HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT AND THE CHANGE

MAHVESH FAROOQI
Oct 08 - 21, 2007

Human Resource Management (HRM) came into academic limelight in 1980s and early 90s. With the passage of time the concept of HRM become a common practice in the corporate sector and frequently used by the practioners and researches, globally.

It is interesting to note that the last two decades has witnessed a noticeable change in HRM especially in those areas which are concerned with acquiring, developing, promoting and utilizing human resources in the business at an active pace. There could be no two opinions about the fact that the main objective of HRM is to enhance and improve the productivity of the personnel working in any organization.

You will appreciate that this objective emerged from what we commonly cell, "Industrial Relations, personnel administration and personnel management." I need not point out that this is actually the parentage of HRM but mind it HRM is not merely another personnel management fad because it aims to create a whole organizational culture. A culture which, binds the workers to The Co.'s objectives with full professional commitment, integration, dedication and above all quality performance. So, this much about the parent discipline and present status of HRM. Now coming to its future prospects I may simply say that the 21st century holds a bag full of opportunities in the days to come. However, these opportunities will bring along with them a lot of pressure also. The most important thing in this context is the core value of HUMAN FACTOR. The Co's or organizations will have to change their attitude radically. Their productivity will not improve and sustain until and unless they treat their workers as human beings.

That is why there is a worldwide consensus or human resource as one of the major tool of increasing efficiency, productivity and prosperity of the organization concerned.

Another important point in this regard is that HRM did not appear on the horizon all of a sudden. In fact, it is an interesting stay of continuous evolution or metamorphosis. The efforts of early pioneers in this context are of basic importance. You would not perhaps believe it that a gentleman entrepreneur named Robert Oven himself introduced the concept of workers' motivation and welfare in his own factory in the initial stages of industrial revolution in England. His spirit of philanthropy coupled with his intellectual brilliance realized that no increase in productivity and no improvement in quality would be sustainable until and unless there is heart and soul involvement of the worker. The well known Japanese Co. NEC has also successfully multiplied its profits by being worker friendly. You would perhaps be amazed to know that the chairman of the company makes it a point to meet the families of the workers once in a month to personally know about their welfare and problems. It is because of this that each and every worker of the company has a personal involvement in the performance and success of the company. Unfortunately, such an approach has all along been missing in the industrial sector in our country. As a result, the workers are less of a worker and more of a shunker. Hardly any one of them puts his heart and soul in the work given to him. It is just a matter of routine lacking the personal touch which plays the magic. LOOK! The future of our industrial sector would not be bright until and unless the concept of HRM is changed and a worker friendly atmosphere is created. After all a worker is a living being has to be treated not like a robot.

Now I come to the 1st major point of growth and evolution of the HRM function. It is:

MAINTAINING HARMONY AND AVOIDING DISRUPTION IN THE FORM OF WORKERS UNREST MANIFESTED THROUGH SLOGAN MONGERING AND STRIKES.

Secondly, successful organizations will have to be CHANGE-ORIENTED. It is the process of the change has come to stay? This reminds me of the famous "Urdu poetic line.

"Sabaat aik taghaiur ko hai zamanay mein"

THE WORLD IS CHANGING AT SUCH AN AMAZING PACE THAT THE POET HAD TO SAY THAT MEHWAY HAYRAT HOON KAY DUNYA KYA SAY KYA HO JAI GI

In such an accelerated pace of progress only those organizations would be able to survive who is change - prone. Here again I may quote the example of Japanese Entrepreneurs majority of whom car -mark minimum 25% of their income reserved for R & D workers welfare.

The competitive success of any organization involves HRM in an integrated manner.

It demands proven capabilities from the HR specialists because their role shifts from a mere facilitator to a functional peer. Someone who injects vitality in the organization.

We should remain alert to meet all future challenges due to rapid development of technology and the great impact of IT. Remember only the learning organization will make all the difference. The whole scenario has been beautifully portrayed by a poet in these words:-

FRIEND! THIS IS THE AGE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY HOW LONG WOULD YOU REPEAT THE TALES OF BYGONE DAYS?

COME OUT OF THE PRISON HOUSE OF ORTHODOXY STICKING TO THE ELEGY OF THE PAST.