Human resources is used to describe both the people who work for a company or organization and the department responsible for managing all matters related to employees, who collectively represent one of the most valuable resources in any businesses or organization. The term human resources was first coined when the value of labor relations began to garner attention and when notions such as motivation, organizational behavior, and selection assessments began to take shape in all types of work settings.
Human resource management is therefore focused on a number of major areas, including:
Recruiting and staffing
Compensation and benefits
Training and learning
Labor and employee relations
Due to the many areas of HR search firms , it is typical for professionals in this field to possess specific expertise in one or more areas. Just a few of the related career titles for HR professionals include:
Training development specialist
Human resource generalist
Employment services manager
Compensation and job analysis specialist
Training and development manager
A Closer Look at Human Resource Management
Human resource management involves developing and administering programs that are designed to increase the effectiveness of an organization or business. It includes the entire spectrum of creating, managing, and cultivating the employer-employee relationship.
For most organizations, agencies, and businesses, the human resources department is responsible for:
Managing job recruitment, selection, and promotion
Developing and overseeing employee benefits and wellness programs
Developing, promoting, and enforcing personnel policies
Promoting employee career development and job training
Providing orientation programs for new hires
Providing guidance regarding disciplinary actions
Serving as a primary contact for work-site injuries or accidents
Unlike company managers who oversee the day-to-day work of employees, HR departments deal with employee concerns such as benefits, pay, employee investments, pension plans, and training. Their work may also include settling conflicts between employees or between employees and their managers. The human resource management team recruits potential employees, oversees the hiring process (background checks, drug testing, etc.), and provides new employee orientation. The HR management team must complete a specific set of tasks if an employee quits, is fired, or is laid off. Paperwork must be completed to ensure that the process was completed legally. Severance pay may be offered or negotiated, benefits must be settled, and access to company resources must be severed via the collection of keys, badges, computers, or sensitive materials from the employee. Effective HR teams encourage company employees to do their best, which contributes to the overall success of the company. Their work often involves rewarding employees for good performance and creating a positive work environment.
Human resource management involves both strategic and comprehensive approaches to managing people, as well as workplace culture and environment. The role of human resources professionals is to ensure that a company’s most important asset—its human capital—is being nurtured and supported through the creation and management of programs, policies, and procedures, and by fostering a positive work environment through effective employee-employer relations.The concept behind human resource management is that employees who are subject to effective human resource management are able to more effectively and productively contribute to a company’s overall direction, thereby ensuring that company goals and objectives are accomplished.
Today’s human resource management team is responsible for much more than traditional personnel or administrative tasks. Instead, members of a human resource management team are more focused on adding value to the strategic utilization of employees and ensuring that employee programs are impacting the business in positive and measurable ways.