Define Strategic Human Resource Management Management Essay

Strategies HRM is to help the programmes for improving organizational effectiveness by developing policies such as talent management, knowledge management and generally making “a great place to Work”. HR strategies can be concerned with the improvement of customer relation policies and persisting development.

Define Strategic Human Resource Management:

According to Bratton (2001) “SHRM is the process of connecting the human resource function with the strategic objectives of the organization in order to improve performance”. Another idea of Beer (1984) management authority dispute that “the HRM policies and practices of the organisation need to fit with its strategy in the competitive environment and the conditions that it faces” Beer et al supposed that “Today, many pressures demanding a broader, more strategic and more extensive viewpoint with regard to organisation’s human resource. They propose that HRM has two distinctive quality.

The line manager agrees more accountability for ensuring the alignment of personnel policies and competitive strategy.

Personnel has the operation of placing policies that control how personnel performances are execute and improve in ways that make them more mutually reinforcing

The Harvard model of strategic HRM is premised on the idea that if a manager expand an outlook of “how they desire to see the staffs involved in and developed by the enterprise” then some of the evaluation of past personnel management can be survive.

The fundamental features of strategy are,

Forward looking- the organizational capability of an organisation relies on its resource power;

Strategic fit- the need when improving HR strategies to obtain harmony between them and organisation business strategies within the circumstances of its internal and external situation.

1.2 The importance of human resource management in organisation.

Nowadays business, the right management and approach of the organisation staffs are the important factors in the organisations overall performance. Strategic technique in HRM is significant particularly in improving organisations. Starting from correct appointment to maintaining performing staffs, HR management is crucial in developing not only the staffs but the whole organisation itself.

The legal connection between the employee and the association is called as Human resource management. They preserve the employment right s and safety laws (OSHA, and civil rights act) and also providing training to the employees according to the association policy. In order to reach to the goal of an organisation they require right person in right time with right talent, so the organisation requires a talented HRM. Furthermore to the choice and management to do the task HR department should put up a reliability and responsibility in employees, should provide update data about the organisation programmes and also start a security in their working condition and job. For improving and take care of an employee, the expenditure is pretty high which is roughly the expenditure three fold than recruiting , selecting and training a new employee. This is not really considering the hidden expenditure by the wasting money due to the unacceptable or misguided management and the wasted time by training rather proper management of sustained staff. Employees are real heart beat of an organisation. How better they perform or maintained, the more the result and benefit to the organisation.

1.3 Analyse the framework of strategic human resource management:

Harvard model focus on the interests of various stakeholders in the organisation and how their interests are linked to the goals of management. The strategic human resource management model provides a comprehension that how the European structure and business programmes stress the Co-determination and the strength of the situational components in Human resource management strategy. As per this example the HRM policy is detailed in four areas that is affect of employee, human resource flows, work system and reward system and the main component is that the managers accountable to focus on each string . The estimated result from these policies are correspondence, competence, commitment and profitable. So it literally means the improvement in team work, trust between the employee and employer, activity development in both individual and group in a cost effective manner and self and social benefit. The structure of Harvard as modeled by Beer et al is show in figure 1

Stakeholder Interest:






Long-term Consequences

Individual well being

Organisational effectiveness

Societal Well being

HR Outcomes:



Cost effectiveness

HRM Policy choices

Employee influence

Human resource flow

Reward system

Work systems

Situational Factors:

Work force characteristic

Business strategy and Conditions

Management philosophy

Labour market


Task technology

Laws and Social values

Figure 1: Source adapted from Beer et al (1984) Harvard Framework

Understand the formulation and implementation of human resource strategies

Strategy development is the stage of strategic management that occupy the decision making and planning that lead to the foundation of the particular strategic plan and of an organisations objective. Strategy execution is the stage of strategic management that occupy the use of organisational and managerial devices to lead resources towards obtaining strategic out comes.

2.1 Strategic human resource process:

The SHRM process can be splited into three categories.

Establishment of the business strategy and translating it into HRM strategic aims

Execution of the HRM System based on HR strategy

Assess or review of the success and strategic cooperation of the HRM Systems.

All these categories are closely connected.

The first stage: Organisation understands HR department as a business partner and assist it with resources for being a proactive partner. It contained the top team creating the organisational strategy and will strengthen the pro-active strategic linkage of the HRM so that both strategy creation and the HRM team support each other.

Second Stage: Different HRM system like appointment and selection, performance management, training and improvement, career management and compensation should be aligned with the HR strategy. So it is called vertical linkage. Policies and practices of distinct HRM systems are changed or designed to the strategy execution requirements. This is the horizontal linkage. This stage also assesses need for organisational success or improvement and managing change during process like mergers, acquisitions, restructuring etc.

Third Stage: The extent of alignment of HRM systems with business strategy and their donation in obtaining strategic aims need to be assessed. The success for evaluation consist different surveys and assessment processes. The difficulty of assessment arises because most companies are not very clear as to what they want to assess.

2.2 The Roles in Strategic human resource management:

The HR expert has more demanding roles to obtain under SHRM – the developing business partner model. In performing the new demanding position, the HR expert must think outside the traditional organizational box of HRM and improve a more organized and radically distinct approach to manage the human element to successfully help the industries business strategy creation and execution. According to Lawler III and Mohrman (2003) become an effective strategic partner, the HR manager must have competencies that have to do with the business problems associated in strategy and strategy improvement and capability to donate to organizational design and modify the management.

According to Rowden (1999) the HR task must alter from a staff role that delivers pre-packaged HR services to a service that assists managers to produce customized strategic programmes to influence the success of company activity.

The HR manager can play a crucial part in the creation of strategy and supplying the human resource need to help different strategies and strategic plans in the organization. She/he gives the leadership role in developing the human capital and the necessary capabilities to enact the strategy and govern the execution and alter management processes to success (Lawler III & Mohrman, 2003). Good human capital management is a prerequisite for effective implementation of business strategies.

2.3 Development and Implementation of Human Resource Strategies:

Conducting a Strategic Review: HR strategies can develop and combine under the influence of situations; there is much to be said for adopting a organized approach to their creation. This can take the form of a strategic review, which evaluate strategy needs in the light of an analysis of people needs, present and future business.

Setting Out the strategy: There is no standard model of how a HR Strategy should be start; it all relies on the organisational situation. Some of the special areas included in this strategy are:


Business needs the crucial factors of business strategies

Analysis and environmental components (PESTEL/SWOT)

Cultural elements

Content – Details of HR Strategy

Rationale- Background of business requirements and cultural/environment elements

Execution of plan

Action programme

Resources needed

Project management arrangements

Expenditure and result analysis

Implementing HR Strategies: The term ‘strategic HRM’ has been undervalued in a few quarters, occasionally to mean no more than a few common points about HR policies and at other times to explain a short-term plan, for example to increase the retention rate of graduates. Since strategies tend to be indicated as abstractions, they require to be translated into plans with obviously stated aims and deliverables. But getting strategies into effect is not easy. It must be stressed that HR strategies are not just programmes, policies, or plans concerning HR problems that the HR department happens to feel are significant. Piecemeal initiatives do not constitute strategy.

3.1 Range of HR Strategies for the British Airways

Company Background:

British airways are one of the biggest UK based international airlines and also it is the flag carrier airline of the UK. It connects internationally to different 400 places as per the available information on 2010. On the fleet size it is the largest airline of the UK.

. It was founded in 1974 from its predecessors merging. It was privatize in 1987. Organisation slogan is “upgrade to British Airways”. Its goal is to be the best and most effective organisation in the Airline industry. BA joined with Spanish airline “lberia” in 2011

British Airways (BA) HR Strategies: It has positive attitude towards its employees and organisation has no methods to its customers and business. British Airways believe strongly that its HR is contributing to the organisations survival and success in every complex and crucial circumstances and situation. The significant aim of BA HR department is to improve motivation and responsible employees hence they can contribute the best in the prosperity of the company. It also designed different standard to help, improve and develop the skills of the employees. British Airways established special remuneration programme in order to make employee feel more connected in the organisation result. The organisation also shares profits with its staffs in order to encourage shared ownership. Organisation appointment strategy consist strategy of inclusiveness and the diversity. British Airways HR strategy is to continue invest and spend on the training and improvementt of the staffs because organisation believe that it is the best way to ensure the organisation HR will be enable to business achievements and objectives as well as feel valued in the organisation. (British Airways PLC)

The board of directors and management of the British Airways set the strategic goal of the organisation to ensure that required financial and human resources are in place for the organisation to meet its aims, objectives, and reviews performance management. (British Airways PLC)

Management should be set with the right ability in organizing, planning, leading, and establishing standards. As they are the ones who will fundamentally be focused in developing the organisation instead of the technical factors and operations, a higher understanding of this responsibility is vital, and this also plays a significant element once competition is put into the market. (British Airways PLC)

Their persistent increase, the right benefits and compensation, and producing better outcomes for the customers and subsequently, the company work-life balance are just some of the things that motivate employees to perform better. (British Airways PLC)

3.2 HR Strategies and Their application in British Airways

British Airways is presently using Resource Based Model and believe strongly that organisation can only get competitive merits if its resources especially HR is competitive and unique in terms of capabilities and skills.

Organisational culture is significant for a company nowadays for setting organisation’s direction and formulating tradition, creating unity, value, and belief for its employees to behave within organisation.

British Airways altered some of its significant historical beliefs and values by new corporate culture and mission. British Airways tried to launch new mission into the company by introducing many new appraisal system and new training programs to stimulate new changes in order to develop performance in organisation. New corporate cultures include participative management, customer/commercially-oriented, informality, innovation, and so on. It is vital for a company to change itself when external condition adjust in order to overcome; therefore, alters in culture and mission are done for transforming a company to be the effective organisation in the industry and for developing organisation performance in order to survive with fierce competitors. For instance, BA tried to alter corporate mission from “To be a safe airline” to “To be a competitive airline” in responding to the modification of the external condition. (Salama, A. & Easterby-Smith, M., 1994).

According to the 2010 annual report British Airways has five significant aims to obtain. They are

To create leading position in London

Attract new customers and retain the present customer to build outstanding, high quality services in market

Long term oriented customers

Widen the business internationally and develop organisation presence all around the world.

To build the customers meets and base the needs and requirements of the customers by establishing

new revenue.

Performance evaluation is one of the key elements of HRM development. British airways can easily evaluate the performance of the staffs with the help of performance assessment. Hence it can be choose the suitable profits and rewards for the staffs to stimulate them.

British Airways also offers training and progress of the staffs and organisation has appropriate idea about which kind and when should the training need to be given to staffs. BA rely on that training and improvement is the best way to improve the output of the staff.

According to Bratton and Gold (2010) human resource of the organisations is extremely capable and in effect then it will help organisation to meets its aims with productivity.

4.1 Contemporary issues affecting strategic human resource management:

The mainstream organisations will adjust themselves when external and internal situations change. According to Buchanan D. & Huczynski A., (2004) the problems for organisational modification can be separated into two. The first problem is “External Trigger” which is variation in customers’ needs and tastes, legislation and government policies, activities and improvements of competitors and so on. The second concern is “Internal Trigger” containing employment of a new senior manager, new ideas about how to provide services to customers, new product and service design improvements, and so forth. The organisation replied by introducing “Privatization” program to modify the ownership of the organisation from the government to the private sector when these triggers have an influence on BA. To increase the organisation performance, this program has a determination in order to overcome with stern competitors. Alteration within organisation will happen in three phases as stated by Lewin’s model of change.

Unfreezing – It is decreasing the forces of modification which preserve behaviour in its current form, appreciation of the requirement for change and improvement to happen.

Movement – It is the development of new approaches or behaviour and the execution of the modification.

Refreezing – It is stabilizing alteration at the new level and strengthening through subsidiary mechanisms

4.2 Analyse Contemporary issues affecting strategic human resource management:

Privatization in British Airways:

British Airways in 1980 has a excellent modification within its company which is “Privatization” project. The organisation faced the financial difficult at that time. The British government was not willing to provide public money to eradicate organisation liability because it is a long term commitment which is cost more than £1 billion and the fear of criticism. Furthermore, the improvement of airline deregulation that allows organisation in airline industry to set charges and stop or start service on route as their popularity made struggle for British Airways to survive with other competitors. Therefore, British Airways decided to make modification within the company. The privatization made BA to modification many things in company such as mission statement, organisational assembly, corporate culture, and so forth.

British Airways Lewin’s Change Model:

The three phases of alteration in organisation are relaxing, movement, and refreezing which can make both negative and positive result on organisational framework and employees.

Unfreezing Stage

The organisational modification in British Airways is to unfreeze present shape of behaviour as a way of management struggle to change. Therefore, organisational modification made an effect on individual level. For an example, British Airways executed “Downsizing of Workforce” policy to rearrange the company which made the organisation to cut down the number of staff. Therefore, the result of this policy focused hierarchical levels, permitted work to get done more easily, and gave more autonomy to functioning people which it would lastly improve organisation performance. British Airways also recognized new training programs such as “Putting People First” and “Managing People First” to support line managers and workers to recognize the nature of the airline industry services (Goodstein., D., L. & Burke, W., 1991). Additionally, there was most important modification in British Airways top management. Colin Marshall was nominated to be CEO by Sir John King which the choice of new CEO changed by new culture which concentrated more on customer service and marketing and made the old corporate culture vanished in the privatization period.

Movement Stage

The organisation in this phase involved in building any alteration to be real which the organisation developed programs and strategies to bring the vision of the top management-level to the bottom-line employees throughout the company. Number of internal British Airways systems and structures were altered such as the opening of Terminal 4 at Heathrow airport, combined with “Iberia” and new bonus system. (Goodstein., D., L. & Burke, W., 1991)

Refreezing Stage

The organisation in this phase had to steady alterations by introducing systems that can make behavioral outline in the company. For an example, a new performance evaluation system created on outcomes and behaviour was formed to focus subordinate improvement and customer service. Furthermore, British Airways symbols were recognised to support those variations such as refurbished aircrafts, a new corporate coat of arms with the motto “We fly to serve”, new employee’s uniforms, and so on. (Goodstein., D., L. & Burke, W., 1991)

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