Human Recourse Management: Final Exam Model, Essay Example

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Essay

Introduction

Human resource management strategies are based on recruitment and selection processes. It is crucial to note, however, that these are not simply techniques to fill open positions; they are also measures for organizational change, sustaining employee commitment, and achieving high levels of performance. Most free market countries have adopted a ‘best practice’ model in the personnel profession. Based on this model, the primary purpose of recruitment is to find the best possible candidate for the position. In other words, all other factors are put to the side and the organization is focused primarily on finding the best person for the job. However, other models are in place that focusses on other aspects of recruitment, such as a prospective employee’s personality and overall attitude, rather than a prospective employee’s ability. As such, based on these models, employees who seem to fit in with the culture of the organization are sought, instead of employees who may presumably do a good job.  In other words, recruiters look for employees who will support the organization’s goals and who will want to grow with the organization, instead of employees who simply qualify to perform the job.

Discussion

Through recruitment and selection management can determine and gradually adjust the social characteristics and capabilities of the workforce. For instance, a common trend in human resource practices places increased emphasis on teamwork. However, two decades ago the emphasis was placed on individualist, independent workers. This is evidence that recruiters’ attention have shifted from a list of skills and abilities to an individual’s broader base of competences. The result is that there is now a greater regard for personal flexibility and adaptability from prospective workers.

When choosing a prospective employee, a firm must consider several crucial factors. First, the firm should determine if the worker will be a good fit for the organization; secondly, and if the worker will be a good fit for the team of the proposed project; and lastly, if the worker will be a good fit for the actual job. The firm should also consider the cost associated with hiring said worker.

Advantages associated with an organization’s recruitment of workers, both full time and part time, mostly refer to flexibility, access to skills, and cost savings to the organization. Because there is a growing demand for qualified temporary workers, staffing agencies offer some type of formal skill-development. This ensures that the organization to which the temporary workers will go receives highly skilled employees. This method saves the organization money by not having to train temporary workers (Purcell, Purcell, & Tailby, 2004). In addition to saving the organization training-related costs, the skill development offered by the staffing agency recruits more high-quality workers. The recruitment of temporary workers also controls labor cost commitments that may fluctuate as the result of unpredictable business trends. As such, the organization hires labor only when needed. Furthermore, recruitment of temporary workers is beneficial in filling organizational gaps created by contingencies, such as those caused by employees who are on sick leave. This ensures smooth operational functions. Similarly, the recruitment of temporary workers is beneficial to stand-alone operations, which are designed to be learned quickly; for instance, routine peripheral work (Purcell, Purcell, & Tailby, 2004). On the other hand, the recruitment of temporary workers is also beneficial for expert jobs where professional skills are required, but where the employee is not interdependent on other employees. Furthermore, temporary workers give organizations an opportunity to identify future, permanent, recruits. So, instead of advertising a job and sifting through hundreds of applicants, the organization can gauge a temporary worker’s skills to determine if that employee would be a valuable, long-term asset to the company. Other advantages include an increased ability to source a higher-quality applicant, firms depend more heavily on employment agencies to satisfy its recruitment functions, hiring temporary workers helps firms cope with global competitive pressures and maximizes the HR advantage to recruit and secure open-ended contract employees. Furthermore, hiring temporary workers speeds up the recruitment process and gives firms greater access to employee expertise (Lecture Slides). Also, the recruitment of temporary employees gives firms an opportunity to identify and locate employees with specific skills and experiences that would be beneficial to the firm. Lastly, firms who utilize temporary employees are often not held accountable for labor and employment violations; these issues would remain the responsibility of the employment agency (Lecture Slides).

Disadvantages associated with an organization’s recruitment of part time workers mostly refer to the potential complexities of the triangular relationship between the firm, the employee, and the staffing agency. From an employee perspective, being a temporary worker limits the control and incentives associated with internal labor. Also, although temporary workers receive adequate skill-training from the employment agency, they may still lack firm-specific skills, which may lower their effectiveness in the firm. Unlike public organizations, the firm that hires temporary employees is not mandated to adhere to nationally determined rules as it relates to pay rate, or vacations (Purcell, Purcell, & Tailby, 2004). As such, the firm does not have to concern itself with pay differentials that exist between permanent company employees and temporary workers, and consequently does not have to worry about employee motivation and morale as it relates to pay rate. Furthermore, temporary workers may not be as committed to quality control as permanent workers and this is particularly true in the medical field where temporary nurses may compromise patient care. Similarly, it may be a difficult and tiresome task for permanent employees to constantly re-familiarize temporary employees with the ins and outs of a particular organization. For instance, temporary nurses may not be familiar with the particular ward to which they are assigned and will need to be familiarized by permanent workers. Organizations that recruit temporary workers also have an increasing problem with employee retention due to growing number of alternatives to full-time employees (Purcell, Purcell, & Tailby, 2004). In addition, utilizing employment agencies is costly to firms as they have to pay both the employee and the agency for its services. The firm also has limited control over the type of employee it will receive from the agency (Lecture Slides).

There are two types of recruitment methods that are most often utilized by firms: internal recruitment and external recruitment. Both methods have advantages and disadvantages. Internal recruitment refers to the practice of filling an open position from within the firm’s workforce. Advantages of internal recruitment is that the recruitment process is often less costly and happens faster, employees that already work for the firm are familiar with its operations, it is a motivating factor to existing employees because it holds the promise of promotion, and the firm is already familiar with the prospective candidates’ strengths and weaknesses. Disadvantages of internal recruitment is that it limits the amount of perspective candidates for the advertised position, it limits the amount of new ideas that can be introduced to the firm from the outside, it creates another vacancy within the agency that needs to be filled, and it may cause resentment among employees that are not appointed to the new position. External recruitment refers to the practice of filling a vacant position from outside the firm’s workforce. Advantages of external recruitment are that firms have a larger pool of candidates to choose from, new ideas are brought from the outside, and many outside recruits have a wider range of experiences. Disadvantages associated with external recruitment are that it is a longer process, it is often more costly because of job advertisements and interviews, and it may not always effectively reveal the best candidate for the job.

Workers employed on temporary contracts may gain enhanced skills and a more comprehensive professional experience because they experience an increased client base due to their temporary status. As such, they may develop a better understanding for what they would ultimately like to do. Additionally, due to their brief encounters with various firms, they are exposed to a larger pool of professional recruits. Temporary workers may have increased opportunities to identify and request to work on specific projects. Furthermore, they may enhance their career profiles by gaining different knowledge and skills from the different firms at which they work. Also, because their skills are more up-to-date and their knowledge is more comprehensive, temporary workers may respond only to the highest bidder who offers them employment (this does tend to skew the balance of power). Furthermore, the temporary worker has no long-term commitment to any one firm, and as such can change their professional environment regularly. Similarly, the temporary worker can stipulate his or her preferred hours and workplace location (Torrington et al, 2008).

By contrast, temporary workers may lose benefits associated with permanent employment at a specific firm. In other words, by choosing to become a temporary employee, said worker may lose sick pay and company pensions. As such, there is very little financial security associated with temporary employment. In addition, they have very little job security. Firms are under no obligation to offer continued employment to temporary workers and can terminate employment at any given time. They also run the risk of entering an environment that is both unfamiliar and unpredictable. Lastly, temporary workers are saddled with the sole responsibility of maintaining their skills and knowledge of technological innovation. Failure to do so will make them less desirable recruits for firms (Newell, 2005).

Potential tensions that may arise from temporary workers working alongside permanent workers are varied. Temporary workers are expected to perform job-related duties adequately from the minute they enter the new workplace. Because it is an unfamiliar environment with unfamiliar modes of operation, the temporary worker may fail initially to become a valued member of an established team of permanent workers. The social interdependencies of teamwork may be disrupted by the presence of inadequately trained temporary workers. However, a job description and general explanation of expectations may be helpful in guiding the temporary worker to professional success.

Another tension found in the workplace as the result of a firm hiring temporary workers may be ineffective team leadership. For instance, team leaders may find it difficult to meet service standards because they have to integrate temporary staff members, who often do not stay longer than a few weeks. The result of this could be that permanent staff members may become increasingly frustrated with ineffective leadership and may choose to quit. Permanent staff members are key members of any organization and should be nurtured to ensure continued employment. Poor team leadership may also result in lower service quality.

Conclusion

A firm’s human resources department is responsible for the recruitment and hiring of new employees. Employees are either recruited from within the firm (internal recruitment), or from outside the firm (external recruitment). Both methods of recruitment have its own advantages and disadvantages. As such, it is crucial that the best possible human resource strategies are employed to ensure that vacant positions are effectively filled. After all, human resource management strategies do not only focus on filling vacant positions, they are also propagates for organizational change, achieving maximized levels of employee performance, and sustaining employee commitment.

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