For the question of why study human resource management, there is only one answer. It is a profession that is becoming increasingly important day by day. It is also a job where one gets an opportunity to make life easier and better for other people. Take a look at the four dimensions.
Human resource management is a vast area that covers the entire expanse of an organization. Given its vastness and the impact of its coverage, we must classify it into different dimensions for ease of understanding and operational efficiency. While many sub-disciplines and processes exist within the gamut of HR and various models to categorize them, one of the most common ways to do it is by creating the four dimensions of human resource management practices as defined by Noe et al. (2010). Most of the HR management courses online will cover them.
1. Managing The Human Resource Environment
This element covers everything that relates to company culture, compliance or regulation issues, the mission and vision of the organization, and so on. It means that the environment or climate that exists within the company is the primary responsibility of human resources. Managing it in a way conducive to encouraging good performance from the workforce is what HR does. The internal environment of a company is bound to have a substantial effect on every employee. It is necessary to see each of these elements in detail.
Impact Of Culture On Employee Performance
The culture of a company has a powerful impact on every employee. Various factors make up the culture of a company. The manner in which a company treats its employees and what working environment it provides is an important factor. Another important aspect that decides a company’s culture is its employee makeup. Companies must be inclusive and try to employ people from different religions, races, and genders. A good mix of people from different backgrounds helps to bring more perspectives.
People need to enjoy their work. When workers enjoy what they do, their productivity is much better. Companies should try to make work a game that all can enjoy. This will bring more creativity and ensure better interaction between employees. The decisions made by top management also become part of a company’s culture. Its mission, vision, and values must inspire staff members to work for the company and for a more significant cause that positively impacts society.
An excellent corporate culture is where every employee gets an opportunity to exhibit their skills. All workers must get a chance to perform and grow. The importance of studying human resource management is that these courses will teach them how to bring that culture into an office and enlighten everyone with its values. HR managers should also ensure that new employees are made to feel comfortable by others and given guidance about how to be part of a team. Companies should develop a culture of helpfulness in the workplace.
Importance Of Compliance In The Workplace
Being compliant with both internal and external regulations and directions is a necessity for every company. HR managers must ensure that compliance training is given to all employees for various reasons. When workers are offered this training, companies can rest assured that employees will follow them. This will help in reducing expenses that are likely to be incurred due to fines. This is the answer for someone asking why it is important to study human resource management. Companies will also save their reputation when employees follow all rules and regulations.
One of the benefits of studying human resource management is that it will teach students the importance of staying updated with the latest regulations. HR officials must regularly inform employees about the latest compliance standards and other rules. There are specific industries in which laws can change very often. HR can offer online training classes on compliance so that everyone knows the latest regulations. It will help the company to avoid any penal action.
Passing on regular information about rules and regulations helps companies to avoid any damage to their reputation. Nowadays, it is not just losing reputation among customers that should worry companies. A company known to violate rules will not be able to attract promising talents to work for them. Today’s youngsters are very much aware and concerned about such issues. Employees will also be happy to know that their company will not face closure due to non-compliance issues.
How Mission And Vision Of A Company Motivates Employees?
Every company must have a mission and vision. The mission statement describes a company’s short-term goals and the purpose of its existence. The vision statement talks about what the organization hopes to be after a few years. Both these are important for motivating employees to work harder and with more loyalty. These statements also give an assurance to shareholders that this company is working with direction. The society in which the organization functions also knows how it will benefit.
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The vision statement states a purpose and a goal. This is very important for motivating employees to work harder. They know what they are working for and what the company hopes to achieve in the future. This will assure them of career development and growth. It is in spreading this message that the importance of human resource management is felt strongly. They must see that all employees understand their firm’s vision and how they will achieve it. This will give clarity to workers about their role in the organization.
While the vision statement shows employees where they will reach, the mission statement tells them how they will achieve that objective. Another critical aspect of the mission statement is that it tells employees what the firm will give to society. It is a vital aspect, especially for youngsters who prefer to join socially responsible companies and provide support to people in and around them. The mission statement also guides companies to make correct decisions.
2. Acquisition and Preparation of Human Resources
As we all know, human resources form the backbone of any organization. That means that the acquisition of the right people is a top priority, as is the development of those people to maximize their potential. This is the second dimension of HR that needs to be strong at the foundational level itself. The acquisition is a crucial activity that can have a substantial financial or business implication if not carried out correctly. Talent acquisition is different from recruitment in various ways.
Understanding Talent Acquisition
Companies no longer recruit people. They acquire talent, and there are a lot of differences between the two. This answers the question of why study HRM perfectly. A person who has a human resource management qualification knows what talent acquisition is and why it is crucial for a company. Talent acquisition is not just about filling vacancies. By this term, it implies that a company acquires people who are not just fit enough to fill a current vacancy but have the potential to handle higher responsibilities in the future.
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When acquiring talent, companies must make sure that they attract the right people. Many factors attract candidates to a company. Of these, the office environment, as mentioned above, plays an important part. Today’s youngsters want to work for a company with a good reputation as an employer and as a socially responsible company. Many people see how inclusive a company is when it comes to gender and race equality. The importance of studying HRM is that one can learn how to project their firms to attract highly qualified people.
Giving an accurate job description is essential for getting the right people to apply for a job. HR must make sure that their ads for job vacancies appear in suitable media channels. Human resource officials can also make use of social media platforms for this purpose. What is most important is that a company must be able to appoint competent persons for a job instead of just filling a vacancy. This is where talent acquisition differs from recruitment.
How Talent Acquisition Differs From Recruitment?
Many times both these are used interchangeably. But there is a vast difference between recruiting people and acquiring talent. Recruitment is done for filling vacancies. Various organizations and government agencies do this in large numbers. We can even say that recruitment is just one process in talent acquisition. It doesn’t refer to selecting people who will be suitable today and for many years to come. Talent acquisition is all about appointing those who can stay and grow with the company.
Talent acquisition is a process that starts with planning long-term staffing requirements. It begins with analyzing what type of people the company needs for achieving its long-term goals. The procedure also includes branding the company suitably to attract people to work for it. HR officials must get the message out that their firm is highly suitable to work for and that there is much scope for growth and development. Candidates must understand that they can showcase their skills and have a rewarding career.
What is the importance of studying human resource development? It is crucial because this is where one learns how TA is more beneficial for a company than recruitment. One who wants to recruit someone to fill a vacancy might appoint a person with experience in the job. But an HR official who understands talent acquisition may prefer to appoint someone fresh from college with enough qualifications. HR can groom such a person to follow this company’s culture and working methods. This recruit will be more beneficial for the future.
The Talent Acquisition Process
This process starts with analyzing requirements. HR officials must consider the company’s mission and vision when looking for people. It will help to decide on a candidate profile and start searching for someone who suits that profile. A proper job description is created. On this basis, HR officials will prepare a profile for the ideal candidate. These steps are critical for a company to recruit the best hands. The next step is to get the management’s approval for appointing so many people.
Formulating selection criteria and recruitment procedures is not a simple task. These must help in selecting the best candidates. Gaining such expertise answers the question of what the importance of studying human resource management is. There are many methods to filter applicants and choose good ones. Many companies have a written test as the first step. It is possible to assess the mental ability of candidates with this test. The tests and interviews will not be the same for all positions.
Next comes an essential part of searching and attracting suitable people for the job. HR officials use various methods to find people who are most suitable for a particular post. They can use analytics to analyze vast amounts of candidate profiles to find the best one. Social media is another good place to search for people. Even among social media platforms, people of different ages and experiences can be found on various platforms. Once they find suitable people, the selection process is completed, and an ideal person is selected.
3. Assessment and Development of Human Resources
Assessment of the talent that exists within the firm is a big responsibility for HR. They need to find the right people who can be developed for more prominent and crucial business-linked roles. It is an important dimension to have as part of the entire employee lifecycle since it directly impacts whether an employee decides to stay with the firm or not in the long term. This forms the third pillar. Today, an important job of every HR official is to retain as many good employees as possible.
Why People Leave A Company?
Making a good worker stay on is not easy. There are so many companies looking for such people, and they will be ready to make a better offer for experienced people. Opportunities are plenty for someone who is qualified and is willing to work hard. There are many reasons why someone leaves a company. Compensation can be an important issue. Everyone works for money, and there is always a need for more as people improve their lifestyles. But this is not always the reason.
Understanding why people leave a firm is the main reason why we study human resource management. An important reason quoted by many employees is a lack of opportunity to use one’s skills. Every employee wants to feel useful to their company. They want companies to use their capabilities for achieving corporate goals. When this is not done, workers will feel frustrated and think about seeking opportunities elsewhere. HR officials must ensure that every worker is fully utilized.
There are other reasons for people leaving a company. Not having enough opportunities for growth is another reason. Nobody wants to remain in the same position for too long. Everyone wants to move upward and earn more money. People’s needs increase constantly, and this makes it necessary for them to earn more. But it is not just for better salaries that everyone wants to move to a higher position. There are other attractions like authority, proximity to the C-suite, and designation. Companies must know what each employee wants.
Way To Assess Employees?
To promote employees to the next level, they must be assessed first. There are workers at various levels doing different jobs in a company. So, there cannot be a common assessment method for all of them. But a company cannot have different methods for each individual. This is why HRM is important because they can devise common methods that can be used for all employees with slight changes in parameters. This helps companies to have a uniform system that is also unique to suit everyone.
Management by objectives is a popular method of evaluation. In this process, employees and their managers together arrive at a set of objectives that workers must achieve. These will be decided based on the employee’s position. These goals must also align with their company’s common goals. 360-degree feedback is another popular method used by many companies. Feedback about an employee is collected from people who interact with the person. This includes managers, peers, and customers.
The assessment center method is one where employees can see how they are being viewed by others. This has a great impact on their performance. This method also helps to predict future performance by a worker. In the behaviorally anchored rating system, a set of behavioral examples are linked to levels of performance. These are changed as per workers’ positions. Some companies also use psychological appraisals that help in finding a person’s hidden potential. Other companies use monetary benefits an employee provides to assess their work.
Methods To Develop Employees
The importance of HRM is not just limited to assessing employees. It is also their duty to develop employees and make them ready to occupy higher positions. There are many methods that companies use for developing workers. Training is a very common method that helps upskill workers. These can be done by employing outside agencies or by using experienced staff members. There will be lectures, hands-on experience, and assignments. Some companies upload training material online and test workers on how well they have understood them.
Companies use job rotation to teach employees new tasks. This can be very helpful because two people will learn new jobs at the same time. They can exchange their positions and learn new skills. Sometimes sharing duties is also used for teaching an employee new capabilities. Stretch assignments are given to employees to improve working knowledge. In this method, workers are asked to extend beyond their call of duty to acquire skills. They may be given horizontal or vertical assignments based on their abilities.
Coaching is given by senior employees to their less experienced colleagues. In this way, staff members help juniors to learn new tasks. This method is helpful when someone is being moved to a higher position, and his or her junior has to take over that work. Mentoring is a similar method where a senior member teaches junior colleague work procedures. Workshops or working groups are usually used when employees must be trained as a group. This gives workers a chance to interact with those outside their organization.
4. Compensation of Human Resources
All those who join an organization are not doing it only to remain employed. The main or end goal is to be compensated and rewarded for the work they do and the skills they bring to the table. Managing this aspect such that it remains fair and equitable is the job of human resources and the fourth dimension. One of the three reasons why you are studying a human resource management program is to know how to correctly compensate workers for their job.
What Is Compensation?
Compensation is a way in which employees are rewarded for their work. The most common method of compensation is financial. It can be paid monthly, hourly, or as a percentage of sales, they do. This is an important aspect of employment, and every HR must ensure that employees are adequately compensated for their work. The amount must be fair. It must be equal to the work done but also come under company budgets. Companies must have a common method of calculating salaries for all employees.
Every company must have a clear strategy about how their employees are going to be paid for their work. There must be a rational method, and employees must know how they are evaluated for their salaries. HR officials must inform employees of the reason for what they are being paid. This will motivate staff members to work better. They must know that their contributions are valuable and help the firm achieve its goals.
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A clear salary strategy also helps in keeping employees in a company. It is not only because of how much they are paid. It is also because they know that they will be paid adequately in the future also. Employees will be happy to grow in their roles and do more for the firm. HR officials must have a clear plan about how increments are going to be given in each department. Professors stress this point when explaining the importance of human resource management to students.
Factors To Consider When Deciding Employee Compensation
It is students’ expectation in human resource management subject classes that they will be taught how to decide salaries. The best degree courses in India teach this in detail. Two important factors that influence the decision on compensation are experience and education. People with better qualifications and more experience expect a higher salary. Companies also benefit from their qualities. The other important aspect in deciding salaries is the industry in which they operate. Different industries pay differently depending on the criticality of work and profit margins.
Salaries in some cities are higher than others for the same level of education and experience. This is because these cities are expensive to live in. Companies consider the cost of living and pay more so that employees can lead comfortable life. Persons having particular skills for a job also get paid higher. There may be similar designations, but they may require different skills. This also decides different pay packets when some skill sets are more critical.
The other important factor that decides pay packets is the demand for certain skills. There have always been some skills that are more in demand than others. This is a phenomenon that happens continuously. People with such skills get a higher salary than others. When there is enough supply to match demands, salary levels will automatically come down. This can also happen geographically. There may be some areas where people with certain skills may be in short supply. In these places too, salary levels for such people will be high.
Good Employee Compensation Strategy
The way in which salaries are decided in different firms depends on various unique factors. However, there are certain practices that HR officials can adapt to ensure employee satisfaction. A total rewards approach is good to retain employees when there is a tight budget and workers must get rewarded for their work. Regular review of compensation is another way to ensure that employees don’t leave because of poor salaries. A quarterly review of salaries will give a better picture and help to retain more employees.
There are other reasons why employees need to be paid higher. If there is a drain of workers with some special skills, it is time to see what reasons prompt them to leave. HR officials must check whether any competitor is expanding and recruiting more employees. They must also check if any other industry is expanding rapidly and needs people with similar skills. Such factors could cause a sudden outflow of people. The only way to retain them could be a hike in salaries or other benefits.
Another way to ensure that a company is paying fair wages to its employees is to check the salaries of other similar companies. HR officials can also check salary levels in competitors. This will give a clear picture of how much they must pay to keep employees happy. Getting feedback from employees is also a good way of knowing if they are satisfied with salaries and other benefits paid by the company. Preparing a statement that will show all benefits earned by employees is also a good way to show them that they are earning fairly.
These are the ways in which we define the four dimensions of human resource management. All broad and essential activities can be fitted into any of these four dimensions. Those studying human resource management will learn in detail about these dimensions. Apart from learning these aspects and how to handle them, a human resource manager must also possess some essential skills.
Essential Skills For An HR Manager
There is no doubt that communication is an essential skill for an HR manager. These professionals have to deal with staff members at various levels. They are constantly interacting with both upper-level executives and low-level workers. Right from recruiting a person, it is the HR officials who communicate more with employees in a company. Starting with salary negotiation and explaining what new recruits must do, these professionals convey messages from the management to employees. Communication is also an essential skill for dispute resolution, which is another important HR function.
It is the HR department that resolves disputes in a company. It is because of this that human resource management is important in every company. Interpersonal skills help in maintaining good relationships between employees and employers. Companies function well when there is no friction between people of various departments. Whenever such issues arise, it is the HR manager who must intervene and sort out problems. There can be labor issues that must be solved to get a factory to function. Solving this will need a lot of people skills, and every HR manager must practice and master them.
It is not easy for a new employee to adapt to new circumstances. There can also be occasions when existing workers are not very friendly to new ones. But a company can function smoothly only if staff members are comfortable and can work together. Onboarding is the process of welcoming new recruits and making them feel comfortable. HR must find more cordial members among existing staff and connect new employees with them. This will help new recruits easily fit into their roles and start contributing to the company’s performance.
Gone are the days when HR members had to sift through huge volumes of files for information. Now everything is available on laptops and mobile phones. They don’t have to create each appointment letter or scan each resume manually. There are many programs that will help them do it without any strain. It gives them free time to do something creative and help their company achieve its goals. But a person must be familiar with these technologies and be able to use them easily. Technical skills are essential for every HR official.
Complaint Handling Skills
If there is one place everyone goes with their complaints, it is the HR department. There are a lot of things employees complain about. It can be the rude behavior of a colleague. Sometimes it is the non-availability of certain resources that are essential to complete a job. There are many facilities inside an office that keep staff members working comfortably. Any defect with any of these will have to be dealt with by the HR manager. Apart from this, there are always complaints about insufficient pay, longer working hours, less bonus, etc. to be handled.
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Negotiating is part of any human resource manager’s job. Employees start negotiating when they join a company. Whether it is for better salaries, more benefits, or a higher designation, it is the HR department that must handle such requests deftly to ensure that the company’s interests are protected. There are also requests for various resources for projects. Different project managers may need the same set of people. Such requests must be handled carefully while ensuring that the project itself doesn’t suffer. HR managers must also negotiate with top bosses to get employees certain benefits.
This is a quality that every HR manager must possess. They are dealing with people, and people have emotions. Every human resource personnel must remember that all employees are humans with lives beyond their offices. There can be many instances when their personal lives will take precedence over official work. Personnel managers must understand this and behave compassionately with everyone. Staff members should feel free to approach them to solve their personal problems. Such an attitude will help these professionals to manage people well and get work done as required.
A human resource manager’s job is not always rewarding. There are various occasions when they fight battles for others. They may not have any gain either officially or personally out of such issues. But they must do it as part of their job. They must perform such duties with the same sincerity as they would do for themselves. This requires that these professionals remain committed to their jobs and the people whom they represent. There cannot be any half-hearted attempt in their official duty. Such an approach can distance employees from them.
A human resource manager must be well-organized. The person deals with a multitude of activities that it is easy to get lost in all that. Being organized will help these professionals to handle their daily work with success. There are various files on employees that must be updated regularly. A good personnel manager will be able to provide information immediately on any of the staff members. There are also many legal matters to be taken care of. These people must be able to provide documents and certificates when demanded by government agencies.
Dealing with people is akin to dealing with society. All companies exist in a society, and they must maintain a good relationship with people in that locality. There are other social responsibilities that HR managers must fulfill. They must ensure that there is a mix of people from all backgrounds in their employment. They must also ensure gender equality. Such matters are very important, not just from a legal point. Today’s youngsters look at such things in the company that they join. Fulfilling such obligations will help to get better recruits.
There are some fundamentals that HR is deeply linked to, which arises from, and is sustained by. Without these, it will not have the kind of identity and purpose that makes it a critical function. Here is a brief overview of what those fundamentals are.
The organization, at the macro level, is what human resource management is connected to. The area of HRM arises because an organization comes into existence. Therefore, its structure, vision, roadmap, and purpose are elements that define or shape up the human resources strategy. In addition to that, the performance scorecard of an organization is what gives HR its own goals.
This seems obvious but is the most challenging. The fundamentals of human resource management lie in people processes, programs, policies, and practices. That entails designing them, implementing them, and also tracking them to be revisited in case they are not meeting the desired purpose. The entire employee life cycle falls within the accountability of the human resources function – from Recruitment, Induction, Performance Management, Rewards, Talent and Leadership Development, and Employee exit. Each of these has many sub-functions, which are detailed out in good courses and should be understood well by the practitioner.
Human Resources management is incomplete without a clear link of collaboration to the business. Business is the driver due to which recruitment takes place. It is also the reason why talent development happens, or new leaders are developed. Without the connection to the business, HR will be functioning in silos and will have no idea of how things work. That could have major implications such as loss of good talent and impact on business revenue.
Unlike what many people think, HR is not an inward-focused function only. It needs to be aware of the external market environment and what takes place there. Awareness of the external market also needs to be matched with the right way to create an employer brand for the organization. That is a fundamental role of HR as well.
Human resource management is a true combination of skills, knowledge, and attributes. While attributes or traits are usually inherent and you need to spend time discovering which one is suitable for your role, skills and knowledge can be acquired. Skills are acquired mainly on the job itself while performing it and knowledge through a good quality and credible course or program. Spend time looking through the various hr management courses to understand which one suits your needs. It should cover the fundamentals of HRM.