Human Resource Strategies; Unit 3 - Notes

Notes made from a combination of resources including the Malcolm Surridge text book and Philip Allan revision guide.

Covers the human reesources quarter of the course; HR Objectives, Workforce Plans, Organisational Strucutres and Employer - Employee Relations

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Human Resource Objectives and Strategies
Human Resources:
Department responsible for the use of labour within the firm
Activities relating to the workforce are integrated and vital in helping the firm achieve its corporate
Aims to make the best use of HR in relation to the firms overall growth
HRM is the design, implementation and maintained of strategies to manage people for optimum
business importance
Nature of HR Objectives:
Targets pursued by the HR function or department
There are a number of HR objectives, the importance of which will vary according to the firm, its
products and the market
Matching the Workforce to the Firms Needs:
The firm needs to have sufficient employees and skills to ensure that it can meet the needs of its
customers and to provide the best quality goods or services possible
Recruit employees, make some redundant and redeploy others; as well as training some to prove
the necessary skills
Making Full Use of the Workforce's Potential:
Potential can exist in:
Underutilised employees
Overworked or stressed employees
May be underused because:
Skills are untapped
Employees and underutilised
Maintaining Good Employee/Employer Relations:
Makes strike and industrial action less likely
Attracts high calibre and better qualified applicants
Maintain a positive corporate image
Communications may be highly effective
Influences on HR Objectives:
Corporate objectives
Attitudes and beliefs of senior staff
The nature of the product
State of the market
Price elasticity of demand for the product
Corporate image

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Employment legislation
HR Strategies:
Medium-long term plan to achieve the HR objectives
Factors persuading implementation:
Japanese success in managing people using this approach
Changes in the organisational structure that leads to managers taking on responsibility to
manage people
Increasing popularity of psychological approaches to motivation
Hard HRM:
Treating employees as a resource to be used optimally
Employees are obtained cheaply, controlled and disposed of when necessary
Short term policy
Communication is mainly from the top downwards
Autocratic leadership with motivation from money (Taylor)
Easier for…read more

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HR outcomes are a package, only if all 3 are achieved can a firm expect to see a change in behaviour
Skills Audit: A procedure used to identify the talents and abilities that employees have which may not
be fully used by the firm
Workforce Plan
Appropriate plans should be drawn up for the short, medium and long term…read more

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Components of Workforce Plans:
1) Consider the corporate objectives of the firm
2) Consider how HR can be managed to assist in achieving the corporate objective
3) Set objectives
4) Make a judgment about the size and type of the workforce the firm will require
5) Compare the available workforce to the desired one
6) Review internal and external supply of labour
7) Decide upon policies necessary to convert the existing workforce into the desired one
Creating a HR planning group can speed up…read more

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Issues of Implementing Workforce Plans:
Employer-Employee Relations:
A damaged relationship may lead to the workforce resisting changes and taking industrial action
causing loses of sale and revenue
A good relationship can assist the process with good communication and commitment ensuring things
are done efficiently
Limits the extent of spending of the HR managers
Can provide an argument for not paying sums
Corporate Image:
A bad corporate image may harm its commercial performance
A good corporate image can have a…read more

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Organisational Structure
The way in which a firm is organised
Sets out:
Routes of communication
What has authority and responsibility
Roles and titles of individuals…read more

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The people to whom individual employees are accountable and those whom they are
Types of Structure:
Formal / Traditional Hierarchy:
Shares decision making throughout the firm
Gives all employees a clearly defined role and establishes their relationship with other employees
A tall structure with a narrow span of control
Firm will be centralised
Senior managers expect to be treated with respect
Tradition is important
Communication in formal firms is principle downwards and uses established routes moving down
from senior to junior employees
Employees appreciate…read more

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Clear lines of communication can also make managers overcautious in case a decision turns out badly
Choice of Structure:
Consider a number of factors:
Size of the firm
Nature of the product
Skills of the workforce
Firms strategic objectives
Environment the firm operates in
Adapting Structure in Improve Competitiveness:
Reduction in the number of layers in a hierarchy within a firm's structure
It reduces costs
Improved responsive by bringing senior managers and customers close together
Motivates employees further down the hierarchy
Improved communication…read more

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Passing of authority to a subordinate within a firm
Senior manager's still holds responsibility for making sure job is completed
Works from home for a significant part of their working week
Allows employees greater responsibility for their own week
Reduces stress levels
Costs of firm can be reduced
Employees spend more time working
Once the main financial inducement has gone, the attractiveness of homeworking is a firm is
The social dimension of work is important and homeworking removes that
Employees may not…read more

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Formal communication is the exchange on information and ideas within and outside a firm using
official channels
Informal communication takes place outside the official channels of a firm
The role of managers is to communicate with all stakeholders
Great quality communication has benefits
Encouraging and listening to the views and opinions of all employees with feedback should improve
Provides a greater understanding of differences in cultures and onions within a firm
Managing Communication with Employees:
Communication Mediums:
The method of communication will depend upon…read more



This is a summary of the first part of the AQA HRM syllabus. Well written and concise can be used for revision or to create your own revision resources.

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