Management’s basic job is the effective utilization of human resources for the achievement of organizational objectives, viz., profitable operations, and growth through the satisfaction of certain needs of the customers and society. It is through the combined efforts of human resources or personnel that technological, financial, physical, and all other resources are utilized. Therefore, the motivation of human resources is of utmost importance everywhere. The effectiveness with which various kinds of human resources are coordinated and utilized is responsible for the success or failure in achieving organizational objectives.
All the activities of any enterprise are initiated and determined by the persons who make up that institution. Plants, offices, computers, automated equipment, and everything else that a modern firm uses may be rendered unproductive except for human effort and direction. Of the tasks of management, managing the human component is the most important task, because everything else depends on how well the employees are working. The technological and material factors do frequently play a large part in the operations of a firm, yet in the ultimate analysis, it is on the quality of its people, the opportunities they get to develop and utilize their skills, and the manner in which they are managed and supervised in their work that the performance of the organization depends.
The following definitions will make the concept clearer:
“Human Resource Management is that part of management which is concerned with people at work and with their relationship with an enterprise. Its aim is to bring together and develop into the effective organization the men and women who make up an enterprise and having regard for the well-being of the individual and of working groups, to enable them to make their best contribution to its success”.
“Thus, Human Resource Management is that part of the process of management specifically concerned with the people employed in an organization. Its purpose is to establish and maintain sound relations at all levels of the organization and to secure the effective use of personnel by ensuring such conditions of employment as well as to attain for this personnel social satisfaction which they tend naturally to seek within their working environment”.
The word ‘personnel’ refers to the human resource’ of an organization, i.e., the employees. Thus Human Resource Management is often referred to as Personnel Management (though there are conceptual differences between the two). To define it, “Personnel management is concerned with all aspects of managing the human resources of an organization. More specifically, personnel management involves determining the organization’s need for human resources, recruiting and selecting the best available employees, developing, counseling, and rewarding employees, acting as a liaison with unions and government organizations, and handling other matters related to the well-being of employees.” Each of these functions is necessary to some degree irrespective of the nature and size of the organization. That is why, in most organizations, a separate department known as Personnel/Human Resources Department is created for the effective performance of these functions.
Human Resource Management is also concerned with the human and social implications of change in internal organization and methods of working and of economic and social changes in the community”. Management must have the support of all employees. In an informative society, human resources are at the cutting edge. And it means that human resource professionals are becoming much more important in their organization.
Currently, many companies recognize the growing importance of their human resources, but a large number are conceptualizing them in strategic terms-in ways to gain a competitive advantage. But, many companies forego the opportunity to seize competitive advantage through human resource practice initiatives.