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What is Human Resource Management?

Aug. 13, 2021

Human resource team discussion

What is Human Resource Management?

In general, human resource departments handle hiring, firing, and many other day-to-day and administrative aspects of employment within a business. Managers of human resource departments oversee a wide range of operations. Duties can include hiring new staff members or meeting with other managers to create strategic plans to achieve company goals.

Human resource management typically requires solid critical thinking and interpersonal skills. The responsibilities also require analytical problem solving and the “soft skills” of assessing job candidates and letting go of staff.

Understanding human resource management

To understand the nature of human resource management, one should first understand what human resource management is. In essence, human resource management consists of overseeing the operations of an HR department. HR managers also ensure that the department functions in harmony with all the other departments of the company.

Strategic human resource management, or SHRM, requires that a manager align HR activities with long-term company goals. Therefore, day-to-day HR activities center on more strategic, big-picture aims.

Hallmarks of human resource management

Human resource management is not a fixed term or a static field. It is constantly shifting along with individual business sectors and with the overall state of the HR field. Nonetheless, human resource management typically involves a few core themes.

The strategic nature of the field often means that managers must learn the company’s overall goals and concerns. They must also determine how the goals relate to the responsibilities of the HR department.

Big-picture concerns may include matching resources to future needs, minimizing staff, and maximizing expertise within a specific niche. Overarching goals may also involve developing company ethos, improving efficiency, promoting work-life balance, or other factors.

By understanding and applying these goals, HR management can develop the best protocol for day-to-day activities within the department. For this reason, an HR department using a strategic approach may need to work more closely with management in other areas. The SHRM approach may also lend more authority to the HR director or management team. However, they must be able to align their department with company goals.

In conclusion, human resource management is one approach to human resources that emphasizes the overall aims and concerns of the company. More specifically, SHRM may focus on business strategy, capital management, business performance, or any other business area. Hiring is more effective to the company’s needs when leaders combine a strategic approach with company goals. Over time, these HR decisions can create a more productive and effective workplace.

Become a Leader in HR with LSU Online

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Christina Bourg
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