Soft/Hard Hrm

Topics: Management, Strategic planning, Strategic management Pages: 4 (979 words) Published: May 22, 2008
Definition of HRM
'A philosophy of people management based on the belief that human resources are uniquely important in sustained business success. An organization gains competitive advantage by using its people effectively, drawing on their expertise and ingenuity to meet clearly defined objectives. HRM is aimed at recruiting capable, flexible and committed people, managing and rewarding their performance and developing key competencies.'

Lack of a universally agreed definition of HRM lies in the absence of a ‘coherent theoretical basis for classifying HRM policies and practice’- Guest 1997 identifies 3 categories of general-level theory: 1.Strategic theories-origin: contingency theory

2.Descriptive theories-origin: systems theory
3.Normative theories: origin: motivation theory

Models of HRM

Hard HRM (also referred to as strategic management)
Emphasis is on strategy- HR employed to achieve and meet business goals. •Emphasizes the necessity of ‘tight-fit’ between HR strategy and business strategy & goals of the organization. •Focuses on the resource side of human resources. It emphasizes costs in the form of 'headcounts' and places control firmly in the hands of management. Their role is to manage numbers effectively, keeping the workforce closely matched with requirements in terms of both bodies and behavior.

Matching model- ‘best-fit’ (follows a contingency approach) •2 assumptions underpin this model:
1.Most effective means of managing ppl will vary from org to org and is dependant on org context. 2.Differing views cannot exist as everyone should be working toward achieving the same goal-success of the business. •Matching Model-Michigan Business School (Fombrun, Tichy and Devanna, 1984). There are many similarities with the Harvard 'map' but the Michigan model has a harder, less humanistic edge, holding that employees are resources in the same way as any other business resource. People have to be managed in a similar manner to...
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