Human Resource Management

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In this assignment I intend to outline the development of Personnel Management (PM) and Human resource management (HRM). Briefly describing their development and the role they play in a work place today. I will then discuss the role HRM played in changing the approaches adopted by management to employment, before finally hypothesising about the future direction of HRM.

PM can be traced all the way back to the late 18th century and the industrial revolution in England. However for the purpose of this assignment my analysis will begin much later after the Second World War (WW2). WW2 created a massive demand for labour and in particular personal specialists. It was in late 1946 that these specialists created the Institute of Personnel Management (IPM). In the 1960s employment laws were passed to create growth in the personnel function which meant PM had to evolve. In the 1970s further legislation was passed promoting sexual equality and standards in the work place which encouraged further development and at this stage the role of PM was as a mediator between management and employees. PM had a very low power base within business and was often referred to as the ‘trashcan’ as every undesirable job an organisation had to undertake was dumped on PM. For example PM would be left to explain management’s decisions to angry employees or fight management’s corner in disputes with workers unions. This meant that much of the work carried out by PM was reactive, they were also mainly left to work with the soft S’s: staff and support and most of their work was carried out in the short term. PM was never fully identified with management showing its lack of importance and respect to and from business respectively.

The 1980s and 90s saw a radic...

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...anisations to meet the changing demands of the global business market with ease. Embracing their new relationship with employees has allowed them to reap the benefits of a happier more productive workforce. If HRM can maintain its current position then it will be able to move from strength to strength, as developments in technology and communication proceeds unabated HRM will be able to keep evolving and improving. HRM is now an integral part of an organisations armoury, with a good HRM department businesses should be able to grow and be successful taking all the problems of running a business in its stride.


Bratton j, Gold j (2003) Human Resource Management Theory and Practice 3rd edition, Palgrave McMillan.

Gross r (1996) Psychology the Science of Mind and Behaviour 3rd edition, Hodder & Stoughton
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