Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action
Equal employment opportunity (EEO) refers to the exemption of employees from workplace discrimination on basis of race, sex, marital status, disability, age and even transgender. EEO rights are affirmed by the federal and state fair employment laws. It is the obligation of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and its states counterparts to enforce the EEO rights. The principle behind EEO is that every employment seeking individual should have the same access to working opportunities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics projections, the fastest rate of increase among workers, from 2000 to 2010 in the United States, was to be by women and minorities (Buckley, 2006, p 112). These demographic trends go well in line with the policy of EEO. Therefore for employers to devise an effective recruiting strategy; they must understand the mission and policy of the EEO.
The genesis of Affirmative action in employment is a number of Executive Orders issued by the United States presidents dating back to the early 1960's. Executive Order 10925, which was issued in 1961, served the introduction of the phrase "Affirmative Action" which directed the employers to take action to ensure unbiased treatment. In 1965, another order 11246 required the federal contractors to pick up underutilized minorities. If the minorities were willing and accessible, employers were to set goals and timetables to ensure this underutilization was reduced. Executive Order 11375 availed this to women in 1967 (Buckley, 2006, p 257).
The Affirmative action policy is closely related to the EEO policy. The former is however different from EEO in that it is mostly deemed as a moral duty to make up for past wrongdoings to certain groups of people. The current effects of historical discrimination are thus eliminated by implementation of this policy. For example, affirmative action plans include numerical assertions with the intention of increasing the hiring of minorities. Affirmative action is therefore mostly about numbers, with a policy program that ensures participation of women and minorities in the workplace is fair and just. The policy of affirmative action is legally binding and can be used in court against an employer. Federal contractors may be sued and barred from contracts if they are judged to be discriminating or not pursuing Affirmative Action, although this is rare. On an individual level, the application and importance of the concept of EEO is an aspect that has come to light from the writing and research of this paper. Viewing the whole concept of EEO as a moral obligation, I did not know that it was a legally binding undertaking that is wholly supported and endorsed by the federal government.Further, the research and writing of this paper has instilled more knowledge on the level of importance on the application of Affirmative Action. The fact that the policy of affirmative action is a legally bound and fully effected and adhered to by numerous employers is factor learnt from the subsequent research on this discipline.
Human Resources Planning, Recruitment and Selection
Human resource is a term that defines the people who make up the workforce of a firm. Managing an organization's human resource is a key factor that determines the level of success of the firm (Stredwick, 2005, p 20). It is therefore vital that the strategy of management of the human resource be duly feasible and lucrative businesswise. Human resource managers seek to accomplish this by connecting the supply of skilled and competent personnel, with the firm's ongoing business aims and projections to amplify returns on expenditure and secure achievement.
Human resource planning is important in an organization's overall resourcing strategy. This planning can be defined as the methodical approach in ensuring that the identification and evaluation of workforce personnel is in line with the organization’s goal. Planning of the human resource ensures that the right people are selected for the right job and are in the right place at the right time. A practical and effective human resource planning strategy would include having adequate workforce personnel, with the correct mixture of skills, and who are in the convenient locations, going about their jobs when needed (Stredwick, 2005, p 138). It is vital that the human resource managers involved in planning comprehend the nature and value of the imputations which individuals can offer. However, human resource planning is essentially a long-term goal oriented undertaking. The outcomes may be difficult to note especially in the short run. Consequently, the firm may incur large sums of capital for the effective implementation of this process.
Human resource recruitment is an equally vital undertaking of an organization’s resourcing strategy. It involves the subsequent selection of the chosen and approved candidates. This process involves identifying and securing personnel required for an organization’s workforce. It is a process that starts with attracting eligible candidates to apply for available jobs and ends when applications are acquired and duties assigned. The recruitment process ought to be in line with the increasingly aggressive market to ensure highly qualified recruits are assimilated into the organization at all ranks. Staff recruitment can either be internal or external. Internal recruitment can prove to be the most cost effective way of getting best recruits from within the firm (Mathis & Jackson, 2009, p 224). This can be effective if the existing employee's skills have been enhanced by them individually or by the organization. Skill enhancement could be as a result of training, further studies or peer motivated development. However organizations need external recruits in their quest to hire the best candidates. Aggressive business models demand skill and talent that cannot be single sourced from within the organization’s workforce. Current trends in the recruitment of staff involve the inclusion of a third party recruitment firm. Organizations which are faced with sudden need to recruit a large number of staff that is out of norm for them, will often delegate this duty to a third party recruitment firm. Recruitment and selection must be an integrated part of the overall human resource strategy, and must work alongside other aspects of the human resource function.
Human Resource Development
Human Resource Development (HRD) is a plan used by employers to help employees expand their personal and organizational abilities, knowledge and talents. HRD is very important in the actualization of an organization’s goals. It builds and sharpens the employees’ skills to suit the requirements of the diversifying market trends. HRD ensures continual advancement and growth of the individuals. More importantly, HRD is mutually benefiting to both the organization and the individual. Development is mostly educational and can take several forms: senior employees could offer vocational learning and training to the other employees with a desired outcome of fulfilling the firm’s goals (Stredwick, 2005, p 187). A successful HRD program will prepare the individual to undertake a higher level of work through improvement of productivity.
Employee compensation refers to wage programs in the firm, such as salaries prescribed for certain jobs. Employee benefits typically connote retirement schemes, health and life insurances, award of vacations, profit sharing, stock options, and bonuses. Compensation and benefits to employees act as major boosters to morale and increasing productivity in individuals. Employers tend to give back to employees, in terms of value, in return for their contribution to the success and running of the organization. Benefits may however end up being expensive to the organization. Some benefits are actual requirements by the law, for example health insurances; these are enforced by the federal state (Stredwick, 2005, p 191). Employee compensation and benefits can be divided into four main categories: guaranteed pay, variable pay, benefits and equity based compensation. Influence for employee compensation and benefits are mainly influenced by external and internal factors. The most vital external influences are inflation, rate of unemployment, tax law, labor market and trends. The most significant internal influences include labor unions, firm’s business objectives, and firm’s culture. The compensation and benefits is necessary as some employees’ sense of self esteem may be pay oriented; this includes incentive schemes by the organization. It is the obligation of employer to assure the employees that their salaries are based on value of the duties undertaken and not the values of the individuals.
Employees’ Safety and Health
Employees’ safety and health schemes are concerned with protecting the well being and welfare of individuals engaging in a particular job. The main aim of this is to ensure a safe working environment. It is a core obligation for employers to provide a safe and healthful workplace environment for their employees. This is also a law that is enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and agency of the United States Department of Labor. Ensuring that safety and health measures are firmly in place in an organization helps save money in the long run. The organization adds value to itself by addressing the safety and health issue in the workplace. Recent estimates place the cost incurred on work related injuries at the workplace at close to $170billion (Mathis & Jackson, 2009, p 468). This is a huge loss of value to the company as it gets these costs from the profits.accrued.Ideally employers should endorse programs and schemes that best suit the needs of the workplace in addressing the safety issue. For example, safety training classes help create a safety norm in which employees themselves help uphold better safety procedures while on duty. So protecting individuals on duty at the workplace is for the good of all stakeholders, including the community, economy and families. Safety and health measures help create and add value to our workplaces and lives.
Employee Labor Relations
Employee and labor relations (ELR) are a broad field comprising of all the numerous inter-relations between the employers and employees (Fossum, 2000, p 12). This vital component of human resource operates as a bridge between staff and management. Labor relations offer balanced assistance to individual employees and management. A good relation between the employer and employee is essential in ensuring the smooth running of the organization. Communication between the two parties allows for proper conflict management in case it exists and hence creates a healthy business environment.
As has been seen, the subject of human resource management has more to it than meets the eye. It in cooperates many sub disciplines that are vital in application. The subcomponents of the subject of human resource management are inter-connected to each other.
Application of these components as per the requirements will help a given organization in its overall performance. The importance and relevance of each component can not be overlooked. However, the importance of other components of the subject can be termed more important than the other. For instance, the legally binding concepts of human resource management such as EEO, AA and creation of structures that ensure employee safety and health are more important. These components can be termed more important from the fact that they hold severe consequences for a given organization if not fully endorsed. The consequences are not only legal but also more importantly financial. Therefore, it is key that employers and human resource managers endorse these crucial policies in their strategies to avoid the consequences. The overall human resource management tool can be used to effectively shape organizational behavior. Further, individual employees can have attitude change with the positive optimization of the human resource role. For instance, the strict adherence of the EEO regulations is key in creating personal reflections in each individual. With the in cooperation of persons from all walks of life in the organization will ensure an integration of an atmosphere of respect and understanding of various individuals not only in the work place but also the outside world.
Specific current and/or future applications
The importance of the policy of EEO is a factor that needs proper considerations by many employees.Personally, working as a human resource manager in future, the full application of this policy is imperative. Having learnt the legal connection of this policy, I would fully endorse the concept in my workplace as a human resource manager. This would effectively reduce the possibility of having negative regulatory consequences from the government. Further, the vital application of this concept would go well with the future workforce in question from individuals’ levels. As a human resource manager, adhering to this state requirement will go a long way in projecting a diversified workforce. The benefits of these projections would be numerous in many aspects. For instance, the subsequent endorsement and full application in practice of this vital policy would be effected by employers especially in related industries or organizations. The ripple effect of this undertaking will ensure that individuals, especially those discriminated before by employers, regain not only confidence but an employed status. The biggest benefit of compliance and adherence to this policy is that a better world with equal opportunities to all will be in the making. Integrating the importance of this policy would be vitally positive if its relevance is instilled to individuals especially the young. Therefore, at a personal level, having seen and learnt, not only the importance but also the benefits of this policy, I intend to practice it with my family. I will therefore ensure that there is a general ambience of satisfaction on treatment and handling of each member. The benefit of this is that everyone will therefore instill in themselves this crucial virtue. If fully endorsed by each family member, the resultant ripple effect of this undertaking would go a long way in creating a better world for all.
Employee health and safety measures are key elements that will go a long way in ensuring a better working milieu The fact that this concept is a law enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA, is a learnt idea, consequent from this research. As a human resource manager, I would be fully committed in ensuring that the process of ensuring health and safety for all employees is created and adhered to. This would also go well in line with the regulations of the OSHA.As a result, legal troubles with the government, that could be expensive, would be avoided. The importance of creating structures and policies ensuring employees’ safety and health are clear from the statistics.Therefore,as a manager, endorsement of these process would be imperative as it would in the long-run save health related expenses. The importance of ensuring health and safety measures are in place is crucial in not only the work place but also homes. From knowledge derived from this research, the relevance of this concept in the work place could be ideally applicable at home. With the mind boggling statistics from the (Mathis & Jackson, 2009, p 468), clearly, prevention is better than cure. Personally, the creation of safety and health measures at home will be requisite. Instilling this important knowledge and understanding to my family members will go a long way in ensuring their positive participation from each individual. This undertaking will be helpful in reducing the end cost of health and safety related complications that would have been avoided by simple application of safety and prevention measures.
Human resource management is a core factor that determines and affects the end result of an organization. It is therefore supposed to be a carefully and professionally approached by firms.
Buckley, J. (2006). Equal Employment Opportunity Compliance Guide. New York, NY: Aspen
Stredwick, J. (2005). Introduction to Human Resource Management, 2nd ed. London:
Fossum, A. (2000). Employee and Labor Relations. New Jersey, NJ: Bna Books.
Mathis, R. & Jackson, H. (2009). Human Resource Management. Ohio: South-Western College