Before we define HRM, it seems pertinent to first define the term ‘human resources’. In common parlance, human resources means the people. However, different management experts have defined human resources differently. For example, Michael J. Jucius has defined human resources as “a whole consisting of inter-related, inter-dependent and interacting physiological, psychological, sociological and ethical components”.
According to Leon C. Megginson “From the national point of view human resources are knowledge, skills, creative abilities, talents, and attitudes obtained in the population; whereas from the view-point of the individual enterprise, they represent the total of the inherent abilities, acquired knowledge and skills as exemplified in the talents and aptitude of its employees”.
The National Institute of Personnel Management (NIPM) of India has defined human resource/personnel management as “that part of management which is concerned with people at work and with their relationship within an enterprise. Its aim is to bring together and develop into an effective organisation of the men and women who make up an enterprise and having regard for the well-being of the individuals and of working groups, to enable them to make their best contribution to its success”.
According to Decenzo and Robbins “HRM is concerned with the people dimension in management. Since every organisation is made up of people, acquiring their services, developing their skills, motivating them to higher levels of performance and ensuring that they continue to maintain their commitment to the organisation are essential to achieving organisational objectives. This is true, regardless of the type of organisation-government, business, education, health, recreation, or social action”.
Thus, HRM can be defined as a process of procuring, developing and maintaining competent human resources in the organisation so that the goals of an organisation are achieved in an effective and efficient manner. In short, HRM is an art of managing people at work in such a manner that they give their best to the organisation for achieving its set goals.
The primary objective of HRM is to ensure the availability of right people for right jobs so as the organisational goals are achieved effectively.
This primary objective can further be divided into the following sub-objectives:
- To help the organisation to attain its goals effectively and efficiently by providing competent and motivated employees.
- To utilize the available human resources effectively.
- To increase to the fullest the employee’s job satisfaction and self-actualisation.
- To develop and maintain the quality of work life (QWL) which makes employment in the organisation a desirable personal and social situation.
- To help maintain ethical policies and behaviour inside and outside the organisation.
- To establish and maintain cordial relations between employees and management.
- To reconcile individual/group goals with organisational goals.