Human Resource Management in Office Space There are many challenges that a firm’s Human Resources department must deal with effectively over the lifetime of a company. Office Space, as an example, directed by Mike Judge, presents many of the challenges of everyday life that a Human Resource (HR) department must cope with. The HR department must create a feeling of job satisfaction for employees or possibly face dire consequences like in the film, Office Space. The movie is a great example of what happens in businesses where employees feel like prisoners and when bosses feel like they must act like guards.
A company’s Human Resource department is vital and has an important position in an organization’s wellbeing. Office Space is a great example of irrational management and bizarre human behavior. The staring character is Peter Gibbon. He is a computer programmer who is trying to find meaning to his life. He is completely dissatisfied with his job and wishes a greater meaning to his life. He almost always arrives late to work and is very annoyed by his co-workers. He has two friends in the office: Zamir and Michael.
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Zamir an Islamic immigrant takes great pride in his work and is very proud to about the opportunities that the United States has given him. Michael is extremely skeptical, cynical, and lacking pride in his work and in himself. Everyone in the office struggles to find job satisfaction in their air-conditioned cubicles (Judge). Eventually, Peter sees a hypnotherapist and his personality radically transforms. He completely stops showing up for work on Saturdays and Sundays. He is so bluntly honest about how he feels, around the office, that his co-workers take the situation and what he says as sarcasm.
Thus, his situation is exceptionally humorous to everyone in the office. However, the reality is they are all trapped in the same dreadful, dead end job going nowhere in their professional careers (Judge). Peter’s new attitude gives him a new popularity in the office, saving his job because he creates a relationship with some consultants who were brought to the office to evaluate worker performance. However, both Zamir and Michael lose their jobs. Peter convinces them to develop a plan that will destroy the company and make them rich. Michael had once created a virus that would steal fractions of money over a period of time (Judge).
Consequently, the plan comes to an end because of the possibility of facing prison time. In addition to, Peter loses his girlfriend. The three of them decided to admit the scheme and pay back the money. They decided to face the consequences of their actions instead of running and becoming fugitives. Fortunately, another disgruntled coworker finds the money and burns the office building down and runs away to hopefully a better place (Judge). Today, most HR departments follow a system that helps a company to work more efficiently and effectively.
Unlike in Office Space, Human Resources allow companies to communicate with their employees between different levels of corporate hierarchy. Though, it is easier for smaller firms to communicate with their employees because there are less people to communicate with. In larger companies, the Human Resources department is responsible for dealing with all of the payroll, hiring, employee evaluation, and insurance benefits (Ivancevich). Human Resource is now playing such an important role in communication that it is hard to believe large companies used to deal with all these tasks without this department.
Arguably, the most important role of HR is the effective communication that the department has among employees and upper management. Instead, of employees having to communicate with upper management, Human Resources will sort out many of the questions and concerns to present to the upper managers and C. E. O. s. This creates less dysfunction within a firm, helping to create a more harmonious place to work. Ultimately, allowing managers to accomplish objectives. And allowing employees to work with a since of job satisfaction (Strategic Organization).
Worker rights are now a huge concern of new employees and existing ones. HR helps protects the rights and helps enforce all policies that is in the interest of the company, helping to create a better company. The Human Resource department, now helps companies from being sued, allowing companies to keep their hard earned profits (Pomoni). A vital goal of Human Resources departments is to keep the workers’ environment safe and as pleasant as possible. Workers have rights and HR departments attempt to keep employees satisfied with their job, helping to keep morale up, while protecting the rights of every employee (Pomoni).
The office in Office Space could have really benefitted with an effective HR department. For example, no one seemed to care about one another in the office. No one even took the time to learn Samir’s last name. They constantly mispronounce it and it is a joke throughout the film to say his name incorrectly. There is a lot of dysfunction in film. Michael Bolton is relentlessly teased about his name because it is the same as some terrible signer that everyone detests. The workforce is extremely separated, into clicks creating a hostile environment which is hard to find satisfying.
Both these characters are labeled harshly and cannot escape these identities. They simply become the guy with the unpronounceable name and the guy with the named after some terrible singer. Office Space perfectly shows us what not to do within an organization. There is absolutely no organizational culture within their company. Organizational culture is defined as the pattern of shared value, beliefs, and assumptions considered being the appropriate way to think and act within an organization (Ivancevich). Fundamentally, culture is created in two different levels within a corporate organization.
The first form exists within a company’s infrastructure and physical organizational culture such as company banners, posters, general office setup, and office dress code (Langton). The more deeply rooted and second level of organizational culture is based on the beliefs of values, mission statements, ideas, and assumptions within the organization (Langton). The success of an organization very much depends on a firm’s ability to establish effective culture within their organization. Different companies have different organizational cultures; however, managers cannot just force culture onto employees.
In Office Space, managers made workers work in a harsh environment (Judge). The Human Resource department is also a valuable tool to keep up motivation and moral. Providing a comfortable work environment allows employees to be more productive. However, at Initech, the physical working conditions at lack the lack the qualities that create an enjoyable and satisfying space to perform assigned jobs. The employees work in tiny cubicles that block their view of the windows, representing the closed system technique of eliminating outside distractions.
The copy machine never works, their supplies are constantly being replaced with lesser-quality brands, and poor Milton is repeatedly forced to move desks, eventually ending up in the basement alongside the cockroaches (Judge). In relationship to Office Space, Initech shows evidence of organizational cultures. There are numerous rituals and symbols that can be identified and are important to a Human Resources department. Rituals are the repetitive sequences of activities that are expressed and reinforced the key values of one’s organization (Ivancevich).
In the film, Peter is reminded by his managers to place a new cover sheet on his reports. This paper shows that it is important and a ritual for the company. Another example of Initech’s culture is their frequent informal staff meetings. At one point or another, we have or will experienced working conditions similar to the one in Office Space. What is important is having the management skills to effectively fix problems and solve confrontations. In conclusion, the Human Resource department has a vital role within an organization’s infrastructure.
This department is the glue that holds a company together and resolving many management issues. Human Resource management is responsible for allowing open communication. Without hesitation, Initech could have benefited from an effective HR department in the film, Office Space. The company conducted their management unethically. A successful Human Resource department can help give employees a better work environment, helping them to become more productive and better workers for a firm. Works Cited “Elsevier Editorial SystemTM. ” Web. 11 Aug. 2011. ;http://ees. lsevier. com/obhdp/;. “Human Resources – Business Management Development Jobs Consulting Training Policy Human Resources. ” Web. 18 Aug. 2011. ;http://humanresources. about. com/;. Ivancevich, John M. Human Resource Management. Boston: McMcGraw-Hill Irwin, 2010. Print. Judge, M. (writer and director) ; Rothenburg, M. (producer). (1999). Office Space [motion picture]. USA: 20th Century Fox. Langton, N ; Robbins, S. P. (2007). Organizational Behavior: Concepts, Controversies, and Applications. Toronto: Pearson/Prentice Hall. “Organization. July-Aug. 1994. Web. 12 Aug. 2011. <http://org. sagepub. com/>. Pomoni, Christina. “The Importance of Human Resources Management (HRM) in Modern Organizations. ” Associated Content from Yahoo! – Associatedcontent. com. Web. 12 Aug. 2011. <http://www. associatedcontent. com/article/1488488/the_importance_of_human_resources_management. html>. “Research”. Web. 12 Aug. 2011. <http://www. antiessays. com/>. “STRATEGIC ORGANIZATION ??? SO! ” Rotman School of Management. Web. 11 Aug. 2011. <http://www. rotman. utoronto. ca/~baum/so. html>.