‘Human Resource Management is critical to the effective management of organisations’
Human resources are without a doubt the most important asset of any organisation and a resource which needs to be managed, but as Mullins (p.749) states, it is important to remember that unlike physical resources, people are not owned by the organisation. Human resource management is known to be one of the key management areas and is an essential part of every organisation. Certo defines management as the process of reaching organisational goals by working with and through people and other organisational resources. Human resource management is usually defined in broad but very common terms. A definition by Fisher et al. states ‘Human resource management (HRM) involves all management decisions and practices that directly affect or influence the people, or human resources, who work for the organisation.’ A professional body for all those concerned with the management and development of people, The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (MIPD), defines human resource management as ‘The design, implementation and maintenance of strategies to manage people for optimum business performance including the development of policies and processes to support these strategies.’ A more in depth explanation by Torrington et al. in 1995 says ‘Personnel management is a series of activities which; first enables working people and the organisation which uses their skills to agree about the objectives and nature of their working relationship, and secondly, ensures that the agreement is fulfilled.’
There are different functions and activities that managers are in charge of. Certo (p.8) explains that there are four basic management functions; planning; organising; influencing; and controlling. He defines planning to be the tasks that must be performed to achieve organisational targets, outlining how the tasks must be carried out, and signifying when they should be performed. Organising is the assigning of the tasks developed under the planning function to different individuals or groups of individuals within the organisation. Organising then creates the means which puts the plans into action. The third function, influencing is the function which is concerned with the people within the organisation. These are the people whom which the work planned to achieve the organisation’s targets are assigned to in the organising function. Influencing is more commonly referred to as motivation or leading. The ultimate reason of influencing is to increase productivity. Controlling is the management function for which managers collect information that measures latest performance within the organisation and compare the current performance to pre-establish performance standards and also from this comparison, decide if the organisation should be changed to meet pre-established standards. Controlling is an unending progression and managers continually gather information and make comparisons to try and find new ways of improving production through organisational modification of the available resources. For this reason, management must always be attentive of the status and use of organisational resources. Certo (p.9 – 10) further continues to explain that these resources composed of all assets available for activation during the production process are of four basic types; 1.
Human: Human resources are the people who work for an organisation. The skills they possess and their knowledge of the work system are very useful to managers 2.
Monetary: Monetary resources are the amounts of money that managers use to purchase goods and services for the organisation. 3.
Raw materials: Raw materials are ingredients used directly in the manufacturing of products. 4.
Capital: Capital resources are machines used during the manufacturing process.
There are also several tasks which managers are required to do out of which Certo (p.16) identifies the three basic types of major...
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