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Role and Purpose of Human Resource Management

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Published: Wed, 13 Sep 2017

Analyze the role and purpose of human resource management in a selected service industry

Human Resource Management plays a very vital role in all industries, especially that of hospitality. Due to the constant transformation and growth within the industry, the need to obtain an effective Human Resource Management team cannot be ignored. Hotels such as Marriott International has come to the realization that its employees are its largest assets and having a good, skilled and hardworking workforce can be the difference between the company’s success or failure (Icmrindia.org, 2004). Human Resource Management can be defined as the process of employing and developing employees in order to efficiently and effectively utilize them in the achievement of company goals and objectives (Parrilla, 2015).

Below are the findings related to the role, purpose, and functions of Human Resource Management in service organizations.

1. According to Amos et al., (2008) staffing, employee compensation and benefits, and defining and designing work are three major responsibilities of HRM in the service industry.

2. Maximizing productivity within service industries by optimizing the effectiveness and potential of the organization’s staff members is the purpose for which the HRM was created (Nickson, 2013).

3. Bolden-Barrett (n.d.) outlines in her article that recruiting, retention, compensation, liability and labor are the major roles in which the HRM manages.

4. Businesscasestudies.co.uk (n.d.) through its research elaborated that “HRM function not only manages existing staff, it also plans for changes that will affect its future staffing needs.”

5. HRM is often pressured into finding a level ground between the implementation of Hard or Soft HRM (Riley, n.d.).

The service industry is greatly dependent on human resource rather than the resource needed to perform tasks within the organization. As a result of this, the service industry has invested a lot in ensuring that their HRM department is effective and have the necessary resources in order to carry out their functions. Bolden-Barrett (n.d.) outlines in her article that recruiting, retention, compensation, liability and labor are the major roles in which the HRM manages. She believes that by delegating a specific department to handle such roles it will relieve some pressure off management and also eradicate the deterrents that plague the service industry. Nickson (2013) reinforced the views outlined in Bolden-Barretts’ article by explaining that the purpose of HRM is to maximize productivity within service industries by optimizing the effectiveness and potential of the organization’s staff members. With this purpose in mind, the HRM would assess the company and determine what is lacking and also what it needs in order to succeed and reach its full potential. According to Amos et al., (2008) staffing, employee compensation and benefits, and defining and designing work are three major responsibilities of HRM in the service industry. When broken down further the department would be in charge of managing existing staff, recruiting & selecting new staff, laying off workers, providing training and assessment, mentoring & motivating, handling evaluation & compensations, building strategies, providing legal guidance for both employees and the company and most importantly implementing steps to retain current staff. In fact, Businesscasestudies.co.uk (n.d.) through its research elaborated that “HRM function not only manages existing staff, it also plans for changes that will affect its future staffing needs.” This kind of plan requires HRM to find a level ground between the implementation of a hard or soft management system (Riley, n.d.). They need consider the risks of implementing soft HRM and leaving the company at a competitive disadvantage by treating employees as the most important assets or implementing a hard HRM where they end up gaining a more cost effective workforce.

Conclusion

Achievement within the service industry depends on the individual and collective efforts put in by its workforce. HRM as a practice notably offers support and advice to the senior management within an organization. With that being said, the department plays a role in recruiting, retention, compensation, liability and labor. They meet the expectation of these roles by ensuring that the staff in which they recruit possess the needed skills, mindset and experience in which the company needs. They also ensure that employee recognition programs and various incentives are implemented in order to retain current workers. The HRM department also handles the legality within the organization when it comes to the rights of the workers, the enforcing of labor laws and the exercising of company policies. It can be concluded that in regards to the roles of the HRM within the service industry, they are in fact fulfilling and exceeding expectations.

AC. 1.2 Justify a human resources plan based on an analysis of supply and demand for Marriot International

Introduction

Human resource planning is a process through which an organization identifies its current, immediate and future human resource needs to enable the achievement of set goals and objectives (Buller and McEvoy, 2012). A human resource plan attempts to estimate labor, demand and evaluate the nature, sources, and size of the supply that will be needed to offset that demand (Bratton and Gold, 2010). Hotels like Marriott International have recognized the vital role that a human resource plan plays in the constantly changing environment in the hospitality industry. A human resources plan links with the organization’s business plan to ensure the goals of the business are met. An effective human resources plan is, therefore, essential to ensure the employees have the competencies and skills required for the business to succeed.

Findings

Following are the findings on the labor supply and demand in the hotel industry:

1. According to Boxall and Purcell (2016) developing a human resource plan involves the forecasting of hiring needs and employment arrangements. It involves a series of steps that include the identification of business strategy and needs; conducting a job analysis; writing a job description, and determining the feasibility of hiring.

2. The demand and supply of human resources planning in the services sector are influenced by the specific skills, experience and knowledge level and qualities that the organization requires from employees (Werner and DeSimone, 2012).

3. The internal factors that influence human resource planning include organizations size, organizations culture; organizations structure; business strategy; power and politics; and top management and line managers (Harzing and Pinnington, 2015).

4. The external factors that influence human resource planning include economic condition; government regulations; technological change and advancements; industry characteristics; workforce demographics; competitor actions; and union actions (Choi and Ruona, 2010).

5. Human resource planning is affected by changes in the economic and technological environment. The influx or decrease in economy and technology causes a subsequent change in human resource plans (Bratton and Gold, 2010).

Discussion

A human resources plan is important in any services industry. According to Bratton and Gold (2010) plans helps organizations to adjust to the rapidly changing environment as the demand for human resources increases. Changes in the technological and economic environment affect the human resources plan. The development of technology may lead to a subsequent reduction of workers while the reduction in the economy may also decrease human resources intake in the services sector. However, organizations need to manage and institute a working human resources plan. Developing a human resources plan involves the forecasting of hiring needs and employment arrangements. This means the business needs to identify its strategy and needs; conduct a job analysis; write a job description; and determine the feasibility of hiring (Boxall and Purcell, 2016). Human resources specific skills, experience and knowledge level and qualities that ensure growth influence their demand and supply (Werner and DeSimone, 2012). Internal and external factors in an organization have an influence in the planning of the human resources. The internal factors include organizations size, organizations culture; organizations structure; business strategy; power and politics; and top management and line managers (Harzing and Pinnington, 2015). The external factors include economic condition; government regulations; technological change and advancements; industry characteristics; workforce demographics; competitor actions; and union actions (Choi and Ruona, 2010). The factors enhance how organizations plan and organize their human resources.

Conclusions and Recommendations

The organizations in the services sector operate in a constantly changing environment in the world.  Many factors exist that may discourage or hinder these organizations to plan for their human resources at present and in the future. However, instituting a human resources plan ensures that an organization is prepared for any change that may occur in the business environment. A human resources plan assists an organization to fulfill its mandate when managed appropriately. The recommendation is that Marriott International needs to develop a human resources plan with its business plan. The argument is that as external and internal factors influence, affect and change the supply and demand of human resources, the business will adapt to this changes with a plan in place.

Assess the current state of employment relations in Marriot International

Introduction

Employment relations refer to the total interaction or relationship between an employee and the employer (Nickson, 2013). This relationship is in regards to the establishment of employment conditions. The topic of employee relations in Marriot International is crucial because of the realization that a good employment relations program in an organization leads to the success of the organization. As an approach to effective employee treatment, an employment relation incorporates all issues in the workplace employer-employee relationship including equal opportunity, recruitment, organizational structure and, training and development (Lee and Way, 2010). This forms a basis through which the employees remain loyal to the organization and stay committed to fulfilling the objectives of the organization as required in the specific jobs (Lee and Way, 2010).

Findings

Below are the findings on the current state of employment relations in the service industry

1. There is a significant growth in the number of workers and employers in the service industry. This growth has precipitated a selective approach by both workers and employers in finding their employers and workers respectively (Goetsch and Davis, 2013).

2. Employment relations is revitalized in the service industries as a result of consistent boycotts and strikes by workers in the service sector thus effecting talks on issues affecting the employees (Vidal, 2011).

3. Employment relations are currently being handled by unions representing the employers and the employees while the government stands as the mediator (Davidson et al., 2011).

4. As a response to boycotts and strikes, unions and management in the services sector are cooperating through corporate campaigns and neutrality agreements to ensure employment relations are improved (Nickson, 2013). They institute harmonization measures through arbitration and negotiation teams to settle grievances and disciplinary procedures in employment relations.

5. Low wages, sexual harassment and poor working conditions in the services sector have precipitated the increase in unions organizing strikes and calling for better employment relations agreements (Kusluvan et al., 2010).

Discussion

Employment relations in the hotel sector are important because it influences job satisfaction, customer retention and the success of the business. The fight to achieve better working conditions has been taken to the employers by employees. According to Kusluvan et al., (2010) low wages, sexual harassment and poor working conditions in the services sector have precipitated the increase in unions organizing strikes and calling for better employment relations agreements. Employee relations have affected how employers and employees select workers and employers respectively (Goetsch and Davis, 2013). Employers and employees look for organizations in the services industry where their needs and requirements will be met. Davidson et al., (2011) researched how HRM handled employment relations in the past and the present. The findings showed employment relations are currently being handled by unions, negotiating teams, and collaborative institutions. They handle employment issues and in extreme circumstances lead boycotts and strikes to revitalize the issues in the services sector (Vidal, 2011). As a response to boycotts and strikes, unions and management in the services sector are cooperating through corporate campaigns and neutrality agreements to ensure employment relations are improved (Nickson, 2013). They institute harmonization measures through arbitration and negotiation teams to settle grievances in the services industry.

Conclusions and Recommendations

As an approach to effective employee treatment, employment relations incorporate all issues in the workplace, employer-employee relationship including equal opportunity, recruitment, organizational structure and, training and development. Employment relations contribute to the success or the failure of a given business. Poor relations lead to poor or inadequate services which lead to the business being affected. The recommendation is that Marriott International should institute an effective working relationship between the employers and the employees in the hotel. This is done by ensuring all employees are treated equally and professionally. They should also support their unions by entering into continuous talks on how to improve their conditions thus enhancing employment relations.

Discuss how employment law affects the management of human resources in a selected service industry business

Government regulations have increased within the hospitality industry over the years especially due to the industry’s rapid growth and diversity. According to Simpson (n.d.), employment laws moderate the relationship between the employer and the employee. The laws delegate areas such as wages, benefits, workplace discrimination, safety on the job and immigration, just to name a few. Employment laws within Jamaica are based on common law concept of the contract of employment, legislations and court opinions (Jamaica Trade Union – Labour Laws, n.d.). The laws are enacted as a means of protecting workers from unfair treatment within their workplace as well as protecting employers.

Findings

Below are the findings related to the different employment laws within my country, Jamaica:

1. According to Employment (Termination, etc.) Act (2008) employers should give prior notice to employees who are dismissed for the reason of redundancy.

2. The ‘Holiday with Pay’ Act of 1974 outlines that pay, gratuities or benefits should be given to workers who are on sick or vacation leave (Under The Holidays With Pay Act, 2000).

3. The Jamaica observer (2016) advised that the National Minimum Wage increase takes effect today, March 1st, 2016. Such recommendations are made by the Minimum Wage Advisory Commission with guidance from the Minimum Wage Act of 1938.

4. Under the Trade Union Act of 1919, Trade Unions were able to become established, get registered and function. The Act also stipulates ways in which membership is acquired and also how disputes should be settled (Trade Union Act, n.d.).

5. The Employment (Equal pay for men and women) Act of 1975 is in place to eliminate discrimination between sexes as it relates to wages for completing the same work (Jamaica: The Employment (Equal Pay for Men and Women) Act, n.d.).

Employment laws greatly impact how the human resource within the hospitality industry functions and operates. The various laws are utilized as guidelines to ensure that employees are treated fairly and that management operates within the laws. According to Employment (Termination, etc.) Act (2008) employers should give prior notice to employees who are dismissed for the reason of redundancy. It further explains that the period of the notice depends on how long the employee has been working with the organization and also how they should be paid for their service. The ‘Holiday with Pay’ Act of 1974 outlines that pay, gratuities or benefits should be given to workers who are on sick or vacation leave (Under The Holidays With Pay Act, 2000). HR will now have to take into consideration the requirements for paying employees who are on sick leave, going on vacation and even workers who work overtime. Employers who do not comply are at risk of being fined upwards of $250,000 and/or prison time.  The Jamaica observer (2016) advised that the National Minimum Wage increase takes effect today, March 1st, 2016. Such recommendations are made by the Minimum Wage Advisory Commission with guidance from the Minimum Wage Act of 1938. This law is mostly geared at protecting workers without a voice or representation from a Union to bargain on their behalf. With that being said, it is still as important as it sets the bar for the minimum pay in which a certain group of workers should receive. Under the Trade Union Act of 1919, Trade Unions were able to become established, get registered and function. The Act also stipulates ways in which membership is acquired and also how disputes should be settled (Trade Union Act, n.d.). Hotel workers are now able to gain Union representatives under this law. Workers no longer have to strike when their contracts have been breached, as now they have legal representatives who are able to negotiate, deliberate and argue on their behalf. Human Resource Management within the hotel industry will need to sit with Union representatives and negotiate proper wages for workers, decent working conditions and also fair schedules. The Employment (Equal pay for men and women) Act of 1975 is in place to eliminate discrimination between sexes as it relates to wages for completing the same work (Jamaica: The Employment (Equal Pay for Men and Women) Act, n.d.). HR management under this act is obligated in paying workers of both sexes equally to do the same amount of work. Therefore, if the hotel has a male and female chef that does the same amount of work then one shouldn’t be getting more pay than the other just because they are a different gender. In addition, both workers should be treated equally and fairly.   

Recommendation/Conclusion

The hotel industry succeeds when there are full corporation and understanding between employees and employers. As an HR manager, it is my duty to ensure that in creating corporation between management and workers I am also able to do so within the employment laws that governs the country. When these laws are understood, followed and implemented by myself, management and workers then it saves the hotel money- by preventing fines, time- by avoiding lawsuits and lengthy court hearings, and also bad publicity. When the various employment laws are enforced the hotel will experience fewer turnovers, as workers will appreciate the measures taken to ensure that they are fairly treated and therefore will not want to resign. In addition, productivity will increase as workers will be certain that they will receive proper compensation for their labor. Subsequently, with increased productivity, there will be better service and product quality as well; workers will have greater commitment and be compelled to put in more work. Last but not least, with the representation of Unions, workers are more trusting and comfortable in their working environment; this is because they know the Union will act in their best interest.


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