Human Resource Development Unit 2 HRD Structure Culture, Climate & System

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Human Resource Development Unit 2 HRD Structure Culture, Climate & System

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HRD Structure Culture, Climate & System


1. Multiple choice question and answers:

(i) It is a method of intervening in a systems.

(a) Process consultation.

(b) Survey feedback.

(c) Managerial grid.

(d) Goal setting.

Ans: (a) Process consultation.

(ii) Human Resource departments are ______.

(a) line departments.

(b) authority department.

(c) service department.

(d) functional department.

Ans: (c) service department.

(iii) What are the factors responsible for the growth of HRM?

(a) Development of scientific management and awakened sense of social responsibility.

(b) The problem of how the available human resource could effectively minimise the cost and maximise the production.

(c) Technical factors, awakening amongst workers, attitude of the government, cultural and social system.

(d) All the above.

Ans: (c) Technical factors, awakening amongst workers, attitude of the government, cultural and social system.

(iv) Directing is one of the important functions of HRM which comes under ______.

(a) managerial function.

(b) operative function.

(c) technical function.

(d) behavioural function.

Ans: (a) managerial function.

(v) Which of the following correctly defines the Human Resource Department?

(a) Functional department.

(b) Service department.

(c) Line department.

(d) Authority department.

Ans: (b) Service Department.

(vi) Human factor can be defined as ______.

(a) The entire concept of human behaviour.

(b) Interrelated Physiological, Psychological and Socio-ethical aspects of a human being.

(c) Micro and macro issues of socioeconomic factor.

(d) None of the above.

Ans: (b) Interrelated Physiological, Psychological and Socio-ethical aspects of a human being.

(vii) Finding ways to reduce ______ is a crucial responsibility of management.

(a) Stress.

(b) Dissatisfaction.

(c) Uncertainty.

(d) None of the above.

Ans: (c) Uncertainty.

2. What is the structure of HRD? What are the principles in designing a HRD system?

Ans: The HRD structure include the following: The task structure, including the activities, their grouping and linkages. The manpower, including  levels and competencies, experience etc. The role, role relationships, role clarity, role effectiveness and inter-role linkages.

Designing in integrated HRD systems requires a thorough understanding of the principles and models of human resource development and a diagnosis of the organisation culture, existing HRD practices in the organisation, employee perceptions of these practices, and the developmental climate within the organisation. The following principles related to focus, structure, and functioning should be considered when designing integrated HRD systems.

Focus of the System:

(a) Focus on enabling capabilities: The primary purpose of HRD is to help the organisation to increase its “enabling” capabilities. These include development of human resources, development of organisational health, improvement of problem solving capabilities, development of diagnostic ability (so that problems can be located quickly and effectively), and increased employee productivity and commitment.

(b) Balancing adaptation and change in the organisational culture: Although HRD systems are designed to suit the organisational culture, the role of HRD may be to modify that culture to increase the effectiveness of the organisation. There always has been a controversy between those who believe that HRD should be designed to suit the culture and those who believe that HRD should be able to change the culture. Both positions seem to be extreme. HRD should take the organisation forward, and this can be done only if its design anticipates change and evolution in the future.

(c) Attention to contextual factors: What is to be included in the HRD systems, how is it to be sub-divided, what designations and titles will be used, and similar issues should be settled after consideration of the various contextual factors of the organisation — its culture and tradition, size, technology, levels of existing skills, available support for the function, availability of outside help and so on.

(d) Building linkages with other functions: Human resource development systems should be designed to strengthen other functions in the company such as long-range corporate planning, budgeting and finance, marketing, production, and other similar functions. These linkages are extremely important.

(e) Balancing specialisation and diffusion of the function: Although HRD involves specialised functions, line people should be involved in various aspects of HRD. Action is the sole responsibility of the line people, and HRD should strengthen their roles.

Structure of the System:

(a) Establishing the identity of HRD: It is important that the distinct identity of HRD be recognised. The person in charge of HRD should have responsibility for this function exclusively and should not be expected to do it in addition to any other function. Multiple responsibilities produce several kinds of conflict. This person should report directly to the chief executive of the organisation.

(b) Ensuring respectability for the function: In many companies, the personnel function does not have much credibility because it is not perceived as a major function within the organisation. It is necessary that HRD be instituted at a very high level in the organisation and that the head of the HRD department be classified as a senior manager. Both the credibility and usefulness of HRD depend on this.

(c) Balancing differentiation and integration: The human resource development function often includes personnel administration, human resource development and training, and industrial relations. These three functions have distinct identities and requirements and should be differentiated within the HRD department. One person may be responsible for OD, another for training, another for potential appraisal and assessment, etc. At the same time, these roles should be integrated through a variety of mechanisms. For example, inputs from manpower planning should be available to line managers for career planning and HRD units for potential appraisal and development. Data from recruitment should be fed into the human resources information system. If salary administration and placement are handled separately, they should be linked to performance appraisals. Differentiation as well as integration mechanisms are essential if the HRD system is to function well.

(d) Establishing linkage mechanisms: HRD has linkages with outside systems as well as with internal sub-systems. It is wise to establish specific linkages to be used to manage the system. Standing committees for various purposes (with membership from various parts and levels of the organisation), task groups, and ad hoc committees for specific tasks are useful mechanisms.

(e) Developing monitoring mechanisms: The HRD function is always evolving. It therefore requires systematic monitoring to review the progress and level of effectiveness of the system and to plan for its next step. A thorough annual review reappraisal every three years will be invaluable in reviewing and planning the system. It may be helpful to include persons from other functions in the organisation in the HRD assessment effort.

3. What are the types of HRD system?

Ans: HRD has five major systems and each of the systems has sub systems as elaborated below: the first three systems viz., Career system, Work system and Development system, are individual and team oriented while the fourth and the fifth systems viz. Self renewal system and Culture Systems are organization based.

4. What are the elements of HRD climate?

Ans: All the components of HRD climate (performance appraisal and reward, feedback and counselling, potential appraisal and career development, employee welfare and QWL, organization development, and, training and development) have been found influencing job satisfaction.

5. How does culture affect HR?

Ans: Cultural values are part of the external factors that influence HR exercises. Cultural values command employee behaviour. In organizational cultures where employee engagement is common, it is more likely to have higher employee satisfaction and encouragement than the ones that do not favour employee involvement.

6. Why is culture important in HRM?

Ans: The culture of the workplace controls the way employees behave amongst themselves as well as with people outside the organization. The culture decides the way employees interact at their workplace. A healthy culture encourages the employees to stay motivated and loyal towards the management.

7. What are the four types of culture?

Ans: Four types of organizational culture: 

(a) Adhocracy culture.

(b) Clan culture.

(c) Hierarchy culture.

(d) Market culture.

8. What is culture workplace?

Ans: A workplace culture is the shared values, belief systems, attitudes and the set of assumptions that people in a workplace share. A positive workplace culture improves teamwork, raises the morale, increases productivity and efficiency, and enhances retention of the workforce.

9. What are the elements of HRD climate? How it affects organization’s climate?

Ans: All the components of HRD climate (performance appraisal and reward, feedback and counselling, potential appraisal and career development, employee welfare and QWL, organization development, and, training and development) have been found influencing job satisfaction.

It is related to the quality and suitability of the work environment. It has to do with the support that employees feel they receive from the organization. The organizational climate is a reflection of the degree of employee motivation. It has positive and negative effects on people’s behaviour in the workplace.

10. Why HRD climate assessment is important?

Ans: HRD climate helps the employees to acquire required competencies that would enable them to execute their present or future expected roles and aids in developing their capabilities for better Organizational Performance. Engaging employees in work is crucial to satisfying and understanding the organization’s customers.

11. How do you assess organizational climate? Discuss the meaning and definition of Organisation Climate.

Ans: Follow these steps when introducing a climate assessment survey into your organization: 

(a) Initiate the assessment. 

(b) Decide to build or buy.

(c) Design and administer the assessment. 

(d) Collate data and analyze results. 

(e) Package data and communicate results.

(f) Act on results. 

(g) Measure impact.

“Climate in natural sense is referred to as the average course or condition of the weather at a place over a period of years as exhibited by temperature, wind, velocity and precipitation.”

However, it is quite difficult to define organisational climate incorporating the characteristics of natural climate. This is so because the most frustrating feature of an attempt to deal with situational variables in a model of management performance is the enormous complexity of the management itself. People have defined organisational climate on the basis of its potential properties. A few important definitions are as given below.

According to Forehand and Gilmer, “Climate consists of a set of characteristics that describe an organisation, distinguish it from other organisations are relatively enduring over time and influence the behaviour of people in it.”

According to Campbell, “Organisational climate can be defined as a set of attributes specific to a particular organisation that may be induced from the way that organisation deals with its members and its environment. For the individual members within the organisation, climate takes the form of a set of attitudes and experiences which describe the organisation in terms of both static characteristics (such as degree of autonomy) and behaviour outcome and outcome-outcome contingencies.”

Thus, organisational climate is a relatively enduring quality of the internal environment that is experienced by its members, influences their behaviour and can be described in terms of the value of a particular set of characteristics of the organisation. It may be possible to have as many climates as there are people in the organisation when considered collectively, the actions of the individuals become more meaningful for viewing the total impact upon the climate and determining the stability of the work environment. The climate should be viewed from a total system perspective. While there may be differences in climates within departments

these will be integrated to a certain extent to denote overall organisational climate.


1. Write any two important uses of Human Resource Information System”.

Ans: The two important uses of human resource information system are:

(i) Human Resource Planning and Analysis.

(ii) Human Resource Development.

2. What is Human Resource Information system?

Ans: Human resource information system (HRIS) is a system designed to supply information to the human resource management, to help them in managing the people effectively and efficiently. This system can be built around electronic computers in case of big organisations.

3. State the objectives of Human Resource Information System?

Ans: Following are the objectives of Human Resource Information System:

(i) To make the required information available at reasonable cost.

(ii) To provide necessary security and secrecy for important and confidential information.

(iii) To make the desired human resource information available in the right form to the right person and at the right time.

(iv) To process the information i.e., data by using most efficient methods.

(v) To keep the data’s upto date.

4. Mention the approaches or methods of valuation of Human Resource?

Ans: The methods of valuation of Human Resource are: 

(i) Management by objective.

(ii) Ratio Analysis.

(iii) Personnel Productivity.

(iv) Personnel Reports and Budget.

5. Write a short note on the need of HRD. Explain the various instruments of HRD.

Ans: HRD is needed by any organisation that wants to be dynamic and growth-oriented or to succeed in a fast-changing environment. Organisations can become dynamic and grow only through the efforts and competencies of their human resources. Personnel policies can keep the morale and motivation of employees high, but these efforts are not enough to make the organisation dynamic and take it in new directions. Employee capabilities must continuously be acquired, sharpened, and used. For this purpose, an “enabling” organisational culture is essential. When employees use their initiative, take risks, experiment, innovate, and make things happen, the organisation may be said to have an “enabling” culture. Even an organisation that has reached its limit of growth, needs to adapt to the changing environment. No organisation is immune to the need for processes that help to acquire and increase its capabilities for stability and renewal.

A well designed HRD programme should have the following sub- systems.

(i) Performance Appraisal: The objective of performance appraisal is to determine the present state of efficiency of an employee in order to establish the actual need for training. The process of performance appraisal consists of setting standards for performance, communicating the standards to the employees, measuring the performance and comparing the actual performance with the standards set.

(ii) Potential Appraisal: Potential appraisal is used for providing necessary data which helps in preparing career plans for individuals. This technique aims at development of latent abilities of individuals. This is a process of developing in the employees, capacities to perform new roles and responsibilities.

(iii) Counselling and Monitoring: Counselling is a two way process in which a counsellor, usually a superior provides advice and assistance to his subordinates.

The main purpose of counselling and monitoring is to help the employees scientifically to be sensitised to their potential, their strengths and weaknesses.

(iv) Training: Training is an investment in the HRD process which gives dividends both in short and long run. The ultimate goal of training is improving competence of the employees for raising the standards of organisational performance.

(v) Building Morale and Motivation among the Employees of an Organisation: The organisation must give constant evidence to the belief that human resources in the organisation are the key to development. This requires proper motivation of the employees which provides a base for the management functions of planning and organising.

(vi) Development of Team Work: The HRD section must try to develop a habit of team work among the human resources. Team work requires among other things, that the members have an image of their own team mates, which coincides as precisely as possible with reality.

(vii) Creating Effective HRD Environment: HRD climate is one of the pre-requisites of effective HRD process implementation. It is an integral part of organisational climate. HRD climate creates growth opportunities and recognition.

(viii) Quality Circle: The quality circles are generally, autonomous units. Usually led by a supervisor or a senior worker and organised as work units. The workers who have a shared area of responsibility meet periodically to discuss, analyses and propose solutions to ongoing problems.

6. What are the functions of HRD?

Ans: The core of the concept of HRS is that of development of human beings, or HRD. The concept of development should cover not only the individual but also other units in the organisation. In addition to developing the individual, attention needs to be given to the development of stronger dyads, i.e., two-person groups of the employee and his boss. Such dyads are the basic units of working in the organisation. Besides several groups like committees, task groups, etc. also require attention. Development of such groups should be from the point of view of increasing collaboration amongst people working in the organisation, thus making for an effective decision-making. Finally, the entire department and the entire organisation also should be covered by development. Their development would involve developing a climate conducive for their effective2ness, developing self- renewing mechanisms in the organisations so that they are able to adjust and proact, and developing relevant processes which contribute to their effectiveness.

7. Explain the information needs of Human Resource Information System?

Ans: The need for human resource information system arises due to the following factors:

(i) In case of organisations which are geographically dispersed, every office requires timely and accurate information for manpower management.

(ii) An employer has to comply with several labour laws. A proper information system would store and retrieve data quickly and correctly enabling the employer to comply with statutory requirements.

(iii) Large organisations employ a very large numbers of people. It becomes necessary to have an effective information system to tackle the personnel problems.

(iv) Nowadays, salary packages are becoming very complex consisting of many allowances and deductions. Information system is needed to store this information. 

(v) With the help of information system, employee records and files can be integrated “for fast retrieval” cross referencing and forecasting.

The system should be oriented towards decision making rather than towards record keeping.

From the above, it can be concluded that planning and control of human resources need a sound information base. The human resource managers have to take various decisions at various levels of its management hierarchy. For taking these decisions information is needed. Quality of the decisions will depend upon the nature and type of information provided for taking the decisions. Therefore, for the efficient working of the human resource department effective information system is very important. This system supplies information required for the effective management of human resources in an organisation.

8. Write the essential characteristics of HRD.

Ans: The essential characteristics of HRD may be identified as:

(i) Planned and Systematic Approach: HRD is a planned and systematic approach to the development of people. HRD is a system consisting of several interdependent and inter-related sub-systems e.g performance appraisal, training, job enrichment etc.

(ii) Continuous Process: HRD is a continuous and dynamic process which believes in the need for continuous development of personnel to face the innumerable challenges in the functioning of an organisation.

(iii) Inter Disciplinary Approach: HRD is an inter disciplinary approach. It uses knowledge drawn from psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics and political science for planning and implementing various programmes for the development of individuals, groups and organisation.

(iv) Both Micro and Macro Aspects: HRD has both micro and macro aspects. At the macro level, HRD is described as the core of all development activities in the sense of improvement of quality of life of people of a nation. At the micro level, HRD involves the improvement in the quality of managers and workers so as to achieve greater quality and higher levels of productivity.

9. Discuss the factors of Human Resources Development (HRD) changing environment. Discuss the factors that influence Organisational Climate.

Ans: The changing environmental factors include:

(i) Unprecedented increase in competition within and outside the country consequent upon the announcement and implementation of economic liberalisations. The economic liberalization demands continuous improvement of human resources.

(ii) Trends towards market economy are more prevalent in most of the countries including the erstwhile communist countries. These trends towards market economy are resulting in severe competition not only among the industries around the globe but also industries within the nation. This competition allows only the industries strong in all respects to continue in the market and the other industries are forced to withdraw from the market.

The vitality of human resources to a nation and to the industry depends upon the level of its development. Organisations to be dynamic, growth- oriented and fast – changing should develop their human resources. It is needless to say that the organisation possessing competent human resources grow faster and can be dynamic. Though the positive personnel policies and programmes motivate the employees by their commitment and loyalty, these efforts cannot keep the organisation dynamic and fast-changing.

Organisations to be dynamic should possess dynamic human resources. Human resources to be dynamic should acquire capabilities continuously; adopt the values and beliefs and aptitude in accordance with changing requirements of the organisation. Similarly, when employees use their initiative,-take risks, experiment, innovate and make things happen, the organisation may be said to have an enabling culture.

The competent human resources can be dynamic in an enabling culture. Thus, the organisation can develop, change and excel, only if it possesses developed human resources. Thus HRD plays a significant role in making the human resources vital, useful and purposeful.

Organisational climate is a manifestation of the attitudes of organisational members towards the organisation. Researchers have used the data relating to individual perception of organisational properties in identifying organisational climate. Even in this context, there is a great amount of diversity.

Litwin and Stringer have included six factors which affect organisational climate.

These factors are:

(i) Organisational Structure: Perceptions of the extent of organisational constraints, rules, regulations, red tape.

(ii) Individual Responsibility: Feeling of autonomy of being one’s own boss.

(iii) Rewards: Feelings related to being confident of adequate and appropriate rewards.

(iv) Risk and Risk Taking: Perceptions of the degree of challenge and risk in the work situation.

(v) Warmth and Support: Feeling of general good fellowship and helpfulness prevailing in the work setting.

(vi) Tolerance and Conflict: Degree of confidence that the climate can tolerate, differing opinions:

Schneider and Barlett give a broader and systematic study of climate dimensions.

They include the following factors:

(i) Management Support.

(ii) Management Structure.

(iii) Concern for new employees.

(iv) Inter-agency conflict.

(v) Agent dependence and.

(vi) General Satisfaction.

Taguiri has identified five factors influencing the organizational climate on the basis of information provided by managers.

These are:

(i) Practices relating to providing a sense of direction or purpose to their jobs-setting of objectives, planning and feedback.

(ii) Opportunities for exercising individual initiative.

(iii) Working with a superior who is highly competitive and competent.

(iv) Working with cooperative and pleasant people.

(v) Being with a profit oriented and sales oriented company. KATZ et. have identified five factors which affect individual performance in organisation;

(a) Rules orientation.

(b) The nurturance of subordinates.

(e) Closeness of Supervision.

(d) Universalism.

(e) Promotion-achievement orientation.

Lawrence James and Allan Jones have classified the following factors that influence organisational climate:

(i) Organisational Context: Mission, goals and objectives, function etc.

(ii) Organisational Structure: Size, degree of centralisation and operating procedures.

(iii) Leadership Process: Leadership styles, communication, decision making and related processes.

(iv) Physical Environment: Employee safety, environmental stresses and physical space characteristics.

(v) Organisational Values and Norms: Conformity, loyalty, impersonality and reciprocity.

Richard M. Hodgetts has classified organisational climate into two major categories. He has given an analogy with an iceberg where there is a part of the iceberg that can be seen from the surface and another part that is under the water and cannot be seen. The factors in the visible part that can be observed and measured are called OVERT factors and the factors that are not visible and quantifiable are called covert factors.

Both these factors are shown in the following figure in the form of an iceberg:

The results of the above studies show that it is very difficult to generalise the basic contents of organisational climate, based on these studies. However, some broad generalisations can be drawn and it can be concluded that four basic factors are somewhat common to the findings of most studies.

These factors are:

(i) Individual autonomy.

(ii) The degree of structure imposed upon the position.

(iii) Reward Orientation.

(iv) Consideration, warmth and support.

Another common factor can be in respect of conflict and cooperation. But this factor is used in different perspectives by different people.

10. What are the characteristics of organisational climate?

Ans: The nature of organisational climate will be clear from the following characteristics:

(a) General Perception: Organisational climate is a general expression of what the organisation is. It is the summary perception which people have about the organisation. It conveys the impressions people have of the organisational internal environment within which they work.

(b) Abstract and Intangible Concept: Organisational climate is a qualitative concept. It is very difficult to explain the components of organisational climate in quantitative or measurable units.

(c) Unique and District Identity: Organisational climate gives a distinct identity to the organisation. It explains how one organisation is different from other organisations.

(d) Enduring Quality: Organisational climate built up over a period of time. It represents a relatively enduring quality of the internal environment that is experienced by the organisational members.

(e) Multi-Dimensional Concept: Organisational climate is a multi -dimensional concept. The various dimensions of the organisational climate are individual autonomy, authority structure, leadership style, pattern of communication, degree of conflicts and cooperation etc.

11. Write a short note on components of Corporate culture.

Ans: Corporate culture depends basically on its history, technology, industry, custom and practice, leadership style, organisation structure, etc. According to T.J. Watson, the important values as employee learned them were to do every job well, to treat all people with dignity and respect to appear neatly dressed to be clean and forth right to be internally optimistic and above all loyal. He further added that it is a shame for any man, if he is in good health to put in twelve months in a business territory and not come through with 100% of quota or target. Such an employee is not cheating anyone as much as he is cheating himself and his family.

Japanese basic business principle which its industrialists recognise is to foster progress to promote the general welfare of society and to devote themselves to the further development of industrial culture. The seven spiritual values in the National Service through industry in Japan are fairness, harmony and co operation struggle for betterment courtesy and humbleness, adjustment, assimilation and gratitude. All organisations are unique and therefore have unique cultures. However, if one examines the attributes of the majority of industrial organisations, there are a number of traits that are seen as desirable for effective organisation.

12. What is Human Resource Development — Structure?

Ans: Generally, the organizational structure of human resources is very flexible it reflects the immediate needs of the organization. There is no modern organization, where the HRM organizational structure stayed the same for more than 18 months.

The HR organizational structure has to follow and meet out the needs of the organization, beside it has to allow the employees inside human resources to operate smoothly and to deliver consistent results over the longer period of time.

Structure of HRD system is mainly bears responsibility for the following:

(a) Establishes as the Identity of HRD: It is important that the distinct identity of HRD be recognized. The person in charge of HRD should bear the responsibility exclusively for this function and should not be expected to do it in addition to any other function. Multiple responsibilities produce several kinds of conflict. This person should report directly to the Chief Executive officer of the organization.

(b) Ensures Respectability for the Function: In many companies, the personnel function does not have much the reason it is not perceived as a major function within the organization. It is essential that HRD is instituted at a very high level in the organization and that the head of the HRD department be classified as a senior manager. Both the credibility and utility of HRD depend on such resultant.

(c) Balances Differentiation and Integration: The human resource development function often includes three functions- personnel administration, human resource development and training and industrial relations.

(d) Establishes Linkage Mechanisms: HRD has connection with outside system as well as with internal sub-systems. It is wise to establish specific linkages to be used to manage the system. Standing committees for various purposes (with membership from various parts and levels of the organization), task groups and ad hoc committees for specific tasks are useful mechanisms.

(e) Develops Monitoring Mechanisms: The HRD function is never stationary it is always evolving. Hence these are requirement of systematic monitoring to review the progress and level of effectiveness of the system and planning for its next steps. A thorough annual review and a detailed appraisal every three years will be invaluable in reviewing and planning. It may be helpful to include persons from other functions in the organization in the HRD assessment effort.

13. What is Human Resource Development — Designing HRD System: Focus on Enabling Capabilities, Attention to Contingent Factors, Proper Respect for HRD and a Few Others?

Ans: In designing HRD system, the following issues should be taken into account:

(a) Focus on Enabling Capabilities: The basic objective of HRD is to help the organization to increase its enabling capabilities which include development of human resources at three levels-individual, interpersonal, and group. Simultaneously, focus should be on developing high-performing organizational culture.

(b) Attention to Contingent Factors: In designing HRD System, contextual factors should be taken into account. These factors are organization’ size, culture and tradition, technology, nature of workforce, and skill levels to be developed. These factors should be taken into account while deciding – 

(i) what aspects to be included in HRD system. 

(ii) how to divide HRD system into subsystems. 

(iii) designations of positions in HRD system.

(iv) interaction of HRD system with other functions of HRM.

(c) Linkage with Other Organizational Functions: HRD system provides support to other organizational functions– production/ operations, marketing, and finance. Therefore, effective link between HRD system other organizational functions should be provided.

(d) Balancing Specialization and Diffusion of Functions: Though HRD is a specialized function, line people should be involved in various aspects. Action related to human resources is sole responsibility of line people while HRD system is expected to enable these people to discharge their responsibility effectively.

(e) Balancing Differentiation and Integration: There should be balance between differentiation and integration of HR functions. Differentiation denotes difference in cognitive and emotional orientation among personnel dealing with different HR functions and integration denotes state of collaboration among these people.

While differentiation is necessary for specialization in performing various HR functions, these functions should have collaborative approach. Therefore, balance is required between differentiation and integration. 

While designing HRD system, proper attention should be given on this aspect. 

(f) Developing Monitoring Mechanism: A system should have a monitoring mechanism through which the performance of the system is measured.

If the performance is not up to expectation, corrective actions may be taken to overcome the problem. This is true for HRD system also. HRD system works in the dynamic environment.

Therefore, it may work well in the given environment. When the environment changes, HRD system does not work well. Monitoring mechanism ensures that information reaches the person who is responsible for bringing change in HRD system.

(g) Proper Respect for HRD: In order to ensure that HRD system works effectively and achieves its objectives, it must be given proper respect. This can be done by positioning HRD at sufficiently higher level.

14. What is the functioning of the system?

Ans: Functioning of the System:

(a) Building feedback and reinforcing mechanisms: The various sub-systems within HRD should provide feedback to one another. Systematic feedback loops should be designed for this purpose. For example, performance and potential appraisals provide necessary information for training and OD, and OD programmes provide information for work redesign.

(b) Balancing quantitative and qualitative decisions: Many aspects of HRD, such as performance and potential appraisals, are difficult to quantify. Of course attempts should be made to quantify many variables and to design computer storage of various types of information, but qualitative and insightful decisions are also necessary and desirable. For example, in considering people for promotions, quantitative data are necessary inputs, but other factors must also be taken into consideration. Thus a balance between the mechanical and the human factors is necessary.

(c) Balancing internal and external expertise: A human resource development system requires the development of internal expertise and resources, specifically in content areas that are used frequently within the organisation. For expertise that is required only occasionally, the use of external resources or consultants may be the most feasible. It is necessary to plan for an economical and workable balance between the two. It is preferable to use internal personnel to conduct training; however, an organisation that uses only in-house expertise may not benefit from new thinking in the field. On the other hand, a company that relies solely on external HRD help does not develop the internal resources that are necessary for effective functioning.

(d) Planning for the evolution of HRD: Various aspects of HRD can be introduced into the organisation in stages, depending on its needs, size and level of sophistication. Some aspects may require a great deal of preparation. Rushing the introduction of an aspect of HRD may limit its effectiveness. Each stage should be planned carefully, with sequenced phases built one over the other.

This may include:

(i) Geographical phasing introducing the system in a few parts of the organisation and slowly spreading it to other parts. This may be necessary in a large or widely located organisation. 

(ii) Vertical phasing introducing the system at one or a few levels in the organisation and expanding up or down gradually.

(iii) Functional phasing introducing one function or sub-system, followed by other functions. For example, introducing job specifications (identification of critical attributes of jobs) before introducing a complete potential-appraisal system.

(iv) Sophistication phasing introducing simple forms of sub-systems, followed after some time by more sophisticated forms.

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