The Distinctive Approach In Competitive Approaches Commerce Essay


Human Resource and management is a "distinctive approach to employment which seeks to deliver competitive advantage through deployment of committed staff" Bardwell and Claydon (2007).

Human resource is very important to managers because it allows the management to:

Hire the right people in an organisation, appraise people fairly, avoid discriminatory actions, provide training and development to employees, plan labour to avoid high turnover and compensating employees. Dessler (2008 p. 2)

Human Resource and management is divided into two parts which are soft and hard HRM.

Hard approach focuses on management strategies which are driven to achieve organisational goals. Whereas soft approach focuses on enhancing a humanistic and development approach which offers quality and flexibility of employees. Beardwell and Claydon (2007).

According to Legg (1995) viewed hard Human Resource as passive by providing skills which are needed at the right place. While soft Human Resource provides commitment through motivation, leadership styles and communication in soft Human resource employees are proactive rather than passive.Hard and soft Human Resource both shows the importance of different people in an organisation and their attributes.

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According to Truss et al 1(997) Training and development which is given to employees is considered as soft Human Resource .While hard Human resource is integration of strategies techniques such as performance appraisal.

In our study we are focusing on training and development,careeer development and performance management technique which is the performance appraisal.

According to (Abe manual) training is defined as a "planned process to modify attitude, knowledge or skill through learning behaviour". Training provides requirements for undertaking a particular task at work. This might mean showing an employee how to use particular equipment at work, showing a supervisor how to build up on skills like letter writing or filling up payrolls at work.

Development can be defined as "the growth or realisation of a person's ability through conscious or unconscious learning" (Abe manual).Development of employee is normally concerned with the long term individual or organisational goals. Development strategies in an organisation is used to oversee the future of an organisation Human Resource department.

Performance management process is defined as design systems which are used to manage employee's performance in order for organisation to achieve strategic goals. It involves job design, training and development and evaluation of employees on how the job is being conducted.

Performance appraisal is defined as the procedure which involves assessing the employee performance by setting working standards and providing feedback to the employee regarding to his or her performance. It also aims motivate them in order to perform effectively in future.

Career development is defined as lifelong process of managing progress which contributes to a person's success and fulfilment .Career development enables an individual to identify their inner goals both within the company and when they leave the company. Dessler (2008).

2. The Learning Culture

According to Senge organisations should have a culture which allows them to shape their own future to a far degree than the past. Organisation should improve their performance and both the management should seek ways on how to increase performance on their jobs (Abe manual pp58).

Senge (1990) fifth discipline of learning in an organisation.They are (a)Personal mastery b)mental models c)shared vision d)team learning and e)system thinking

Personal mastery is going beyond competence and skills and achieving your fulfilment and creating what you want in life Senge (1990 p.7)

Mental models is the driving force behind the organisation values and principles which enables an individual to understand better Senge (1990p.8)

Shared vision is the creativity and innovation which is based on group activity with the employees. Here employees learn from each other in order to make the vision real Senge (1990 p.9)

Team learning involves discussion of ideas with other team mates at work, by dialogue between employee widens exploratory possibilities and discussions finds the best solutions Senge (1990 p.10)

System thinking is a system which views an organisation as a living entity .It focuses on the relationship among parts of the organisation system. System thinking enables the manager to see the world as a whole and spot patterns which might hinder the growth of the organisation Senge (1990 p.69)

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3. Perfomance Appraisal

Performance appraisal helps to identify the needs of the hidden talents of a potential employee. Therefore it identifies the training needs and development and promotion. Feedback of an appraisal direct an employee to determining his or her career goals they want to achieve.

3.1Benefits of Performance Appraisal

(Abeuk manual Pp162 -164)

The assessment of past effectiveness and setting new performance targets.-This task should be carried at all level when conducting an appraisal can only address achievement which is well understood. There should be agreement about the overall objectives and identification of tasks, support and guidance.

The assessment of individual progress: Appraisal will help employees in future job decisions which will enable them to know what careers they will undertake .

The assessment of training and development: Whenever an assessment is made there are chances that an employee will be given training opportunities this will lead to achieving new knowledge and skills.

The assessment of potential promotion: Appraisal may help to identify employees who are hardworking and the passion to learn at work. This will help the organisation to spot employee who will be future managers.

Tools for measuring Appraisal

Graphical Rating method

This is the simplest method of appraising it lists traits such as reliability and quality. Graphical setting rating method is done by checking the score which an employee describes his or her performance for each trait. Therefore the values of the trait are then added up.

Three things to measure on the graphical rating method are:

1) Generic dimensions like communication, teamwork, know-how and quality.

2) Job actual duties this is done by assessing how well an individual is in each type of job.

3)Its also used to measure competency the employee expected to show competencies which are needed for the job Dessler (2008).

Alternation ranking method

In this method, employees are ranked from best to worst. Subordinates names are listed down and then they are selected the ones who haven't performed well will be ranked after first ranking the highest employees. Dessler(2008).

Forced distribution method

This method is used to whereby percentages are placed to rate employees. Managers rank workers comparison to other workers. The 20 percent workers are categorised as the top workers. The 70 percent are categorised as middle workers are 10 percent are categorised as the bottom workers. Managers give the group 30 percent to improve their performance in 90 days and if they cannot show any improvement they are kicked out of the company.

Exmples of company which uses forced distribution approach are:

Alsever (2008)

1) General Electricity they have practiced this method in the 1980 and they are sill using this method to help the grow and so far it has generated revenues $130 billion in 2000 from $70 billion in 1995.

2)Yahoo company, they have also adopted this method to determine compensation increases. Mangers award employees from top to bottom.

3) Ford motor company they have used this method until 2001 but due to legal settlement $10.6 million in 2001 they stopped using since it lead to dysfunctional behaviour.

4) Motorola also relied on this method between 2001 and 2003 but they have stopped using the system.

360 degree method

In Human Resource or industrial organizational psychology, 360 degree feedback which is also known as multi- rater feedback is referred to as employee development feedback. Ratings are collected all round the employees.

The feedback generally comes from subordinates, supervisors, peers and internal and external customers and self assessment (Dessler 2008).360 degrees may be contrasted with upward feedback, where managers are given feedback by their direct reports or by a traditional performance appraisal (Bracken D.W et al,2001).

The results from 360-degree feedback are often used by the person receiving the feedback to plan their training and development (BNA Bulletin to Management1997)

Advantages of using 360 degrees

1)Define corporate competencies-most companies are using 360 degrees in order to meet the needs of an employee for reaching business executes process which will determine communication skills knowledge and experiences.

2) Increase the focus of customer services-This tool has helped to meet the needs of internal and external customers. It has also reinforced the TQM process which is determined by the customer survey responses. By doing this it emphasizes the importance of customers in an organization and it helps reaching the company objectives.

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3) Support team initiatives-This method promotes team based approach which can be advantageous to promote the business objectives of a company. Since employees are involved in the multi rater scale, they can also give factors beyond their own bosses.

4) Detects barriers to success-Since the ratings are collected all round, which it can have an impact on the supervisors evaluation. Many supervisors are shocked about the results since some of them are unexpected results. This feedback helps everyone in organisation to know how better they can be for the benefit of the company.

5) Assesses developmental needs. Companies identify the areas where employee need to develop and assistance is given which can have an effect in the long run.

Examples of companies

a)Disney started using 360 degree feed back system in 1981in order to gain competency in their organisation .

b)American Airlines have also used 360 degrees to develop training programs which emphasized on the committing leadership. They also used 360 degree for gender fairness in the organisation

c)Intel has also used a flexible 360 degree which is used for effective communication, recognition and pay which they have based this in their vision and values of the company.

d)Kodak has also used the 360 degree for innovation and creativity which lead to employees being recognised for their good work and also rewarded.

e)U.S west also implemented the 360 degree system, this system showed an increase on the customer services which was over 300 percent.

f)Arizona state university implemented 360 degree which enabled the faculty research department to increase productivity which was over 200 percent

g)Westinghouse also implemented this system which enabled their productivity to increase by 50 percent in the Steam Turbine Division in Orlando, Florida.

h)General Electricity (GE),used this system which received recognition for the development of talent management process in the organisation.

Dysfunctional use of performance appraisal

Appraising an employee make that employees to be optimistic on what their ratings will be since it involves assessing an employee against standards. Therefore the appraisal process its difficult to conduct since greater concern can raise which suffers from validity and reliability. All this can cause dysfunctional in the organisation as a whole.

The following are appraisal problem:

Hallo effect This is general impression on rating which is based on specific rate qualities. Example of such a problem is when a supervisor rates their friend high than the other employees just because they don't get along well at work. This brings attention or the supervisors to be trained when appraising employee to avoid the hallo effect.

Leniency or strictness This occurs when supervisors rate the employees high or low. It generally occurs during graphic rating scales which involve ranking high or low performers this problem occurs when graphical rating is used to appraise. An example is when a student finds out that there has been in a leniency during grading. While there are other performance who deserve higher grades than what they get. If this is applied in an organisation it can be seen that organisation leniency can reduce the amount of pay increase an individual should deserve. An organisation example is when Union National Bank in Charlotte and Wachovia Bank merged operations under Wachovia Bank, employees will be able to apply for positions since the bank will be large. In such a situations, employers can base the seniority of employee with job performance in order to increase retention. The problem here will be the employer will rate their employees the same since they want to retain their entire workforce.

Bias This occurs when employers appraise an employee by basing difference such a age, sex and race. In this case employees. For example the case of U.S Court appeal for the 10th circuit found that a 36 year old supervisor ranked a 62 years old subordinate at the bottom of the department and then he was finally terminated due to his low performance. The decision to terminate the 62 years old was influenced by discriminatory act toward the 62 year old employee.Another case example the case of Rowe V.General motors 1972,this occurred when Rowe was discriminated upon because he was black and therefore he wasn't given an opportunity for promotion. Organisation example is when 3M Company in 2001 allegedly discriminated employees who are over the age of 45 in their appraisal, training, promotion and pay since they were regarded as unable employees to meet the company's management. Therefore these employees were forced into retirement or termination.