Human Resources Roles and Responsibilities

Essay by chinadoll07University, Bachelor'sB+, July 2008

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The purpose of this paper is to define the roles and responsibilities of the Human Resources Manager. Their primary function is attracting the most qualified employees and matching them to the jobs for which they are best suited. The jobs in the human resources field require contact with people inside and outside the office; dealing with people is an important part of the job. The ultimate goal is their ability to manage a plethora of roles for the success of any organization.

The first person a prospective employee comes in contact with is the company’s Human Resources Manager. Companies rely heavily on the expertise of HRM to enforce policies, practices, and systems that influence employees’ behavior, attitudes, and job performance (B. Gerhart, J. Hollenbeck, R. Noe, P. Wright, 2004). Their primary job function is to ensure there is a fair, objective, and legal route to a candidate who is interested in obtaining a job.

Unfortunately, the trends in globalization, technology, diversity, e-business, and ethics have made it a difficult task to keep the vision of HRM clear. So many laws that protect the employee do not always protect the employer. In order for the HRM to do the best possible job they must keep up with the constant change of the laws, and their clear meaning.

Companies are finding that to survive they must compete in international markets and keep foreign competitors’ at bay. Their attempts to gain and sustain a strong customer base in the United States make the market challenging to say the least. To meet these challenges, U.S. businesses must develop global markets, keep up with competition from overseas, hire from an international labor pool, and prepare employees for global assignments (S. Bates, 2006). That is where the need for technology comes into play.

Advances in computer related technology have had a major impact on the use of information for managing human resources. Large quantities of employee data including training records, skills, compensation rates, and benefits usage and cost can easily be stored on personal computers and manipulated with user-friendly spreadsheets or statistical software (Gerhart, Hollenbeck, Noe, and Wright, 2004). Often these features are combined in a human resource information system or HRIS, a computer system used to acquire, store, manipulate, analyze, retrieve, and distribute information related to an organization’s human resources (Gerhart, Hollenbeck, Noe, and Wright, 2004).A HRIS can support strategic decision making, help the organization avoid lawsuits, provide data for evaluating programs or policies, and support day-today HRM decisions. Therefore, these technological advances put a world of information and knowledge virtually at their fingertips. This in fact closes the gap making the world seem like a much smaller place.

The growth in e-business, plus the shift from a manufacturing to a service and information economy, has changed the nature of employees that are most in demand. Companies are looking to hire college grads because of their technological savvy and because a large number of baby boomers are headed toward retirement (C. Folds, 2006). Companies look to college graduates for fresh perspectives and innovative ideas (C. Folds, 2006).

Employees from all over the world now come together to work in one unit. Another kind of change affecting the U.S. labor force is that it is growing more diverse in racial and ethnic terms. America being the great melting pot that it is offers tolerance and understanding to those in the workforce as a whole. The greater the level of diversity of the U.S. labor force challenges employers to create HR practices that ensure they fully utilize the talents, skills, and values of all employees (Strasheim, P, 2006). But diversity is much more than gender and ethnicity. It includes all of the things that make us individuals physical characteristics, education, personal values, environmental and socio-economic influences, and so on (Gerhart, Hollenbeck, Noe, and Wright, 2005). For an organization to operate in other countries, its HR practices must take into consideration differences in culture and business practices.

The reputation and credibility of a HRM is always an important factor, for the success of any company. Being an expert at people management skills is a must. They have to know a wide array of subjects such as finance, market strategy, technology, staffing and training needs of the employees. They have to be masters of multitasking often managing the constant change of laws, needs of the customer base and keeping employee incentives high. The managing of cultural change when various cultures enter their company can be difficult to manage. The difficult task of maintaining their reputations and credibility may be about providing a professional service to the employer and an ethical service to their employers. (Strasheim, P., 2004). An efficient HRM is an asset to their company because without them there is no road to success.

ReferencesBates, S. (2006, August). The Role of HR Executive Undergoing Great Changes. HR Magazine, Retrieved from website, T. (2005). Diversity: A World of Difference. Valuation Insights and Perspectives, 10, RetrievedMarch2, 2007, from, Chauntelle (2006, June, 27). Black Enterprise, Retrieved March 5, 2007, from, B., Hollenbeck, J., Noe, R., & Wright, P. (2005). The Fundamentals of Human Resource Management. Chicago: McGraw Hill.

Strasheim, P. (2004). HR, ethics, compliance risks & fair labor practices: ethical dilemmas, an ethical safety algorithm and recommendations for a way forward. Retrieved March 2, 2007, from