Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Human Resource Management, Management, Human, Strategy, Workplace, Company, Employee, Function

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2020/10/08

Question 1 – What is human resource management?

While defining human resource management may seem an easy task, there is no universally accepted opinion on this matter. The most frequently discussed issues associated with the definition of human resource management include lack of consensus on its nature; distinction between the so-called best-fit and best practice approaches; distinction between internal, organizational, strategic, and environmental fir; coverage of different groups of employees; and perception of human resource practices (Paauwe, & Boselie, 2005). However, leaving out the controversies, there are several essential elements that underlie within this concept. Human resource management is a term generally used to describe a wide spectrum of organizational activities associated with selecting and recruiting, training and developing, designing work for, directing, motivating, appraising and rewarding, and controlling workers (Wilton, 2011). In other words, human resource management represents the framework of policies, philosophies, practices and procedures for managing the employer-employee relationships. Over the last several decades, human resource management has developed from a largely operational, administrative function to a management area often considered central to sustained competitive advantage and organizational viability. In the modern world of business, crucial importance of human resource management is undeniable, up to the point where there is no longer any need to prove the dependence of a firm’s performance on labor management. It is self-evident that the effectiveness of human resource management has a critical influence on successfulness of the company’s operations (Torrington, Hall, & Taylor, 2008). Therefore, it is not surprising that the strategic importance of human resource management has become much more acknowledged during the past two to three decades. A strategic approach is now an inseparable part of human resource management, unlike personnel management, which is perceived to perform solely operational functions.

Question 2 - What is the primary function of human resource management?

Human resources management includes several separate but overlapping aspects of managerial activity. There are five broad functions of human resource management fundamental for managing workforce: resourcing, performance, reward, learning and development, and employee relations (Wilton, 2011). There are other activities and tasks attributable to human resource management, such as workforce administration, management of diversity and equality, and health and safety. Activities associated with resourcing comprise recruitment, selection, HR planning, talent management, induction, termination of employment contract, and succession planning. Performance deals with assessing the extent to which individuals and teams within an organization contribute to successful company performance and fulfillment of organizational goals, and the quality of such inputs. Primarily, this is done through performance appraisals. Reward function refers to development and implementation of reward systems that include financial and non-financial rewards, including perks, benefits, and pensions. The function of learning and development identifies individual, team, and organizational needs and requirements in terms of training and growth, and implements and evaluates various training programs. Employment relations manages the quality of employee communication, their involvement in decision-making processes, relationships between unions and management, and employee welfare. Considering the fact that all these functions are essential for well-being and success of any organization, identifying the primary function of human resource management is not an easy task. The majority of professionals within the human resource sphere consider that the primary function of human resource management still corresponds to the initial purpose which human resource departments served 30-50 years ago: sourcing and hiring employees (Werner, & DeSimone, 2012). Therefore, resourcing can be called a primary function of human resource management.

Question 3 - What is the role of human resource management in an organization’s strategic plan?

Business strategies are developed to make the best use of a company’s capabilities and resources in ways that lead to superior value creation in comparison with its competitors (Phillips, & Gully, 2014). Consequently, competitive advantage directly depends on a firm’s abilities to use the capabilities and resources effectively and efficiently. These abilities, in turn, largely depend on the quality of the company’s talent. Therefore, when exercising strategic planning, a company’s management must have comprehensive knowledge of the quantity, quality, state, and composure of the employees who will carry out various elements of the strategy. Human resource strategy connects the entire function of human resources to the company’s business strategy. Strategic human resource management, hence, aligns the firm’s goals and values with the goals, values, and behaviors of employees and influences each of the company’s human resource functions’ strategies, including performance management, staffing, compensation, and training and development. The combination of these separate functions builds an integrated system of human resource management, which supports the execution of the company’s business strategy, guided by the organization’s talent philosophy. The role of human resource management is vital in a number of aspects of organizational strategic planning that involve acquisitions, market share, organizational restructuring and redesign, technology implementation, and market entrance. When an acquisition occurs, human resource management department conducts special audits that are a part of the “due diligence” process that is conducted to identify potential problems. When a company plans to enter a new market, the HR department identifies that needs for crucially important personnel and compares them to the available supply of workforce in respective jobs. During expansion or contraction of an organization’s market share, HR deals with expanding or shrinking the supply of workforce. Expansion and/or implementation of technology requires specific qualified personnel, so human resource management is involved in this aspect of strategic planning as well. Finally, in organizational redesign/restructuring, human resource management department plays a major part in deciding on the form of restructuring, implementation planning, redesigning job descriptions and reformulating authority delegations.


Paauwe, J. & Boselie, P. (2005). HRM and performance: What’s next? (CAHRS Working Paper #05-09). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University, School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies. Retrieved from: http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/cahrswp/476
Phillips, J. M., & Gully, S. M. (2014). Human Resource Management. Mason, OH: Cengage Learning
Torrington, D., Hall, L. & Taylor, S. (2008). Human Resource Management (7th ed.). Essex: Pearson Education
Werner, J., & DeSimone, R. (2012). Human Resource Development (6th ed.). Mason, OH: Cengage Learning
Wilton, N. (2011). An Introduction to Human Resource Management. London: Sage Publications

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WePapers. (2020, October, 08) Human Resource Management Overview Essay. Retrieved August 19, 2022, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/human-resource-management-overview-essay/
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Human Resource Management Overview Essay. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/human-resource-management-overview-essay/. Published Oct 08, 2020. Accessed August 19, 2022.

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