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Question:

There are varying views as to the role of a Human Resource Function and its practitioners. Explore what these roles are and analyse how they can add value and enhance organisational effectiveness?

 

Answer:

Human resource is basically a function that is business driven. Role of Human Resource professionals keeps on changing with changing world. The effectiveness of human resource professional depends upon a complete understanding of the corporate decisions. It also includes the ability to apply policies and decisions effectively. This profession of human resource is changing as well as expanding on a very rapid scale. There come new areas of expertise that ate being required to derive the business results for the organization. In addition to this the challenges faced by the human resource professionals must be defined precisely and solutions should be determined properly in order to achieve success. There is also an oversupply of labor and also there is an under supply of right talent. It has become an important need for human resource organization to find out new methods so that they are able to attract new talent. This can be done with the help social media while posting advertisements on job portals. The other is a very traditional and famous method to organize job fairs. The new generation employees are being looking for a job that provides them with a balance between their job as well as their family.

There is a lack of technical talent which has made it difficult for the organizations in order to fill up some special positions. Also during the time of unemployment in the society the human resource department faces the problem of finding employees for their organization. Following are the four recruiting challenges that are being faced by every human resource department in India:

  • Sourcing of candidate is changing- sourcing and recruiting are considered to be two different things but a recruiter spends an average time of 15 to 20 hours in a week in order to source the right and the best candidate. So this clearly shows that there is a problem here only. With this routine that is being followed the duties of recruiter and the method of sourcing is getting mixed up and it is losing its importance. Due to this the human resource department is not able to search for a right and best candidate for a particular job post (Jackson, 2008).
  • Advanced and new technology-there is two important types of technology they affects hiring and recruiting today. I) system of tracking of employees- it is most important form of technology that is being used today as it provides solutions for recruiting the employees . II) Marketing firms for recruitment- it is about a procedure to reach to the potential candidate. Both these methods of technology that are being used to hire the employees are still not adopted or used properly by the organization. Sometimes most of the candidates do not come to know how to put in their details in the tracking system or job portals where they can be find easily. In the case of marketing platform the human resource professionals are not able to reach to some areas and thus many employees gets deprived of the opportunity.
    • Filling up the gap of skills – human resource department aims at filling up the gaps ok skills by hiring skillful and talented employees. But the problem or challenge faced human resource department is that they are not getting skillful employees as most of the talented persons are working with other companies. So this challenge makes it difficult to fill up the gaps of skills in their organization.

 
  • Leadership development- leadership has become biggest challenge that is being faced by human resource in an organization. It is found that many employees resign from their job by giving the reason that there was a poor form of leadership in the organization. With the poor form of leadership it is meant that the employees say that there was leader short-tempered, not serious about the work, etc (Debrah, 2013). Leadership development faces the following difficulties that have become a challenge for human resource professionals.
  • Unfamiliar responsibilities- the main challenge that leadership development faces is that including new leaders that have the best leadership skills and can handle unfamiliar responsibilities with complete responsibility. Most of the organizations reward their best leaders with promotions and different kinds of incentives. But sometimes these promoted leaders forgets their responsibilities and after some time it is found that they do not have those skills for which they were rewarded. According to human resource professionals a leader should have all the qualities of a good performer and the employees working under their leadership should be satisfied with their leadership qualities. But now-a-days this responsibility of leader is missing to a great extent and thus it has become a challenge for leadership development.
  • How to handle accountability- leadership is a quality that includes all the functional roles

Like scale, scope of leadership, pressure a leader can handle and most importantly how to handle accountability. A leader is responsible for making the decisions based upon overall interest of the organization. The main challenge faced is that a leader does not handle accountability properly. He sometimes blames the external environment for not achieving the results or sometimes blames the employees for not working properly.

  • Leadership and managing change are almost the same things. The main function of a leader is adopt as well mange change in the organization. By this it is meant change in method of working , new technology etc. so a leader should be ready to innovate and try new things so that this change can be accepted easily
  • A leader should be efficient enough to deal with the diversity in the organization. By diversity it is meant that there are employees from different cultures. A leader has a responsibility to see that all the employees are treated equally and no employee should have the feeling that there culture is being insulted. but the challenge faced today in leadership development and diversity is that the employees says that their leader is not treating them equally and sometimes he follows a rule of biasness among them and thus they feel hurt (Greer, 2001).
  • Better compensation – it is very much clear that money matters a lot. Now-a-days the employers are giving cash benefits in the form of compensation to their employees. These days the organizations are attracting new employees by giving them the benefit of certain rewards and packages. So human resource department of every other organization take it to be a challenge of introducing rewards better than the other organization.

  • Opportunities of career development: many organizations today are taking up this career development perspective very seriously and thus they are excelling over their competitors. This career development has become a challenge because it has become the reason of increasing attrition rate. The employees who gets an opportunity f career development in other organization they just grab it without giving it a second thought.

  • Problem of clear and transparent work culture: employees while joining the organization demands or expect a clear and a transparent work culture. But sometimes many organizations fail to provide the same. Due to this the employees gets affected by the present work culture and thus quits the organization. So it is a challenge for human resource professionals on a large scale and they take it very seriously and have started working upon it.

  • Human resource professionals have found that acquiring of human capital and optimization of human capital investments is one of the biggest challenge that is faced by them. The human resource professional need to develop in order to develop the management tactics so that it helps effectively in attracting new employees ,retaining the present employees and rewarding the best performing employees. But with the increased competition organizations are not able to acquire human capital and neither they are able to optimize investments made in human capital.

  • Flexible work hours: employees today demand flexibility in working hours. Many organization have adopted the time slot of 9 A.M to 6 P.M. this has become a challenge for human resource professional’s because sometimes they may lose a talented and a experienced employee because of not providing him with the flexibility in work schedule. Sometimes it is found the many employees resign from the company because their shift timings are being changed frequently.

  • Changes in economic environment: by change in economic environment it is meant that examination of certain factors of production. This includes scarcity of resources like raw materials, electricity, transportation facilities, increasing consumer awareness and demand for high quality products increases. The other important factor is that there is a an upward trend in the inflation resulting in decrease of purchasing power of rupee. When an economy faces inflation then the resources tend to decrease day by day and cost of machine, labor and materials increases day by day. So this is also an important challenge that is faced by human resource department.
 

Ways to overcome the challenges are as follows-

The recruitment challenges happen because of many different reasons. The demand for the professionals is high but the supply is very low. Following steps can be taken in order to overcome the challenge of recruitment.
To know what the company wants and for whom they are looking for- a company has a general idea or responsibilities that they want their new employees should handle but id they do not have any general idea then there is no need of hiring (Lawler, 2008) . Not only is this general idea sufficient a company should also have a complete staffing plan. This will help them to attract new candidates in a much better way. So it is basically filling up the gap that exists between the company and the job descriptions. This will help them to communicate the desirability and need for skill for each position in the company.

To understand that what can be done in order to motivate the candidates- now as the company knows that what kind of employees they have been looking for the next step to overcome the challenge is to know that what the employees are looking for. This includes the satisfaction level of employees who are working in the organization. It is the duty of human resource professionals to provide them with a clean and healthy atmosphere at the workplace. It also includes providing them with the best compensation packages. The salary guide by the famous author Robert Half states that provide the employees a good amount of salary will attract new talent as well as they will be motivated to work with complete dedication and hard work.

Proper use of social media- social media has helped a lot in providing information from every part of the world. So in order to overcome the challenge of recruitment the recruiters should make the best possible use of social media sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Not only this job portals can also be used efficiently and effectively in order to post the applications for new jobs (Mello, 2014). Human resource department should appoint a separate team who can handle all the activities of job posting through social media.

To work along with a recruiting firm- in order to overcome the challenge of recruitment the company should adopt the method of outsourcing. This means that they should tie up with a recruiting firm and should give them the contract of hiring the employees for their organization. They should give them all the criteria of what they want from the employees.

Hiring right people at a right time and with all the right sources is one important aspect to get success in business. But sometimes lack of experience, insufficient funds, shortage of time and an inexperienced professional staff may prove as a challenge for the company. So in order to overcome this challenge a company should hire experienced candidates to make a [professional team for staffing and with this they can hire people easily and within their satisfactory level.

 

Ways to overcome the challenge of leadership development

Leadership today has become most challenging task because the mangers are not able to understand their employess easily. So following are the ways by which this leadership development challenge can be overcome:

To know what the company wants and for whom they are looking for- a company has a general idea or responsibilities that they want their new employees should handle but id they do not have any general idea then there is no need of hiring (Lawler, 2008) . Not only is this general idea sufficient a company should also have a complete staffing plan. This will help them to attract new candidates in a much better way. So it is basically filling up the gap that exists between the company and the job descriptions. This will help them to communicate the desirability and need for skill for each position in the company.
 
To understand that what can be done in order to motivate the candidates- now as the company knows that what kind of employees they have been looking for the next step to overcome the challenge is to know that what the employees are looking for. This includes the satisfaction level of employees who are working in the organization. It is the duty of human resource professionals to provide them with a clean and healthy atmosphere at the workplace. It also includes providing them with the best compensation packages. The salary guide by the famous author Robert Half states that provide the employees a good amount of salary will attract new talent as well as they will be motivated to work with complete dedication and hard work.
 
Proper use of social media- social media has helped a lot in providing information from every part of the world. So in order to overcome the challenge of recruitment the recruiters should make the best possible use of social media sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Not only this job portals can also be used efficiently and effectively in order to post the applications for new jobs (Mello, 2014). Human resource department should appoint a separate team who can handle all the activities of job posting through social media.
 
To work along with a recruiting firm- in order to overcome the challenge of recruitment the company should adopt the method of outsourcing. This means that they should tie up with a recruiting firm and should give them the contract of hiring the employees for their organization. They should give them all the criteria of what they want from the employees.
 
Hiring right people at a right time and with all the right sources is one important aspect to get success in business. But sometimes lack of experience, insufficient funds, shortage of time and an inexperienced professional staff may prove as a challenge for the company. So in order to overcome this challenge a company should hire experienced candidates to make a [professional team for staffing and with this they can hire people easily and within their satisfactory level.

 
Ways to overcome the challenge of leadership development

Leadership today has become most challenging task because the mangers are not able to understand their employess easily. So following are the ways by which this leadership development challenge can be overcome:

 An inspiring leader – if a leader is not at all serious about the company work and the policies and procedures then the leader cannot expect from his subordinates to work with dedication and hard work. The first and the best solution to overcome the challenge of leadership is that a leader should understand the psychology of his subordinates. A leader should be co-operative, sincere and hard working towards his job and should maintain a healthy relationship with his subordinates. He should have the capability of inspiring his team members timely so that they are motivated to work properly.

 Better communication with the team members – a leader is not just made to just sit and watch that what the employees are doing. he should be well informed with the activities of his team members and should timely conduct meetings and discussion session so that he is able to communicate with the team members. But yes he should be informed is right but a leader should not interfere in the activities of the team members. Sometimes when the team members are working with complete dedication and still a team leader interfere in their work then they may get irritated and the leader loses his importance and then it leads to challenge of leadership development (Jackson, 2008).

 A leader should have the quality to get the best out of the team leaders- a leader should always be hard working and innovative in motivating his team members so that they give their best out of their work. For this a leader should assure them that he is always with them in their critical times. A leader should accompany the team members for their first sales meetings, presentation with the clients. A leader should make the team members work as a single unit. In order to make them comfortable and love and concern among themselves he should celebrate the festivals together, should ho out for lunch or dinner parties.

 Learn from experienced leaders – In order to become a best leader and to overcome the challenge of leadership development a leader should read the books of successful leaders. A leader should make note of what these successful leaders have done, what were the challenges faced by them and how they overcome those challenges.
 
 A leader should practice motivation as well as positive thinking. This will surely improve the leadership quality of a leader and the challenge can be overcome easily. A leader will become well prepared to overcome the challenges and problems in an innovative way.

 If a leader is in problem he should hesitate to ask for help for the top leaders. This will help the leader to find out a solution easily which he was not able to find out himself. A leader should thus avoid thinking that asking for help may show their weakness.

References:

 Schuler, R. S., & Jackson, S. E. (2008).Strategic human resource management. John Wiley & Sons.

 Greer, C. R. (2001).Strategic human resource management. Prentice Hall.

 Mello, J. (2014).Strategic human resource management. Cengage Learning.

 Perry, J. L. (1993). Strategic human resource management.Review of Public Personnel Administration, 13(4), 59-71.

 Lawler, J. (2008). Strategic human resource management.Handbook of Organization Development, 353.

 Human resources management. Oxford University Press, 2011.

 Budhwar, P. S., & Debrah, Y. A. (Eds.). (2013).Human resource management in developing countries. Routledge.

 Mondy, R. W. (2013).Human resource management. Pearson Higher Ed.

 Dessler, G. (2014).Human resource management. Pearson Higher Ed.

 Budhwar, P. S., & Debrah, Y. A. (Eds.). (2013).Human resource management in developing countries. Routledge.

 Marler, J. H., & Fisher, S. L. (2013). An evidence-based review of e-HRM and strategic human resource management.Human Resource Management Review, 23(1), 18-36.

 Guest, D. E. (2011). Human resource management and performance: still searching for some answers.Human Resource Management Journal, 21(1), 3-13.

 Schuler, Randall S., and Susan E. Jackson.Strategic human resource management. John Wiley & Sons, 2008.
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