"Small business is not a little big business"

Essay by ivi69University, Master'sB, August 2006

download word file, 12 pages 4.0


A highly competitive business environment has made organisations aware of the critical role of Human Resources Development as a strategic function. Increasingly, the contribution of employees accounts for an organisation's ability to compete, grow and produce value.

Unfortunately, Human Resources Development has been designed especially for medium and large businesses, in which specialists are in charge of the management process; these companies also get enough time, money and staff to deal with these tasks.

On the contrary, smaller firms don't have the opportunity to give Human Resources enough importance. SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) indeed are organisations in which less than fifty people are employed. Therefore, their social context and working environment are specific and different of those of larger organisations. Their overall resources are limited, mainly in terms of budget, time and staff, and it may seem difficult to implement training and learning policies.

However, it is possible and has a very positive impact on the company as part of its market, as well as on the relationships between the employees; some key features have to also be taken into account to suit the particular needs of such organisations.

As in large businesses, the four basic steps of Human Resources Development must be developed: assessing performance, planning and evaluating Human Resources policies, implementing these policies and designing their implementation.

The first point to discuss is also about the specific features of Human Resources Development in small businesses. Secondly, there are a many barriers to overcome, especially compared to big businesses, and the reasons why Human Resources is a neglected field in SMEs should be explained. Thirdly, SMEs have many advantages related to their size, which is why we will be able to discuss many solutions that need to be implemented to overcome these barriers.

A. Human Resources Development...