Reflective Paper On Human Resource Management

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Reflective Paper On Human Resource Management

Reflective Paper On Human Resource Management


The manner in which an organisation's personnel are managed has a tangible influence on the productivity of the employees, which ultimately acts upon the firm's bottom line. Corporate success is dependent upon the integration of the human resource plan and the corporate strategic plan.It has become a widely held premise that people provide organisations with an important source of sustainable competitive advantage and that the effective management of human capital, not physical capital, may be the ultimate determinant of organisational performance (Youndt, Snell, Dean, Jr, & Lepak, 1996).

The relationship between the strategic planning of an organisation's people and the overall strategy is being increasingly recognised as one of immense importance. A growing recognition of human resources as being a company's most important asset has, and will continue to, change the focus of strategic planning. It is no longer acceptable to exclusively plan for those assets that will appear on the balance sheet. A cohesive plan integrating human resource management and the overall strategic plan is necessary, such that the management of people is not a distinct function, but acts as a medium through which all other business strategies are implemented (Armstrong and Long, 1994: p. 42). In essence, the competitive, human resource, and structural strategies should all be linked in a systemic and dynamic fashion (Boxall, 1996: p. 61). Unfortunately, as will be discussed later, this proposal is not as simple practically as it is theoretically.

Purpose of HRM

The purpose of HRM is to anticipate changes within the employee framework, thereby ensuring that the organisational objectives are fulfilled (Nankervis, Compton and McCarthy, 1993: p. 53). This process is critical to the strategic objectives of the firm. If changes in the 'people market' can be anticipated, and if this is attended to at the senior level, human resource management (HRM) can act as a proactive commercial adviser. However, the relationship between overall strategic planning and HRM is largely dependent on the perceptions of both HRM and senior management towards the contribution that the workforce can make to corporate success. For example, companies that are aware of the strategic value of human resources are more likely to integrate HRM with the overall strategic plan (Nankervis, Compton and McCarthy, 1993: p. 56).

Strategic HRM

Strategic human resource management (SHRM) is "the process of identifying the organisation's strategic goals and the use of these goals as the basis for personnel practices and procedures" (Butler, Ferris and Napier, 1991: p. 64). Comparing the performance of organisations that utilise it with those that do not can show the importance of SHRM. Numerous studies and reports have concluded from their study of the corporate sector that the strategic management of human resources leads to a competitive advantage, (see Collins, 1987; Butler, Ferris and Napier, 1991; Koch and McGrath, 1996; Armstrong and Long, 1994; Schuler and MacMillan, 1984; Pfeffer, 1995; Schuler and Jackson, 1987). Knowing, therefore, that the development of a strategy for HRM is beneficial, the setting of strategic objectives ...
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