Human Resource Planning Management

Human Resource Planning

Human Resource Planning and Management. The firm’s position in the particular industry that it operates determines whether the profitability of the firm can be defined to be above or below the average profitability in the entire industry. Making the profit level of any particular company be above the industry average is a long-term goal of any particular company regardless of the industry in which it operates. To gain long-term above-average profitability level, two types of competitive advantages can help the company rise to such levels.

The first one is either cost management or differentiation. When any firm can keep the cost as low as possible, it will be in a position to charge less and have a broad market base, a factor which is important in improving the long-term profitability levels. The course that is taken by any particular company depends on the leadership focus on either of the two kinds of competitive advantage. The two kinds of competitive advantages lead to four generic strategies that are aimed at ensuring the profitability of the organization rises above average in the long-term. Such includes the broad cost leadership, focused cost leadership, broad differentiation, and focused differentiation. The four Porter’s generic business strategies regarding the business focus affect the human resource planning management of any particular organization in some factors, including in the selection process, screening, training, and compensation among many other factors affecting human resource planning in any specific organization.

Leadership of any organization can decide to focus on any of the two factors of competitiveness depending on the environment in which they are operating as well as their goals. As noted by Pfeffer (2007), any of the generic competitive generic styles that are adopted in any particular organization have and influence on the staffing models adopted by the organization. A choice of one particular style will best fit one staff modeling, which may not be suitable for a different strategy. For example, a choice of one style can result in what Pfeffer (2007) describes as “…disengagement and diminished productivity is the pervasive and growing conflict between work and family…” (117). The style adopted, therefore, influences all the stages of the human resource planning from the selection to retention. The reason is that each style of leadership requires a different pool of employees regarding their qualifications, motivations as well as focus as described by Heneman, Judge, and Kammeyer-Mueller (2015).

Humphrey, Morgeson, and Mannor (2009) describe an organization to comprise of physical, financial and human capital. The three compositions are affected by the leadership choices and focus that are made by any particular organization. Mainly, the generic competitive strategy adopted by different organizations depend and what can be described as “workforce quality” as well as the “workforce quantity” (Heneman, Judge, and Kammeyer-Mueller, 2015). The staffing strategy of an organization focuses on HR planning, recruitment, and selection, employment as well as retention of the employees. An organization that mainly focuses on the reduction of the cost will first of all look at the staffing strategy that will cost the organization the least amount of resources. Therefore, apart from just focusing on the operational cost of the organization, broad cost leadership strategy will include in cost of hiring and retention in the costs of the organization. Given that the staff pool of the organization has a major impact on the total cost of the organization, a broad cost leadership will pay attention to the total cost that goes to its human resource department.

Staffing strategies and staffing models of an organization have impacts on market share, environmental sustainability, deployment, customers’ satisfaction among many other determinants of profitability. Specifically, in the development of the organization’s staffing strategy and models, the leadership pays attention to the effects of these factors on the two kinds of competitiveness which are cost as well as differentiation (Terpstra and Rozell, 1997). For example, broad differentiation business strategy won’t pay much attention to compensation of the employees. This strategy will mainly focus on the quality that the employees bring to the organization without paying much attention to their pay demands. However, the broad cost leadership strategy will focus more on the pay demands of the employees and therefore go for the cheapest means through which they can achieve their objectives. The similarity between the two strategies is that the focus on a wide area as opposed to the focus strategy.

The focused cost leadership and the focused differentiation leadership have some unique characteristics that affect the human resource planning strategies that are adopted by an organization. Rather than focusing on the entire industry, this two generic business strategies pays attention to specific segments of the industry and then pay attention to either cost or differentiation in these particular segments. The main idea as noted by Humphrey, Morgeson, and Mannor (2009) is therefore that these two styles of leadership focus on a narrow competitive scope as compared to the “broad-based” leadership styles. Whether the leadership style in the particular segment focuses on cost or differentiation affects the staffing strategies and models just the same way the broad-based leadership affects this factors, but in a narrow scope for this case.

The cost focus strategy seeks to gains cost advantage in a particular segment of the industry. Therefore, in its staffing strategy, the management and the human resource department will look at the cheapest means to compose its employee’s pool. The screening and the selection process will mainly focus on employees that can help the organization reach its cost limits. Also, the training process of the employees will mainly focus on methods of reducing the cost of operations in the organization. Under this strategy, the organization will be willing to retain a small number of employees that will help in the reduction of the total cost that is incurred by the organization.

Human Resource Planning
Human Resource Planning

On the other hand, differentiation focus will seek to achieve differentiation in a particular segment of the industry. The differentiation focus, therefore, tries to make the products of the company look different from those of the competitors and therefore gain market advantage. Differentiation is an important factor in profitability, and therefore any particular organization must pay attention to it. According to Cole et al. (2004), the level at which the organization achieves product differentiation depends on the pool of employees that they have. Therefore, just as it is with the cost focus, the differentiation focus will also influence the staffing strategies and staffing models that are adopted by an organization. The organization will pay much attention to the “quality” of the employees that will help it in achieving the differentiation target rather cost. Since product differentiation can help an organization keep the prices higher but maintain the customers base, the organization using this strategy will therefore not pay much attention to the cost of establishing this strategy.

Human Resource Planning Strategy

The strategy that any business chooses to adopt has far-reaching effects the entire planning process of the organization. More specifically, the cost focus or differentiation focus of any organization will determine the steps and the processes that will be adopted in the human resource planning process. Human resources planning is defined by Clardy (2008) as the process of adjusting the flow of workers in any organization, both in and out of the firm. The goals of the organization will specifically affect the process of human resource planning as well as the aspects that the planning process pays attention to. The role of the human resources planning for this case will ensure that the organization has a workers pool that will help it achieve the kind of competitive advantage that it has chosen to focus on. The planning process will pay attention to the skills that it requires the employees to have, both today and in the future to achieve the competitive advantage that it requires.

The role of human resource planning is ensuring that the organization has the right number of employees as well as employees that have the right skills to drive the agenda of the organization. As defined by Heneman, Judge, and Kammeyer-Mueller (2015), human resource planning aims at ensuring that the right number of employees are at the right place, at the right time and capable of effectively and efficiently delivering the needs of the organization. It ensures that the organization achieves its objectives through having the right composition of employees. Therefore, human resources planning is essential for any particular organization. The process is greatly affected by the strategy that the organization decides to pursue. This includes all the processes of human resource planning ranging from the screening and selection to the retention stage. Whether an organization chooses to focus on cost or differentiation will affect the whole process of human resource planning, staffing planning, and diversity planning.

When an organization decides to pursue the low-cost strategy, the human resource planning will mainly focus or ensure the organization has the right pool of employees that will help the organization keep its costs as low as possible. Under the low-cost strategy, the firm is trying to take advantage of the prices and therefore have to focus on reducing the prices since this will help them in keeping the prices as low as possible. The main objective of this case is to earn a larger market share through specializing in reducing the prices of the goods and services that the organization offers. This is only possible is the human resource planning will be effective in ensuring that the organization a pool of workers that first understands the goal of the organization and secondly have the right skills to pursue this goal. For the cases of the organizations that focus on differentiation, the human resource planning process must understand that the employees in the organization are a key part of achieving the competitive advantage and differentiation that requires. Therefore, the human resources planning for the case of a firm that chooses to specialize in differentiation will focus on accessing the organization with the right pool of employees that will make the products and the services of the organization look different as compared to other competitors in the market.

Succession Planning

Succession management is important as the workers in the organization need to have certain competencies and skills that will help an organization in achieving its objectives. The human resource planning focuses on the succession management by ensuring that the organization gets the right pull of workers depending on whether the organization focuses on lowing the cost or making its products and services look different when compared to the services that are offered by their competitors. The human resources management for this particular case focuses on training and job security as well as employees’ loyalty, depending on their focus (Clardy, 2008).

The staff planning process of any particular organization is also affected by the strategy that is adopted by the organization. What the organization decides to pay attention to will affect all stages of the planning process. Heneman, Judge, and Kammeyer-Mueller (2015) define staff planning as the process of ensuring that the organization has the right skills at its disposal. Just as human resources planning, staff planning seeks to ensure that the organization has the right number of employees and at the right time and employees possess the required skills to fulfill the objectives of the organization. The staff planning takes into consideration both the internal and external factors and therefore is important in ensuring that the organization achieves its objectives. The recruitment and selection process in staffing and human resources planning deals with discovering the manpower requirement of the organization depending on what the organization wants to achieve. For this case, the selection and recruitment stage in the human resources and staffing process will pay much focus on cost for the low-cost strategy and differentiation abilities focus on the differentiation focus. The staffing planning will focus on attracting a large pool of workers so that it can have the liberty to select the best from the pool.

As explained by MacKenzie, Klaas, and McClendon (2012), the organizations that focus on low cost will focus less on the selection and recruitment process. The organization will try as much as possible to keep the recruitment budget as low as possible. The recruitment processes will mainly use the mouth to mouth and online application to try and reduce the cost of recruitment and selection. However, when the organization decides to focus on differentiation as its tool of differentiation, the recruitment and the selection process will pay attention to different factors. The process will focus on employees that have a large pool of skills and competencies, a factor that is essential in ensuring that the products and services of the organization are slightly different from those of the competitors.

Diversity planning is also important in an organization. The diversity planning focuses on ensuring that the organization has the right mix employees. The process is vital in ensuring that the organization achieves its current and future objectives. Diversity planning will pay attention to the composition of the workforces on numerous factors including the skills mix, sustainability as well as flexibility of the workforce. The diversity palling process is directly affected by the focus of the organization. Whether the firm decides to either focus on cost or differentiation will affect the mix of the employees that the organization would like to have (Highhouse, 1997). For example, for an organization that chooses to focus on differentiation, it would wish to have a more diversified workforce as compared to an organization that pays attention to cost. The low-cost strategy will focus on a mix that that lowers the cost while the differentiation strategy will focus on developing a diverse workforce that will ensure that the organization achieves either perceived or real differentiation.

Under Porter’s generic business strategies, the firm chooses either to focus on cost or focus on differentiation. Also, the firm chooses whether to focus on the entire market or a specific section of the market. The focus of the organization has major influences on the human resource planning management and staffing policies that are adopted by the organization. More specifically, whether an organization decides to focus on a particular segment of the market or the entire market affects that assessment processes as well as the reliability and validity of the assessment process.

Broad differentiation leadership target a large market area and aims at gaining market advantage through differentiation across the entire industry. The strategy concentrates on one or more criteria in the market, and the strategy is always related to creating a premium price in the market. The differentiation strategy is about creating a premium price and then convincing the customers on why they should prefer such products as compared to the products of the other producers, through their prices may be low. This focus will affect the selections process as well as the reliability and validity of the selection assessment processes (Heneman, Judge, and Kammeyer-Mueller, 2015). The selection assessment process for this case will focus on creating differentiation in a large area, and therefore the selection process will mainly focus on skills and competencies that will enable the organization achieves this objective. The differentiation criteria that can be used include superior products, branding, wide distribution channels as well as constant promotion, specifically focusing on a larger area for the case of broad differentiation leadership.

HRM Dissertation Topics
HRM Dissertation Topics

Under the differentiation focus, the organization divides the market into segments and decides to focus on one segment of the market. Therefore, for this case, the organization would both pick a small area in the market or a single product and then decide to focus on that area or product. The choice of the company will influence the selection assessment methods that will be applied by the firm. The organization will focus on the segment since they have seen an opportunity in the provision of goods and services in such an area and believes focusing on differentiation on the region will help the organization achieve competitive advantage. The difference between the broad differentiation and focus differentiation leadership is the target market, with the broad differentiation focusing on a large market while the focus differentiation pays attention to a segment of the market. Such specialization will have an impact on the employees’ assessments methods in the selection process (Clardy, 2008). The methods are mainly affected by what the methods decide to concentrate on. The concentration of the particular selection assessment methods will dictate how valid or reliable the methods used are.

As noted by Highhouse (1997), the organization is in fierce wars of getting the most talented workers from the labor market. They invest large sums of money with the aim of getting the best employees from the available pool of employees in the labor market. The strategies used include job advertisements and recruiting strategies. This is due to managers understanding that the pool of employees is essential to achieving the objectives of the organization. On this note, depending on the strategy of the organization, the organization will select a selection assessment that they feel is best for identifying employees that best fit what they are looking for. Numerous selection methods can be used by an organization depending on whether the organization has decided to focus on a larger market or specialize in a single segment of the industry. For organizations that mainly focus on differentiation, formal assessment methods are used. This is because the firms are keen on getting the right pool of employees that will push the agenda of the firm forward.

The specialization that the firm chooses to focus on regarding differentiation affects the job analysis in the selection process. There are procedures as noted by MacKenzie, Klaas, and McClendon (2012) that are used in the development of the selection criteria. The procedures are affected by the size of the market that the organization decides to focus on. The competencies and skill that each strategy looks for are different, a factor that affects the selection assessment procedures. One of the most used assessment methods is the Cognitive Ability Tests. The methods mainly focus on measuring the mental ability of the prospective employees.

Other criteria measured under the test includes the reasoning ability, reading comprehension as well as mathematical abilities. The cognitive selection assessment criteria have been used as a predictor of the job performance of the employees. For the case of this test, the broad differentiation leadership will focus on employees with higher mental abilities that can help the organization achieve competitiveness through differentiation in a larger segment of the market. On the other hand, as observed by Heneman, Judge, and Kammeyer-Mueller (2015), the focus differentiation leadership style will focus on abilities that will help the organization focus on a particular segment of the market. Whether the organization focuses on the larger area or a segment of the market will also affect the applicability of this selection assessment method. The broad differentiation strategy mainly relies on this selection criteria since it focuses on the ability of the employees to deliver the competitive criteria of the organization. The reasoning, mathematical and verbal abilities of the employee are essential for this strategy.

Other selection test Personality Tests, Biographical Data test, Integrity Tests, Structured Interviews, and Job Knowledge Tests. The job knowledge test is another selection test that is influenced by the strategy that is used by any particular firm. This selection assessment method measures the knowledge area that is required for a person to perform a certain job effectively. For this case, the broad differentiation technique will be paying attention to employees that can deliver differentiated products focusing on a large area.

For the case of focus selection assessment methods, it will pay much focus on the ability of the employees to focus on a given section of the market. The reliability and validity of this selection criteria are also affected by the strategy that the organization seeks to pursue. This criterion is mainly used by firms that seek to focus on a given region (Kulik, Roberson, and Perry, 2007). The firms under this test look for the best employees that know the particular segment. Therefore, this method is more valid and reliable under the focus differentiation leadership as opposed to broad differentiation leadership. When used under the broad differentiation leadership, the test focuses on employees who know a bigger segment of the market, which the firms seek to sell the differentiated products and services. Therefore, as shown by the analysis of the cognitive selection assessment and the job knowledge test, the focus of the organization regarding differentiation significantly influences the selection assessment methods as well as the reliability and validity of the methods.

References

Clardy, A. (2008). The strategic role of human resource development in managing core competencies. Human Resource Planning Development International, 11(2), 183-197.

Cole, M., Field, H., Giles, W., & Harris, S. (2004). Job type and recruiters’ inferences of applicant personality drawn from resume biodata: Their relationships with hiring recommendations. International Journal of Selection and Assessment, 12(4), 363-367.

Heneman III, H., Judge, T., & Kammeyer-Mueller, J. (2015). Staffing Organizations (8th Edition). Middleton, WI: Mendota House/McGraw-Hill.

Highhouse, S. (1997). Understanding and improving job-finalist choice: The relevance of behavioral decision research. Human Resource Planning Management Review, 7(4), 449-470.

Humphrey, S., Morgeson, F., & Mannor, M. (2009). Developing a theory of the strategic core of teams: A role composition model of team performance. Journal of Applied Psychology,   94(1), 48-61.

Kulik, C., Roberson, L., & Perry, E. (2007). The multiple-category problem: Category activation and inhibition in the hiring process. Academy of Management Review, 32(2), 529-548.

MacKenzie, Jr., W., Klaas, B., & McClendon, J. (2012). Information use in counter-offer decisions: An examination of factors that influence management counter-offer decisions. Journal of Labor Research, 33, 370-387.

Pfeffer, J. (2007). Human Resource Planning from an organizational behavior perspective: Some paradoxes explained. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 21(4), 115-134.

Terpstra, D., & Rozell, E. (1997). Why some potentially effective staffing practices are seldom used. Public Personnel Management, 26(4), 483-495.

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HR Metrics Workforce Analytics Business

HR Metrics and Workforce Analytics

In the current business environment where competition and technological advancement is on the rise, it is imperative for the HR function to be on the forefront in enhancing the success of the business. One of the ways in which the HR function can help improve the work-ability of the business is by ensuring the workforce and the activities that relate to it bring the maximum returns to the company. As such it is pivotal to use the HR metrics and job analytics to track the return on investments channeled to the workforce. In the recent past, organizations have realized the importance of a balanced scorecard for the HR department (Smith, 2013). It is through this score card that the organizations have adopted the use of HR metrics and job analysis to measure the efficiency and the effectiveness of the workforce and use this information in decision-making.

One of the reasons that have led to an increased interest in HR metrics is the use of the data obtained from the metrics and job analytics towards improving the effectiveness of the company. The data obtained from the metrics acts as a basis in which the management can make major decisions for the improvement of the company and achieving the company’s goals. As such, the data acts as a thermostat that can measure the current situation and use the information in decision-making (Smith, 2013). Since the workforce comprises a major asset to the company, it is critical to ensure that decisions based on HR have facts that back them.

HR Metrics Workforce Analytics Business
HR Metrics Workforce Analytics Business

Additionally, organizations have realized that the use of technology in analyzing the HR function has the ability to save time and resources. Essentially the human resource department has the obligation of ensuring that the value of money and time spent in HR activities has major returns for the company. Therefore, it is their duty to provide the management with essential information that they can use to make decisions based on efficient use of the organization’s time and money (Sullivan, 2003). Using the HR metrics and job analytics, the HR department is able to track down the changes and trends in the workforce variables. Further, organizations can monitor the effectiveness of the activities based on people, process, and productivity. Thus it becomes easy to measure the value of time and money spent by the organization in the HR department.

The cost of HRIS is usually a debatable issue among organizations. However, it is important to realize the benefits that come with the use of HRIS in the HR department. For instance, when the HR uses the metrics and job analysis to analyze the cost per hire, the organization gets the facts on the amount it is using to hire. As such, it gives the organization the opportunity to find out whether the amount of money used in hiring is spent on the right people. In essence using the job analytics during the hiring process saves the company the situation where it could hire the wrong people for the job and consequently reducing the turnover rate in the organization (Sullivan, 2003). Primarily this justifies the cost of HRIS.

Additionally, the HR function spends the highest money in most organizations in terms of pay and allowances. Therefore, it is imperative for the organizations to ensure that they reap the most from the services offered by the workforce. Through the use of HRIS, the department can account for the training ROI in which the company spends money (Sullivan, 2003). The training returns on investment ensure that there are maximum financial gains from a training function to the employees. Without the use of this HRIS the company may make losses in training.

It is a significant loss to lose a valued employee by the organization. Therefore, it is important for the organization to have a functional HRIS that keeps track of the employees’ performance and improvements (Smith, 2013). For instance, using the manual employee tracking system may be compromised due to the human nature of being faulty. Such instances may lead to increased turnover and talent mismanagement. Thus a good HRIS saves the company all these losses.

References

Smith, T. (2013). HR analytics. Create-Space Independent Publishing Platform

Sullivan, J. (2003). HR metrics, the world-class way. Peterborough, NH: Kennedy Information.

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Best HRM Dissertation Topics For University Students

HRM Dissertation Topics

Your HRM dissertation is an extended piece of work on a topic of your own choosing. Working on a dissertation often involves searching for more specialized subject information beyond your University library catalog. You may like to look at the HRM Dissertation Topics we have on offer.

Your HRM dissertation aims to integrate your human resource management skills and knowledge with the published research in the area under study so that the project meets the high academic quality and high relevance to the HRM communities for which it has been written. While this blog post is designed to provide all the information that you need to write your own HRM Dissertation Proposal and formulate a handful of HRM Dissertation Topics.

We would advise you to visit our HRM Dissertation Topics pages, where you can find additional information as well as guidance. Our website offers support for the HRM dissertation you will undertake. Students and HR Professional will be offered the opportunity to explore the HRM Dissertation Topics we have on offer.

Please note that your dissertation supervisor might not have the same research interest as you but he/she is the ultimate source for providing students with guidance on how to succeed in writing your own HRM Dissertation. The role of the supervisor is to oversee your academic and professional development and to assist you.

The aim of the team at study-aids is to help students develop their research skills, knowledge and understanding of the human resource management. This will give new insights into HRM research, which will enable you to commission, undertake and evaluate HRM research in your chosen area of management throughout your future career. We recognize that for many of you formulating HRM Dissertation Topics can be a daunting task. For this reason, we expect you to ask questions and clarify your understanding as and when necessary. Remember that effective and successful HRM Dissertation involves asking as many questions as possible from yourselves and from the people around you.

What Is A Dissertation?

Before you begin to think about possible HRM Dissertation Topics for investigation, make sure you are clear in your own mind about what a dissertation is. You will be familiar with the principles of HRM, but it is worth reviewing briefly what a HRM Dissertation is really designed to do, and looking at how a HRM dissertation may mirror but also differ from a standard dissertation in a different subject area.

Different subject disciplines may emphasize different features, but, broadly speaking, a dissertation is a continuous piece of writing, arranged in clearly demarcated paragraphs, in which an argument (a clear line of thought) is developed, in response to a central question or proposition (thesis). The line of argument is supported by evidence you have acquired through research, which you are required to analyse, and which supports or contradicts the various perspectives explored in the course of that argument. Your HRM Dissertation then reaches a conclusion in the final section which pulls together the threads of your argument, supporting, qualifying or rejecting the original dissertation.

HRM Dissertation Topics
HRM Dissertation Topics

It is worth bearing in mind that your HRM dissertation is not a piece of writing designed to reproduce information available elsewhere, but something new and expressive of your individual abilities to analyse and synthesise. In addition, the process of academic writing will, of itself, help you to learn, by enabling you to work with concepts and information relevant to your subject, and thereby developing your intellectual skills.

Your HRM Dissertation should follow the fundamental principles of academic writing, but bear in mind the following key points. It is an extended piece of writing, usually divided into chapters. Make sure that you know the lower and upper word limits acceptable for your HRM dissertation, and what that will look like in terms of word processed pages. Be sure to find out whether you should be following a particular sequence of chapter headings for example, introduction followed by literature search followed by an experiment or a survey and, or an analysis of your research and whether you are expected to devise your own sequence and structure.

Your HRM dissertation contains a detailed exploration of evidence. The evidence referred to may comprise evidence from published texts, for example if you are exploring the literary texts of a particular writer, or it may consist of primary data gathered by your own, first hand research, for example a sociological study of attitudes to gender roles based on research methods such as interviews and questionnaires.

You are required to be clear about the nature of the methodology you will use for gathering the evidence why are you collecting data or analyzing evidence in that way rather than in another way it must be underpinned throughout by awareness of theory your argument should be placed within the context of existing theory relevant to the human resource management subject. It has to be presented in a professionally finished manner. Your supervisor should give you precise details about the format, layout and stylistic requirements of your assignment. Make sure that you know exactly what these are.

The importance of having a dissertation and evaluating it critically remember that you are constructing an argument from the beginning to the end of your assignment. Think of this central idea, and the logical development of your argument (train of thought) around this, as being the central path of your HRM dissertation, and make sure that you do not have sections or paragraphs which are somewhere in the shrubbery out of sight of the main path. Every paragraph should further the central argument, by providing another angle on it, additional evidence, and evaluation of that evidence in relation to your HRM Dissertation.

HRM Dissertation Topics

Comparative Management Practices (Especially With Regard To China)

Co-Operative (And “Partnership”) Aspects of Employment Relations

Cross-Cultural Communication (And Mis-Communication) In Business

Enterprise Restructuring In Emerging and Formerly Socialist Economies

Equal Opportunities and Managing Diversity

Ethical Aspects of Organisational Activities

Gender Aspects of Work and Management

Government Vocational Education and Training Policy

HRM and Organisational Performance

HRM and Shareholder Value In Management

HRM in Buyouts

HRM in the SME Sector

Industrial/Employment Relations

Inter-Organisational Relationships (Mergers, Alliances, Acquisitions Etc)

Knowledge Management

Leadership

Managing Culture

Organisational Change

Performance Related Pay

Recruitment and Selection

Team Working

Technology Change in Organisations

Trade Unions

HRM Dissertation Samples

There is so much to explore within the field of human resource management. The following is a list of HRM dissertation topics that have been written by successful HRM graduates and are used by HRM professionals.

Strategic Role of Human Resource Management Policies and Practices in Organizational Change

The Relationship between Employee Benefits and Employee Satisfaction at Google

The Importance of Training Staff in the Modern Workplace Era

Managing Workforce Diversity

Can Flexible Working Act as Employee Recruitment and Retention Tool?

Formulating Your Own HRM Dissertation

A HRM dissertation is a good example of a scientific work which needs more than merely writing and research skills. It must be kept in mind that such writings as HRM dissertation have specific rules to follow and the special instructions to keep to.

  1. One must understand that a HRM dissertation requires that students could demonstrate specific skills. Thus, students are supposed to do the following, according to the HRM dissertation requirements.
  2. Students must demonstrate the ability to choose the methods for their research on their own, HRM dissertation rules say.
  3. A typical HRM dissertation would presuppose that a student can perform an appropriate inquiry without assistance.
  4. A HRM dissertation demands that students should take a critical approach to the issues which are being researched in their HRM dissertations, so that the students could conduct an independent research.
  5. Among the demands to those who are writing their HRM dissertation, there is the one concerning the so-called subject-specific skills. Narrowing the research of the dissertation, this demand concerns the bibliographical material. Such dissertations are supposed to be grounded on a profound aspect of specific literature, and the chosen area of HRM dissertation must embrace all possible literature, including the most modern one.
  6. There is also a demand to HRM dissertations which says that a good dissertation must make a good use of the research data to construct a well-built argument.
  7. The way in which the data in the HRM dissertation is going to be presented matters much as well. The data in your HRM dissertation must be arranged well represent a logical structure and suggest a problem which will further on be developed into an enticing argument. Such are the basic demands to a good HRM dissertation

Choosing HRM Dissertation Topics

This is often the hardest part of the dissertation. This is because you must choose the topic, your supervisor cannot do it for you (though she or he can help you refine ideas that you do have). There are no hard and fast rules about the topic for your dissertation, but the following guidelines may help. Think about the areas of HRM that you are most interested in or a topic that you yourself are particularly interested in to which a sociological angle can be discerned. Also consider which theories and concepts have interested you the most. Along these lines, consider the courses you’ve taken so far. Which lectures or courses most captured your imagination? You can go back and look at your notes and textbooks to jog your memory.

Do not try to be too ambitious about what you can achieve given your time and resource constraints. The best dissertations are analyses of modest scope done well rather than broad ones done poorly. Think about the kind of research that you will actually do, and make sure that it is something that you yourself can feasibly do in the time available. A general word of advice is to choose quality HRM dissertation topics that are interesting to you. You will spend a great deal of time working on a relatively narrow issue, so choose one you will enjoy! Members of staff may be able to help you refine your thoughts, but the ideas and the motivation has to come from you.

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HRM Gender Influence Career Success

Gender Influence on Career Success

Melamed (1996) defines a career as someone’s progress in his occupation through his life. Within the scope of this essay, career success will be mainly defined as the opportunity for management positions and promotions. This is necessarily a restricted definition, but is a starting point to examine the influence of gender. There is a growing body of opinion that the so-called ‘glass ceiling’, where women’s prospects for career advancement are limited due to their gender, is a thing of the past. On the contrary, this essay will argue that gender continues to influence career success to quite a significant extent, first by examining the current situation of gender difference in management positions, then considering career aspirations and opportunities, attitudes towards the genders in terms of abilities, and finally touching on theories of gender difference in career success.

Women and Gender

First, women continue to be in a significant minority when it comes to occupying management positions. It is certainly true that women have gradually become a more and more important part of the global workforce since the middle of the last century. The new term “career woman” is getting popular. However, a large number of studies indicate that in the pursuit of career success, women have to overcome more difficulties than men, before they can reach the top of the hierarchy. A study by Glenice and Margaret (2001: 3) has shown evidence of ‘attitudinal, behavioural and structural barriers that are deterring women on their way to achieve career success. Such barriers seem to be more obvious in the senior management level. In spite of more and more women join the ‘paid workforce’ and taking up management roles, no more than 5 per cent of top management position is taken by women in the USA (Glenice and Margaret, 2001:1).

In UK the number is estimated to be 4 per cent or lower, while in Australia it is around 3 per cent. Early studies all prove that the phenomenon of the “glass ceiling” does exist in the top ‘management level’. In the past decade, evidence shows that women are beginning to break through the “glass ceiling” and managing to acquire their position in the top management group (Ryan and Haslam, 2005). On the other hand, Ryan and Haslam raise a concern that women’s ability to perform well in these positions is being undermined by the type of roles they are offered. They identify female executives being given roles in departments which are known to be in structural difficulties or failing financially: “women are particularly likely to be placed in positions of leadership in circumstances of general financial downturn and downturn in company performance”. This is just one study, however, and should not be used as a generalisation for the experience and career success of all women in management positions, or to prove that gender affects career success in recent times.

Gender Careers
Gender Careers

Although evidence shows that women are in a disadvantaged position in the labour market, it is a position that may actually be reinforced by women’s own perceptions. The career aspiration and expectation between different genders has been studied. Glenice and Margaret (2001) indicate that women are not very interested in pursuing a career. They found that women are more easily satisfied and therefore less likely to maximize their career aspirations. Hede and Ralston’s research (1993) also shows that female managers are less likely to pursuit a position in senior management level compared with male managers.

Their expectations of an executive position are also lower than men. Regarding equal opportunities, an interesting fact is that most women managers believe that they have fewer opportunities when there is a chance for promotion, and they are not actively encouraged to participate in career development activities (Glenice, & Margaret, 2001). In contrast, male managers believe the opposite. However, the research by Ryan and Haslam (2005) suggests there is a narrowing difference between men and women’s perceptions of their opportunities for promotion and therefore their aspirations are becoming more similar. However they found that both men and women believe that gender plays an important role in decisions in personnel selection regarding the type or area of a job. It seems that the barriers to promotion may exist partially in women’s attitudes or expectations.

Another possible barrier to female career advancement is the perception that men and women have different skills, with the former being more suited to senior roles. The possible difference in the types of jobs offered to women and men mentioned above requires further exploration. Researchers argue that men and women’s career progress are based not just on different attitudes but also on different attributes.

Tharenou et al (in Glenice and Margaret, 2001:3) argue that ‘women’s achievements are built on experience and performance while male employees are judged on their level of education’. This seems to be rather a controversial generalisation, but a more commonly argued point is that the different genders have different skills or qualities. Eagly (in Glenice, & Margaret, 2001:2) proposed that the expectation that ‘women will exhibit communal qualities and men agentic qualities’ has an effect. Glenice and Margaret (2001:3) describe communal tendencies as ‘interdependence and co-operation and enjoyment at working closely with others’, and agentic tendencies as ‘a desire for self-expansion and independent behaviour’ (Glenice and Margaret, 2001:3). Their study proved that these gender differences were commonly given as reasons for promotions. However, this research only proves that the belief that men and women have different skills is widespread. It does not prove that men and women have different abilities.

It could be argued that much of the evidence above for gender difference influencing career success is based on people’s (both men’s and women’s) perceptions and aspirations rather than a real difference between the genders in terms of ability. However, this does not negate the argument that gender is a major cause of difference in career success.

In fact, it seems clear that two factors are strong influences in career success: the relatively unproven issue of actual difference between the genders, and the more commonly agreed-upon issue of belief in this difference. This belief creates external barriers to promotion for women in the workplace, as well as internal barriers, which are that women do not aspire to greater success but may be satisfied with positions lower than their actual abilities.

In conclusion, gender has significant influence on employees’ career success. First of all, the disadvantaged position of women is clear, especially in the top management level. The “glass ceiling” does exist in most countries. Secondly, evidence shows that men and women employees have different experiences in their careers. It is generally believed that men have higher promotion opportunities and career expectations than women, although this is not true in all studies. Thirdly, the career success of men and women are influenced by different factors, because of the different social roles they are expected to play. Men are expected to be agentic in their beliefs and behaviors, while women are expected to be communal. In other words, the traditional view is that women’s internal attributes do not fit the requirement of top management. It will take some time to eliminate such bias before more women can have the chance to prove their ability and reduce the influence of gender on career success.

References

Hede, A., & Ralston, D. (1993) Managerial career progression and aspiration: evidence of a “glass ceiling”? International Journal of Employment Studies, 1: 2, 253-282.

Melamend, T. (1995) Career Success: the moderating effect of gender. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 47, 35-60.

Melamend, T. (1996). Career Success: An assessment of a gender-specific model. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 69, 217-242.

Ryan, M. K., and Haslam, S. A. (2005) The Glass Cliff: Evidence that women are over-represented in precarious leadership positions. British Journal of Management, 16, 81-90.

Wood, G. F., and Lindorff, M. (2001) Gender differences in explanations for career progress. Women in Management Review, 16(4), 152-162.

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I do hope you enjoyed reading this post on gender influence and how it affects career success. There are many other titles available in the HRM Dissertation Collection that should be of interest to human resource management students and CIPD professionals. There are many dissertation titles that relate to other aspects of HRM such as employee engagement, HRM Theory, absenteeism, training and development to name a few. It took a lot of effort to write this post and I would be grateful if you could share this post via Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section. Thank you.

Recruitment Plan Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Recruitment Plan Essay

This essay is based on a recruitment plan for a manager trainee position in an American based company known as Enterprise Rent-A- Car. It highlights the road map for staffing a manage trainee’s position. A good plan enables a company to hire qualified employees who are committed to attain successful personal careers as well help in attaining the company’s objectives through hard work. Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company is a top car rental company in the United States of America under the management of Enterprise Holdings, Inc (Rent-A-Car Par. 1). It is the best place for management trainees to start careers as per the Business Week’s listing in the year 2006.

The company’s business strategy mainly focuses on customer satisfaction. This has contributed to the company’s fast growth over the past decades. In the Company group, there is National Car Rental, WeCar, Alamo Rent-A-Car and RideShare among others. Its business model provides a variety of vehicle classes that are available for renting. Most of its vehicle models are bought from General Motors. The culture of Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company stands on the following core values: good brand name, honesty, fun, hard work, listening to customers, community development and inclusion of globally sustainable activities.

Introduction

The company was founded in 1957; it has been ranked the best in customer satisfaction particularly in airport rentals over the past eleven years. It is the provider of vehicle on rental basis to NHL and NCAA among other big transit companies. The company is prominent as the largest fresh college graduate employers in the United States of America, Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company’s management structure is majorly informal. It allows the employees from all levels to interact freely. Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company has branches worldwide including USA, Canada, Germany, Ireland and the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) with more than 70,000 employees all over the world (Rent-A-Car Par. 3).

Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company’s global presence helps the company to access larger market share thus high revenue for the company. During the recruitment plan exercise, attention should be given on how to staff such a sensitive position due to its key roles and responsibilities as pertains to a trainee manager. There are consequences and implications of having low performers in the position. For instance, a low performer can lead the company sales revenue reducing drastically, this can be as a result of market share loss. Implications of having high performers in the position include, rise in the percentage market share due to the innovative nature of the employee, this ensures high revenues for the company. The company should have a strategic context for future proposal for recruiting and selecting for this job. This is due to the dynamic nature of the rental car business as there is more use of information technology as seen it the case where the customers book for a car through the company’s website. Such services recommend employees with substantial knowledge on the use of such eCommerce platforms.

Description of the staffing system used by the company for the job

Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company uses both external and internal recruiting systems. External recruitment planning involves news paper advertisements, recruiting on campus, referrals among others. The advantage of using this system is that it gives the Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company new and varied approaches from its employees despite such a process being so expensive to undertake. On the other hand, internal recruitment is where the current employees can be promoted or demoted to fill the positions. This has an added advantage since it is a cheaper way of recruiting employees to fill positions within a company.

Perform the job/ competency analysis on the job in present and in the near future

Job analysis is the procedure followed when analysing a job for its specification and description. This comprises a list of qualifications required to be attained by the recruits and elements of that given job respectively. Job analysis is also used to evaluate employees to determine the level of incentives to be awarded. During job analysis the recruitment teams are able to come up with recommended qualifications for the job. Here are the possible qualifications essential and desirable in new hires in the position of a manager trainee for Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company;

  • Bachelor’s degree with a minimum of six months sales experience, customer service, excellent supervisory skills as most of the roles involve supervising others within the company.
  • Good leadership experience probably as a student leader in college.
  • A valid driver’s license is a MUST.
  • No drug related conviction for the last three years while driving.
  • Must be above 18 years.
  • Must be authorized to work in the country where he/she wants to work.
  • Must be flexible to work anywhere when posted.

Sourcing of Potential Employees

Advertisements for job vacancies are made through mass media. College recruiting is commonly used by Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company as a source of labour, this is either done through face-to-face interviews or applications through Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company’s website. Other sources of labour are current employees, referrals from employees, former employees, former military, customers, print and radio advertisements, internet advertising and social media, employment agencies and temporary employees. The above named sources are also the future labour supplies for the position.

Recruitment Plan
Recruitment Plan

Appropriate recruiters are chosen to perform the task of selecting the right candidate for the job. The reward system is essential for this group of people in order to ensure that the recruiting process is successful. Human resource planning is essential during the selection process, in order to achieve this objective the past staffing levels, change in technology, the activities involved during staffing and other similar information are essential for the planning process.

The gaps between employees’ current supply and future labour demands of an organization helps in forecasting employee competencies and behaviour needed in the organization’s future. Present sales revenue are also used in strategic human resource planning future numbers of employees and the skills needed and the source of such people. Cultural diversity affects the labour cost, ease in human resource acquisition, flexibility, innovation, and problem solving techniques in the company as it adapts multi-cultural awareness and effective interpersonal skills into the workplaces. This is essential for multinational companies like Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company.

Internal Employee Assessment Plan

Employees’ job analysis is performed to provide employees with their performance results, these results can be used to distribute compensation as well as during training activities but more importantly to find potential candidates for any vacant positions. Any feedback should be delivered to the employees through the three approaches: telling and selling, telling and listening and problem solving (Pride, Hughes and Kapoor 62). Employee assessment results are important when downsizing an organization, the reason for the layoff should be clearly defined to the worker. This should be communicated to the new employees to avoid any legal issues. Legal precautions should be considered to avoid law suits for instance there should be a termination agreement. Right sizing of the company employees should be done to improve the employees’ efficiency this will as well reflect on the future labour demands of the company.

How decision-making plan enables the company to comply with Equal Employment Opportunity and other legal requirements

Good decision making procedures enable the company to avoid lawsuits as there is a well defined selection technique that avoids discrimination in any form say in terms of sex, race, religion or nationality. Age discrimination Act of 1967 which was amended in 1986 to eliminate discrimination against older people above the age of forty can be avoided through good decision making plans. Organizations with good decision makings plan help in selecting even the candidates with disabilities thus avoiding law suits from such people under the Americans with disabilities Act of 1990. Affirmative action by the company to encourage members from the minority groups to apply for jobs and hiring of qualified candidates from such groups can be achieved through effective decision making processes.  The occupation safety and health Act of 1970 to protect the employee’s working environment to prevent ill health and loss of lives can be included in the terms and conditions of a company contract during decision making (Pride, Hughes and Kapoor 102).

Socialization Plan

For effective and comfort of the new worker in Enterprise Rent-A- Car Company he/she will need information on how business is conducted in the organization. Furthermore the new employee will need information on; how daily routines are conducted within Enterprise Rent-A- Car, its history, objectives, activities and products. Lastly the new employees are given the company policies, rules and regulations not forgetting their rights and benefits (Harold and Heinz 48).

Evaluation

It helps to cross check the costs of the selection process, the costs include; time spent during the process, salaries for recruiters, advertisement costs and recruitment expenses. Evaluation of  the recruitment plan process can be based on the rate of application sent out, number of shortlisted candidates, performance of the shortlisted candidates, the total cost of the process, time lapsed data and reviews on the projected on the entire process. There are a number of recruitment evaluation methods; number of successful inquiries, the number of candidates at every stage of the recruitment plan process, the final number of candidates recruited and the number of the new employees retained in the organization for more than a half a year (Aswathappa, 2007).

Barriers of effective implementation of a recruitment plan

Perception; due to the difference in the way people perceive ideas, implementation of a plan can be a problem if the involved parties have different frames of reference. This may result in disagreements hence delays in its implementation. For example the members of a recruiting committee may not rate the recruit equally. This can result in a conflict when choosing the final list of the successful candidates. What is fair to one person may seem to be unfair to the other resulting to an unfair process, when people are recruited on an added advantage of their age, religion, region, race or gender among others.

Immobility and location; the locality of labour affects the recruitment plan process, marred women hesitate taking jobs in places far away from their families. This might result to inadequate number of female recruits thus affecting implementation of a gender equity recruitment plan. (Aswathappa, 2007)

Reliability; if a method cannot provide consistent outcomes whenever it is used to recruit employees, however, this might not be the case for some plans hence inappropriate to implement them. The performance and judgments of people varies from time to time as in the case of recruits and recruiters respectively. This means that if such a plan is used repeatedly with the same people involved the results are likely to vary from time to time.

Validity; A valid recruitment plan is easily predictable, but when the predicted results do not match the real situation then implementation of the stated plan may not be recommendable. This is as a result of internal and external factors such as location, trade unions regulations and paucity of desired expertise in the available labour force.

Pressure; if compulsions are used to select candidates, then such a plan may not be used due to the pressures from friends, family and politicians to select the stated candidate (Aswathappa, 2007).  This means that even if the procedures where to be followed the results are always predetermined by such factors.

References

Aswathappa, K. Human Resource and Personnel Management. New Delhi: Tata McGraw-Hill Education, 2007.

Harold, Koontz and Weihrich Heinz. Essentials Of Management. New Delhi: Tata McGraw-Hill Education, 2008.

Pride, William M., Robert J. Hughes and Jack R. Kapoor. Foundations of Business. Boston: South-Western Cengage Learning, 2011.Print

Rent-A-Car, Enterprise. Enterprise Rent-A- Car. 2012. 22 November 2012

Recruitment Plan, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Staff Motivation, Recruitment, Selection, HRM Essays, HRM Dissertations, Human Resource Management, Human Resource Planning, Employee Assessment, Management.

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I do hope you enjoyed reading this recruitment plan blog. There are many other titles available in the HRM Dissertation Collection that should be of interest to human resource management students and CIPD professionals. There are many dissertation titles that relate to other aspects of HRM such as employee engagement, HRM Theory, absenteeism, training and development to name a few. It took a lot of effort to write this post and I would be grateful if you could share this post via Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section. Thank you.