HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT IS THE WAY FOR NATION BUILDING

COUNTRIES LAGGING BEHIND HAVE A COMMON FLAW OF IGNORING HR

AMANULLAH BASHAR 
Apr 27 - May 10, 2009

In the present world only those countries are lagging behind economically, socially and politically which did not give high priority to the human resource development through education which is the only way out to achieve the goal of nation building .

However, it is never too late to begin with to take corrective measures. Pakistan like other developing countries failed to realize the significance of the basic education as the policy makers were relatively more conscious of higher education as compared to basic or primary education which in fact provides the foundation to achieve the desired results.

Whatever the budgetary allocations are made every year the major chunk of that allocations goes for building construction or the salaries of the teaching staff while the system does allow the benefits of the allocations trickling down to the masses.

In our society, the primary education is being imparted by the government schools generally called (peela school) or by the private sector usually known as English medium schools. The government sponsored institutions or schools are far away from the concept of quality educations mainly because of the poor quality of the teachers or the faculty while the private sector has succeeded in imparting quality education but at a price which is far beyond the reach of the average income groups what to speak of the poor. The students produced by the government sponsored schools have no depth to take advantage of the higher education due to irrelevant knowledge which does not help them to move on in practical life. It is the high time that besides improving the quality of education in the government schools, the budgetary allocations are needed to be used for subsidizing the cost of private education sector so that every child could have the access to better schools.

It is unfortunate that the society is witnessing the menace of growing law and order, violence, street crime and deteriorating socio-political situation mainly due to inability of the masses to afford to get quality education for their children.

So far only the elite of this country are getting benefits of the higher education and getting reasonable jobs while the middle class or lower middle class of the society have no opportunity to produce even skilled workers to cater to the need of the industry. The gap between the elite and the masses is increasing with every passing day to an alarming proportion. In order to bridge this gap it is high time to focus only on the ways and means for development of the human resource to cope with the rising socio-economic problems of the country.

HUMAN CAPITAL MANAGEMENT

In times of financial crisis, companies should not resort to blind layoffs and down-sizing rather organizations need to develop their talent pool and invest in people which would be their real assets when the upturn comes. This was the consensus of over 20 leading corporate leaders including CEO's and HR heads who were speakers at the Human Capital Management 2009 conference held in Karachi last week. The theme of the event was "HR's integral role in tough times" and it was organized by Terrabiz at a local hotel. The event was attended by over 200 top and senior management employees from leading Pakistani and multinational organizations.

The speakers and panelists stated that in times of economic and financial crisis, the HR function has to play a leading role and is faced with numerous challenges and pressures from the employees as well as the management of every organization. The conference discussed ways and means in which HR departments can work smartly and intelligently and act as a positive force at the heart of every business.

Talat Naseer, Senior Vice President of Abraaj Capital UAE was the opening speaker with a detailed presentation on how the credit crunch affects the talent crunch and developing a business focused agenda and a learning organization. Another leading speaker was Dr. Mirza Abrar Baig, Senior Vice President and Group Head HR of National Bank of Pakistan who delivered a case study on talent management at NBP.

Fatima Asad Said, Director Abacus Consulting gave an in depth discourse on compensation and rewards strategies which can be employed during times of recession so as to keep employees motivated s well as keep organizational budgets under control.

Monis Rehman, CEO Ropzee.PK spoke on Recruitment strategies and how to minimize costs and maximize results by engaging the right people for the right jobs.

A well applauded CEO Round Table discussion was participated by Asad Amanullah, CEO Gillette Pakistan; Nadeem Elahi, CEO TrG; Saifuddin Zoomkawala, Chairman EFU Insurance; Asif Qadir, CEO Engro Chemicals and Ploymers Limited and moderated by Junaid Iqbal, CEO BMA Financials. The participants discussed in detail the issues related to managing people in times of financial crisis and what steps need to be taken by organizations and their HR departments.

In his opening remarks, CEO Terrabiz Hamza Wasi Hashmi praised Pakistani organizations for bravely bearing out the economic meltdown and hoped that the recession would run its course soon and times would change by the end of this year.

Other panel discussions focused on Recruitment Strategies and Training and Development. Presentations were made by various speakers on Compensation and Rewards Management; Making Tough Decisions; and other aspects of HR management. Prominent speakers at the event included Mudassar Aqil, General Manager HR at Bank AlFalah; Saleem Qureshi, CEO HireLabs; Andaleeb Abbas, CEO FranklinCovey Pakistan; Haroon Waheed, Head of HR Unilever Pakistan; and many others.