Table of contents
International Human Resources Management
Management of Change
Policy Making and Development
Safety, Health and Environmental Management
Program and Project evaluation
Strategic Human resources Management
My first and foremost thanks go to Dr Nilan Ljunggren De Silva, who was my academic advisor at Atlantic International University. Secondly, I wish to thank my wife Vimbai and Children ,Shantell and Kyliewish for the support, since they endured my perpetual period of absence from home due to my studies.
I dedicate this collection of essays to my mother Judith and the rest of my family for making me who I am today. Thank you.
This is a collection of eight essays in human resources management, which, I initially wrote as assignments for my Masters' Degree at Atlantic International University. Since I got distinctions in almost all these essays, except in Strategic human resources management, where I got a second grade, I have decided to compile them into one book. I am sure that this compilation would assist many other students and human resources practioners across the globe. I adopted my own unique format in my approach, in that I emphasised on practical aspects related to the current company, in which I am employed. I have strived as much as possible to give practical examples that are applicable to my current organisational environment. All the assignments herein included are related to the human resources function. Some people, however, would question my inclusion of Program and project evaluation subject, since it suits more to the wider business scope than to human resources management. However, it is my belief that human resources must not be specifically separated from other business areas. Programs and projects are equally undertaken in the human resources field.
This collection of human resources management essays has concentrated on some key aspects of human resources. International human resources management explores the main arguments for and against adopting a fairly internationalised human resources system. Organisational psychology, in this case, concentrated on exploring the motivational and behavioural theories that are fundamental to the understanding of human behaviour. This ultimately lead to application of the implications , thereby creating a committed and loyal work force. Issues related to performance management, policy making and implementation as well as strategic human resources planning have been given attention. Safety and environmental issues are also explored .This area is of utmost importance when we focus on human safety and sustainability. My personal position is that every manager must be an entrepreneur, whether, that person works in human resources, marketing or accounting field. In a bid to portray that aspect I am sure the discussion of the subject, program and project development and evaluation is of essence.
International Human Resources Management
International human resources management (IHRM) is a new thinking on the block. It is a new concept which is being differently interpreted. There has not been a single definition of IHRM that has been standardised. The current thinking among many scholars is that international human resources management is a practice that is only found among Multinational Companies (MNCs). Some wish to call these multinational enterprises (MNEs). The argument is that international human resources management is applied by an MNC that has probably more than two firms on an international level (Dowling 2004). The idea being that for these firms, that have one owner, but located in various geographical positions, there is need to have different approaches to the management of people in these countries. Take an example of a company like Nestle. Nestle is found around the globe. However the different nestle branches has got different human resources management systems. However, along the lines there are various common ideologies and philosophy. A similar idea could be to institute the level of computerisation system in its human resources functions in all its subsidiaries. The policies may link somewhere, for example in its approach to human capital development. The main issue is that, the central philosophy in human resources management in all its companies is the same. What vary are the individual companies' operational policies and procedures. This having been said the definition of international human resources management in this paper shall focus on the internationalisation or globalisation of human resources practices, policies, system, technology and standards. Can it be possible to internationalise certain practices? And to what extent can standards and practices be applied on a global basis? Basically, international differs from global. Global concerns the entire earth and human race. International can refer to more than one state. From these foci international human resources practices can be practices that are applicable to more than one country. For example countries in the European Union can use similar policies and practices. Once that is achieved it becomes international human resources. Similar practices can take place in the current geo-political groupings, such as ECOWAS, SADC, and ARAB LEAGUE, just to name a few. It can be very possible to have international human resources management systems than to have global human resources systems. But all the same the variance and diversity in human resources management could be reduced, same as accounting principles and marketing principles look almost similar internationally. It must be emphasised that similarity can never be meant to mean equality.
Having pointed to what international human resources could mean and what global human resources management could be like, next we have to discuss the impact of current globalisation trend, politically and economically on internationalisation of human resources systems. In relation to international Non-governmental organisation and the running of UN agencies internationally, can't the human resources practioner society learn something? Generally this paper will discuss, among others, the following; impact of globalisation trend on human resources management, international standardisation of human resources management, impact of the global information highway, global mobility and migration trends, intra and inter-organisational networks. This discussion will also focus on expected roles of human resources departments irrespective of the geographical location of the corporate. The challenges of the standardisation process and the applicability of standardisation shall be discussed. The emergency of international organisations that promote the human resources vision shall be explored as well as the impact of the virtual online education and the internationalisation of the education system on the globalisation of the human resources management practices. The premise being that if students all over the world converge on international learning institutions like AIU or Cambridge University why could then the internationalisation of human resources sound unachievable?
The first issue to discuss is the internationalisation or globalisation of business. In most business ventures there seems to be global trends. The global trend does not imply that who ever chooses to do business in such a matter is bound to follow predetermined courses. It merely means that for a business to succeed there are guidelines that are available on a global scale. Yes, flexibility is essential. Innovations can also be included in such a practice, but the general principle is the same. The specific details differ from place to place. For example a format of a business plan follows some general attributes. A business plan can not be a good plan, without an aim, objectives and a vision. What it means is that most businesses would fair better with such a plan. Specificity is the one that varies and specificity now takes into consideration national culture and values system as well as other environmental determinants. Internationalisation in this sense relates to the creation of the general framework in which the business people refer to (Bonache and Zarraga 2008). An example of marketing department could be the use of a SWOT analysis to determine the marketing strategy. The scope and essence of SWOT is the same anywhere else in the world. The variables in that analysis are the one that differs. That aside another example comes from the accounting field. The balance sheet has got certain requirements. You can not choose to omit other assets just because you are in Africa and not in America. This must apply to any field of specialisation, such as human resources. The human resources field must have definite guidelines in various areas. The following areas for example could have the general guidelines:
- Policy making and implementation
- Recruitment strategy
- Performance appraisal system
- Use of technology
- Talent management
- Development and training
- Record keeping
- Strategy outlook
www.hapintl/whatwedo/globalihrmod.hmtl adds the following main aspects
There are of course many more areas that can be covered. There can be identification of various aspects to be included in these subject areas. It says that international human resources portfolio should include these:
- The impact of international cultures on employees
- Employee resourcing and relationship options
- Training and development in an international environment
- The complexity of multinational management practices
In essence, anyway, there are similarities in many of these. For example a policy statement must indicate the do's the don'ts, the background, the aim, areas of responsibility among others. According to IBM Global services (2007) international Human Resources is a practice that is already a reality. The only difference from what is discussed here is on the definition attached to it. However it has identified and confirmed that similar practices in human resources could be applied almost similarly in more than one country; with only minor variations to factor in for the difference in culture and national values. Since some of the points in this discussion have been illustrated by IBM (2007) it is wise to give a brief background to this grand forum that took place in 2007 and has set the stage for the adoption and application of human resources practices on a global scale. IBM Global services organised a Human Resources Forum in 2007. According to IBM (2007:3), "... the summit was organised by senior executives from around the world to evaluate globalisation impact on today's human resources function." According to IBM (2007) the main discussions were centred on," the need for globally standardised, yet flexible, human resources processes...; the importance of stronger integrated global work force integration."(IBM 2007:3) The main point is that can't the human resources community come up with internationally accepted and adaptable human resources system? It is possible to achieve that. The case in point is that of international donor agencies and non-governmental organisations. Despite their international scope of operations their policies and guidelines are the same. Take an example of the international Red Cross society. Its parameters of operations are almost the same world-wide. Their policy frame -works are the same? In spite of the differences' in cultures in the specific nations they operate from, their ethics and codes of practices is the same. The other case in point is that of the United Nation agencies, such as UNICEF, UNICEM, and UNESCO, just to name a few. They have similar codes of conduct and yet their operations are international. The other point of reference is in sport arenas. In sports there are no variations in rules and regulations. Cricket has its own rules and regulations and practices that apply the same all over. Take soccer, the rules are the same every where. In this case it is even very complicated in that there is not any wavering in respect of that. What matters is that the necessary mindset and monitoring mechanism are put in place. Having said the above, can't it be so open that international human resources policies could be created alongside the same lines although not exactly the same. There are lee ways to accommodate cultural diversity. However cultural practices are being diluted globally. The demographic mobility trend shows that cultural diffusion is widely developing, so much that by the turn of the century we can talk of a real global culture, the culture of humanity and mankind that is not associated to religion or politics or geographical disposition.
The other argument that supports the need for a truly global human resources function lies in that the roles of the human resources globally are almost the same. The human resources function wish to achieve similar duties. In short let us delve in what the roles of human resources could be, that may be applicable any where in the world. The following are some of the roles of human resources department that can be adopted globally:
- To maintain administrative duties
- To enhance customer satisfaction
- Developing procedures and policies that lead the companies and guide the work force
- Assisting in designing and improving governance mechanisms
- Talent identification and development
- To ensure there is high employee performance as well as organisational performance
- Assisting in creating organisational culture and common vision
- Creating , enhancing and maintaining a competitive advantage over rival companies due to competency management
- Assisting in enhancing cost cutting measures, that results from proper people management systems
- Analysis of issues and activities that have an impact on the people dimensions in an organisation
- Auditing and improving on the human resources competency
- Central to the coordination and networking function in the company
- To assist in achieving corporate sustainability through people development and environmental management strategies
- Policy making and development
- Policy implementations
- Assisting in inputting the human resources component of a business plan
- Creating the measurement systems that assist in corporate decision making process
- Assisting in achieving strategic partnerships and integration.
The above are the overarching roles of the human resources function according to some human resources gurus. (IBM 2007; sparrow 2009; Perkins and Shortlands 2006)
These roles always exist in most companies, irrespective of the geographical location or cultural endowments. It is possible, however that in some organisations some of the above aspects are in the hands of other departments such as the Public relations (Schuler 2004).
The difference comes in the basic aspects of human resources. Some companies may do away with other functions or they would have leaner scopes or expanded scopes.
There is a set of operative functions that companies will have various approaches on. However the philosophies lying behind such activities are the same the world over. Let us take an example of policy formulation and implementation. The intention of policy making is:
- Policies and practice reflect the organisation standards. This means that workers and the management have a common point of reference, this reduces misunderstandings.
- Policies and procedures are also ways of creating boundaries on what should de done, by who and when.
- The other importance is that policies as well, are there to recognise the employee needs. From there, efforts to address such needs are made and action plans are then created and implemented.(www.entrepreneur.com/humanresources)
Other reasons for formulating personnel policies are to:
- Assisting in eliminating any misunderstandings between the employees and the employer ,
- These also help to maintain consistency and organisational effectiveness.
This example of the basis for human resources policies indicate that the global focus of human resources management is the same. The differences must not come from the philosophies of human resources, but from the trivial details. It follows, therefore, that just like in international football the rules are the same; therefore the general structures in approaches are the same. This is very practical in human resources management. That is why these days there are a prevalence of human resources and management templates that are produced on an international level with an international focus. Websites such as:
www.onlineebusadv.com , are examples of organisation that companies and individuals can access or purchase business templates, including human resources ones from. The sale of payroll software is an instrument of globalisation of human resources practices. These samples and templates have to meet international standards and are based on what renowned international businesses use.
The basis of international human resources lies in comparative management. In the human resources fraternity this has come to be called comparative Human resources Management. Comparative human resources management is based on the premise of comparing human resources practices and system between organisation, between countries, continents or other regional blocks. This, as well is linked to the question of research work and surveys. Sparrow (2009) discusses some aspects of comparative management as follows. Sparrow says comparative management is based on comparing practices by using questions as:" How is human resources management structured in individual country? What strategies are used? What is actually put in practice? What are the main similarities and differences?" These questions are a basis of comparison. If the company carrying the comparative analysis finds that they have something to improve on, then they can do so. The other issue that promotes the globalisation of human resources practices is that there are now international consultancy human resources organisations that produce analysis of practices in various regions. This means that companies can have ready made comparative analysis results. If these analysis results are accessed by many companies it facilitates the use of international human resources practices. This may mean that there are analyses of practices and policies of individual companies- producing institutional perspectives. Gunter (2006:16) says, "Institutional perspective may help explain the institutional pressures that may be powerful influence on human resources strategy, program and practices." The version here is that large organisation will strive to adopt more sophisticated and socially responsive human resources activities. On the other hand other companies would try to learn from such organisations.
Having followed the flow of this discussion you may have identified that the main thesis would be the standardisation of human resources function on a global scale. Once that is achieved then we have a complete internationalisation of the human resources function. It can never be possible that exactly the same standards are adopted in every company in every country. Individual differences are always the order of the day. The essence of the international human resources function is the creation of systems that has common features, though unique to some extent. Let us take an example of a person. All people are thought to be the same. Despite where ever their origin may be, but they do have common structures. The main features are common. If some features are missing then we says that someone is crippled or malformed. Every normal human being should have two ears, two eyes, a mouth, a nose, two legs et cetera. The general composition is the same. The differences that are there are minor. These are the differences of how big one's nose is, the colour of one's eyes, the length of one's arms, among other minor variations. The broader picture is what we are discussing about when relating to international human resources. Let us consider the structure of a strategic human resources plan- its components. By international human resources focus we are referring to similar layouts, with different technical details. An example could the lay out of a strategic plan. For example a strategic human resources plan could be made of the following components, irrespective of where the strategic has been created:
- Core values
- Swot analysis
- Future swots
- Various strategic points like;
- Change management intentions
- Resourcing intentions
- Development and training intentions , among others
So the generality of the scope or focus of human resources could be looked at.
The scope of discussion in this section still remains of the need to standardise international human resources practices.IBM (2007:3) says," human resources organisations need to attack the issues of globalisation on a number of fronts, from standardisation perspective companies need to evaluate the relevant costs and benefit of various levels of conforming across different processes and geographies." From this view point globalising human resources function is possible and vital, but the problem stands on related costs. Some companies may not be able to afford the expenses of globalising human resources functions. The same source(IBM 2007:3) adds," human resources need to be more active in developing a more globally integrated work force, facilitating the organisation's ability to identify, develop and connect talent around the globe." It shall be a challenge to adopt global human resources practices now, but it shall be a necessity in the very long run, not too long though. Harmonisation of human resources practices will be evolutionary and gradual. The rate of labour mobility means that there are a lot of knowledge transfers. The technological advancement points out as well to the need to globalise human resources functions. There are soft wares that are being created and applied. There are similarities among these. Some of the soft ware is international in nature. This will result in rectification of human resources knowledge, to fit these soft wares. An example is the payroll soft ware, training soft ware, among many. Technology is global; it has global focus and standards, hence the need to have similar practices in order to use common technological facilities.
Some identified reasons to go-global include the following (IBM 2007):
- Need to offer processes that have the greatest benefits; the processes that creates competitive advantages. Companies that do not follow suit will become disadvantaged;
- Need to develop suitable and relevant governance mechanisms that respond quickly and effectively to current and expected challenges
- Need to cede budget controls to global process owners. In other words corporate budgets will also need to meet global standard. May be consultants will have to formulate budgets. This however does not sound to be a practical aspect;
- Need to recognise and accept that all work locations can be subjected to similar situations, yet continue to remain viable provided that proper structures are designed and put in place.
However it should be realised that standards can not be the same everywhere and to any company. The differences could still come about in relation to the size of the companies. Similar small companies can operate along the same lines, where as large companies can also operate along the same lines. This discussion does not imply that all companies must be forced to operate in the same manner. The point is that human resources departments must research nationally, regionally and internationally and adopt practices that work better than what they currently do have. The focus is that human resources practices must search for better systems, practices and policies beyond their borders. There is need to carry comparative analysis and then audit their current organisations ' functioning. It is not always the best to be conservationist in such a vast changing environment. There needs to continuously strive to acquire knowledge on new trends in human resources practices and policies.
What could come under the current global trends? The main issues include the essence of strategic alliances and net works. In human resources there is a need to have wide connections. It could be in terms of social or business networking. Networking assists when an Hr expert has difficulties somewhere when assistance is needed. If the problem relates to legal issues he/she must identify who could assist in such an instance. Another trend is in transferability of information, as well as the emergence of expatriate management. Other generic issues may relate to corporate governance, performance management and compensation systems that now relate more to productivity incentives than to straight salaries and wages. The liberalisation of trade has an impact on human resources trends. Perkins (2006:5) says," Globalisation sit alongside such notions as enterprise, efficiency, trade liberalisation and the information economy." From this assertion it means that the Human resources function must not lag behind other business trends, because people are the drivers of such changes and advancements. Global trends must be responded to accordingly. Let us take a case which many human resources practioner do not take seriously. It is the issue of terrorism and security. Organisations through the human resources functions must put in place strategies to deal with terrorism. Terrorism is not just a political thing. It can affect companies and individuals. Take the instance of the 11 September bombing of Pentagon in USA. In the pentagon there were companies that were doing business there that were affected. What role should the human resources function have done if they had anticipated such a move? Take also the Human resources department of the planes that were used to strike at the Pentagon, what could they have done if they had been aware of such a threat. A risk associated with terrorism could require an international approach from human resources departments world-wide. Terrorism is not a passing fad, but a reality that will affect many organisations. There comes the need for an international human resources strategy to deal with such an issue.
Also, a global human resource perspective is required when dealing with other emerging problems, such as of heightened disasters like cyclones, hurricanes, fires, floods and trappings in mines, among others. It is essential for the companies that have not experienced such disasters to put in place contingent plans. Risk assessment, prevention are essential component of the human resources function. Gunter (2006:16) says, "The complexity of globalisation and global events invites multi-theoretical and multilevel analysis." The emphasis is that the challenges which each individual company faces may be a result of a trend in international spheres.
The focus of a global approach to the management of human resources also originates from the fact that there is now serious and large scale transfer of knowledge. Knowledge is now international. No knowledge can ever be localised. With the emergence of the internet and advanced technology like phones, knowledge is easily transferable, from one corner of the globe to the other. According to International Business Studies 34,' the internationalisation view assumes that knowledge has public good characteristics that allow firms to exploit the knowledge in various locations at little or no additional cost." The point is that knowledge can be easily transferred internationally. A case in point is the shift in the educational paradigm. For instance people from Bangladesh, Chine, Yugoslavia, Angola, and Columbia can all learn at one institution such as AIU. They gain similar education. And that education is spread all over the world. By education, we are not merely meaning lecturing and illustrations only, but the development of vital skills. At AIU one of the main skills acquired is that of research and analysis. Students from the university will use such skills to acquire more knowledge at an international level. AIU brings forth students who are knowledge- creators rather knowledge acquirers. The main issues from AIU focus include the need to be sustainability conscious, conscious about the needs of humanity among others. Such a global focus has been engrained in many people. The result will be that such knowledge will be spread internationally through published work. One philosophy of AIU, for example is the need to have published work. That implies the spreading of knowledge on an international scale. The students who, come from AIU, as many as they are will be creators and spreaders of knowledge. What about many students from universities world over. How much knowledge will be spread? How much knowledge is spread by already seasoned technocrats and specialists, among others? Based on the observation and understanding of international business Jose et al (2009: 3) say," Knowledge is considered an essential resource in a company's internationalisation process." So the spread of knowledge on the new insights and trends in human resources will enable the globalisation of human resources practices. The Nottingham University Business School China (2009:5) says, "Corporate knowledge can be transferred to emerging markets in codified, widely available and controlled manner." This emphasizes how widely knowledge can be spread globally, even in the human resources field. This same source says that the emergence of expatriate managers assist in spreading particular knowledge across boarders.
The factor that leads to the global spreading of knowledge involves the demographic mobility and international migration. Knowledge spreads through that system. According to The international Human Resources Management (2008:11) international travel has become easier, quicker and cheaper." There are a lot of people moving across boundaries for search of employment. The issue is that most people who move to better places come from developing countries. When they stay in foreign countries they attend education there. They also work there for years and then come back. When they come back they bring back the knowledge they would have acquired there and put that knowledge in practice at home. An example could be of a country like Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe has an estimated population of about fifteen million people. However the current estimates is that more than six million people have left the country to go abroad as economic and political refugees. When they eventually come back to Zimbabwe after ten to fifteen years, what a huge impact these people will have on the work processes in our country? Among these people are a lot of youths who have gone to have their education abroad. That is how knowledge will spread. This also includes knowledge on human resources management.
Knowledge also moves through inter-organisational networks. Nottingham Business School China (2009) identifies networking as an essential component of business. No organisation can have its own operations without having to have linkages with other partners. Every business organisation has to have and maintain physical interactions with external and local knowledge holders, such as customers, suppliers, government bodies and local communities. In some organisations the human resources department plays that role. Through such interaction there is implicit knowledge that is acquired. If such accessed knowledge has been seen to be important, the relevant corporate members make recommendations and create relevant documents and database systems. Knowledge can easily be acquired through the natural socialisation process. Nottingham Business School (2009) argues that the acquisition and transmission of knowledge takes place within a socialisation process where there is face-to- face interaction as individuals or as teams. That is why it is essential for organisations to create room for social interactions. This could be achieved through having gatherings, where people from other corporate bodies are invited to attend. Some companies make use of some public holidays, such as new years to organise gatherings. Hominy Chen (2003:4) says," the formation of strategic alliances between two organisations combines competition and cooperation to create collaborative strategy." The idea is that from cooperation between companies there is an advantage of knowledge diffusion which creates a competitive advantage. Senior human resources executives must create ways to link with various national and international organisations that they can share information with. Another way of such socialisation is following certain blogs that disseminate required information. For example there are many human resources blogs from where we can get knowledge. Such blogs send daily or weekly newsletters and information which we can easily access and convert into vital information bases. An example where we can get such information is www.about.com or www.citeman.com from these most issues affecting human resources is discussed. They create an international forum where individuals or companies can get information from. As a Human Resources Person, the writer is a member to many such websites that is why he is a keen follower of international human resources management function.
The human resources function has a big responsibility of assisting in the creation of good governance mechanisms in their respective organisations. The current scenario is the one that emphasises corporate governance and proper governing systems. Wikipedia.org defines corporate governance as," a set of processes, customs, policies laws, and institutions affecting the way a corporation is directed, administered or controlled. ...It also includes the relationship among goals of stakeholders involved and the goals for which the corporation is governed." This gives the human resources the mandate to carry out extensive, yet intensive research on the best governance systems possible to drive their organisations forward. The principal stakeholders whose interests and relationships should be considered in creating good governance systems include the customers, the creditors the employees, the board of directors among many others. The required theme to be factored in corporate governance structures and principles include accountability, transparency, honesty and integrity among others. Other qualities such as professionalism and people management must be well-thought of .Strategic human resources management may be utilized to achieve governance structure which enable the management of multiple implicit and explicit contracts between employers and employees (Perkins 2006). So the human resources function must be research-orientated in order to come up with good governance systems. It should carry out auditing of the current governance system to find ways in which improvements could be made. Corporate governance is essential to achieving sustainability. Sustainability will only be achieved where there is thoughtful planning and organisation. Perkins (2006: 26) says that, "... the aim of corporate sustainability, which refers to the continuing , voluntary, social, economical and governance issues is to improve quality of life of employees, their families, the local community and the society in general. So governance issues must be openly and constructively confronted and dealt with. The following shows the main facets of the model of governance mechanism that is widely used, irrespective of geographical positions on the globe:
1. Governance Organisation
- Reporting structure
- Roles and responsibilities. It means for a credible governance system there should be clear roles and responsibilities, identified and apportioned.
2. Governance Processes
- Relationship management
- Financial management
- Contract management
- Performance management
3. Decision Rights
- Responsibilities for decision making
Another system that is associated with governance or is part of the governance system is that of steering executive committee. This deals with the following issues:
- Strategic direction and decision making
- Linkage to business strategy
- Business representation
The committee should be linked to the following organisation to:
- Linkage to processes
- Critical client knowledge
- Retained work load
To achieve an international focus on human resources certain qualities must be adopted. The human resources fraternity must identify certain fundamental qualities that can assist in driving the human resources forward into a global focus (Lin 2002). There are fundamental skills and knowledge as well as attributes that must be adopted. Being faced with problems, issues and concerns the human resources personnel must make use of skills such as:
- Creative thinking
- Strategic orientation
- Quality- focused
- Open communication
- Problem solving skills
- Interpersonal skills
- Negotiation skills
They must as well have:
- high ethical regards
- Legal compliance
- High regard of social responsibility
- Environmental awareness
- Economical mind
- Business orientation, among others
The role of the international human resources societies is assist to human resources personnel to develop such skills.
International approach to the management of human resources is essential due to the increased information systems and wide communication channels. The spread of knowledge is very high these days. Information can spread rapidly these days due to the following:
- The internet access
- Mobile phones
- Satellite dishes
- International public communication networks including TVs and radios
- Increased people mobility
- Fast and efficient courier services
Research is another aspect that is making international human resources an option. Most companies are now research- focused; as it may relate to fields such as human resources. So new trends are identified and adopted. According to the international human resources management (2008) global communication has expanded rapidly through the use and existence of the radios, televisions and the print media. The advent of free trade has necessitated the creation of forums that spread knowledge through economic blocks such as ECOWAS, COMESA, SADC, EU, among others. At such forums business topics are discussed and information is disseminated. Migration has led to the spread of business news on an international scale, so as the new educational dimension that has an extensive focus.
Global human resources systems are a possibility and much more thoughts and research must be put into it due to the fact that the issues concern human resources are as universal as the human race itself. Most challenges that face the human resources fraternity comes from the same sources. The following are the main factors that affect the human resources functions. These factors exist any where else on the globe. These are:
- Economic challenges
- Political factors
- Social factors
- Local and governmental issues
- Trade union influence
- Employers' demands
- Work force diversity.
These all impact on human resources irrespective of the geographical location of the organisations. It therefore calls for a conceited approach to their management. The internal factors that also affect the organisations are almost the same. These include the following:
- The organisation's mission
- The vision
- Organisational culture
- Human resources system
- Existence of business plans
Being faced with similar scenarios may mean a need for an integrated approach. A common approach could reduce the time needed to deal with such issues.
Why human resources could take a similar approach, which could only proactive and global is based on the fact that most organisations now rely on having strategic approaches. With a strategic approach, statements of intention are made in respect of many years to follow. It therefore seems reasonable to focus on the same variables in creating such a focus. That focus is encompassed within a strategic plan or a business plan. In every business plan there is a human resources component. Currently most business plans take an international outlook. It therefore implies that international human resources related strategic plan is possible. If the business plan has a global focus why can't the human resources plan have a global perspective? It is possible, although with some constraints and challenges. www.hfrp.org says that a strategic plan focus hinges on strategic planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. www.globalresearch.com says that," the strategic role of human resources management focuses on how to enable ordinary employees to turn out extraordinary performance, taking into accounts their ever-changing expectations." The need to come with a human strategic plan and process is to ensure that the work force is motivated and enable d to perform effectively. There is need for a strategic choice. Gunter et al (2006:11) say, "Strategic choice is defined as the process whereby power holders within organisations decide upon courses of strategic action... Strategic choices are seen to be made through the initiatives within the network of internal and external organisational relationships through probation and reaction." In strategic planning the organisations mainly are becoming proactive. They try to determine their future courses in laid down statements of intentions. The human resources personnel are among those influential people who make plans that drive the organisation forward into the future.
The drive towards international human practices is made very possible due to the creation of international bodies that are there to oversee the human resources function. Apart from the international bodies there are national bodies and regional associations that are there to spearhead the standardisation and conformity of international human resources practices. The following are some bodies on the international scene that are working towards the rationalisation and harmonisation of the human resources function. These are:
- World federation of Personnel management,
- Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPP in UK)
- Global professionals In Human Resources
- Human Resources Certification Institute( HRI in USA)
The emergence of such bodies shows the seriousness of trying to work towards international human resources management systems and practices. Let us all have a rough synopsis of areas in which international human resources systems could be applied the same. The following areas could be made to look similar and function similarly, despite some minor differences:
- Maintenance of administrative systems
- Bolstering internal customer satisfaction
- Development of common procedures and policies
- Competency management and career planning
- Learning and collaboration environment
- Performance management
- Adoption and use of new technology
- Improvement of vendor management
- Increase to legal and regulatory compliance
- Developing appropriate governance mechanisms
- Focusing on processes affecting greater benefits
- Stakeholders involvement
- Improving the quality of life of employees
- Measurement systems to improve the system of human resources
- The use of consultancy in human resources management and development
- Auditing mechanisms
- Importance and application of research in human resources
We are only going to look a bit on how a few of the above factors could be implemented. Firstly let us look at how to maintain administrative excellence. In the IBM global discussion (2007) the one issue that was highlighted as would require international standardisation is on administrative excellence. In the discussion it was pointed out that there is need to reduce administrative complexity. Newer systems which are simple and reliable have to put in place. There is need of administrative systems and procedures that enable the running of key human resources function in a simple and usable way. Systems that should be put in place include a means to deal with management of talent and mentoring of future leaders of the organisation. There is need to simplify administrative systems so that interpretation of the systems should be simple. Standardisation will also mean that what people learn at Universities and colleges would be transferable to the work place. If it is such difficult to standardise human resources practices it would mean that studying with a foreign institution in human resources management is rendered useless. It would mean that people in Zimbabwe will have to learn Human Resources Principles in Zimbabwe only, where there is a national culture in which someone will have to work. The learning of Human Resources management principles any where in the world for human resources personnel should imply that the skills and knowledge I learn from the United States Of America, should be transferable to my place of work here in Africa. Again, standardisation will ensure that in this age of technological innovation a company finds it ready to deal with competition. Technology related to human resources administration should be the same world over. Again standardisation will ensure that talent could be tapped from any where else in the world. A person who was borne in Africa and get educated in Africa could go and work in India. This is only made possible by standardisation process.
Management of talent is a very vital topic that requires international standardisation. There is need to pursue a standard educational system that will cater for people who would work anywhere else in the world. The educational organisations such as the universities and colleges, with the partnership of industry and international organisations dealing with human resources management should find ways to harmonise what they teach. It is not worth studying on international forum things which one can not relate to in the local scene. Talent management starts with the educational institutions. The products of universities and colleges should then be identified by prospective organisations, who would further nurture that talent. That is why IMB (2007:5) says," Standardisation allows companies to tap the strength of individuals around the globe." The creation of international head hunting consultancy means there is now labour mobility across the globe. An example is that of www.zebrajobs.com. This website seeks people who want to work in India from right round the globe. In Zimbabwe we have a number of employment agencies who search for people who want to go and work abroad. There are also migration agencies that facilitate the transfer of people who wish to work outside the country. In the end only conservative ones may remain in the country. The most ambitious and vibrant work force will be lured to go to perceived better places, especially the developed countries.
Vendor management deals with contracting of services providers and the drawing and management of the contracts. Standardisation in terms of contract layout and content would assist very much. A lot of consulting firms create such forms and related materials. That has assisted in bringing a common focus and orientation to contract administration.
The other focus of globalisation would be to create certain competencies that would enable the standardisation process. According to IBM (2007) the following would be among the competencies to be developed:
- Understanding demographics and capabilities of the work force
- Predicting future labour supply and demand
- Enabling individuals to perform work regardless of the location
- Facilitating collaboration across traditional organisational boundaries
In this section we are going to look at only one point to illustrate the entire concept. The point is on facilitating collaboration across traditional organisational boundaries. The main emphasis here is that we need to develop and nurture social networks, within the organisation and across organisational boundaries (IBM 2007). Inside an organisation we need to facilitate social integration and cohesion. The human resources department has that main function. There is need to identify facilities and opportunities that enhance socialisation. An example of a facility would be the introduction of a staff club. That club caters for all staff members as well as accommodating members who come from other corporate bodies in the vicinity. Having sports function is another way to create social linkages. Net working through the internet is a recent development. As a human resources practioner you can identify as many potential partners as possible and have their email details. Keeping up dating each other on certain events could improve and later solidifies the relationships. In such networking it is essential to do the following:
- Locating and keeping in contact with people individuals with specific expertise
- Developing a sense of connection and community among employees
- Delivering formal and informal learning to employees
- Identifying emerging trends and opportunities and trend
Challenges of standardisation
Standardisation as discussed in this paper could appear to be straight forward thing; however it has some critical challenges. The following are some of the challenges:
- There are differences in national laws and regulations
- There different various contractual agreements entered between trade unions, works councils and the government
- There may be difficulties to overcome inertia of revamping legal processes that are perceived to meet expectations of local geographies (IBM 2007)
The differences in national laws and regulations will make it difficult to standardise labour relations issues. Each country has its own legal constitutional that highlights the scope of human rights issues. Those rights will have to be reflected in the employment laws. The employment law must also harmonise with the national legislature. There are many legal systems in various regions. These laws differ greatly. This will make it difficulty to institute standardisation in labour and industrial area. In this instance regional regulations have to be observed. Zimbabwe has its own labour law, whereas USA has its own labour laws.
The other issue that lies under industrial and labour relations relate to various contractual agreements that are entered into by national bodies or at corporate level. At national level employers' associations make agreements with labour unions. These agreements are entered into as they relate to the national scope. Such agreements can not be determined at international level. These can only be crafted by the involved parties.
The other main hiccup in implementing global strategies and standards lie in that there may be inertia in changing the existing systems. Where ever there comes change resistance is expected. So in order to institute new changes to be in line with international standards there may be need for a well-thought of change management system. Following change management principles and criteria would help the human resources fraternity to introduce the expected changes.
All that having been said, there still hope that internalisation of human resources has already taken shape with the internationalisation of education, the globalisation process, the information system, emergence of global challenges such as terrorism, that require conceited effort to deal with. The example of international soccer rules and frame work gives us all a case study to look to for the internationalisation drive. With will power and commitment from concerned section soon global human resources systems will be the order of the day.
The other factor that points to the success of the globalisation trend in human resources has been the ability of multinational companies to apply similar systems in various countries in different geographical positions on the globe. The other pointing factor has been the fact that at the IBM global services forum, there human resources executives and fundis from various geographical areas endorsed the possibility of a truly international human resources system. Among the human resources executives were people from United States, Canada, Latin America and the rest of Europe (IBM 2007) there is now more evidence of the evolution of the human resources function into a coordinated, integrated and functional body of knowledge, applicable on a global scale.
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1. Strategic Planning
2. Human resources Portfolio
3. Corporate Governance
Industrial and Organisational Psychology is a special study that focuses on understanding human behaviour and their underlying motives. Human beings unlike the other resources are unique in that their ability to expend their energy is based on their state of mind. The employer must treat the human capital in a way that enhances productivity and increased performance. The unpredictability nature of human beings makes it essential that human behaviour be studied. The results of the study must be implemented at the work place for the betterment of the working relations and increased production. This science emerged based on the fact that human beings now do not just stand as a factor of production, as it used to be during the slavery era. It is now much appreciated that any human being has his/her fundamental rights, needs and aspirations that need to be fulfilled, irrespective of the fact that you are the owner or the worker. In nature of humanity, every man is borne equal and will die equal and must be given equal treatment and regard in the interim between his birth and death. Failure to understand human behaviour, appreciate it and act accordingly means disaster is in the making in your business. The underlying subject in Industrial and Organisational Psychology lies in motivation; how to motivate people to win their commitment, effort and loyalty in the business transactions you do with them. You can not coerce a person to willingly expend his effort in performing certain responsibilities in any industrial and work setting. Certain key business ethics and principles must exist in order to create good work relationship. Such principles include creation of loyalty, commitment, ownership, mutuality, trust, cooperation, understanding and co-existence. The understanding of Industrial and Organisational Psychology and the application and adherence to the principles of psychology must be enhanced.
In order to understand the spectrum of industrial and organisational Psychology we need to understand what psychology means in general terms. Psychology is the study of the mind. It is the study of the processes, which take place in the mind before a person makes a decision. It includes the understanding of factors that make a certain person in certain circumstances to make some decision on the action to take. It also involves the understanding of trends which people in certain circumstance do. In view of this generalisation let us now focus on what Industrial and Organisation Psychology is. Agmondt (2010:3) says, "Industrial and organisational Psychology is a branch of psychology that applies principle of psychology at the work place." Reddy( 2004:3) defines Industrial and Organisational Psychology as," the application and extension of psychological facts and principles to the problems concerning human beings working in industrial , business , service and research organisations." The similarity in these two definitions is that industrial and organisational psychology is just an extension of the field of psychology. When you understand psychology any where else you can easily relate the principles to the work place to solve the industrial problems. The theories of psychology do not change because we now relate to the industrial situations. What matters is the application of the principles that are derived from the theories of psychology. Reddy (2010:4) adds a new dimension in defining industrial and organisational psychology by saying, "is the study of man and his behaviour with the aid of scientific methodology" Man's behaviour can be understood through action research which is a scientific methodology. It is essential therefore that, research be carried continually at work in order to understand how the people at that industrial site think, feel, aspire and behave. There is not much difference with the definition provided by Blum and Taylor (1968) as quoted by http://En-wikipedia.org, saying that organisational and industrial psychology is, "the scientific study of the relationship between man and the world of work..." The human behaviour therefore can only be understood by the use of scientific methods. This implies the use of scientific research tools including research questionnaires, interviews, observation, and analysis of documentation among others. It must therefore be understood that the difference between industrial psychology and psychology in general is not about principles and methodologies, but about the application of the principles.
Having looked at what Industrial and Organisational Psychology is, it is now necessary to look at the synopsis of this discussion. The rest of this discussion shall focus on the importance of Industrial Psychology, the main theories found in Psychology, the principles of motivation, basic concepts of motivation, and the applications of the principles of motivation at the work place. Practical considerations shall be explored in this discussion.
Scope of Industrial and Organisational Psychology
The next issue in this discussion is on the issues covered by Industrial and Organisational Psychology. Psychological principles must be applied in various fields at the work place. The areas where the principles of psychology can be applied to, include the following, but not exclusively these: (http://en-wikipedia.org )
- Job performance
- Productivity study
- Job analysis
- Human engineering
- Management applications
- Education selection
- Recruitment and selection
- Vocational guidance
- Work environment
- Training and development
- Employment law
- work/life balance
- organisation culture
- organisation surveys
- performance management
The scope of areas where principles of Psychology are applied is long as a means to illustrate the importance of Industrial and Organisational Psychology. It is not an area of study and application that requires lukewarm attention. This is so because it is a part that directly relates to the most important asset in the company- human capital. However, we cannot discuss all the above issues, in order to link their relevance to industrial psychology; a few issues shall be considered as a sample of the application of Industrial Psychology.
Let us look at the few examples. The first example is the application of psychological principles as in relation to human engineering. Human beings need to work in situations that are user-friendly and safe. According to Maslow, for example, human beings value their safety. Human beings do not want boredom and tiresome activities. So when designing the work systems the designer must take these into consideration. The use of guarding in machines is to increase safety. Since poorly guarded machinery increase chances of injury, machinery guarding must be done well. People are not willing to work in injury prone areas. The machine and equipment that may be included must be ease to use and must not create unnecessary stresses and boredom. So the design of machinery, equipment, and creation of work processes and procedures must be done with the view of coming up with what people can not resist to use. Some people can quit work that is dangerous.
In productivity study at the work place emphasis can as well be put on means to reduce or eradicate concerns that the workers can have. It may be wise to survey on employees when you need to create new work processes and procedures. Consultation is essential. It assists you to understand what the workers feel, think, like, dislike about the innovations you may need to make. Considerations that can be taken in work study and engineering can include improvement on environmental aspects such as lighting, ventilation and noise levels. Considerations could be made at the level of stresses, boredom and fatigue that can come about as a result of the changes. Making changes without considering and consulting workers may lead to high dissatisfaction. The side effects of such dissatisfaction could be absenteeism, increased labour turnover or reduced productivity.
Another area where psychological principles must be applied could relate to creating of salary, wages and benefit structures. Salaries, wages and benefits that increase productivity, morale and motivation must be related to productivity. The more productive a person performs the more compensation that person should get. When a person performs more according to Victor Vroom's expectancy theory that person expects better rewards than someone whose performance is down. There is need to structure compensation system that are just, fair and competitive. There must be internal fairness and external equity. If the pay structure is seen to be unfair, unjust and lacks equity there develops problems at the work place. This analysis is done based on psychological principles.
Importance of Industrial and Organisational psychology
The above discussion has assisted to show how psychological principles can be applied at the industrial and organisational level. This section now shows why industrial and organisation psychology is important. Why should companies employ people who have special expertise and knowledge in Industrial and Organisational Psychology? Firstly the importance of Industrial and organisational psychology is in that management needs to understand why employees think and behave as they do (Crafford et al (2006). To understand what the workers think and feel will assist management to respond accordingly to the needs and requirements of the workers. This assists in increasing motivation. Satisfaction is increased and dissatisfaction is reduced or eradicated. Again, this will allow management to create structures that the workers would accept. So in designing policies, procedures, processes the management considers employee aspirations, this will assist to tape the potential and motivation of the work force. Being sensitive to the employee's needs and aspiration helps to create loyalty, commitment and conditions conducive for production. Where the needs of employees are not taken into considerations there is a lot of confrontations and misunderstandings which result in poor industrial relations and reduced production. Application of the principles of psychology assists in enhancing the dignity and performance of human beings and the organisation they work for. Applying the principles of Psychology at the work place increases ethics, customer care and mutual trust. These are all necessary for production. More so, the problems that arise at the work place are addressed in a way that is acceptable to most people (Rogelberg, 2002).However, it must be understood that the application of the principles of Psychology does not mean doing every thing which the workers want. The workers can accept a lot of below standard conditions if they are involved in making such decisions. Worker involvement in decision making is essential. What is important is that workers are made aware of constraints that are genuine. The use of joint employer - employee forums will assist both sides to understand constraints and problems that exist in the company. Employees must be engaged in negotiations and bargaining.
Main Theorists that influence industrial and Organisational Psychology
There are many theories that have been postulated by many psychologists over centuries and decades. Most of these theories have been in existence and their implications have been applied over the years. Most of these theories have a lot in common. The implications of these theories in the industrial settings have brought a lot of stability in business and commerce. Many industrialists have been using systems and procedures that evolved due to some psychological theories without proper understanding of their origin. However most of these theories as they exist can be placed in two groups. These are the content theories and the process theories. The content theories are also called the need based theories. The content theories tend to focus on the need of the individuals and they try to explain the different factors that contribute to encouraging certain behaviours or eliminating certain behaviours. The theories in this category include Maslow's hierarchy of needs, Mc Cleland's needs theory and Herzberg's two factors' theory. On the other hand process theories are more complex and they tried to explore deeply on the' how' and 'why' of motivations and drives (Crighton and Towl 2005). The theories try to determine why workers would select certain behaviours and hate the others. These also try to explain why people make the choices they make in certain situations. Some of the theories in this group include Victor Vroom's expectancy theory, and Adams' equity theory (Rathankoon 2003). It is however acceptable that both the two classes of theories are relevant and applicable in the industrial setting. This paper will further explore the theories of Skinner, Herzberg, Victor Vroom and Maslow. It should be clear the theories to be further analysed in this paper have been taken from both classes of theories. Their applicability and practicality will be discussed as well.
As we can not discuss them all at once let us start deliberating on Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Maslow's hierarchy of needs have five pillars, which many psychologists call the five hierarchy of needs. Some psychologist chooses to call these Maslow's pyramid of needs. According to Bates (2006) Maslow's hierarchy of needs have five categories which are:
- Physiological needs
- Safety, stability and security
- Belongingness and love
- Self-esteem and esteem of others
According to Maslow a person has got the above hierarchy of needs. The term hierarchy indicates that there is a starting point and the ending point in fulfilling these needs. The beginning is at the base of the pyramid. The physiological needs occupy the first step on the pyramid, followed by safety, stability and security, then belongingness, self-esteem and self actualisation. Each person has the needs at the bottom of the pyramid to be met first before moving to the next step. For example a person should have the basic needs fulfilled before moving onto the safety and security needs. Unless the first needs are met a person may not look forward to the fulfilment of the next group of needs. The pyramid shape shows that some needs are more important than the others; and that others must be fulfilled before the others can be considered as pressing needs (Schermerhorn 2003). So according to Maslow once the lower level of needs have been satisfied their impact on the person's behaviour diminishes. A person will no longer feel and view such needs as pressing. The person has to move to the next level of needs (Hunsaker 2005).
What do physiological needs relate to? These are the needs that are necessary for survival. Some people refer to them as animalistic needs. Without these survival is not possible. In other words these are biological needs. According to http://en-wikipedia.org , if these requirements are not met the body can not continue to survive." These needs are essential for metabolical processes. These are food, water and oxygen. These as well may include shelter and clothing which are essential for protection.
The next level of needs relates to safety, security and stability. After the biological needs are satisfied these set of needs become the pressing ones. A person expects to have safe life, free from injury. These also deal with the need for people to have a predictable orderly world in which there is fairness and consistency. These also relate to have lasting job opportunities. There is also need for fair treatment. That calls for the existence of credible procedures to deal with grievances and disciplinary actions. Employees need to be protected from unilateral decisions. There should as well be conditions suitable to assist employees in cases of emergencies and calamities, like in the case of the death of a loved one. Facilities should be put in place to assist employees. These could include setting aside money to assist employees in case of emergencies, such as illness. People needs working conditions that are secure and safe, free from physical and psychological threats. The workers ' well being and health must be promoted. Health and safety considerations come under this level of needs. In all, the workers need to feel safe and secure physically and emotionally.
Love and belongingness occupy the next level in Maslow's hierarchy of needs. This level deals with social concerns. Human beings are social and gregarious animals. This means that people need to belong to each other and to groups. People need to feel a sense of belongingness. This relates to the feelings of friendship and intimacy. There is a need for a sense of brotherhood and sisterhood, a sense of neighbourhood and humanity. This calls for social networking and mutual support and cordial relationships. At work this can be achieved by creating opportunities for employees to socialise with one another. This may include creating of social and sporting clubs. Some organisations create sports clubs where people can come together. Social gatherings can be created such as end of year parties, cultural ceremonies and religious gatherings. The organisation must support such functions and even create opportunities for that. That is not directly related to the work life but brings in a sense of overall satisfaction. At Chipinge banana Company we have introduced sporting facilities for football, women soccer, darts, chess and volleyball. Each year we have an end of year party. There are other social and recreational facilities such as a beer hall and television room where people go and enjoy themselves. Sometimes we have sport galas and cultural events such as having traditional dances and music shows.
Another category of needs is self-esteem and esteem of others. http://en-wikipedia.org talks about the great need for people to be respected and be appreciated. Human beings must feel that they are accepted by other people. People need to feel recognition from other human being in relation to what they do in their daily lives. Firstly, the person himself or herself must feel that he or she is worth in the eyes of other people. If an individual feels that s/he is not valued by the people around him /her that person develops what is termed an inferiority complex. He feels he is not as worth as others. This can lead to some psychological problems, such as depression and stress (http://en-wikipedia.org ) Inferiority complex will affect a person's performance even at work. Such people usually panic when there is the presence of his seniors. At the workplace people must be made to feel that they are worth. One way to do that is to praise a person when he has done a job well. Giving awards such as the best employee of the year assists to enhance a person's self worth.
The next level of need is what has been termed as self-actualisation. This is a need to achieve the best you can in your life. A person wishes to strive towards the best he can. According to www.managementhelp.org , in relation to self- actualisation says, "What a man can be he must be." Maslow contends that a man must become everything that one is possible of becoming. Self-actualisation is to desire to achieve what one can achieve in relation to his potential. What is necessary is to create the conditions that can make someone to achieve that. In an organisation it is necessary for management to create opportunities to assist people who need to achieve more in life to do so. One step is to create opportunities for training and development. For those people who aim to attain more education they must be offered such an opportunity. Opportunity to further develop skills related to one's job must be created.
Frederick Herzberg postulated the two factor theory of motivation. According to Herzberg man has two sets of needs. The first set of needs is the lower order forms of need, which are needs to avoid the loss of life, hunger, pain and other deprivations. Then there is the need to grow psychologically that is to be effective, creative, achieve and maintain individuality in situations of group pressure (Bates 2006). According to www.ehow.com Herzberg's theory is called the motivator-hygiene theory. According to Herzberg job satisfaction is important for both the company and the employees. In order to get the best from workers Herzberg contends that employers should make use of two approaches to satisfy employees. Employees must be afforded the opportunities to grow psychological and to get job satisfaction at the work place. Herzberg therefore classifies the two sets of requirements as motivators and hygiene factors. Riley (2005:5) says that the motivating factors according to Herzberg are the six job content ones that include achievement, work itself, responsibility, advancement and the possibility of growth. On the other hand hygiene factors include company policy, supervision, and relationship with supervisors, work conditions, relationship with peers, salary, and status and job security. According to Riley (2005:7)," the basic premise of two factor theory is that if an employer is trying to increase job satisfaction and ultimately job performance for an employee, they must address those factors that affect one's job satisfaction." This is referred to as intrinsic motivation. This will increase job satisfaction. This theory treats dissatisfaction not as an opposite of satisfaction. The factors that affect satisfaction are diametrically divorced from those that affect dissatisfaction. Improving the factors that affect dissatisfaction is considered under extrinsic motivation.
According to Herzberg the following are the motivators:
- Work itself
- Possibility of growth
Briefly we are going to look at what a company can practically do on each of the above.
People must be placed where they are made responsible for their tasks. If each person is given a feasible and fair work task they strive to achieve that. Once that task is achieved that employee feels very happy. There is also emphasis on goal setting. Employees must be given some targets to meet. Once they work hard to meet these targets; and really meet them they will feel a sense of accomplishment. Through that way they are intrinsically motivated. The need to achieve a certain task comes from within. Armstrong (2004:226) says," the need for achievement is defined as the need for competitive success measured against a personal standard of excellence." So when standards are set and a person achieves them that person normally gets satisfied.
Employees must be given recognition for their accomplishment and initiatives. Once they have done something remarkable an appreciation must be given. An appreciation could be through words of thanking that employee. It could be a token of appreciation in terms of a gift. Letters of appreciation could be given. Certificate of competency could be awarded among other things. Recognition can be achieved also by listen to the suggestion of the workers and take some of those suggestions seriously. Armstrong (2004:226) says, "People need to know not only how well they have achieved their objectives or carried out their work but also that their achievements are appreciated. However appreciation is made, it gives recognition to the person who performs the appreciated task.
The employees need to be given work that is challenging and motivating. Targets must be reasonable and achievable. The employees must be involved in setting the targets and in planning their work. The task must be varied in nature. There must be no room for boredom. Employees must feel that it is worth for them to do such type of work.
The employees must have high responsibilities to do. The job scope must be wide enough for the worker to feel great. The responsibilities must be clearly spelt. Delegation of additional tasks is useful enough in motivating the employees. Apart from the employee's normal tasks additional duties must be assigned from time to time. Another way to motivate the employees is to do job rotation. Job rotation ensures that the employee is exposed to new challenges. It is also imperative to multi- skill the workers. The workers must have multiple duties to do. Multiple tasking can also help the workers to be motivated.
There must be room for advancement for workers. Employees must not remain at one level for along time. The chance for promotion can make employees look forward to something in the future. The company policy must ensure that workers have got room for advancement. Armstrong (2004: 228) says, "The availability of learning opportunities with selection of individuals for high-prestige training course and programmes and the emphasis placed by the organisation on the acquisition of new skills as well as the enhancement of existing ones, can all act as powerful motivators."When new and higher posts arise it is necessary to promote from inside the company. All job posts must be advertised internally. Unless there is no one with suitable qualification and experience should there be an external advertisement of the job post. The company policy must be clear on the procedure for promotions.
Possibility of Growth
The company must communicate to the employees that the promotions shall be made from within as long as there are qualified people. To prepare for advancement the company must institute career paths and career goals.
Whereas motivators are needed for an employee to achieve high performance, hygiene factors are needed to ensure that the employees are not dissatisfied. Hygiene factors include:
- Company policy
- Relationship with supervisors
- Work conditions
- Relationship with peers
- Job security
Let us look briefly on how a company can assist in these.
The company must have clearly written company policies. These policies must be clearly communicated. In compiling these policies employees must be highly involved. Involving employees ensures that the policy provisions are acceptable to employees. The policy should be reviewed and amended from time to time. These policies must not be too divergent from those of the surrounding corporate organisations.