Public Administration and Human Resource Management

HR functions of deputy department in a federally created authority

Feedback regarding the pros and cons of centralised vs decentralised HR responsibilities

Human resource management (HRM) is a leadership function that requires the efforts of a qualified person to oversee the activities of an organisation. It can either be centralised or decentralised depending on the nature of the organisational structures. However, these human management structures have various cons and pros that make them either effective or ineffective.

In the context of this essay, the governmental entity has a centralised HR office that is led by a director and an assistant. Centralised HRM refers to a situation in which the human resource professional controls the functions of the employees from a specific unit in the organisation that is designed for such purposes. This strategy has various advantages that make it effective in the management of organisations. At the outset, centralised systems are characterised by low operational costs. The HR structure adopts an approach that reduces the overall expenditure of the organisation since all the departments are answerable to a single unit. Secondly, a consolidated structure results in the concentration of human resource knowhow. As a result, both line and senior managers at the federal agencies mostly facilitate HR services. Finally, yet importantly, single human resource management leads to the optimisation of public organisational processes.

However, federal entities are vulnerable to adverse effects due to the existence of bureaucracy. Usually, centralised human resource management structures only allow certain individuals to make government decisions that affect the operations of the entity. In most cases, this state of affairs leads to inactivity amongst the employees since many decisions that are executed are deemed unfavourable. In addition, federal systems create many misconstructions amongst the employees and senior management. This situation results in the development of mistrust that can further lead to the failure of transparency and accountability of organisational resources. Lastly, it disrupts the diversification of ideas. Other ideas that can be eligible for organisation development are not put into practice since only one individual makes almost every federal decision.

On the other hand, decentralised human resource structures are systems that encompass several departments that are headed by different managers. Unlike the centralised human resources, decentralised systems involve the efforts of various teams that operate at different departmental levels of the government entity. The greatest advantage of decentralised government entities is the diversification of ideas that improves the overall functioning of the organisation. However, broad-based HR systems lead to wastage of time during harmonisation of different ideas that emanate from the various departmental heads. This situation hardens the process of decision-making.

The above-mentioned pros and cons of the two structures are a clear indication that the situation in the federal authority requires immediate implementation of a decentralised human resource management system.

Recruitment and selection of candidates for the open positions

Recruitment and selection of candidates is a human resource management function that demands objectivity rather than subjectivity to avoid personal bias, poor assessment, and halos and horns effect. Human resource managers should recruit new employees based on neutral competence and merit systems. However, the process of recruiting employees to occupy public positions follows a number of steps that are outlined below.

Analysis of Qualifications

Human resource managers should assess the required qualifications that should grant a prospective candidate a chance to occupy the vacant position prior to recruitment and selection. This strategy eases identification of various qualities that align with the nature of jobs.

Needs Assessment

The second stage involves the identification of the prevailing and impending needs of the public organisation. It enables the human resource manager to classify jobs.

Assessment of Competition for Knowledge and Skills

This step is crucial for the evaluation of the availability of knowledge and expertise that are suitable for the vacant positions in the public entity.

Evaluation of Payment Capabilities

The human resource manager should determine the ability of the organisation to pay prospective employees.

Execution of the Recruitment Process

After the fulfilment of the above steps, the human resource manager can proceed to the execution of the recruitment process.

Compensation systems, position management, and employee policies

Compensation systems are organised approaches that facilitate the provision of payments for employees. In the context of this essay, the organisation should avail commissions, and overtime pays to keep employees motivated. On the other hand, position management refers to a channelled use of employee talents to achieve the goals of the organisation. HR should ensure that the placement of employees in public service positions is based on their skills and abilities. Lastly, the organisation needs to revise the existing employment policies and procedures. This strategy should entail the sensitisation of employees to the organisation’s mission and code of ethics.

However, HR has to establish robust training and appraisal procedures that can be adopted to develop competent employees. Employee training is usually a four-step process that includes orientation, provision of preparation requirements, testing, and evaluation. Successful training exercises are followed by follow-up appraisals of employee performance. A proper performance evaluation system comprises five steps. At the outset, there is a need to develop an assessment formula. Secondly, the HR manager has to pinpoint various performance areas that are to be measured. Thirdly, the evaluation system involves the setting of feedback mechanisms. The next step entails the development of punitive measures to guide the process. Lastly, the HR manager sets a convenient assessment calendar that enables efficient performance appraisal.

Public Works Department

Outwardly, the public works department of the small municipality suffers from a variety of issues that have derailed the achievement of goals. These issues include demotivated government employees, ethical dilemma, and poor managerial skills, among others. As a new manager in the organisation, I suggest a few solutions that can be implemented in the public works department. At the outset, there is an ethical dilemma in the department. Indeed, Abdala confirms that morality is appalling in the public works department. Therefore, there is a need to recruit a moral agent in the department to formulate and implement ethical resolutions that govern the behaviour of employees. The morality of an organisation significantly determines its capacity to accomplish set goals and objectives.

Secondly, the employees are demotivated due to poor incentive, training, and promotion systems. As a result, some of them have started looking for alternative jobs in other organisations. This situation implies that there is a need to formulate and execute robust systems that recognise the value of government employees in the public works department. The primary function of a manager is to nurture the skills of employees with a view of keeping them motivated throughout their job tenure. Therefore, there is a need to develop a motivational system through provision of incentives such as bonuses, training, recognition, and/or promotions to heighten employee engagement. This situation will motivate and retain the engineering workforce. Lastly, poor leadership characterises the department. Proper leadership is paramount to the success of any organisational system. It is an ingredient of mutual capacity that enables the development and accomplishment of strategies. However, the achievement of the above objectives demands robust research to determine the specific strategies that can improve employee engagement.

Paradoxes identified in the work of HR in the UAE

A paradox is a phenomenon that encompasses conjointly exclusive and inconsistent systems that rarely occur together in nature. In the field of human resource management, various paradoxes have led to emergency and/or discovery of unexpected opportunities that have led to the improvement of businesses at times. Contradictions either disrupt or improve management goings-on that influences the success of public organisations. Various paradoxes that are related to democracy, organisational needs, performance-related pay systems, reform, and policy, among others have been identified in the textbook. The paradox of democracy is a phenomenon that is common in modern human resource management systems. Usually, people possess sovereign rights that greatly influence their understanding of public entities. Nonetheless, they are not able to exercise such civil liberties in public service since the nature of organisational structures does not offer them freedom. Only a few of the privileges that are stipulated in governing systems are applicable in working environments. Since public organisations are directly linked to government systems that are mostly centralised, this paradox can be alleviated by ensuring that organisations promote exercising of employee rights in areas such as training, payment, motivation, and promotion.

The paradox of ‘performance-related pay systems’ is a criterion that is used in public organisations to compensate employees based on their output. Many human resource managers strongly believe that this strategy boosts employee motivation and engagement. However, it is definite that employees have different personal goals that compel them to work towards certain achievements in public service. The truth is that many HR managers have created a mindset that payments that are based on performance create motivation amongst the employees. Although some people have been noted to exhibit improved performance, the system is deemed unjust due to the nature of humanity and varying abilities of public servants. Nonetheless, it puts employees in a state of pressure that makes them work to attain higher recompense. This paradox can be averted by ensuring that human resource departments in public organisations take proper account of wage harmonisation, motivation, and promotion of employees.

Thirdly, the textbook identifies the paradox of reform. In the wake of globalisation and speedy technological shifts, most public service organisations have opted to carry out change management in an attempt to improve both employee and structural performances. There is an emerging trend of modernising organisational systems. However, a contradiction arises where societies are still glued to ancient viewpoints that delay implementation of modern reforms. The idea of modernising organisations usually faces pressure from anti-reformist groups. Such groups majorly comprise of tycoons, cartels, and other self-interest parties. As a solution, there is a need to adequately train and sensitise employees to the need for change in public institutions in an attempt to ease reform processes.

The policy paradox has also been identified in the textbook. World’s political societies significantly influence contemporary human resource management systems. Public organisations exist within a network of communities, markets, and regulatory frameworks that determine the manner in which they conduct their operations. This situation creates a system of entities that are mutually exclusive. For instance, markets and communities form a system of social networks that facilitate the exchange of good and services for personal welfares. To avert this paradox, a variety of factors such as influence, cooperation, conflict of interest, loyalty, and age of information, among others should be matched with the goals of the public organisation.