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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

HRM: Strategic Role and Functions

Strategic Role
  • HRM should be strategic business partner of an organization
  • Should support business strategies
  • In addition to internally representing the employees (people dimension), should also have external focus
  • Forward thinking and proactive
  • Assist the organization in creating and maintaining competitive edge
  • Should try to work as profit center and economise its operations
  • Should add value to the organization
Also refer: (Strategic Management), (HR Strategies), (HR Dynamics) and (Balanced Scorecard)

Functions of HRM

1. Staffing

Manpower or human resource planning
- Job analysis: competency matrix
- Job description/Position description
- Job evaluation
- Determination of actual number of employees needed for various jobs

Also refer: (Human Resource Planning) (Human Capital Architecture)

Recruitment and selection of people
- Attracting talent
- Selection process
- Motivating the talent to join the organization

Also refer: (Recruitment and Selection)

2. Training and Development

- Acclimatization process for new employees

- Competency mapping and gap analysis
- Appraisal
- Training need assessment
- Training process

- Potential assessment
- Development process

Career planning
- Fast track (talent management)
- Normal career path management

Also refer: (Training and Development)

3. Motivation

- Appropriate appraisal system
- Appraisal process

Compensation and benefits
- Determination of salary and benefit packages

- Recognition motivation
- Monetary motivation

Also refer: (Performance Management and Appraisal) and (Three Sixty Degrees Appraisal System) and (Motivation)

4. Maintenance

- Installing and maintaining two way communication

- Design/Selection and implementation of health schemes

- Awareness creation
- System for safe working conditions

Employee relations
- Establishing fairness
- Designing and implementing employee relations policies and procedures

- Dispute
- Grievances
- Unions
- Employment related legalities
- Health and safety related legalities

Also refer: (Stress Management), (Mentoring), (Counseling at Workplace), (Behavioral Safety)

Differences between Personnel Management (PM) and Human Resources Management (HRM)

1. Personnel mean employed persons of an organization. Management of these people is personnel management (PM). Human resource management (HRM) is the management of employees’ knowledge, aptitudes, abilities, talents, creative abilities and skills/competencies.

2. PM is traditional, routine, maintenance-oriented, administrative function whereas HRM is continuous, on-going development function aimed at improving human processes.

3. PM is an independent function with independent sub-functions. HRM follows the systems thinking approach. It is not considered in isolation from the larger organization and must take into account the linkages and interfaces.

4. PM is treated like a less important auxiliary function whereas HRM is considered a strategic management function.

5. PM is reactive, responding to demands as and when they arise. HRM is proactive, anticipating, planning and advancing continuously.

6. PM is the exclusive responsibility of the personnel department. HRM is a concern for all managers in the organization and aims at developing the capabilities of all line managers to carry out the human resource related functions.

7. The scope of PM is relatively narrow with a focus on administering people. The scope of HRM views the organization as a whole and lays emphasis on building a dynamic culture.

8. PM is primarily concerned with recruitment, selection and administration of manpower. HRM takes efforts to satisfy the human needs of the people at work that helps to motivate people to make their best contribution.

9. Important motivators in PM are compensation, rewards, job simplification and so on. HRM considers work groups, challenges and creativity on the job as motivators.

10. In PM improved satisfaction is considered to be the cause for improved performance but in HRM it is the other way round (performance is the cause and satisfaction is the result).

11. In PM, employee is treated as an economic unit as his services are exchanged for wages/salary. Employee in HRM is treated not only as economic unit but also a social and psychological entity.

12. PM treats employee as a commodity or a tool or like equipment that can be bought and used. Employee is treated as a resource and as a human being.

13. In PM employees are considered as cost centers and therefore, management controls the cost of labor. HRM treats employees as profit centers and therefore, the management invests in this capital through their development and better future utility.

14. PM’s angle is that employees should be used mostly for organizational benefits and profits. HRM angle emphasizes on the mutual benefits, both of employees and their families and also the company.

15. PM preserves information and maintains its secrecy. In HRM communication is one of its main tasks which take into account vertical, lateral and feedback type communication.

Differences between Human Resource Management (HRM) and Human Resource Development (HRD)

1. HRM is a subset of the entire management processes of an organization. HRD is a subset of HRM.

2. Scope of HRM is wider. Scope of HRD as compared to HRM is narrower.

3. HRM manages and develops the human elements of an organization in its entirety on longer term basis. HRD focuses on those learning experiences which are organized for a specific period to bring about the desired behavioral changes.

4. HRM emphasizes that employees, their abilities and their attitudes constitute an important organizational resource that should be used effectively and efficiently to achieve organizational as well as employees' goals. HRD emphasizes mainly on training and development of employees.

5. HRM takes decisions on HRD plans. HRD thus depends on the decisions of HRM.

6. HRM at its center has HRD. HRD's cooperation is important for overall success of HRM. HRD has to work within the realm of HRM and therefore, it's objectives should be in tandem with the broader objectives of HRM. Thus, HRM and HRD are interdependent.

7. HRM takes care of all the human needs and tries to satisfy these needs so that the employees are motivated from all the angles to contribute their best to achieve organizational goals. HRD focuses on upgrading the skills and competencies of the employees in order to improve the performance of the employees on the job.

For everything you wanted to know on building leadership and management, refer Shyam Bhatawdekar’s website

(Refer our High Quality Management Encyclopedia “Management Universe” at:

Suggested Books for Your Personal/Professional Library (All the titles are available as paperbacks and eBooks online from Amazon) 

Management, Business, Self-help and Personality Development Books

1. HSoftware (Human Software) (The Only Key to Higher Effectiveness)
2. Sensitive Stories of Corporate World (Management Case Studies)
3. Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
4. Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers (Volume 2)
5. Classic Team Building Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
6. 101 Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
7. Stress? No Way!! (Handbook on Stress Management)
8. HSoftware (Shyam Bhatawdekar’s Effectiveness Model)
9. Competency Management (Competency Matrix and Competencies)
10. Soft Skills You Can’t Do Without (Goal Setting, Time Management, Assertiveness and Anger Management)
11. Essentials of Work Study (Method Study and Work Measurement)
12. Essentials of Time Management (Taking Control of Your Life)
13. Essentials of 5S Housekeeping
14. Essentials of Quality Circles
15. Essentials of Goal Setting
16. Essentials of Anger Management
17. Essentials of Assertive Behavior
18. Essentials of Performance Management & Performance Appraisal
19. Health Essentials (Health Is Wealth)
20. The Romance of Intimacy (How to Enhance Intimacy in a Relationship?)

Novels, Stories, Biographies and Travelogues

21. The Peace Crusaders (Novel: how the peace crusaders established permanent peace on a war strewn planet?)
22. Love Knows No Bounds (Novel: a refreshingly different love story. Also available with the title “Good People”)
23. Funny (and Not So Funny) Short Stories
24. Stories Children Will Love (Volume 1: Bhanu-Shanu-Kaju-Biju and Dholu Ram Gadbad Singh)
25. My Father (Biography)
26. Travelogue: Scandinavia, Russia
27. Travelogue: Europe

For More Guidance, Assistance, Training and Consultation


Training in all the modules of "Human Resource Management" is imparted by Prodcons Group's Mr Shyam Bhatawdekar and/or Dr (Mrs) Kalpana Bhatawdekar, eminent management educationists, management consultants and trainers- par excellence, having trained over 150,000 people from around 250 organizations. Assistance in implementation of various HR systems is also provided by the team of Prodcons Group.

Also refer:, and

Other Topics of Interest

All Management Topics (General Management, Marketing and Sales, Service, Operations/Manufacturing, Quality, Maintenance, Human Resources, Finance and Accounts, Information Technology, Life Management)

The topics are listed in alphabetic order:

(Home Pages for All the Management Topics) and
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(Human Capital Architecture)
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(Internal Motivation or Self Motivation)
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(Life management: I Am Liberated)
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