Quiz 7: Human Resources Management

Business

Human resources management has four components: planning, attracting competent resources, developing resources and retaining the employees. Good HRM process is known to have contributed to organizational performance. But not all companies have state of art human resources practices. This is due to the following reasons: Ignorance: This may have to do with ignorance at the top level of management. They may not know how it can contribute to the organizational performance. They would think that this is only a cost centre and target of their cost cutting measures. It is still possible that some organization may be under the mistaken impression that they already have the best possible HR practices that is applicable to their organization. Senior HR managers may have been around for couple of decades and may be out of touch with the new changes and advancement made in HR practices. As per their knowledge based on what they learned couple of decades back, they would have implemented a perfect HR system and would not know about new methods. Cost: The state of art HR practice costs money. Also, it is not a onetime cost as training and developments are continuous process. Many organizations would not like to commit themselves to higher level of spending. Size of Organization: It is also possible that organization is not of sufficient in size. As a result, a huge spending on HR practices would not justify the result it may bring, however good the result may be. As a result, organization may wait for its size to grow bigger before they implement state of art HR practices. Political Aspect: There could be political aspect also. When various departments compete to get funds, HR manager, being a cost centre, would lose out to other divisions which are responsible for commercial operations. HR manager may not be powerful enough to get the sufficient funding and political support required to implement state of are HR practices.

2007-2009 Was the period of crisis for Citibank. Citigroup was actively engaged in managing its losses, downsizing its business and surviving through the crisis. Its human resources division would also have been actively engaged in the activities. Human resources must have been planning on ways to reduce the size of manpower and still retain the best of the talents that they want to keep. Hence, human resources planning would have been one of the most important activities of human resources department. Hence choice a. is incorrect. Human resources department would have been actively involved in trying to figure out how to downsize the manpower without losing the best of their resources. Since downsizing was expected to be large, they would be expecting to fill any existing vacancies from redundant employees and even after this, they would have to sack several employees. Under this situation, there certainly wouldn't have been any focus or activities in attracting the employees. Hence, choice b. is correct. Citibank was downsizing its manpower and business. Under such a situation, it can be reasonably expected that many employees may have been required to perform tasks that they were not performing earlier. This would have required some training and development activities. Training and development activities may not have been the least important aspect. Hence choice c. is incorrect. Citibank was downsizing its business and manpower significantly. At that point of time, it must have been most worried about having to let go of employees with valuable skills that they may need in future. Many employees would get scared at the downsizing being effected and would have left. Hence, human resources department must have given significant thought of retaining the valuable employees. Hence choice d. is incorrect.

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