BUS 378: Knowledge & Organisational Learning
How can HR management systems and practices in Singapore, be re-designed using KM and OL principles to increase innovation and competitive advantage over the next five years.
2012 is marked as a significant year for Singapore’s workforce demographics. This is the year where the first batch of baby boomers turned 65 years old (National Population and Talent Division, Prime Minister’s Office 2012). Under the Retirement and Re-employment Act (RRA) in effect since 1 January 2012, while the statutory minimum retirement age remains at 62 year old, employers are now required to offer re-employment to eligible employees who turn 62, up to the age of 65 (Ministry of Manpower, Singapore 2012).
Over the next five years, a big cohort of baby boomers will reach retirement age and this will leave a big void in the Singapore workforce and along with it, valuable experience and knowledge. It is thus, crucial for companies in Singapore to have a solid Human resource management system to hire the right candidates, retain knowledge and be active in succession planning in order to remain competitive. This essay serves to explore how companies can re-design HRM systems and practices using Knowledge Management and Organisational Learning principles to increase innovation and competitive advantage over the next five years.
The essay will first discuss the issue within the Singapore Workforce context; it will then provide the definition and function of Human Resource Management, Knowledge Management and Organisational Learning. It then goes on to explain how applying KM and OL principles and strategies can aid in creating innovation and increasing the competitive advantages of a company in terms of training and development and; succession planning in the Human Resource activity.
Singapore has a rapidly aging workforce. The National Population and Talent Division, Prime Minister’s Office (2012) stated that there will be 900,000 baby-boomers leaving Singapore’s workforce between now to 2030. According to the Population White Paper published in January 2013 (National Population And Talent Division - Prime Minister's Office 2013), the estimated number of entrant into Singapore workforce in year 2030 alone stands at 171,000 while the estimated number of retirement stands at 258,000. This demographic shift signifies a possibility of labour shortage in the coming years.
It is important for companies and their human resource department to foresee such phenomenon now and start to plan for future recruitment, train for knowledge retention and start their succession planning programme.
Human Resource Management
According to Dess, et al. (2012), human resource management refers to activities involving the recruitment, training and development, and also compensation for all types of personnel.
Although Human Resource Management sits in Michael Porter’s Value Chain analysis as a support activities along with Firm’s Infrastructure, Technology and Procurement (Figure 1: Porter’s Generic Value Chain), it should be noted unlike the rest of the activities, the human factors are the only intangible resource of a company (Dess, et al. 2012) which cannot be easily replicated.
Knowledge management is defined as the effective learning processes associated with exploration, exploitation and sharing of human knowledge (tacit and explicit) that use appropriate technology and cultural environments to enhance an organisation’s intellectual capital and performance (Jashapara 2011).
Knowledge management processes include how knowledge is acquired, created, refined, stored, transferred, shared, and used.
Based on the issue presented, knowledge management is now a pressing matter for companies. It is important that soon-to-retire employees impart their skills and knowledge to...