Hrm and Technology

1. 0 Introduction In today’s rapidly changing business world, the need has arisen to harness the resources to its optimum use in order to gain success in the business arena. Technology plays a vital role as this applies to the most valuable resource of Human resource too. Technology has greatly influenced the transformation from traditional and personal management to a more strategic human resource management approach. The ongoing technology improvement has paved the way for quick access to obtain the preferred resource regardless of geographical and environmental barriers.
The extent of technology use across various activities of HRM, especially in recruiting and selection covers from advertising positions, receiving applications, initial screening to final section. This particular search can be for entry level, middle level and high level position as appropriate, according to the external and internal factors of an organization. Huge cost reductions in HR have also been experienced through technology application, while, they have also led to adverse impacts such as redundancies and lay-offs.
Communication development technology contributes furthermore, from the recruitment process to career development process through training and development, and creates resource personnel in the organization. Computer based testing leads to unbiased selections, arbitrating to effective and efficient Human Resource Management. Access to Human Resource Information systems (HRIS) has also helped to automate most of the functions of HRM to a greater extent and allows the HR activities to run in a less cumbersome and efficient manner.

This report further outlines the adoption of virtual work and outsourcing as a result of modern technological evolution, and the benefits and impacts that technology has embraced towards Human Resource Management. 2. 0 DISCUSSION 2. 0 What is Human Resource Management? According to Samson & Daft, “Human resource management refers to the activities undertaken to attract, develop and maintain an effective workforce within an organization”. In other words HRM is the function dealing with managing people within the employer – employee relationship (Stone, 2005).
HRM function involves the productive use of people in achieving the organisation’s strategic business objectives and the satisfaction of individual employee needs. HRM is closely related to other management aspects, as its main objective is to improve the productive contribution of people. Human Resources Management encompasses a wide range of activities inclusive of identifying and deciding on staffing needs, hiring, recruiting and training the most suitable employees, ensuring and evaluating their performance, , and ensuring that the personnel and management practices conform to various regulations.
It also includes activities relating to managing approaches for employee issues such as benefits and compensation, safety, employee records and personnel policies. (Snell & Sherman, 2004). Human Resource managers plan, administer and review activities relating to staff selection, training and development, conditions of employment and other human resource issues within organizations (Peters, 2004). 3. 0 Objectives of using Technology in HRM The study of HRM describes what human resource managers do and what they should do.
While there are many definitions of HRM, its primary purpose is to improve the productive contribution of people within an organization. Until the last few years the discipline was known as personnel management. (Eddie & Smith, 2004). Now the term ‘human resource management’ is increasingly used in recognition of the importance of an organization’s workforce in contributing to the goals of that organization. Today’s human resource issues are enormous and appear to be ever expanding.
The human resource manager faces a multitude of problems ranging from a constantly changing workforce to coping with ever increasing government rules and regulations. Because of the critical nature of human resource concerns, they are receiving increased attention from upper levels of management. It used to be rare to see job advertisements for human resource managers. Now such advertisements are very common and encompass significant organizational responsibilities. People are the common element in every organization. From an organization’s perspective, its staff is its human resources.
It is people like you who produce the goods and services that create wealth. It is these goods and services that contribute to our standard of living. (Collins, 2005). There are many challenges facing organizations today. The better our organizations work, the easier it is for society to meet the present and future threats and opportunities. It can be said that the central challenge we face in society is to continually improve the performance of our organizations in both the private and public sectors. Part of this improvement will come from organizations becoming more efficient and effective.
This requires the effective management in these organizations. 4. 0 Technology in the modern business An Organization’s Technology is the process by which inputs from an organizations environment are transformed into outputs. This model integrates organizational level technology research with human resource management strategies. (Robert, Mathis, John Harold 2006). The model relates dimensions of technical processes to human resource practices, focusing on practices used to develop employees. These relationships are mediated by the type of skills employees use.
An empirical study of 139 employees found support for two hypotheses developed from the model. Results suggested that technology and HRM activities are connected through the level of cognitive skill complexity and the amount of support employees receive in developing new skills. Due to changes in the way decisions are made in organizations today (for example, making more decisions at lower levels) the connection between the work process, the skills employees need, and the emphasis on developing employees will become increasingly important. 5. Impact of Technology in HRM The technology has radically changed the way employees and managers access human resource data, and the use of online HR solutions has expanded rapidly over the past year. (Collins, 2005). Self-service and online tools have become important in the continuing effort to improve the management of HR functions and to drive competitive advantage, the survey found. “As the lines blur between HR data and that used by the rest of the enterprise, organizations find it makes sense to consolidate all employee data using a corporate portal.
The importance of HR self-service is increasing, especially those applications that improve employee performance. “We’re seeing the strongest growth among applications focused on managing and enhancing worker skills and productivity–no surprise given that up to 70 percent of an enterprise’s expenses are people-related. _New skills required: As new technologies are developed and implemented, there is an Urgent need to upgrade existing employee skills and knowledge if the organization wants to survive and flourish in a competitive world.
Additionally there will be growing demand for workers with more sophisticated training and skills especially in emerging ‘hot’ sectors like telecommunications, hospitality, retailing, banking, insurance, biotechnology and financial services. For example, services. For example, service sector employee requires different skills than those utilized in manufacturing. (Peters, 2004). They need strong interpersonal and communication skills as well as the ability to handle customer complaints in a flexible way. _ Downsizing: New Technologies have decimated many lower end jobs with frustrating regularity.
Increased automation has reduced employee head counts everywhere. The pressure to remain cost effective has also compelled many a firm to go lean, cutting down extra fat at each managerial level. The wave of merger and acquisition activity, in recent A time has often left the new, combined companies to downsize operations ruthlessly. The Positions that have been filled up with workers possessing superior technical skills and Knowledge has also tilted the poser base ( in many emerging industries) from management to technical workers.
It is not uncommon today for managers to have limited understanding of the technical aspects of their subordinates’ work. Managing the expectations of knowledge workers is going be major area of concern for all HR Managers in the years ahead. (Akin, Norton, Peg, 2004) _ Collaborative work: Technological change has resulted in hierarchical distinctions being blurred and more collaborative teamwork where managers, technicians and analysts work together on projects. Team based incentive plans have also made it necessary for all classes of employees to work in close coordination with each other. Telecommuting: The rapid advances in technology have led to the relocation of work from the office to the home. Telecommuting has become the order of the day where employees work at home, usually with computers and use phoned and the Internet to transmit letters, data and completed work to the home office. Companies have been able to increase their applicant pool through this mode and employees have also been able to live further away from cities and gain considerably due to savings in rents, transportation etc. _ Internet and intranet revolution:
Internet and information technology have enabled companies to become more competitive by cutting costs. Manufacturers, bank, retailers, and you name anything have successfully harnessed computer technology to reduce their costs and deliver want satisfying goods and services to customers at an amazing speed. Even in HR, internets and intranets are being used to handle training, benefit administration, performance management and out placement functions, in recent times. (Peters, 2004). The cumulative impact of new technology is so dramatic that at a broader level, organizations are changing the way they do business.
Use of the internet to transact business has become so commonplace for both large and small companies that e-commerce is rapidly becoming the organizational challenge of the new millennium. Managing virtual corporations and virtual workers in this technology driven world is going to pose tough challenges for HR Managers in the years ahead. _ Role of HR in a virtual organization: A virtual organization is network of companies or employees connected by computers. Virtual workers work from home, hostel, their cars, or wherever their work takes them.
The human resources function plays a unique role in a virtual organization: i. Psychological fit: The lack of face-to-face interaction in virtual organization, virtually compels HR professionals to determine the psychological fit between different units initially. (Collins, 2005). ii. System alignment: Given the lack of physical proximity, it becomes even more critical that the organization’s mission, vision and measures be aligned and that all parties are familiar with these issues, the HR function can play an important role in this task. iii.
Reconsider rewards: In a virtual unit. Very few permanent exit. In many cases, the organization will be staffed with workers having different motivational forces. So rewarding each entity in an effective way becomes an important job. iv. Reconsider staffing needs: In a virtual organization, most employees work on a contractual basis. Finding people with requisite skills, a knowledge and motivation level becomes an important activity. v. Build partnerships: Virtual, teams have to be built from scratch paying attention to their unique requirements.
The concept of employment needs to be replaced by the concept of ‘partnership’ especially when most tend to work independently away from the permanent employees or owners of the organization. vi. Develop leaders: Leaders become the major forces for building trust, creating a mission and instilling a sense of belonging to the organization HR can play a major role in ensuring that leaders assume these responsibilities and meet them in an effective away. (Collins, 2005). 6. 0 Technology in HR Activities A human resources officer develops, advises on and implements policies relating to the effective use of personnel within an organization.
HR personnel work comprises a number of different but related policies, all of which are required by organizations that employ people, whatever the size or type of business. These cover areas such as working practices, recruitment, pay, conditions of employment and diversity. HR staffs need to ensure that the organization employs the right balance of staff in terms of skills and experience, and that training and development opportunities are available to employees to enhance their performance in order to achieve the organization’s objectives. Collins, 2005). Typical work activities As a human resources (HR) officer they must have a clear understanding of their organization’s business objectives and be able to devise and implement policies which select, develop and retain the right staff needed to meet these objectives. (Farquharson, 2006)The exact nature of the work activities varies according to the organization, but is likely to include: working closely with departments, increasingly in a consultancy role, assisting line managers to understand and implement policies and procedures; • promoting equality and diversity as part of the culture of the organization; • liaising with a wide range of organizations involved in areas such as disability, gender, age, religion and health and safety; • recruiting staff – this includes developing job descriptions, preparing advertisements, checking application forms, short listing, interviewing and selecting candidates; • developing policies on issues such as working conditions, performance management, equal opportunities, disciplinary procedures and absence management; • advising on pay and other remuneration issues, including promotion and benefits; • undertaking regular salary reviews; negotiating with staff and their representatives on issues relating to pay and conditions; • administering payroll and maintaining records relating to staff; • interpreting and advising on employment legislation; • listening to grievances and implementing disciplinary procedures; • developing HR planning strategies with line managers, which consider immediate and long-term staff requirements in terms of numbers and skill levels; • planning and sometimes delivering training, including inductions for new staff; • Analyzing training needs in conjunction with departmental managers. (Farquharson, 2006) When considering all the above accepts of a human resource manager, they must allocate much and more time and energy on selecting the right candidate to the right position.
The technology can be used on Selected HRM activities such for Employee recruitment, employee selection, training and development and performance appraisals 6. 1 Recruitment & Selection The HR manager faces the main challenge when it comes to Recruitment and selection the manager has to be much more careful when choosing the right candidate. A recent study showed that the correlation between the ability to deliver well in a job interview and the ability to do well on the job is just 14 percent, or one good employee out of every seven people you hire. (Okpara, 2006). If you or your recruitment agency has found itself in a similar position, there are proven methods to improve this average. The same study considered these methods. Background Checks – According to (Okpara, 2006).
The 14 percent increases to 26 percent if the candidates passes a series of employee background checks like falsified educational credentials and other serious liabilities, background checks only reveal information when an individual has been caught being lying. Of equal or greater value are underlying attitudes, as well as actions at which an applicant has not been caught, to most fully protect the organization against negligent hiring lawsuits and to assure the organizations are hiring reliable, ethical, hard-working employees. Knowing this information about the people the company hire is absolutely essential because a business can be held liable for accidents and crimes committed by its employees. Personality Tests – consider traditional assessment tools used in the hiring process. These assessments measure personality characteristics.
Personality tests raised the rate of success in hiring to around 50 percent positive. (Okpara, 2006). Many employers want to know a candidate’s aptitude and personality type to ensure an appropriate job match. Some want to know it before they hire a candidate, some before they promote an employee, and some before they create work teams. In an effort to learn more about an employee, employers today administer personality tests. There are many kinds of personality tests available, but in the workplace a validated and reliable occupational assessment is critical to success on the job. (Okpara, 2006). Those professionals do not pass or fail but should be selected for the job that matches their individual personalities.
Abilities Assessments – When applicants were tested for both abilities and personality, employers found they were hiring the right people just over half or about 54 percent of the time. (Times, 2006) After managers have used to identify their employee’s strengths and areas for development, they can use the Series to software’s available to develop the competencies that are most important to their professional growth and success. (Okpara, 2006). The software’s are conveniently located on the Internet, making it easy to implement and execute. These systems help managers to keep doing the things they do well, stop doing those things that interfere with their effectiveness, and start doing things that will improve their performance. These systems encourage managers to perform their jobs better.
It gives emphasis to the importance of managers to the organization and its goals and pays big dividends in the form of improved productivity, fewer “people problems,” increased employee retention, and greater profits. It is an ideal method for managers to improve their leadership and management skills. It can be used anywhere and at any time because it is on the Internet. After responding to questions and doing online exercises, it gives managers the tools they need to maximize their strengths, become better managers, and lead more effectively. Interest Assessments – To take it one step further, the study considered interest assessments, an even more sophisticated tool. It measures the job-related qualities that make a person productive – Thinking and Reasoning Style, Behavioral character, and Occupational Interests.
These systems were used for placement, promotion, self-improvement, coaching, succession planning, and job description development. (Okpara, 2006). It is a flexible management tool that develops Job Match Patterns that can be customized by company, department, manager, position, geography, or any combination of these factors. Job Match Assessments – The study found that the most impressive and successful assessments are integrated measures of a combination of factors, and also include the concept of job match. They use cutting-edge technology combined with empirical data to evaluate the candidate against employees who are exemplary in performing their duties. Okpara, 2006). These recruitment assessments increased an employer’s ability to identify excellent candidates more than 75 percent of the time. Hiring top performing employees may be one of the most valuable activities you can do for your business. This system combine tested and reliable data derived from pre-employment screening assessment system, with a customized job analysis survey to create a benchmark by which the manager can hire an employee who best fits for the job and company. Employee Selection Process By including job match as a key factor in your employee hiring process, allocation of human capital will be significantly more effective.
Most employee hiring decisions are made with inadequate information, but Profiles International assessments will deliver the information that the manager need to know before tendering a job offer and making a hiring mistake. 6. 2 Performance Appraisal Technology may contribute to performance management and thus to appraisal satisfaction in two primary ways. First, technology may facilitate measuring an individual’s performance via computer monitoring activities. This frequently occurs as an unobtrusive and rote mechanical process that relies on minimal input from individuals beyond their task performance. Jobs that incorporate this type of appraisal technology are frequently scripted or repetitious and involve little personal judgment or discretion. Working in a call centre or performing data entry are examples. (Peters, 2004).
In this instance, the very act of performing a job simultaneously becomes the measure of how well a jobholder accomplishes it. Keystrokes, time on task, or numbers of calls made are recorded and at once become both job content and appraisal content. A second approach to technology and performance management changes the emphasis so that technology becomes a tool to facilitate the process of writing reviews or generating performance feedback. Examples here include multi-rater appraisals that supervisors or team members generate online, as well as off-the-shelf appraisal software packages that actually construct an evaluation for a manager. (Peters, 2004). This particular technological approach occurs more often in the ontext of jobs that involve personal judgment, high discretion, and open-ended tasks for which real-time performance monitoring is not an option. 6. 3 Training and Development The activity of Training and development has been made more efficient from the implementation of technology to it. Organizations now use computer based training sessions which use a visually demonstrated and presentation oriented training programme for the employees. (Peters, 2004). Programmes are stored in computers which reduce the necessity of getting trainers to repeat the training programme over and over again. The employees are also equipped with software’s which enable them to re-check and use as manuals for the work they perform, thus influencing a cheaper mechanism of Self Training. (Peters, 2004).
Errors and omissions are eliminated in the training programme, making the employees to understand their job processes more efficiently. 6. 4 Reward System The revolution is being driven by new technologies and by the major social and political changes that have led to the globalization of business and to the increasing numbers of democratic, capitalist countries. Billions of people have recently entered, or are about to enter, the capitalist world. (Collins, 2005). A smaller but very significant number have entered the world of electronic connectedness as a result of the growing popularity of the Internet, satellite TV, cellular phones, and videoconferencing.
The combined effects of technological and political change on organizations are enormous and multifaceted. Increasingly, organizations are finding that in order to be competitive in the new global economy they have to reinvent themselves in important ways. This is true of their basic organizational structure, their global reach, and their use of information technology. (Collins, 2005). It is also true of their reward systems. The old reward practices and systems that worked well in nationally focused, bureaucratic, capital-intensive, hierarchical, steady-state, near-monopoly corporations. Dramatic change is needed, and it is not difficult to identify what the key theme of today’s reward systems should be: a focus on rewarding excellence.
Many factors argue for excellence being the number-one focus of any organization’s reward system, including the ability to attract and retain the best people and to motivate the kind of performance that an organization needs in order to succeed in the new economy. Creating reward systems that focus on excellence and treat employees as human capital investors requires a major change in the way most systems operate. (Collins, 2005). Reward systems typically treat employees as job holders who are rewarded according to the size and nature of their jobs and how well they perform their jobs. Viewing them as human capital investors suggests a different approach to rewards in two respects. First, it suggests basing rewards on the value of the human capital that people bring to the organization.
What their job is at a particular moment is much less important than the value of their knowledge and skills. Second, it suggests rewarding people according to how effectively they use their human capital-their knowledge, skills, and competencies to help the organization improve its business performance. Creating reward systems that recognize the value of human capital and reward performance excellence is not easy. It requires a careful articulation among an organization’s reward system, business strategy, organization design, information systems, and employees. (Collins, 2005). I will begin our discussion of how it can be done by considering how reward systems impact organizational effectiveness. 7. 0 HRIS Human resource ‘info system’
The Human Resource Information System (HRIS) is a program or software or online issue solving method for the data entry, data tracking, and data information needs of the Human Resources, payroll, management, and accounting functions within a business. (Stone, 2005). In general packaged as a data base, hundreds of companies sell some form of HRIS and every HRIS has different capabilities. It is very important to select the HRIS carefully based on the capabilities you need for the organisation. Benefits of a Human Resource Information System (HRIS) is no longer a “nice to have,” but a necessity to help HR manage both a sea of information and the money spent on benefits plans, as HR faces limited resources and constantly changing data. (Stone, 2005). As a result the HRIS that most effectively serves companies tracks: Pay raises and history, pay grades and positions held • Performance development plans, training received • Disciplinary action received, personal employee information • High potential employee identification, and applicant tracking, interviewing, and selection. An effective HRIS provides information on just about anything the company needs to track and analyze about employees, former employees, and applicants. Your company will need to select a Human Resources Information System and customize it to meet your needs. 8. 0 Benefits of Technology in HRM Technology is changing the way we work, the roles we undertake, and the interactions through which work gets done. (Peters, 2004).
Companies are leveraging to manage the complexity of the global HRM and to deliver high-quality service. Companies use either a common system universal to all location For a example, HSBC uses people soft Ids to identify all the employees dispatched globally. SAP is the system that is used in MAS Holdings Globally, which enables the employees, suppliers and the management and the higher management to make Operational, analytical and strategic decisions, or a set of non standard system in unique to a each location to handle their HR programs and informational needs. The problem with the latter is that data are often late, incomplete and/or inaccurate. However because the time and cost factors they are the most commonly used.
To reduce the negative impact of such problems some companies are developing service centers utilizing self service technologies and HRIS databases to eliminate routine work and to push delivery point back the employee or line management. With an appropriate use of HRM technology Human Resources staff enables employees to do their own benefits updates and address changes (example: by creating a data entry format , uploading it to the intranet and later program the filled data to be store into a central location), thus freeing HR staff for more strategic functions. Additionally, data necessary for employee management, knowledge development, career growth and development, and equal treatment is facilitated. (Farquharson, 2006).
Finally, managers can access the information they need to legally, ethically, and effectively support the success of their reporting employees. 9. 0 Conclusion Technology and Human Resource have brought about a radical change in meeting with the strategies, policies and implementation of the corporate planning of an organization. In other words, it has become the nucleus of an organization, which caters to the requirements of selecting the right candidate for the suitable job, training and coaching them to develop and achieve the desired levels to maximize objectives and to create a competitive edge in the industry and ultimately sustain them in the organization with a career development plan.
In this process, opportunities will be given to those who are really in need of a specific exposure in another country so as to acquire the required skills. This so called valuable resource will be able to cater to the demand with a long-term view, by adopting the right technology advancement at the right time and improve the overall operation of the organization with a clear vision and hence contribute to the bottomline which will enhance the share value and satisfy the shareholders to achieve satisfaction. 10. 0 Reference ? Stone, J, R. (2005). Human Resource Management. (5th Ed. ). John Wiley and sons, Australia ? Anne Osborne Kilpatrick, James A. Johnson, 2004. Handbook of Health Administration, Co. CRC Press ? Collins, M. (2005).
Professional recruitment: Journal of proquest education, p. 32. ? Eddie, C. & Smith. (2004). Human Resource and Personnel Management: Text and Cases, Co. Tata-Mcgrawhill, p. 87-89. ? Farquharson, M. (2006). Performance appraisal: Journal of proquest education, p12. ? Grey. . (2005). Human resource planning: Journal of proquest education. ? Robert L. Mathis, John Harold Jackson, 2006. Human Resource Management, Co. Thomson South- Western ? Okpara, J. O. (2006). Job satisfaction: American journal of academy of business, p81. ? Peters, L. (2004). five keys to effective recruiting: Ivey business journal, p 21-24. ? Snell & Sherman, 2004, managing human resource 12th edition

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