HRM in short but in full form it is Human Resource Management, one of the most vital parts of any organization has a long history. Though human resource as included in proper education few decades back but the concept of human resource management is quite old. The concept of HRM gains more prominence during the time of the industrial revolution. Though at that time the subject was in its infant stage and till date several changes and new concepts have been added into the subject to make it more realistic, practical and useful for the organizations.

HR spawned from the human relations movement, which began in the early 20th century due to work by Frederick Taylor in lean manufacturing. Taylor explored what he termed “scientific management” (later referred to by others as “Taylorism”), striving to improve economic efficiency in manufacturing jobs. He eventually keyed in on one of the principal inputs into the manufacturing process—labor—sparking inquiry into workforce productivity. (Wikipedia)

Though we can say that the HRM start gaining its ground in the 20th century but if we follow pre-historic society structure and examine the role of group leaders it will clearly show that the principles of personnel management are quite old. The Chinese are the first to follow employee screening procedure in the year 1115B.C.

By the end of the 20th century a post of personnel women officer was established. This post was governed by females they were appointed as personnel manager and they were only concerned about the safety and protection of working women and girls in the factory.

HRM was earlier known by several other names as “Personnel Relation”, “industrial relations” and finally “Human resource”. With the advancement in technologies and transportation facility more and more people start joining offices and factories. The sudden surge in the numbers of employees makes it bit typical for the organization to manage it properly. Now the organization began viewing the employee as an asset to an organization and to get the best from its assets the relevancy of human resource department was realized. Different terms were coined to refer human resource management including organizational management”, “manpower management”, “talent management”, and simply “people management.

The designation of “Labor manager” or employee manger came into existence in 1920’s and most of such posts were created in the engineering industry. The purpose of the employment manager was to handle the day to day affairs of the employees and laborers working in the factory. It includes managing their recruitment attendance, dismissal and queries asked by the employees.

The era of 1930s was revolutionary in terms of economic development all over the world. Many big corporate houses and new factories start their career during this time. The demand of employees also raised high and it became crucial to manage the welfare of employees and get the best from them for the steady growth of the business. A need of personnel was needed for the recruitment, training, motivating and evaluating employees from time to time so that they can offer their best for the growth of the organization. The older industries like textile and mining were hit by the recession and were not in a condition to adopt new techniques or hire more labor as a result they don’t need any recurring personnel or employee manager.

The profile of HRM becomes popular in most of the organizations and industries in the 1980s. HRM started as a subject in many colleges and universities. The various aspects of HRM come into prominence by 1990s. Cornell University’s School of Industrial Relations and Labor study was the first business school in the world in the college level in HRM.

In the first decade of 2000, there was a strong movement to see HR as a strategic partner for companies and not as a function of support. Areas in which HR is involved are the youngest, social responsibility and sustainable growth and environmental concerns.

Today HR has become vital parts of the organizations and it is impossible to set-up and run an organization without proper HRM. A well-managed HR department could improve the efficiency and performance of an organization.

HR department headed even by a HR Director (depending upon the size of the organization) now streamlined into Pay Roll, Recruitment & Selection, Training and Development and Administration sections. With the above there is a good enough job rotation within all sections and all HR staff members can gain expertise.

  • Hariharan_ps

    Human beings were once considered a mere work force wherein it was meant that on given order they will perform as per master’s choice. The value of  individual’s contribution was not understood . The top slot decided everything and people were required to carry out the master’s orders.

    But now, the technology and multi skills changed the whole scenario.  People are not any longer considered as a flock.  Their skills and competency are recognized and on demand . Hence the word resource came into refer where Human beings are involved in any process either manufacture or service.

    All said and done, a total quality mangement is required to manage and monitor this skill which is properly utilized for the improvement of the organization.

    Hence the HRD came into existance.

    P S Hariharan