5HRF Assignment Example: Managing and Co-ordinating the Human Resources Function

5HRF Assignment Example

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1.1Summarise the organizational objectives that the HR function is responsible for delivering and how these are evolving in contemporary organizations.

The HR function is an essential part of the organization and plays a huge role in the attainment of the overall goal. In making their contribution to the organizational goals, the HR function is considered a central pillar to many organizations. The human resource function is responsible for the many-core functions that culminate in the successful attainment of the organizational goals (McCracken & McIvor, 2013). The organizational objectives that the HR function has to deliver are pegged on five core broad categories: staffing, employee development, compensation, staff safety, and health, employee and labor relations. In regard to staffing, the HR function is responsible for hiring full-time or part-time employees, recruiting contractors as well as terminating their contracts and employment (McCracken & McIvor, 2013).  As part of the staffing objective, the HR function seeks to identify and seek the best talent to fill the gap in the firm. The process takes place in several steps to ensure that the best candidate is selected for the specific position. Staffing is concerned with the procurement of people and their subsequent placement in the organization for the achievement of the organizational goals (McCracken & McIvor, 2013). This continuous process is repetitive in nature since talent gaps arise often when employees leave the organization. The systematic process of staffing encompasses the recruitment, evaluation, and selection of qualified candidates for the job position in an organization the process encompasses the planning stage, recruitment, selection, and placement (John & Björkman, 2015). As part of the staffing requirement, the HR function is also required to maintain highly ethical practices in the firm. It also writes and specifies the employee contracts; negotiates for their salary as well as benefits.

The second objective of the HR function is employee development, which encompasses continuous improvement of the employees for them to discharge their role better for the attainment of the organizational goals (John & Björkman, 2015). After the onboarding of new employees, there is a need for the continued development of their skills and knowledge for them to disseminate their roles better. The HR function also provides compensation to the employees in order to motivate them in delivering towards the organizational objectives (John & Björkman, 2015).In light of this, they define and facilitate salary and benefits for the employees. The HR identifies the appropriate compensation method, based on the role of the worker and in adherence to the legal requirements. To achieve the best results that will help in the attainment of the organizational goals, it is essential to consider the safety and health of the workers (John & Björkman, 2015). In light of this, the HR functions in ensuring that there is complete compliance with the set legal requirements based on job safety. Some of the safety requirements cut across the provision of necessary protective equipment while at work.

The HR functions changes with time as changes are effected in the organization. The HR function undergoes three evolution cycles (Nankervis et al., 2019). At the basic level, the HR functions are expedited before progressing to business partnership and then strategic partnership. At the business function level, HR facilitates the basic roles including employee management, facilitation of the payroll, adherence to the HR and company policies, and other staffing needs. The basic roles expedited at the function level are majorly on compliance and personnel management. The HR functions then evolve to business partners where the HR department is not only concerned with the personnel management but also meeting the business needs (Nankervis et al., 2019). At this stage, HR is not only interested in hiring employees, but meeting the organizational needs through a competency-based approach where employee development and organizational design are key. The process may need a formal organizational structure for the successful meeting of the need. The third level is the strategic partner goal where the HR is viewed as a business companion (Nankervis et al., 2019). In the third level of the HR function progression, the organization is concerned with the attainment of the leadership position for the normal operational duties. At this stage, HR is responsible for the identification and alignment of the core competency of the workers. HR is considered essential for the attainment of the organizational goal hence considered as a strategic partner as opposed to a mere department.

1.2 Explain the major theories of effective change management and how these are implemented and evaluated.

There are many theories that explain change management and how such is implemented and evaluated. Three common change management theories include Lewin’s Three-Step Model 1945, Kotter’s Strategic Eight-Step Model (Kotter, 1996), and the Action Research Model 1945. Lewin’s model is based on three major steps in change management (Hayes, 2018). The three steps in change management are unfreezing, action, and freezing. According to Lewin’s model, for a chance to be effective, it has to encompass the three stages. Failure to follow the three steps will make the change to be short-lived. The unfreezing stage, it entails bringing an understanding of why the change is necessary for the organization (Hayes, 2018). In this case, the organization through the management brings to the knowledge that change is needed for the attainment of the organizational goals. In the changing phase, the organization implements the change by launching the new system. This entails a step-to-step implementation of the change process. The third step is the refreezing stage that is characterized by solidifying the change and promoting the adoption of the new norm in the organization (Hayes, 2018). This is attained through providing training to the employees for them to adapt to the system.

The Kottler model is an eight-step process of change management. The model was developed to be used at the management level of the organization to implement the needed change. The first step in the Kottler model is to create urgency for the change (Cummings et al., 2016). This preliminary stage demonstrates the need for a change. The second stage is the formation of a powerful coalition that will facilitate the change.  The third step is the creation of a vision for change, which acts as a guide for the attainment of change. The team facilitates the change communication of the change, which helps all the stakeholders to buy in the idea of the proposed change (Cummings et al., 2016). The organization through the management removes the barriers at the fifth stage of the change implementation process before creating short-term wins at the sixth stage. At the sixth stage, the team evaluates the gains made.  At the seventh change, the organization builds on the proposed change (Cummings et al., 2016).  It is advisable that a change process is not declared early but rather builds on it at the seventh stage before anchoring on the change process.

The action research model is another change management theory that is built on change of behavior, change of attitude, and testing of the proposed change. In the first stage of the Action research model, the proposed change is propelled by the action. The second part is the application of the framework to assess the applicability of the theory (Hayes, 2018). The third step is the assessment of the proposed change. This model is based on a diagnosis process, the introduction of change, and intervention. It is closely related to Lewin’s model. The Action research model facilitates change by the involvement of the client in the system for the process of diagnosis, active learning as well as problem finding for an appropriate solution (Hayes, 2018). The method is implemented on the basis of initiating change through anticipation and responding positively for the attainment of the organizational goals. After the organization identifies the problems, it seeks workable solutions and hence defines proper working relationships and deliverables (Hayes, 2018).  In evaluation, data is collected to identify the gaps for appropriate identification of priorities and subsequent interventions to get the right solutions. Action research models help to see the organization as a whole system and hence evaluation is based on the entire process as opposed to individual components. This forms a better understanding of the role that the process changes.

1.3 Evaluate the business case for managing HR in a professional, ethical and just manner.

In HR, it is imperative to manage cases professionally, ethically, and in adherence to justice. Adherence to professionalism, ethics, and justice plays a huge role in building trust among the employees. By acting in adherence to the good practices, HR promotes fairness and justice to the organization (Mishra & Awasthi, 2018). Further, the team is able to work at optimal productivity and exhibit greater engagement. When HR is managed in a professional and ethical manner, it becomes easier for the organization to comply with the law. This is beneficial as it avoids unnecessary legal suits that come with cost implications (Mishra & Awasthi, 2018). On the same note, adherence to ethics means that the firm is less liable to cases of discrimination and hostility thereby reducing cost implications as well as maintaining good reputation. There are different approaches that an organization can apply to promote professionalism and ethics n(Mishra & Awasthi, 2018).To promote professionalism at work, the organization through HR should inform and educate the employees on the principles of professionalism.

HR also promotes professionalism through a careful process of recruitment to ensure that the chosen candidates are well qualified(Thite, 2013). Indeed, it is imperative to ensure that the candidates chosen have registered with the relevant professional bodies and are accredited appropriately.  Further, HR also promotes further education of the workforce by availing of formal academic opportunities. The knowledge and skills that are got from academic work help the workforce to be more aligned and professional in their duties (Thite, 2013). HR also commits to the continuous learning and development of skills as well as the application of new knowledge. This is attained through the numerous L & D programs that are organized by the HR function. In addition, the HR function also encourages the workforce to pursue appropriate certification where necessary.

The HR department applies different approaches to act in adherence to the ethics and just manner. First, the HR department should be encompassed of the professionals who know and adheres to the law. At times, the HR function may be required to make tough decisions that streamline the workforce to make them accountable (Ekuma & Akobo, 2015). However, all the decisions that have to be made by the HR department and the entire organization should be based on compliance with the labor laws and compliance practices. Secondly, the HR department in the organization can act in an ethical and just manner if they prioritize professional development among the workers (Ekuma & Akobo, 2015). It is imperative to note that HR is a dynamic function that may be changed through technology. The HR function should also act by understanding and resolving conflicts of interest. Conflicts of interest are detrimental to the business operation since they distract the team from working together.

The organization should also endorse diversity and inclusion through HR. concerning this, the process of recruitment should provide an equal opportunity for people from diverse cultural orientations, races, religions, languages, gender, and class (Thite, 2013). The HR function should capture all the issues that are of concern to ethics in a code of ethics. The code of ethics should stipulate the actions of HR and prohibit some actions that are unethical and unprofessional. Finally, adherence to ethics and justice requires that the HR function keeps the information confidential (Thite, 2013). It is imperative to understand that the HR department has vast information on the workers ranging from Medical records, social security numbers, and other confidential information. However, such information should be well protected, whether in paper or electronic form (Thite, 2013).  By failing to observe confidentiality, the firm is said to violate one of the ethical tenets. In addition, it can also form grounds for discrimination based on social status and ethnic attributes.

2.1 Explain the different ways in which HR objectives can be delivered in organizations.

Organizations deliver HR objectives through different approaches as covered under the different models. Organizations apply varying approaches depending on the size and the HR needs. Concerning this, varying models have been used to explain the process of delivery of the HR objectives in the organizations. Some of the models include the Ulrich model, the shared services, outsourcing, and consulting model (Mamman & Al Kulaiby, 2014). The models are applied depending on their suitability in facilitating the HR objectives. The Ulrich model is based on transforming the HR function through the separation of roles. The Ulrich model emphasizes the need of separating the different aspects of HR including HR policy-making, administration, and business roles (Mamman & Al Kulaiby, 2014). The intent of separation is to shift the HR role of HR from administration to strategy-based. The Ulrich model is based on the four major roles of HR: championing employees, playing administrative roles, championing change, and being a strategic partner (Mamman & Al Kulaiby, 2014).

Shared values are the organizational values that are created within the organization by leaders that adopt all the members in the entity. The shared values describe the organizational values and are accepted by most of the employees (Yogamalar & Samuel, 2016). It is described as one model that defines what the organization does and its aspirations. With shared values, organizations can make quick decisions and actions. The adoption of shared values is considered beneficial in promoting organizational efficiency and handling of HR administrative processes (Yogamalar & Samuel, 2016). Shared values help in workforce planning and other essential processes that are attained by the HR function.  The HR function requires the adoption of change of the mindset on the employees and line managers for them to reconsider the internal and external customers (Yogamalar & Samuel, 2016). It also allows easier and faster measurement of efficiency in delivery of the HR services.

The HR objectives can be delivered through outsourcing. This model encompasses having some of the tasks being done by a third party and not internal employees. Outsourcing as a method of service delivery is a common practice that is applied by organisations as it helps in cost reduction (Quartey, 2013). Through outsourcing, a business is able to streamline its business functions. Outsourcing may be conducted partially or in full. In full outsourcing, the HR functions are completely provided by a third party. Different aspects are considered when outsourcing (Quartey, 2013). First, the issue of risk management is considered where the organization may evaluate the threat of eroding reputation, financial risks, legal aspects, security of information, and strategic aspect. Once the executive management has made a decision to outsource, it becomes imperative to conduct a risk management approach (Quartey, 2013). Tax implications are also an important aspect of consideration when outsourcing (Quartey, 2013). This approach is common with small organizations that do not have an HR department.

2.2 Analyse how the HR function varies between organizations in different sectors and of different sizes.

The HR functions are expedited between organizations depending on the size and the sector. For large organizations, whether in the private or public sector, commonly prefer the use of the Ulrich model that emphasizes on shared values model. On the other hand, SMEs use a single HR team or even outsource the HR function. The Ulrich model is applied to help large multinationals and businesses to help in transforming the HR functions through separation of different components by making policies, administration, and business partnership roles (Sheehan, 2014). Due to the large size of the HR department for multinational firms, the HR function is separated into different components. The first component of the HR function is the business partner, a section that is tasked with communication and personnel management for the internal customers (Sheehan, 2014). The components of the HR function play a role in connecting employees with the stakeholders and other personnel (Sheehan, 2014). The HR business partner is the one responsible in partnership with the different members of the organization in HR.

The second component of the large HR department is the change agent, which facilitates the expansion of the business and altering of the goals and objectives (Sheehan, 2014). Within this section of the organization, HR is able to facilitate training opportunities for employees for them to acquire new skills that are essential for the change of organizational goals. The third component of the HR function is the administrative category that is responsible for facilitating a spectrum of administrative roles. The team covers the legislation of policies, promotes occupational health, and adheres to labor laws (Sheehan, 2014). The separation of the different roles also fronts an advocate group of the HR function that champions the need of the employees.

For small firms, they have one HR function that is mandated at handling different issues of human resources within the organization. Given the size of the firm, the HR needs are not wide and can be handled by one department without the need of segregating the roles (Sheehan, 2014). This method also aids in reducing the cost. The HR manager can also coordinate all the HR issues, which commonly revolve around staffing and routine management such as compensation and performance reviews. Some small firms, even outsource the entire HR department or key aspects in a bid to reduce the cost of operation. Outsourcing is the use of a third party in the key HR functions (Sheehan, 2014). The outsourced firm runs the HR functions on behalf of the organization. This organization is responsible in the hiring of the staff, assessment of performances, and facilitating training and development programs.

The type of the HR function also depends on the sector and the nature of the business organization. For firms operating in the public sector, there is a need for a solid HR department that is highly separated to aid in managing the vast HR operations (Sheehan, 2014). On the other hand, private firms have a tendency to hire third parties in a cost reduction drive. For not for profit organizations, outsourcing is considered the most appropriate method because the entity does not see the need for a complete HR function, whose roles are limited. The small-medium private organization develops a single team that caters to the HR needs in the firm.

3.1 Discuss the main criteria and methods used to evaluate the contribution of the HR function.

4.1 Identify and evaluate research evidence linking HR practices with positive organizational outcomes.

References

Ali, N., Kakakhel, S. J., Rahman, W., &Ahsan, A. (2014).Impact of human resource management practices on employees’ outcomes (Empirical Evidence from Public Sector Universities of Malakand Division, KPK, Pakistan). Life Science Journal11(4), 68-77.

Cummings, S., Bridgman, T., & Brown, K. G. (2016). Unfreezing change as three steps: Rethinking Kurt Lewin’s legacy for change management. Human Relations69(1), 33-60.

Ekuma, K., & Akobo, L. (2015). Human resource management ethics and professionals’ dilemmas: A review and research agenda. Human Resource Management Review5(3), 47-57.

Hayes, J. (2018). The theory and practice of change management. Hoboken: Palgrave.

John, S., & Björkman, I. (2015). In the eyes of the beholder: the HRM capabilities of the HR function as perceived by managers and professionals. Human Resource Management Journal25(4), 424-442.

Mamman, A., & Al Kulaiby, K. Z. (2014). Is Ulrich’s model useful in understanding HR practitioners’ roles in non-western developing countries? An exploratory investigation across private and public sector organizations in the Sultanate Kingdom of Oman. The International Journal of Human Resource Management25(20), 2811-2836.

Marescaux, E., De Winne, S., &Sels, L. (2013). HR practices and HRM outcomes: The role of basic need satisfaction. Personnel Review.

McCracken, M., & McIvor, R. (2013). Transforming the HR function through outsourced shared services: insights from the public sector. The International Journal of Human Resource Management24(8), 1685-1707.

Mishra, M., & Awasthi, A. (2018). Ethics of Care Versus Ethics of Justice: Ethical Dilemmas Faced by HR Managers. Journal of Management, Ethics and Spirituality10(1), 53-59.

Morard, B., Stancu, A., & Jeannette, C. (2013).Time evolution analysis and forecast of key performance indicators in a balanced scorecard. Global Journal of Business Research7(2), 9-27.

Nankervis, A., Baird, M., Coffey, J., & Shields, J. (2019). Human resource management. NY: Cengage AU.

Quartey, S. H. (2013). Implications of HR outsourcing for HR practitioners work behaviors: Evidence from the mobile telecommunication industry in Ghana. International Business Research6(11), 178.

Sheehan, M. (2014). Human resource management and performance: Evidence from small and medium-sized firms. International Small Business Journal32(5), 545-570.

Thite, M. (2013). Ethics and human resource management and development in a global context: case study of an Indian multinational. Human Resource Development International16(1), 106-115.

Van De Voorde, K., & Beijer, S. (2015). The role of employee HR attributions in the relationship between high‐performance work systems and employee outcomes. Human Resource Management Journal25(1), 62-78.

Vermeeren, B., Steijn, B., Tummers, L., Lankhaar, M., Poerstamper, R. J., & Van Beek, S. (2014). HRM and its effect on employee, organizational and financial outcomes in health care organizations. Human resources for health12(1), 35.

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