What Are Human Resources?
Human resource management (HRM) solutions are designed to help human resources (HR) professionals better address and manage the needs of their company’s employees.
Human resources is also referred to as Personnel Management, and spans a range of functions including recruiting and hiring job applicants; conducting employee orientation and training; enrolling employees in benefits; administering payroll; mediation between employees and/or managers on the company’s behalf; implementing government labor laws and federal tax laws; and discharging employees from the company or organization.
The human resource management of the organization is crucial to a business’ operations, whether the company is privately-owned, or publicly listed, and regardless of whether it is big or small.
Under human resources management, employees are managed by human resource personnel. Typically referred to as ‘human capital’, an organisation’s people are among its most important assets.
As with any other core assets, successful organisations seek to maximise employee productivity, mitigate against risk, and increase their its return on investment.
Another way of viewing HR is to see it as advocating for employee’s rights and interests within the organization. Ideally these should be closely aligned with an organisation’s goals and processes for achieving them.
The term “human resources” was first defined by John R. Commons, a forerunner of modern economists, in his book “The Distribution of Wealth”, published in 1893. Not long after - in the early 1900s – the first US companies began establishing HR departments.
At the outset, they sought to educate employees on company policy, train employees, handle employee grievances, and to discharge company employees.