Everything you need to know about functions of personnel management. Personnel management is concerned with managing people.

It covers all levels of personnel, including blue-collared employees (craftsman, foreman, labourers), and white-collared employees (professionals, managers, clerical workers, salesmen).

It is concerned with employees, both as individuals and a group with collaboration and involvement in the organisation’s activity.

Personnel management is concerned with helping the employees to develop their capabilities and potentiality to the maximum possible extent.


Personnel management attempts at getting the willing cooperation of the people for the attainment of the desired goal.

The functions of personnel management are very wide. An agreement over them is rare. Broadly, the personnel functions can be divided into two parts — Managerial functions and Operative functions.

The functions of the personnel manager are very comprehensive and varied and are determined and influenced by such factors as the size, nature and location of the organization, its short-term and long-term objectives, nature of industry and product, market conditions, degree of competitiveness among rivals, economic, cultural, political and legal environment, the structure of the administrative officers, the mental make-up of the personnel managers and overall organizational philosophy of business.

The functions of personnel management can be studied under the following heads:-


1. Administrative and Specialist Functions 2. Managerial Functions 3. Operative Functions.

These functions are further sub-divided into:

A: Administrative and Specialist Functions

B: Managerial Functions:- 1. Planning 2. Organising 3. Directing 4. Controlling 5. Motivating 6. Coordinating.


C: Operative Functions:- 1. Procurement of Personnel 2. Development of Personnel 3. Compensation to Personnel 4. Maintaining Good Industrial Relations 5. Record-Keeping 6. Personnel Planning and Evaluation 7. Personnel Research and Audit 8. Discipline and Grievance Handling.

Functions of Personnel Management – Managerial, Operative and Administrative Functions

Functions of Personnel Management – Top 3 Functions: Administrative & Specialist, Managerial & Operative Functions

Personnel management is concerned with managing people. It covers all levels of personnel, including blue-collared employees (craftsman, foreman, labourers), and white-collared employees (professionals, managers, clerical workers, salesmen). It is concerned with employees, both as individuals and a group with collaboration and involvement in the organisation’s activity.

Personnel management is concerned with helping the employees to develop their capabilities and potentiality to the maximum possible extent. Personnel management attempts at getting the willing cooperation of the people for the attainment of the desired goal.

Organization is nothing without personnel. Preferring to work with human rather than objects is still important. What is IBM without its employee? Personnel constitute an integral part of the organization. The knowledge skills, imaginativeness, abilities and commitment of the members of the organization constitute the most critical factor in the development and implementation of work plan and the delivery of product and services.


Without the full commitment of its employees, an organization cannot accomplish its objectives. Consequently, the attention, development, motivation and coordination of employees are essential responsibilities of all levels of management (top, middle, lower). Personnel manager must be greatly concerned with the expectations of both employees and societies in general.

Today, personnel manager is attaining more importance because of rapid change in management process and other technological advancement. Personnel administration is the code of the ways of organising and treating individuals at work and the calculated use of resources so that they will each get the greatest possible realization of their intrinsic (inner) abilities thus, attaining maximum efficiencies for themselves and their group and thereby giving to the enterprise of which they are a part of its determining competitive advantage and its optimum or effective results.

For example, ONGC’s oil exploration capabilities, and Dell’s ability to deliver low cost, high quality computers at an amazing speed.

Personnel administration help an organization in the management of personnel resources with the use of well thought out principles, practices, programmes, functions, activities and rationalise techniques in selecting, retaining, and developing personnel for the fulfilment of organizational objectives systematically and scientifically.


It is an art and science of planning, organising, evaluating and implementing the personnel resources in any organization so that the organization derives maximum benefits in terms of performance and efficiency as well as achievement of the objectives, goals, and targets.

Day-by-day, it is becoming complex until and unless we understand all the implications of such an administration. For example, two professional bodies were formed namely Indian Institute of Personnel Management (IIPM) at Kolkata and the National Institute of Labour Management (NILM) at Mumbai.

In 1980s, these two professional bodies merged together and formed the National Institute of Personnel Management (NIPM) headquartered at Kolkata.

In the year 1990, another milestone was achieved by renaming of American Society for Personnel Administration (ASPA) as Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). Over the year, a new approach — the Human Resource Management has emerged which focuses on developmental aspects of human resource with a pragmatic (positive) and flexible approach.


There are important functions of personnel management, which are discussed as under:

Function # 1. Administrative and Specialist:

Personnel function is an administrative and specialist function. It is an administrative function, as a manager’s job at any level of management hierarchy is to deal with human beings. It is a specialist function also, as Personnel Manager should specialise in recruitment and selection, training and development functions, etc., and he is expected to provide guidance to other departments also.

“Personnel administration is a line responsibility and a staff function. It is a basic management responsibility, permeating all levels and types of management in all organisations. Personnel specialists help line managers in providing advice, counsel, services and various types of controls to secure uniform administration of personnel policies designed to achieve organisational objective.” —Pigors and Myers

Function # 2. Managerial:

Main functions under this category are as follows:


(i) Planning- Personnel Management has to plan the manpower requirement of an organisation. The plans are prepared as to how many employees for each department or section are required and the necessary calibre each one should possess.

(ii) Organising- Personnel Management is responsible for organising the human resources in the best possible manner. It is responsible for establishing harmonious relationship between various factors of production, so that the employees may prove helpful in achieving the objectives of the organisation.

(iii) Directing- It involves motivation and leadership. In the absence of effective direction, the organisation cannot achieve the desired results. Direction includes issuing instructions to the workers, developing communication network and integrating workers.

(iv) Controlling- Personnel Management is responsible for controlling and regulating the activities of personnel department also. It includes the determination of targets, analysing actual performance, comparing the results with pre-determined targets and correcting deviations, if any.

(v) Motivating- Personnel Management motivates the employees of the organisation by providing monetary and non-monetary incentives. This enables the management to get the maximum advantage out of their capability and efficiency.

(vi) Coordinating- Personnel Management is responsible for establishing effective co-ordination between labour and capital resources of the enterprise.

Function # 3. Operative:


(A) Manpower Planning:

Manpower planning is the process of determining scientifically the number and type of employees that an enterprise will need in a specified period of time in future. Its purpose is to ensure that the organisation will have an adequate number of qualified persons at the proper time to perform various jobs efficiently and with personal satisfaction.

Manpower planning consists of the following steps:

(i) Manpower Forecasting:

First of all the number of personnel required is calculated on the basis of the company’s sales forecast, expansion plans, labour market trends, etc. Then the skills required to do the jobs are determined on the basis of job analysis. A detailed analysis of various jobs is made to identify the qualifications and experience required for them.

Job analysis produces two statements:

a. Job description which is a summary of the nature, duties and responsibilities of a job; and

b. Job specification which is a list of the education, experience, skills and training required for the job.

(ii) Manpower Inventory:

A detailed catalogue of present employees is prepared to determine the number and quality of personnel available within the organisation. The qualifications, experience, personality, background, assignments handled, training received, etc., of every employee are included in the manpower inventory. It is also called manpower audit.

(iii) Manpower Programme:

The comparison between manpower forecast and manpower inventory will reveal the gaps in manpower. In order to fill up these gaps, a programme is prepared for recruitment, selection, training, transfer, promotion, etc., of employees.

(B) Establishing Job Specifications:

After determining the number of employees required, it is essential to prescribe the qualification and abilities which each employee should possess. These refer to knowledge, experience, skill, aptitude, initiative, etc. A Personnel Manager should have a list of the required manpower and should specify the qualification, experience, etc., required for each type of post. The list containing these details is known as job specification list. It should mention the minimum requirements for the job. On the basis of job specifications, the qualifications for different posts can be determined.

(C) Determining Labour Sources, Recruitment and Selection:

After determining the number of employees needed and their required qualifications, Personnel Department is to recruit such people.

The different sources of manpower supply, methods of recruitment and selection, etc., are discussed below:

The various sources of recruitment may be classified into two broad categories:

(i) Internal recruitment and

(ii) External recruitment.

(i) Internal Recruitment:

Internal recruitment means recruitment from within the enterprise. There are two main internal sources of recruitment, namely promotions and transfers. Promotion means shifting an employee to a higher position carrying greater pay, status and responsibilities.

Many companies follow the practice of filling higher jobs by promoting employees who are considered fit for such positions. Transfer implies shifting an employee from one section or branch to another, of the same rank. It involves no significant change in the pay, status and responsibility of the employee.

(ii) External Recruitment:

In external recruitment, the enterprise seeks suitable candidates from outside.

The commonly used methods for external recruitment are:

(a) Press Advertisement,

(b) Employment agencies,

(c) Campus recruitment,

(d) Recommendations,

(e) Labour contracts,

(f) Notice at factory gate and

(g) Casual callers.

(D) Selection:

Selection is the process of carefully screening the candidates to choose the most suitable persons for the job vacancies to be filled. It is called a negative process because unsuitable candidates are eliminated or rejected in order to identify the suitable candidates. The number of candidates rejected is much more than those actually selected.

Moreover, tests, interviews and other techniques of selection are more reliable for rejection of unsatisfactory candidates for identifying an ideal candidate. Selection is always done after recruitment. The basic purpose of selection is to choose the right type of candidates to fill various positions in the organisation.

Selection is an important function of personnel management. Errors committed at the time of selection may prove very costly. If the selection process is faulty, unsuitable candidates are appointed. As a result, the efficiency of the organisation goes down. Such persons shirk work and absent themselves from the work quite frequently. They may ultimately leave their jobs.

This leads to wastage of time and money spent on their selection and training. Proper selection and placement of personnel are essential for building up a suitable workforce. It helps to improve the efficiency of operations and the morale of employees. The rates of labour turnover and absenteeism can be kept low.

(E) Placement:

Once the selection has been made, the next role of the Personnel Department is to put the right man at the right place. If the selected persons are not posted at the right place, their output will be adversely affected. Wrong placement results in absenteeism, accidents, wastage and poor performance.

For the purpose of placement, tests should be administered. Placement should be determined after taking into consideration the employee’s past experience and training given in the present enterprise.

There have been instances where huge amounts were spent on the entrants’ training and subsequently they were posted at positions other than those for which they were trained. The Personnel Manager should see that such practices are discouraged.

He should keep a service record containing past and present performance on the basis of which the employees are placed at suitable jobs. These service records of the employees help the Personnel Officer in transferring, promoting or demoting particular employees.

(F) Introduction to the Job:

After a person is appointed, he should be introduced to the enterprise and to his job. This is also called ‘induction’. He should be informed about the history of the company, different departments of the company, his own department, his own job and other pertinent information about the company. He should be acquainted with any special policies and rules, which he may be required to observe.

This job introduction makes him understand his work better and he soon develops attachment with the company. In some companies, the task of job introduction is initiated by the Supervisor under whom the new employee has been placed. It is necessary that the new employee is informed of all the important areas of the enterprise.

(G) Training:

Training is given mainly on three occasions.

These are:

(i) When the new employees are hired,

(ii) When employees are put on new jobs, and

(iii) When some innovations have taken place and it is thought worthwhile to use new techniques of doing a job.

The nature of some jobs is such that it does not require reorientation, like the job of a blacksmith. On the other hand, there are jobs, which require constant training. Engineering graduates in varied fields, for example, need refresher courses in view of new developments taking place frequently.

Functions of Personnel Management – 2 Basic Functions: Managerial and Operative Functions

I. Managerial Functions of Personnel Management:

Personnel management performs both managerial and operative functions.

Among its managerial func­tions, planning, organizing, directing, and controlling of human resources will bear recount:

1) Planning:

Planning in the context of personnel management means formulation of policies and programmes for proper recruitment, selection, training, development, integration, maintenance and motivation of workforce. The policies and programmes in this respect should be clear, precise, easy to understand, flexible, and should be communicated to all workers.

In the context of personnel management, planning means the kind of jobs for which workers need to be selected; knowledge, skills and experience of candidates to be selected; inducting the selected candidates into the workplace, machines and tools to be used by them for performance of allocated tasks and duties, and providing them training where necessary.

(2) Organizing:

Organization is a vehicle for realizing the organizational objectives. It requires every worker to fit into inter-personal relationships—to whom he will be accountable for performance of the task or duty assigned to him, how his job is related to jobs done by fellow-workers, what communication channels he can use to interact with his superiors, peers and subordinates.

Organizing is a function performed by both—top management and personnel management. Top management is mainly concerned with procuring physical resources—material, machinery and equip­ment to be allocated to departmental heads to perform the responsibility assigned to them. How­ever, functions such as establishment of line and staff relationships, assignment of responsibility and accountability and delegation of matching authority are performed by, or in consultation with, per­sonnel management.

(3) Directing:

Proper direction and motivation is provided by issuing appropriate orders and instructions to workers at various levels. Orders and instructions should be complete, precise, to-the-point, and easy to under­stand. But mere issue of orders will not do. It is also necessary that workers are properly motivated to perform the work allocated to them.

Motivation may be positive or negative. Positive motivation may be in the form of providing mate­rial and mental satisfaction to workers to inspire them to work more and better. Negative motivation aims at providing disincentives in the form of demotion, penalty and punishment for not performing the task as desired.

(4) Controlling:

The function of control is concerned with ensuring that tasks and duties assigned to individuals and groups are performed well and in time. It involves establishment of reasonable standards and levels of performance expected of workers, effective feedback, i.e., comparison of actual performance with the performance standards, discovery of deviations and initiation of necessary corrective action.

II. Operative Functions of Personnel Management:

(1) Recruitment and Selection of Workers:

The first step in recruitment and selection of right kind of workers is to know beforehand what each job-holder will be required to do and what knowledge and experience he should possess to do it. The advertisement in any media or handbills posted on the notice board of the organization should clearly specify this so that only persons who satisfy the job-man requirement apply for the job.

After receipt of applications, the next step will be to select the applicants for interview and practical tests. Interview and practical tests should be done by persons who are experts in their respective fields and can be trusted for their objectivity and impartiality.

(2) Employee Development:

The process of employee development consists of adequate facilities to enable employees to acquire proficiency in the methods and techniques of work through various types of training. It calls for proper description of each job. Proper description of job-man requirements enables the employees to know what they need to achieve to become eligible for pay increases or promotion to higher positions.

Employees can be trained in the methods and techniques of work through lectures, instructions, study courses, and readings. Conferences, panel discussions, guided tours and demonstrations can also be arranged for the purpose. However, the best way to do so is to involve employees in actual management situations. Important jobs may be rotated among employees so that the problems pecu­liar to each job may be known to all.

(3) Remuneration or Compensation:

Payment of adequate remuneration or compensation involves a number of things. First, there should be proper job analysis to facilitate selection of right person to perform it. Secondly, there should be constant job evaluation and merit rating of the person who has been asked to perform it. This would greatly help in fixation of wage rates.

To encourage employees to perform better, individual and col­lective incentive schemes may also be introduced. Attention also needs to be paid to psychological and social needs of employees such as urge to interact with fellow-workers, seeking recognition for competence and advancement in career.

(4) Integration:

It involves infusing a sense of belonging to the organization. Harmony, co-operative group effort, and team spirit are possible only when employees realize that their individual self-interests will be served only when they work to promote interests of the organization. For this it is necessary that – (a) The organization structure provides them adequate and effective channels of communication, (b) There is permanent and fast-track mechanism for satisfactory redress of all problems and grievances, and (c) There are healthy and mutually rewarding human relations at all levels.

(5) Maintenance:

Maintenance means provision of appropriate benefits and services which keep the employees commit­ted to the organization. It includes establishment of health, sanitation and safety standards, facilities such as canteen, recreation rooms, toilets, group insurance, employee associations, and so on.

Functions of Personnel Management

The functions of personnel management are very wide. An agreement over them is rare. Broadly, the personnel functions can be divided into two parts — Managerial functions and Operative functions.

1. Managerial Function:

These functions are explained below in detail:

(a) Planning – Planning is the main function of management. In the context of personnel management, it is concerned with manpower planning, studying labour turnover rate, forecasting the future requirement of personnel and planning for selection and training procedures, etc.

(b) Organising – organising involves the establishment of inter-relationships within organisation. It provides a structure for the company by identifying the various sub-groups created by individuals in managerial jobs as well as operative jobs.

(c) Directing – Personnel management is directly concerned with direction function also. It includes issuing instructions to the workers, developing communication network, interpreting various industrial laws and integrating workers.

(d) Controlling – Personnel department helps in controlling also. It provides basic data for establishing standards, making job analysis and performance appraisal, etc. These all techniques assist in effective control of the quality, time and efforts of workers.

2. Operative Functions:

These are services or routine functions of personnel management.

They are as under:

(a) Procurement of Personnel:

The first operative function of personnel management is concerned with the obtaining of the proper kind and number of personnel necessary to accomplish organisational goals. It deals specifically with such subjects as the determination of manpower requirements, their recruitment, selection, placement and orientation, etc.

(b) Development of Personnel:

After personnel have been obtained, they must, to some degree, be developed before going to work. Development has to do with the increase of skill through training. Different training methods are used in this process in order to develop the employees. Framing a sound promotion policy determination of the basis of promotion and making performance appraisal are the basis of personnel development functions.

(c) Compensation to Personnel:

Compensation means, determination of adequate and equitable remuneration of personnel for their contribution to organisational objectives. It is one of the most difficult and important functions of the personnel management to determine the monetary compensation for various jobs.

For choosing a suitable compensation policy a number of decisions are taken into the function, i.e., job evaluation, remuneration policy, incentive and premium plans, bonus policy and co-partnership, etc. In addition to this, it also assists the organisation for adopting the suitable wage and salary policy and payment of wages and salaries at right time.

(d) Maintaining Good Industrial Relations:

It is one of the most essential functions of the personnel manager to create the harmonious relations between management and labour. It covers a wide field and is intended to reduce strikes, promote industrial peace, provide fair deal to workers and establish industrial democracy. If the personnel manager is unable to make harmonious relation between the two, it will be very harmful to the organisation.

The industrial unrest will take place and millions of man-days will be lost. The moral and physical condition of the employee will suffer if labour management relations are not good. It is the duty of personnel manager to make harmonious relation with the help of efficient communication system and co-partnership.

(e) Record-Keeping:

Record-keeping is also an important function of personnel manager. In this system, personnel manager collects and maintains information, which is concerned with the staff of the organisation. Recording is essential for every organisation because it assist the management in decision making, e.g., for promotions.

(f) Personnel Planning and Evaluation:

Under this system different types of activities are evaluated such as – evaluation of performance, personnel policy of an organisation and its practices, personnel audit, moral survey and performance appraisal, etc.

(g) Personnel Research and Audit:

It is also an important function of personnel management. This function is concerned with the research in newer motivational techniques and auditing its effect on the workers of the organisation, etc. Research is helpful in getting the information relating to employees to deal with the issues arising time-to-time. It contributes in taking decision timely. Further the audit is to be carried out to see whether the work is done as per personnel policies or not if there is any irregularity then it can be corrected.

(h) Discipline and Grievance Handling:

It is the function of personnel management to maintain the discipline in the organisation. Discipline is very necessary for smooth working otherwise there would be irregularity in all activities. At workplace there are chances of taking place of differences in thinking, ideas, methods of working, etc. These may lead to grievances if not listened timely. It is the function of personnel management to deal with it in time and properly to avoid problems.

Functions of Personnel Management – 2 Categories: Managerial and Operative Functions

The functions of the personnel manager are very comprehensive and varied and are determined and influenced by such factors as the size, nature and location of the organization, its short-term and long-term objectives, nature of industry and product, market conditions, degree of competitiveness among rivals, economic, cultural, political and legal environment, the structure of the administrative officers, the mental make-up of the personnel managers and overall organizational philosophy of business.

There are two categories of personnel management functions:

1. Managerial and

2. Operative.

1. Managerial Functions of Personnel Management:

A manager is the one who exercises authority and leadership over other personnel, the president of a firm is certainly a manager and so also is the department head or supervisor.

Lawrence Appley said that “Management is the accomplishment of results through the efforts of other people” in the opinion of Harold Koontz, “it is the art of getting things done through people and with informally organised groups”.

Management may be thought of as the process of allocating and organization’s inputs (human and economic resources) by planning, organising, directing and controlling for the purpose of producing outputs (goods and services) desired by its customers so that organization’s objectives are accomplished. In the process, work is performed with and through organization personnel in an ever-changing business environment.

(a) Planning:

This functions deals with the determination of the future course of actions to achieve the desired results. Planning of personnel today prevent crisis tomorrow. The process of goal establishment will involve the active and enlightened participation of the personnel manager with his or her expertise in the area of human resources.

Planning is defining goals for future organisational performance and deciding on the tasks and use of resources needed to attain them. For example, Komatsu, Japan’s leading manufacturer of construction equipment and heavy machinery, president Satoru announced a long ranged plan called “G” 2000 which include moving the company into high-tech initiative such as lasers and 3D software as well as more traditional goals such as advances in heavy machineries and finding more environmentally friendly technologies.

Terry is of the view that “planning is the foundation of most successful actions of the enterprise”. Planning is the determination of the plans, strategies, programmes, procedures, policies and standard needs to accomplish the desired objectives by recruiting, selecting and trained the employees in the organisations.

It involves the ability to think, to predict, to analyse and to come to decisions, to control the actions of personnel and to cope with the complex, dynamic fluid environment. They bridge the gap between where they are and where they want to go. The two most important features of planning are research and forecasting.

Personnel administration should be able to predict trends in wages, in labour market, in union demands, in other benefits, in personnel policies and programmes, changes in production or seasonal variations and the levelling out of differences in productions.

Therefore, planning and decision making has to be undertaken of an action so that anticipated problems and events may be handled properly. This is also stressed by the saying “Good Managers Make Things Happen”.

(b) Organising:

Organising typically follows planning and reflects how the organization tries to accomplish the plan. Organising in fact, is considered to be the wool of the entire management fabric, and hence cannot be ignored.

According to J.C. Massie, “An organisation is a structure, a framework and a process by which a cooperative group of human beings allocates its tasks among its members, identifies relationships and integrates its activities towards common objectives”.

This is done by designing the structure of authority and responsibilities among jobs, personnel and physical factors because in its essentials, it consists of the assignments of the specific functions to designated person or departments with authority to have them carried out, and their accountability to management for the result obtained.

It seeks to achieve the maximum return with minimum efforts by decentralization, whereby the power of decisions is brought down as near as possible to the individual concerned. In the words of Drucker- “The right organisational structure is the necessary foundation; without it, the best performance in all other areas of management will be ineffectual and frustrated.”

For example, SEMCO, a Brazilian company making industrial pumps, mixtures, propellers and other products recognized from a highly structured, autocratic business into a company run on trust, freedom and democracy.

(c) Directing (Motivating, Actuating, Commanding and Leading):

Directions then consist of motivating, supervising, guiding and leadership. Without direction, there is no destination. According to McGregor, many managers would agree that the effectiveness of their organization would be at least doubled if they could discover how to tap the unrealised potential present in their human resources. Directing is involved with getting persons together and asking them to work willingly and effectively for the achievement of designated goals.

Directing deals with not only the dissemination of the orders within an organization units and departments but also with the acceptance and execution of this order by the employees. The review or checking of the safety instalments, wage rate ranges, disciplinary actions and general wage changes are all the responsibility of personnel departments.

Leading means creating a shed culture and values, communicating goals to employees throughout the organizations and infusing employees with the desire to perform at a high level. Leading involves motivating entire department, divisions as well as those individuals working immediately with the managers.

An era of uncertainty, international competition and diversity of the workforce, the ability to shape culture, communicate goals and motivate employees is critical to business success.

(d) Coordination and Control:

In the words of Terry, “Coordination deals with the task of lending efforts in order to ensure a successful attainment of an objective, coordinating refers to balancing, timing and integrating activities in organization, so that a unity of action in pursuit of a common purpose achieved”.

Coordination in the supervisor and those for whom he is responsible. The personnel department has to coordinate the task of developing, interpreting and reviewing personnel policies, practices, and programmes such as safety programmes, employee benefits, job evaluation, training, development and communication.

These activities are generally put into operation by and through the line people; but it is the personnel department which follows them through, unifies them and checks to see how they work.

Control is the managerial function concerned with regulating activities in accordance with personnel plan which in turn was formulated on the basis of analysis on fundamental organizational goals. Controlling is the act of checking, regulating and verifying whether everything occurs in conformity with the plan that has been adopted, the instructions issued and the principles established.

It is the course and getting location reports; rather than it is steering the ship. By check, analysis, and review, the personnel department assist in realising the personnel objectives, auditing, training programme, analysing labour turnover records, directing morale surveys, conducting separation interviews, interviewing new employees, comparing various features of the programme with other organization programme.

This monitoring process provides management with actual performance information for comparison with free determined performance standards, if there are unavoidable deviations from the planned performance, corrective actions can be taken immediately.

Management must ensure that the organization is moving towards its goals. New trends towards empowerment and trust of employees have led many companies to place less emphasis on top down control and more emphasis on training employees to monitor and correct themselves.

For example, at ISS (International Service System), the Danish company, grew from a local office cleaning contractor to Billion Multinational Business, the entire control system is built on the belief that people at all levels will make the right decisions if they are provided with appropriate information. Frontline employees are thoroughly trained to measure their own performance against company standards and make corrections as needed.

2. Operating Functions of Personnel Management:

An operative is the one who has no authority over others but has been given a specific task or duty to perform under managerial supervision. The operative functions of personnel management are concerned with the activities dealing with procuring, developing, compensating, integrating, maintaining, and separating an efficient workforce. These functions are also known as service functions.

(a) Procurement:

The first operative function of personnel management is procurement. It is concerned with procuring and employing people who possess necessary skill, knowledge and aptitude. Under its purview, you have job analysis, manpower planning, recruitment, selection, placement, induction and internal mobility.

(i) Job Analysis- It is a systematic exploration of the activities within a job. It is a basic technical procedure, one that is used to define the duties, responsibilities and accountabilities of a job.

(ii) Human Resource Planning- It is the process by which an organisation ensures that it has the right number and kinds of people, at the right places, at the right time, capable of effectively and efficiently completing those tasks that will help the organization to achieve its overall objectives.

(iii) Recruitment- It is the process of searching for prospective employees and stimulating them to apply for jobs in the organization.

(iv) Selection- It is the process of ascertaining qualifications, experience, skill and knowledge of applicant with a view to appraising his or her suitability to the job.

(v) Placement- It is the process that ensures a fit, matching the employee’s qualifications, experience, skills and interest with the job on offer. It is the personnel manager’s responsibilities to position the right candidate at the right level.

(vi) Induction and Orientation- Those are the techniques by which a new employee is rehabilitated in his new surrounding and introduced to the practices, policies and people. He must be acquainted with the principles which define and drive the organization, its mission statement and values which form its backbone.

(vii) Follow-up- To measure and identify whether the performance is according to the plans or not.

(viii) Internal Mobility- The movement of employees from one job to another through transfer and promotions is called internal mobility. Some employees leave an organization due to various reasons leading to lay-off, resignation, retirement and even termination. These movements are known as external mobility. In the best interest of an organization and its employees, such job changes should be guided by well-conceived principles and policies.

(b) Development:

It is the process of improving, moulding (shaping), changing and developing the skills, knowledge, aptitude, commitment, attitude, creativeness, etc., based on present and future job and organizational requirements.

This functions includes:

i. Performance Appraisal- It is the systematic evaluation of individuals with respect to their performance on the job and their potential for development.

ii. Training- Training is a systematic process by which employees learn skills, knowledge, abilities or attitudes to further organizational and personal goals.

iii. Management or Executive Development- It is the process of designing and conducting suitable executive development, programmes so as to develop the managerial and human relation skill of employees.

iv. Career Planning and Development- It is the planning of one’s career and implementation of career plans by means of education, training, job search and acquisition of work experiences. It includes internal and external mobility.

v. Human Resource Development [HRD]- HRD aims at developing the total organisation. It creates a climate that enables every employee to develop and use his capabilities in order to further both individuals and organizational goals.

(c) Compensation:

It is concerned with securing adequate and equitable remuneration to personnel for their contribution to the attainment of organizational objective.

i. Job Design- Organising tasks and responsibilities towards having a productive unit of work is called job design. The main purpose of job design is to integrate the needs of employers to suit the requirements of the organization.

ii. Work Scheduling- Organizations must realize the importance of scheduling the work to motivate employees through job enrichment, shorter work weeks, flexible times, work sharing and homework assignment.

iii. Employees needs to be challenged at work and the job itself must be one that everyone value. Work scheduling is an attempt to structure work, incorporating the physical, physiological and behavioural aspects of work.

iv. Job Evaluation- Organization formally determines the value of jobs through the process of job evaluation. Job evaluation is a systematic process of determining the relative worth of job in order to establish which job should be paid more than others within the organization. Job evaluation helps to establish internal equality between various jobs.

v. Performance Appraisal- After employees has been selected for a job, has been trained to do it and has worked in it for a period of time, his performance should be evaluated. Performance evaluation is the process of deciding how employees do their jobs.

It is the method of evaluating the employees at the workplace and normally includes both quality and quantity aspects of job performance. It is the process that involves determining and communicating to an employee how he or she is performing and ideally, establishing a plan of improvement.

vi. Compensation Administration- It is the process of dividing how much an employee should be paid. The important goal of compensation administration is to design a low cost pay plan that will attract, motivate and retain competent employees which is also perceived to be fair by these employees.

vii. Incentives and Benefits- In addition to a basic wage structure, most organizations now­adays offer incentive compensation based on actual performance. Unlike incentives, benefits and services are offered to all employees as required by law including — social security, insurance, workman’s compensation, welfare amenities, maternity benefits to women employees, sickness benefits, medical benefits, disablement benefits or allowances, dependant benefits, retirement benefits like provident fund, pension, gratuity, etc.

Organizations have been offering a plethora of other benefits and services as well as a means of “sweetening the pot”. (Employees stock options, anniversary gifts, paid holidays, birthday gifts, and club membership).

Functions related to wage surveys, establishment of job classifications, job descriptions, job analysis and merit ratings, the establishments of wage rate and structure, wage plans and policies, wage systems, incentives and profit sharing plans, etc., fall under this category.

(d) Integration:

With the employee procured, developed and reasonably compensated, the next step that follows is one of the most difficult challenges to the management. This tries to integrate the goal of an organization with employee aspirations through various employee-oriented programmes, like redressing grievances promptly, instituting proper disciplinary measures, empowering people to decide and think independently, encouraging a participative culture, offering constructive help to trade unions, etc.

(i) Grievance Redressal:

A grievance is any factor that involves wages, hours or conditions of employment that is used as a complaint against the employer. Constructive grievance handling depends largely on manager’s ability to recognize, diagnose and correct the causes of potential employee dissatisfaction before it convert into formal grievance.

(ii) Discipline:

It is the force that prompt an individual or a group to observe the rules, regulations and procedures which are deemed necessary for the attainment of an objective.

(iii) Teams and Teamwork:

Self-managed team have emerged as the most important formal groups in today’s organizations. They enhance employee involvement and have the potential to create positive synergy. They encourage individuals to sublimate (to make high) their individual goals for those of the group.

Teams have inherent strength which ultimately leads to organisational success at various levels. It rests upon the premise that significant overlapping of interest do exist in the organization in which programmes as job enlargement, job evaluation, variable compensations plans.

The greater the overlap, the more productivity would coincide with employees that they would prefer to avoid. For example, assignment to narrow and repetitive tasks, meeting his output standards, acceptance of managerial decisions.

(iv) Collective Bargaining:

It is the process of agreeing on a satisfactory labour contract between management and union. The contract contains agreement about conditions of employment such as wage, hours, promotions, disciplines, and lay-off benefits, vacations, rest pauses and grievance procedure.

(v) Employee Participation and Empowerment:

Participation means sharing the decision making power with the lower rank of an organization in an appropriate manner. When workers participate in organization’s decision, they are able to see the big picture clearly and also how their actions would impact the overall growth of the company.

They can offer feedback immediately based on experience and improve the quality of decisions greatly. Since they are now treated with respect, they begin to view the job and the organization as their own and commit themselves to organizational objectives whole heartedly.

(vi) Industrial Relations:

Harmonious relations between labour and management are essential to achieve industrial growth and higher productivity. When the relationship between the parties is not cordial (hearty), discontentment develops and conflicts erupt abruptly (hasty). It is not always easy to put out the fires with the existing dispute, settlement machinery created by government.

Hence, both labour and management must appreciate the importance of openness, trusts and collaborations in their day-to-day dealings. This programme tends to decrease accidents, absenteeism, turnover and operating errors while raising morale, quality and productivity. Such programmes also prevents sabotage (an intentional damage to plant), undesirable behaviour such as insubordination, strike, etc.

At last, after the employee has been procured, his skill and ability developed and monetary compensation determined, the most important yet difficult of the personnel management is to bring about integration of human resource with organizations and to cope with inevitable conflicts that ensue.

Integration is concerned with the attempt to effect a reasonable reconciliation of individual, societal and organizational impact. On the other hand, there are certain things that employees desire which the compensation is reluctant to provide. For example, increase in wages, safe working conditions, time off with pay, shorter hours of work, premium pay for overtime work.

(e) Maintenance:

If we have executed the foregoing functions well, we now have a willing and able workforce. The maintenance of willingness is heavily affected by communications with employees, physical conditions of employees including health and safety and employee service programme are the responsibility of personnel departments.

i. Health and Safety:

Managers at all levels are expected to know and enforce safety and health standards throughout the organizations. They must ensure a work environment that protects employees from physical hazards, unhealthy conditions and unsafe acts of their personnel. Through proper safety and health programmes, the physical and psychological well-being of employee must be preserved and even improved.

ii. Employee Welfare:

It includes the services, amenities offered to employees within or outside the establishment for their physical, psychological and social well-being. Housing, transportation, educations and recreational facilities are all included in the employee welfare package.

iii. Social Security Measures:

It includes employees in addition to fringe benefits. These measures include workman’s compensation to those workers who are involved in accidents, maternity benefits, sickness and medical benefits, disablement benefits dependent benefits, provident funds, pensions, gratuity, etc.

(f) Separation:

Some employees leave the organization due to various reasons like resignation, retirement, death, discharge and lay-off.

Personnel management cannot afford to lay greater emphasis on one and neglect the other two major functions. In this connection the observations of John F. Mee merits mention. “It is essential to grasp the significance of this dual division of personnel functions of the mistake of becoming preoccupied with the demand of detail problems to the neglect of managerial duties is to be avoided”.

It is easy as more executives have learned to their regret, to become so busy with such tasks as hiring, transferring, counselling and training that they fail to foresee the shifting conditions which call for changes in operative functions; they fail to recognise the work of subordinates satisfactorily and they fail to keep a good check-up on the work conditions.