Functions of Human Resource Management

23/03/2020 1 By indiafreenotes

“Human resource management is concerned with the people dimension in management. Since every organization is made up of people, acquiring their services, developing their skills, motivating them to higher levels of performance and ensuring that they continue to maintain their commitment to the organization are essential to achieving organizational objectives. This is true, regardless of the type of organization government, business, education, health, recreation, or social action”.

“Human resource management is series of integrated decisions that form the employment relationships; their quality contributes to the ability of the organizations and the employees to achieve their objectives”.

The functions of HRM can be broadly classified into two categories:

  • Managerial Functions
  • Operative Functions
  1. Managerial Functions

The HR manager is basically a manager and as such must perform the basic functions of management which are as follows:

(i) Planning

Defined in its simplest terms, planning is the determination of anything in advance of the action. It involves scanning of the external and internal environment, setting up of goals and objectives, preparing an action plan to achieve these objectives/goals, laying down policies and procedures, formulating standards of evaluation and allocating resources.

It requires anticipation, forecasting, predictions and so on. Thus, planning is a deliberate and conscious effort to utilise the resources to achieve the given ends. Planning is a link between the present and the future and is a continuous and never-ending process.

The goals set up under planning may be – (a) short term and (b) long term. Besides, these objectives may be – (a) financial, (b) non-financial and (c) mixed. Above all, planning should be flexible so that necessary adjustments could be made as and when needed.

Thus, planning provides the basis for effective and most economical action in the future. It leads to integrated action and reduces considerably the probability of unanticipated crisis. It also leads to the use of effective and efficient methods and helps in accomplishing the desired goals of the enterprise through better control and coordination.

So far as an HR manager is concerned, he/she is required to determine in advance an HR programme that will contribute towards the achievement of goals specified for the organization. Thus, it involves planning of manpower requirements and related issues. Obviously, it is necessary that the HR manager should be an expert in the field of HRP.

(ii) Organising

After plans have been developed and the course of action determined, organising is next in order. The process of organizing is essential for accomplishing the objectives of the enterprise. Organizing involves the establishment of an organization structure through determination and grouping the activities, the assignment of activities to the specified individuals and departments, defining their role, establishing relationships, the delegation of authority to carry out the responsibilities and provision of coordination of men and work.

So far as an HR manager is concerned, in order to execute the HR plans and programmes, he/ she also has to form an organization. He/she is required to design the structure of the relationships among – (a) various jobs, (b) various personnel, (c) jobs and men (d) men and machinery, (e) a specialized unit and the rest of organisation (f) and other physical factors.

In case the relationships among these are well defined, it will leave practically no scope for any sort of confusion and thus lead to smooth sailing of the organization towards the specified goals.

The HR manager is expected to procure the resources necessary to carry out the HR programme, design an appropriate system to carry out such a programme and also establish lines of authority and communication between the various people working with or receiving benefits from the HR programmes. However, the development of sound organization requires certain principles.

(iii) Staffing

Staffing is a process of manning the organization and keeping it manned. Needless to mention that the future of any enterprise is governed by the quality of the hired personnel. In case the enterprise has failed to get right man for the right job, the accomplishment of the objectives of the enterprise will be quite difficult.

So far as an HR manager is concerned, he/ she is required to recruit, select, train, place, compensate, promote and retire the personnel of the organization at the appropriate time in a manner most conducive for accomplishing the objectives of the enterprise. The HR department itself is all about staffing.

(iv) Directing

Having a plan and an organization to execute it, the next step is getting the job done. As the process of management is concerned with getting work done through and with people, they require proper motivation. The management is required to lead, guide, motivate, supervise, communicate and inspire them towards improved performance.

An HR manager is also expected to do all these things in getting people to go to work will­ingly and effectively. Although all managers must unavoidably direct their subordinates, the HR manager should possess exceptional expertise in this regard.

(v) Controlling

Controlling is a very important function of management. In an undertaking, control consists in verifying whether everything occurs in conformity with the plan adopted, the instructions issued and the principles laid down. In this way, controlling is a measuring and corrective device.

Through control, we evaluate the performance against the goals and the plan. Two important things in the process of control are (a) a comparison of actual performance as against standards and (b) taking corrective actions.

So far as the HR manager is concerned, he/she has to evaluate the results of the personnel activities in comparison with the desired objectives. Through control, he/she measures the progress of the HR programme along the lines laid out in the programme and determines how effectively the desired HR objectives were attained.

Thus, we can say that through direct observation, supervision report, records, audits and so on, the HR manager ensures that the enterprise is carrying out the HR programme on the desired lines and, if necessary, takes cor­rective steps.

  1. Operative Functions

Operative functions are performed by the human resource manager continuously and regularly. Its nature is like a routine type.

The Operative functions are as follows:

(i) Procurement of Human Resource / Employment

The first important function of HRM is securing and employing the right type of personnel according to the needs or requirements of the organization. For effective performance of procurement function, HRM has to perform a number of functions such as manpower planning which gives the estimate of manpower requirements.

Job analysis includes job description and job specification which gives the idea of title and nature of job, duties and authorities on that job, specification of personnel required to perform on that job such as qualification, qualities, experience, skill, talent, training, abilities etc.

Then he has to perform the function of recruitment which involves the identification of sources of recruitments, selecting the right type of source for recruiting the personnel. Then he has to perform selection function. Selection procedure has to be chalk out and selecting the right man for the right job.

Then placing the personnel which involve allocation of job to the most suitable candidates. After placement arrange the induction programme for the new entrant and give the information about the company in detail and create a good image and opinion about the organization.

(ii) Employee Compensation

After procurement of employees the next operative function of HRM is compensation function. It means providing adequate, equitable, regular and fair remuneration to the employees. According to the services rendered by the employees, remuneration should be given.

For equitable and fair compensation, it should be based on job evaluation, merit rating Techniques. HRM has to look after the wage and salary administration. He has to formulate the incentives, bonus, fringe benefits, and social security measures in the interest of the employees.

(iii) Development of Human Resource

Development of Human Resources is done through the training and development programme. Development process includes improving the skills and knowledge, creativity, ability, intellectual ability, capacities of employees.

Development process also moulds and changes the attitude and behaviour of the employees, improves their aptitude, commitment etc. Performance appraisal helps in employee development programme.

A systematic training programme has to be arranged by the HRM for employee and management development. He has to prepare career planning and development programme. HRM has to frame the policies and plans of promotion, demotion and transfer of employees.

(iv) Developing Healthy Human Relations

One of the most important operative functions of HRM is developing, maintaining and preserving the healthy, friendly, harmonious relationship between the management and employees or employer and employee.

He is also responsible for developing healthy relations between the employee and employer, between workers and trade unions and management. Due to healthy relations there are no disputes, clashes and misunderstanding. But it improves morale, team spirit, team work, cooperation, togetherness, and oneness among the employees.

(v) Integration of Conflicting Interest

HRM has to perform one more important function that is integration of individual employee interest and business organization interest. Employees are interested in higher wages and salaries, more facilities, bonus, social security, less working hours, overtime wages, best working conditions and so on.

On the other hand company is interested in more profit, higher production and efficiency, long working hours, minimum working condition, etc. HR managers have to integrate these conflicting interests in a way that both the parties should be satisfied.

(vi) Safety and Health of Employees

HR manager has to take the care of safety and health of the employees. In case of employees whose work is risky, and hazardous, HR manager has to provide the safety measures to the employees. Regular medical checkup of the employees has to be done. Free medicines, treatment should be provided to the employees who fall sick.

(vii) Stability and Optimum Utilization of Employees

HR manager has to maintain the employees in the organization and has to utilize them at the optimum level, He must ensure the best utilization of employees. For this he has to motivate the employees and to give them job satisfaction, job security, participate them in management.

Their grievances should be promptly resolved. Opportunities for career development should be given so that employees may prefer to stay in the same organization and company can enjoy the benefits of stable workforce.

(viii) Personnel Research, Audit and Records

HR manager has to conduct research in various areas of human resource for example, research in motivational techniques, behavioural sciences, attitude, turnover, absenteeism, development, performance, morale and so on. Audit involves the periodical assessment and appraisal of employee performance.

Moreover he has to maintain the updated records of the employees since joining till their retirement by maintaining service books or records. These records would help at the time of promotion, demotion and transfer of employees.