The Shift From Personnel Management To Strategic Human Resource Management In Australia

1385 words - 6 pages

The Shift from Personnel Management to Strategic Human Resource Management in Australia

The management of people is ever-changing and extremely dynamic; it under goes sequential evolution with an organisations’ internal and external environments. Consequentially history has seen global Human Resource Management have considerable variation in its focus and practice. In Australia the history of Human Resource Management is said to have transformed over four stages; Pre 1940s Administration and welfare, 1940s – 1970s Personnel Management, 1970s – 2000 Human Resource Management (and, from about 1985, Strategic HRM) and the current era expected to be a mix of Strategic and International ...view middle of the document...

The need for companies to transform their human resource planning to tie in the strategic goals of the organisation was to gain a competitive advantage in the face of increasingly volatile technological innovation, customer expectations, and global competition (Ulrich, 1992: 1). In one of his studies, Ulrich (1992) found that the Marriot Corporation, one of the most profitable firms in the hospitality industry at the time had a competitive advantage over other businesses. This was due to the company executives altering its traditional HR practices; for example executives expanded employee job responsibilities to retain staff. This non-traditional approach saw the Marriot Corporation become the employer of choice, provider of choice, and ultimately the industry leader (Ulrich, 1992).

Recruitment and Selection are separate terms which are used in conjunction with each other in the Human Resource Management environment. Recruitment is the systematic process of attracting a pool of qualified job applicants for a particular position (Pride, Hughes & Kapoor, 2008: 5). Therefore selection is the process of collecting and evaluating information about an individual to extend an offer of employment (Gatewood, Feild & Barrick, 2008: 5). Under the Personnel Management system Recruitment and Selection were traditionally based on personal relationships and narrowed to the internal workplace environment. Taylor (1911) as cited in Bach (2005: 115) stated that the typical way people were selected was based on ‘who you knew’ or who was first in queue. The ability to do the job at the time was not systematically assessed as it should have been. Due to developments in technology, social trends, globalisation, increased labour shortages and increased workplace diversity, organisations needed to reconsider the way they recruited and selected their employees (Lievens, Van Dam, Anderson, 2002). Therefore under the Strategic Human Resource Management Framework (SHRM) businesses began to adapt the approach that Taylor had suggested years earlier. Firms and institutions’ started looking at not only the internal environment and external environments’ to identify and recruit new high potential candidates to their corporations. These candidates were identified through various methods and techniques; such as the psychometric approach; which is fitting the person to the job (Bache, 2005: 116).

Performance appraisal is a systematic evaluation of the individual with respect to his or her performance on the job and his or her potential for development (Aswathappa, 2005: 226). Performance appraisal under the Personnel Management (PM) framework was a term associated with a rather basic process; where a Line Manager would complete and annual report on an employee’s performance and sometimes but not always discuss it with them in an appraisal interview (Fletcher, 2001). This inadequate traditionalist approach saw the need to change the way organisations...

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