Human resources can have a big influence on how successful your company is. This is why hiring a good human resources manager is essential to organize recruitment and hiring.
While interviewing and hiring employees at a company may seem like a straightforward job, when done well, it can require a lot of planning and good decision-making. As a result, human resource managers often use different business models to help guide their decisions.
Hard human resource management versus soft human resource management
Hard human resource management is task-oriented and looks at employees as a resource. This means employees’ feelings may be overlooked more often in the name of increased profit or efficiency. In a hard human resource management system, employees are considered more expendable. This means managers may fire and hire as needed with minimal notice. This system is helpful for some business models where the turnover of employees is high anyway.
Wages are based solely on experience, with the minimal rate being preferable to maximize profits. Hard HRM may still offer employees some benefits, such as sick leave and medical benefits. However, these programs are not typically as good as companies that view employees as a resource rather than a commodity to be used as needed.
Soft human resource management is more people-friendly and a preferable working environment for those who want a lasting career and job security. Soft human resource management focuses on employees as valuable resources rather than a commodity to be used and discarded as needed. Instead, soft HRM focuses on ensuring employees are encouraged, well taken care of and offered the resources they need to do the best job possible. In addition, there is a strong emphasis on offering incentives and support to motivate employees to do their best.
Soft HRM concentrates on training and investing in a workforce for the long term. This is a good model for those wanting to build a solid team with low turnover. In specialized fields and businesses, soft HRM often yields better results because the company is not constantly dealing with employees that are just learning the business or that lack motivation to do a good job.
The ASTD competency model
The ASTD model uses three levels to manage human resources. First, it focuses on the key players needed for a successful business model. It is helpful for realizing what each person at the company reasonably can achieve with some direction and focus.
The foundation level
This level focuses on networking and interpersonal relationships. This can involve directing stakeholders toward a specific decision and creating a network of trust and understanding.
The focus level
This vital level focuses on training, managing talent and measuring employee performance. Facilitating change at the company is yet another duty.
The execution level
This is the level of higher-level positions within a company and the human resources department. Business partners and project managers are good examples.
The Ulrich model
This model is beneficial if you approach human resources by focusing on the people involved rather than the main processes. In addition, it is helpful when you want to consider the structure of your human resources department so work can be spread out for optimal efficiency.
To use the Ulrich model, you must categorize each person within your human resources department using the categories listed below:
- Strategic partner
- Administrative expert
- Employee champion
- Agent of change
Of course, the roles of the CEO of a company and any other executive leadership are considered.
The strategic partner is in charge of strategic planning within human resources, the image represented by the company and partnerships. Administrative experts specialize in compensation packages, workplace compliance and information related to the human resource system.
Employee champions are involved with employee and labor relations, workers’ compensation benefits and claims and diversity.
The Standard Causal model
This basic model documents the feedback loop that happens when human resources decisions are made. The primary strategy of your business is at the top of this model and influences the outcome of every human resource decision. The final result of all the past human resource and business decisions is how much profit your company makes.
The Standard Causal model is a very basic model that is a great framework for thinking about how everything comes together in a business.
The 5P’s model
This human resources model operates on the idea that your company’s purpose, principles and processes decide how effectively employees achieve your company’s objectives.
Purpose: This is the main vision and goals of your company.
People: Your employees are the lifeblood of your company and ultimately determine success.
Principals: These are your company guidelines for achieving your main objectives as a business.
Processes: This is how your company is organized and the operational rules that are in place.
Performance: The final result of your business strategy, processes and employee performance.
Deciding which model to use
Human resource managers need to decide what HRM models work best for their company. This often requires experimenting with different models and taking notes of what works and doesn’t. Some models do work better at various times in a company’s growth. No model is ideal for every business.
Tips for successful human resource management
Don’t be resistant to changing your model when needed
Businesses change, and so do human resource needs. It is important to be open to change to grow a business or keep up with changes within an industry. Getting stuck on a certain way of doing things can lead to a lack of growth within your company. This can make all the difference in a competitive environment.
Look for employees with advanced degrees for some positions and encourage continued education for long-term employees
A more skilled and educated workforce can help a business succeed. Encouraging talented current employees to earn a 100% online MBA is a fantastic way to improve your talent pool from within your company. Thanks to online programs, it is a lot easier for people to continue working and gaining hands-on experience while advancing their careers and offering your company more skills throughout the time they are earning their degrees.
Cast a wide net when you advertise jobs but be open to promoting within the company
Many people are willing to relocate for a great job, so advertising a position nationally is a great way to ensure you draw in as many talented applicants as possible. At the same time, if someone at your company has proven themselves and is a hard worker, you might consider promoting them and hiring someone to fill their vacated position. Promoting within a company boosts morale and encourages others to excel so they can be looked at for promotions when something becomes available.
Make sure employees get the proper training for their position
It does not pay to skimp on employee training. Poor or no training leads to costly mistakes and wasted time. There must be a period for training before a team member should be considered capable of working independently. Even seasoned employees will need additional training if change is implemented within a company.
Never make promises that you cannot keep
Human resource managers are responsible for setting up employees with base salaries and benefits packages. It is important to ensure in job advertisements that if a wage or package is mentioned, you can follow through with it. Never dangle the potential for promotion as an incentive if there is no evidence that it is possible within a reasonable period.
Be empathetic and practice what you need to do to resolve common conflicts
Good listening skills and the ability to empathize with a situation are essential for good human resource managers. Even if you do not 100% agree with what someone is saying, there is likely some aspect of what they are communicating that you can relate to, and that can help you reach them to resolve an issue in the best manner possible.
Conflict in a business is inevitable over time. How conflict is managed is very important. Employees need to know they can be open about problems. Sure, you don’t want people running to human resources for petty things, but you also don’t want employees to be afraid to bring up more serious issues. Unfortunately, a lot of serious things get hidden until they cause a lot of damage because employees are afraid of backlash.