Human Resources and Organization Development

Topics: Human resource management, United Nations, Organizational studies and human resource management Pages: 5 (1463 words) Published: January 7, 2013
Human Resource Development is vital to organizations as it helps to improve business performance through the development of workforce, and directing and improving abilities and skills through activities planned to improve organizational learning. There are numerous definitions of Human Resource Development (Swanson & Holton, 2009) however I prefer the definition posited by Swanson (1995) as stated in Swanson & Holton (2009) because among other things (as discussed below) this resonates very well with me. Moreover, Swanson is one of the prolific scholars and contributors in the field of Human Resource and Organizational Development. According to Swanson & Holton (2009), “Human Resource Development (HRD) is a process of developing and unleashing expertise for the purpose of improving individual, team, work process, and organizational system performance” (p. 4) I believe this “expertise” can be generated through training and development which is one of the core functions of Human Resource Development. The focal point of human resource development is on developing the most superior workforce so that the organization and employees can accomplish their work goals and effective services to clients or customers and stakeholders. As I stated above Swanson & Holton (2009) definition of HRD is the most preferable, mainly because of its emphasizes on key elements in the field and practice of HRD such as developing “expertise” at the individual level, group/team level and at the organizational level towards achieving the goal of effective organizational performance. This definition also amplifies the mutuality and importance as well as the interconnectivity and or interdependence of these forces. Furthermore, organizations have many opportunities for human resources or employee development, both within and outside of the workplace. All activities in the HRD are intended to improve people's abilities to achieve definite objectives and goals. Human Resource Development also includes the integrated use of opportunities such as career development, employee training, performance management and development, mentoring, coaching, succession planning, and organization development in order to improve the individual, the team, and the organization as a whole.

In today’s continuously changing financial and technological environment, in order to perform duties and make meaningful contribution to the success of the organizational goals, employees must acquire relevant knowledge and skills through continuous learning and training (Gom, 2009). Training and development can affect a successful outcome; the organization grows depending on the performance of the employees, if employees do not have the requisite training, they remain with only the skills they know of and the organization may become stagnant and uncompetitive (Gom, 2009). This stagnant position is counter productive and self-destructive in the current competitive and constantly evolving global economy where effective talent management are key to not only organizational performance and development but also survival. Moreover, an organization with well trained employees who are productive enjoys a competitive advantage in comparison to its rivals. In connection to this assertion is the fact that people are organizational human capital and therefore must be utilized and maintained in very good condition and hence to the benefit of the organization.

Employee development and training is a significant element of human resources development. According to Swanson & Holton (2009), “Training and development (T&D) is defined as a process of systematically developing work-related knowledge and expertise for the purpose of improving performance” (p. 229). The ultimate goal of the training and development process is characterized as the formation of the learning organization, continuously reviewing its errors and success and changing its activities accordingly. With this declared, I believe all...
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