It is strategic in nature in that its policies and practices must be strategically aligned with the strategic goals and objectives of the organization. Inasmuch as the management of human capital impacts employee performance and organizational effectiveness, HRS is directly related to the profitability of the organization. What this means is that human resource managers must be well-rounded business-minded people who understand the complexities Of the business world.
They must be active participants in the overall strategic planning of their organization, and have the interpersonal skills to develop healthy and cooperative working relationships with line managers (Bears, Rue, 2012). Similarities Between HRS and HARD Human resource development (HARD) is similar to HRS in that it too is directly related to employee performance and, therefore, organization profitability. Werner and Decision describe the activities of HARD as activities that are intended to ensure that employees have the skills and competencies the organization needs to fulfill its goals and objectives in the present and the future.
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Like HRS, the HARD function is a strategic function that requires specialists to be knowledgeable of the strategic plans of the organization, having the ability to work in concert with line managers, while functioning throughout an organization in a stand-alone capacity, or as a major function in a human resources department (Werner, Decision, 2012). Differences twine HRS and HARD While the overall roles of the HARD specialist are complex and strategic like that of human resource managers, many of their functions are more specialized and narrow.
According to Werner and Decision, the HARD professional works with strategic decision-makers to coordinate educational planning and training programs; they work with HRS management in the design, development, and implementation of HRS programs and intervention strategies. They design and implement change strategies, and advise management on the efficient use of human resources. As a learner program peccaries, they identify, design, and develop learning programs, as well as selecting the appropriate learning materials. They also function as learning instructors.
They counsel employees regarding competencies and career goals, and coach line managers on interventions to improve individual and group performance. Research is the tool they use to statistically determine the effectiveness of HARD practices and programs (Werner, Decision, 2012). The HARD Four-Step Process The complexity of the HARD role necessitates a systems approach to training and interventions. Werner and Decision describe a four-point process ramekin they call “A Delve,” that they believe should be followed when planning all HARD interventions.
The “A Dale” sequential process is: needs assessment, design, implementation, and evaluation. The framework proposes that all HARD interventions be developed to address a specific need or gap within an organization. The design phase of the intervention involves selecting the specific objective for the program, and developing a lesson plan based upon that specific objective. The implementation phase means executing the intervention using the best and most appropriate method. The IANAL phase in the HARD process is evaluation, where the agent measures the effectiveness of the intervention (Werner, Decision, 2012).
Present and future Challenges for the HARD profession The expanded role of the HARD professional has developed and expanded as a result of the new competitive landscape created by the global market and economy. Organizational success today requires doing more with less resources, which necessitates maximizing the effectiveness of human capital by developing employee skills, using technology effectively, creating new organizational structures that facilitate decision-making at all levels of the organization, and developing a learning culture that encourages learning and innovative thinking (Werner, Decision, 2012).
Harris and Short describe a major challenge they call a “maze of complexity and changing contexts” in organizations today. They state, “The value of workplace education and training has become a mantra for business survival” (Harris, Short, 2010, 358-359). Unfortunately, according to Harris and Short, many HARD programs are considered a lesser important function of HRS, indicating a lack of understanding most particularly, on the part of upper and diddle managers of the importance of true HARD functions.