Human Resource Management in light of Theories

Executive summary

This assignment is related to managing human resources. The key factors of this assignment are to provide the learner with the precious and valueable knowledge about examining the different perspectives of human resource management, methods for the development of the flexibility in the organisation, determination of the need for providing the equal opportunities within the organisation and exploration of the topical human resource issues and practices. Through the accomplishment of this very task I have been able to explain Guest’s model of hard-soft, loose tight dimensions of the human resource management, to explain the main differences between the Storey’s definitions of the human resource management and personnel and IR practices and to analyze the human resource management according to a strategic perspective and its implications for the role of the employees and the line manager. it has also made me able to explain a model of flexibility and its types, different forms of discrimination, equal opportunities in employment versus managing diversity, performance management and the impact of globalisation on human resource planning.

Guest’s model of HRM

This model is related with human resource management given by a commentator Guest. This model has two dimensions that are hard-soft and loose-tight. Another commentator Storey interpreted the two dimensions of human resource management that are hard-soft and weak-strong. In the definitions of their models Guest and Storey thought about the key difference that whether emphasise is put on humans or the resources. Guest differentiated between the soft and the hard HRM in a very keen way. Soft HRM is associated with the human relations movement and it has the great emphasize on the humans. It also deals with the utilisation of the talents of the individuals and the perspectives of the Mc Gregors theory. It is equivalent to the high commitment work system. It is also concerned with the goals of the flexibility and the adaptability.

Hard HRM is concerned with the utilitarian instrumentalist approach. It has laid it’s emphasize on the quantitative calculative and business strategic approach for the management of the head count resource in a rational way. It deals with the strategic policies of the organisation and is closely linked with the strategic objectives of the organisation.

On analyzing this model in Sony it is found that soft HRM is related to the work force of the organisation. It plays an important role in creating the good relationships among the employees while on the other hand the hard HRM is effective in the strategic planning of Sony. It is due to this strategic planning that Sony is taking strides towards the height of success.

Major differences between both models 

The difference between the personnel management and HRM is that, personnel management is a continuous process of evolution and growth in which there is a need of more and more experts is required. While on the other hand HRM is concerned with the addition of the further dimension to the multi-faceted role. On the contrary storey regards HRM as the radically different approach and a different philosophy as compared to the management of the work force who is working at the specific time. In this perspective HRM is different form of personnel management and therefore it can be regarded as a departure from orthodoxy of traditional personnel management as explained by storey.

On having a review of these differences it can be said that Sony is working under personnel management because it is hiring more and more technological experts since storey’s definition has theoretical perspectives and practically it cannot be analyzed.

Analysis of HRM from a strategic perspective

The manager should develop the competitive strategy in accordance with the strategic perspective of HRM. The strategic human resource management has taken the place of a bridge between the business management and the human resource management. The strategic human resource management also acts as an overarching concept that is used to link the management and the deployment of the individuals within an organisation to the business as a whole and whole of its environment.

Role of line manager and employees

In order to meet the over increasing demands of the modern and dynamic business sector much of the work load has been put on the line managers. The role of the line manager in HRM is to handle the rapidly changing business environment and to sustain all types of pressure to do more work with fewer resources. Line manager has different skills including mentoring, coaching and counseling as core management competency. Line manager has to do work load management performance management and morale building. HR helps the line manager in achieving his mission. Employees also play an important role because they are important part of the organisation. They strive hard to meet the demands of the organisation thereby making the organisation to achieve its targets through their skills, talents and hard work. HR helps the employees to take strategic decisions in different situations.

Model of flexibility

The main focus of model of flexibility is the development of the organisational capability to give a response to the diversity of competitive needs with in an organisation. According to the model of flexibility the organisation establishes its mission and goals then it works out the external opportunities and the threats, after the analysis of the threats and opportunities comes the flexibility which leads to the desired flexibility that has focus on the employee’s talents and their skills. The employee’s talents and skills leads to the intended flexibility which is based on practical applications. These practical applications lead to the actual focused flexibility practices which further leads to the flexible employee’s skills. The skills are shown by the actual flexible employee’s behaviors. These practices lead to the excellent performance of the organisation.

Need for flexibility

Flexibility describes how and when a particular task is accomplished and how one can organize the careers. It acts as a key tool for the improvement of the recruitment and retention for the management of the work load and for the satisfaction of the employees. It is important because it improves employee engagement and job satisfaction and it reduces stress. Flexibility is important in certain ways

To attract the talent: The talented work force is needed for the benefit plans of the organisation. Due to flexibility the organisation hires talented employees and unites them as a team for the progress and the excellent work performance.

To retain valued employees: The turnover of talented employees can bring the future of an organisation on a stake. In order to secure the future of organisation flexibility plays its role and helps in retaining the valued employees.

To raise morale and job satisfaction: Flexibility plays an important role in raising morale and job satisfaction of employees to continue their job in an effective manner in the organisation.

To improve productivity: The turnover of the talented employees is reduced due to the flexibility and therefore the productivity of the organisation is improved to a large extent.

To reduce stress or burnout: Flexibility helps the employees in reducing stress and burnout. There by making them to work with full zeal and zest.

Methods to implement flexibility

  • Develop the business case.
  • Review the experiences of the organisation.
  • Define policies and practices.
  • Create tools and resources.
  • Help supervisors learn to manage flexibly.
  • Communication of employees with each other.
  • Evaluation of usage and effectiveness of the organisation.
  • Highlight success stories of the organisation.

Pros & cons of flexible working practices

There exist advantages and disadvantages of flexible working practices for both the employee and employer when the employee is allowed by the employer to work according to flexible schedules.

Advantages for the employee

Employee enjoys the following advantages due to flexible working practices:

  • Employee performs personal obligations and life experiences comfortably.
  • The time consumption and fuel costs become less.
  • Enjoys the stress free environment with in the organisation.
  • Personal feeling of control over the schedule and work environment is increased.
  • Employee burnout is reduced due to overload.
  • Allows people to enjoy working in a team.

Advantages for employer

Employer enjoys the following advantages due to flexible working practices.

  • Absenteeism and tardiness is reduced due to flexibility in the organisation.
  • The morale commitment and engagement of the employee is increased in the organisation.
  • Turnover of talented staff is reduced.
  • Recruitment of the talented employees is increased.
  • It develops image of the employer as employer of choice.


  • They need to recognize that flexible work environments are not always appropriate for people to do jobs.
  • Telecommunicating and other flexible tasks are disastrous for those people who are not willing to do those tasks.
  • Overhead cost is increased.
  • Customer’s services are suffered.
  • They create difficult situations for managers of the organisation.

Forms of discrimination

Discrimination is a combination of ability or capacity to check distinction and differences between object, subject, concepts and patterns or possess exceptional development of the senses. It means treating some peoples differently from others. It is also an actual behavior towards the members of another group, people or human being. Employment discrimination has different forms including promotions, illegal hiring, unequal salary, job harassment and firing.

Direct discrimination: When an employer gives more favor to one employee than others then it is called direct discrimination.

Indirect discrimination: It happens when one group of employees feels a task to be more difficult than the other groups then it is indirect discrimination.

Harassment: When an employee is harassed by someone else at the work place then it is called harassment.

Victimisation: When an employee is less favorably treated as compared to others because of making a complaint then it is called victimisation.

Legislative framework of discrimination

It is an unlawful discrimination in employment that is based on nationality, color, race, gender, age, marital status and disability for all staff regardless of their hours or patterns of their work. Several pieces of employment legislation exist in order to provide a framework for implementing equal opportunities within the workplace.

The main legislation is:

  • Equal pay act 1970.
  • Sex discrimination act 1975.
  • Race relation act 1976.
  • Protection from harassment act 1997.
  • Human rights act 1998.
  • Race relation act 2000.
  • Gender recognition act2004.
  • Disability discrimination act 2005.
  • Equality act 2006.
  • Racial and religious hatred act 2006.
  • Frame work for equal treatments directives.

Equal opportunities in employment

It refers to the equality of access to jobs, promotions and other opportunities in the work place.

  • Equal opportunities are offered to the disable persons in the work place.
  • Aged persons are also given the protection of equal opportunity.
  • Those persons who have suffered any form of discrimination are given equal opportunities in the work place.
  • To promote equal access the organisation spends a significant part of its budget.
  • Equal opportunities are given to the employees in case of hiring, promotions, vacations, pensions and various other benefits.

Comparison of equal opportunities and managing diversity

The main difference between the equal opportunity and managing diversity is the force for change. External forces like legislation drive the equal opportunities where as managing diversity is driven by the internal forces within an organisation. Another difference is that the goal of equal opportunity is social justice and correcting errors of the past whereas the goal of the managing diversity is to acknowledge the needs of every individual employee. The main motivation of equal opportunity is to maintain the equality among the employees while in contrast the managing diversity points out the significance of the differences among the employees.

Performance management in practice

Performance management can be defined in the following way. It is the method of taking the actions in response to the performance in reality that is used to make the outcomes for the users and the public in a much better way.

The performance management can be implemented in the following ways

  • Top down or bottom up.
  • Comprehensive or focused.
  • Standardized or flexible.

Different human resource practices 

The evaluation of different human resource practices in the organisation is used to determine how it becomes successful in bringing the best outcomes in its employees. Different organisational challenges can be evaluated through it. The evaluation of the employee work place involves the following:

  • It identifies the strengths and the weaknesses of the work place and due to this human resource practices can be improved.
  • It allows the organisation to focus on mainly on the improvements as a result of which rewards are given.
  • It identifies the comparison between the divisions and groups and identifies the best practices.
  • Degree of alignment of an organisation is identified through it and it provides the bench mark data against the matters in which improvements can be measured.

Impact of globalisation on human resource planning

Most challenges in human resource planning occurred due to globalisation. The globalisation can be represented by large a market that has been opened up by the foreign investors that has lowered the investment made by the investors of the other countries. Due to this the market systems have been dominated and the economic systems have been collapsed. There is also a direct relation between the globalisation and the information technology within the organisation. The globalisation of production and the markets has been majorly facilitated by the quick changes in the technology and the communication costs have been reduced due to it. Along with this it creates competition between different technologies and it spreads the technology through the foreign investment. It makes an enterprise to focus on its main competencies. Service work is made much more productive through it.

Impact of different national cultures

Different components of identity of a person are mainly focused on the culture and on the framework of the interaction that exists between in the persons belonging to different cultures. There should exist a harmony among the ideas of culturally diverse work force. To manage the harmony among the culturally diverse the work force different strategies can be adopted by the human resource professionals. These strategies might include the arrangement and organizing of meetings among the work force so that people with different cultures are provided with an opportunity to exchange the essentials of each other’s cultures and to communicate with each other in an effective manner. In this way they will be able to know about the cultures of each other’s and transform their ideas to one another resulting in a successful management by the human resource professionals.

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