Is Human Lacking in Human Resources?

Duties of the human resource department so far remain as traditional. The traditional definition by virtue of principles of Human Resources is “To attract, select, develop and retain” suggests the duties as mentioned. But are those the only duties -Job Roles- of HRM (Human Resource Management) department? Certainly not. The world of the 21st century is dynamic and diverse. The literacy is turning to Knowledge currency and humans are learning quicker than machines. How surprising it is that we are demanding human resource in a country which has a literacy rate of 56% reportedly and whose residents reach to university level account about 5-6% and those who finish to masters are hardly 4%. So is it that we are lacking humans in human resource? And if so then what we are placing as Human Resource is either a fallacy or a foe? So what is the real purpose and definition of HRM in an emergent or developing country? This poses a strong argument against how shall modern HR be viewed? What shall contribute to the modern definitions and practices of HRM according to psychographics of countries? Evolution of Human Capital Management is the only constant for upcoming centuries but what is the predictor of it? Education? Experience? Empathy? As said,

“Take away my people, but leave my factories, and soon grass will grow on the factory floors. Take away my factories, but leave my people, and soon we will have a new and better factory.”

Andrew Carnegie.

As discussed, following are some presumptive clauses proposed by ‘Training weekly, the source for professional development in “8 Golden Principles of Human Resources” by Professor M.S.Rao. PhD:

Principle No. 1: Recruitment to Retirement

So what does this new principle by the scholar says? The new full cycle duties of HR range from manpower planning, selection, training and development, placement, wage and salary administration, promotion, transfer, separation, performance appraisal, grievance handling, welfare administration, job evaluation and merit rating, and exit interview. To brief it commence all the duties which a mother of a household is supposed to do. But the question is, Mothers of 21st century are changing and so the duties of mothers. Hence, HR majorly in 21st century will play the role of Strategic mother which aligns and synchronizes all departments and its employees throughout the employee tenure in the company. Hence, HR should be a specialized department and not an overall jack with no mastery.

Principle No. 2: People (Men) behind the machine count.

It is to be understood that machines are servant to people. The psychological, motor and affective behaviors are found in humans and not machines. Subsequently, it is evident to keep human a priority and not machines.

Elbert Hubbard rightly remarked, “One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.”

Principle No. 3: Hire for attitude, recruit for skills.

A wise man said, “Attitude and not aptitude determines the altitude”. Therefore, whenever looking for the right fit hire attitude over skills. Because if the person has the right attitude it can determine the capabilities, capacities and abilities required to get the job done. A fresher over an experienced candidate is preferable if he possesses the right,, attitude.

Principle No. 4: Appreciate attitude but respect intelligence.

There has always been a selection war between intelligence and attitude. Which one to choose? Always choose attitude over intelligence because with the right attitude, intelligence can be acquired or sometimes beaten.

Principle No. 5 Hire slow, Fire Fast.

Nothing worth comes easy. The recruitment process must be detailed and timely. Timely does not mean quick. The process must take its due time. The timelines for each recruitment condition must be placed well. Certainly there arise a question, ‘How timelines for different recruitment can be same? Also is there any standard way for recruitment cycle for different management levels? Conclusively, across industry different organizations play around the levels of management, each organization needs to have recruitment cycle according to their own business model and needs. Alignment and synchronization with business culture and acumen gets the roadmap to success. One bad fish can malic the waters, if HR identifies a bad fish in the waters it needs to immediately deploy or reconsider its choice. Many short term measures can be taken in order to identify and move the bad fish out of the waters.

Principle No. 6: (Favourite One) Shed Complexity Wed simplicity.

People today prefer to work in flat organizations rather than tall ones. Tall organizations often have hierarchies with a bureaucratic mindset that doesn’t work in the present context. Generation Yers are happy to work with partners rather than with bosses. So shed complexity and wed simplicity to achieve organizational excellence and effectiveness. Writing with a personal experience, flat organizations tend to benefit more on well-being of employees. No dog eats dog culture is found in flat organizations also none is a slave or a master. Everyone, therefore, is a help extender and not an order placer.

Principle No. 7: HR Leaders are King and Queen Makers.

This shall be well understood by how the article itself proclaims, it says: “Presently, there is an impression globally that HR leaders are king and queen makers. They cannot become kings and queens. They are perceived as people who become ladders for others to climb to higher positions. It is due to the roles and responsibilities they undertake. HR leaders are masters of their trades, not jacks of other trades. They know everything about HR, but they don’t necessarily know much about other aspects in the organization. CEOs are masters in their own domains and jacks of other domains. They are masters in their areas and know something about others areas. Thus, HR leaders must acquire knowledge about other areas and acquire technical and business acumen to become kings and queens—the chief executives.”

Principle No. 8: (Profound and sustaining); ‘to serve is to lead and live’.

As stated by scholar, Mahatma Gandhi once remarked, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” HR leaders must serve people with pleasure without any pressure. They must become torchbearers of human capital and knowledge. They must learn, unlearn, and relearn to stay relevant.

To end well the definition for HRM or HCM will keep evolving, these aforementioned must be valid for a period of time and must change with new leaders. The principles evolve with the time frame. Time is money and nature of money such as currency is evolving with the knowledge and wisdom. Humans are forever even if money fades away humans won’t. Thus to take care of the humans we need is the responsibility of institutions, companies, industry tycoons and employer agencies.

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