating manager has a better idea of the factors that motivate the employee and can present him/her with the desired incentives that both satisfy the employee, but also sustain his high productivity.

4. The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission states the following regarding sexual harassment: "Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual's employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual's work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment."

The contemporaneous society prides itself on high morals and intense sense of equity and equality. However, this is not always the case, proof of it being the growing number of lawsuits against corporations. The main accusations regard discrimination in all its forms, from sexual to race, religion or age. The EECO informs that in 2006, they registered 12,025 accusations of sexual harassment, 84.6% being forwarded by women and the rest of 15.4% by men.

ACAS, the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service, body in the government of United Kingdom, mentions three forms of sexual harassment: direct discrimination, indirect discrimination and victimization. The first form implies a different treatment based on gender or marital status. The second form implies same expectations from different individuals, who are, by nature, unable to perform the same.

The best way to prevent such litigations is for managers to inform employees that inappropriate sexual behavior will not be tolerated. "They can do so by providing sexual harassment training to their employees and by establishing an effective complaint or grievance process and taking immediate and appropriate action when an employee complains." In other words, the best method to avoid sexual harassment lawsuits is to prevent inadequate behavior at work.

5. Expatriation has become a more common phenomenon due to its advantages for both the organization as well as the expatriated employee. The organization gains new knowledge and skills and can even expand its international business, and the employee enriches his resume and lives a unique experience. However, the 10 to 45% failure rate of expatriate operations points out the shortcomings of the method: insufficient pre-departure training of the expatriates.

To insure a successful experience, the expatriation process ought to commence with a strict selection process; only those candidates who simultaneously meet the desired characteristics are to be selected. Here are some of the necessary features: strong will, desire to succeed, optimism, great intelligence and knowledge, goal-based personality, easy learner and easy to adapt.

In the time period prior to the actual departure, the future expatriate ought to be subjected to several training programs, both technical as well as cultural. The technical trainings should include the detailed description of the job to be performed in the relocating country, the job's rights and obligations, all forms of remuneration, the technologies to be used at the new workplace, the goal to be reached, the expectations to be met, the impact of the relocation upon the expatriate's career, and even repatriating possibilities, if necessary. The technical training should only be applied to the employee, without any obligation that the expatriate's family participate to the training program.

However, when it comes to the cultural training, both the employee as well as his/her family should participate. These trainings would generally regard cross-culture training that presents the participants with information on the relocating country, community and organization and also language training.

6. - Small vs. Large Power Distance: Small Power Distance, because horizontal structures within an organization offer a better sense of security and equality, as compared to the Large Power Distance that uses vertical hierarchies and widens the gap between employees and the management.

Individualism vs. Collectivism: Individualism, because it encourages the particular features of employees, encourages innovation and is a better incentive than collectivism.

Masculinity vs. Femininity / Quantity of Life vs. Quality of Life: Quality of Life, because the good relationships at the basis can be built on and generate a pleasant and fruitful working environment.

Uncertainty Avoidance: High Uncertainty Avoidance, because the limitation of a potential risk and… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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