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HRM Ethics DR. RAJNI SINGH. HRM Ethics People learn business management automatically even before knowing what ‘Management’ is- Peter Drucker To many.

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Presentation on theme: "HRM Ethics DR. RAJNI SINGH. HRM Ethics People learn business management automatically even before knowing what ‘Management’ is- Peter Drucker To many."— Presentation transcript:


2 HRM Ethics People learn business management automatically even before knowing what ‘Management’ is- Peter Drucker To many people management is synonymous with business management But business management is only a part of management For a better understanding of HRM Ethics, it is essential to know what Management is, what is HRM, what is Business, what is Ethics and what is Business Ethics.

3 Definition-Management Management is the process of planning, organizing, directing and controlling of organizational resources in order to achieve personal, organizational and social goals effectively and efficiently This definition envisages the use of organizational resources including HR very effectively and efficiently to achieve ends without compromising individual or organizational or social goals, i.e. there must be equilibrium among these factors The HRM implication is that HR (People) can be used as a means to achieve organizational and social goals, but at the same time, it should not be forgotten that they have their own ends, i.e. in certain aspects they are the end in themselves, even in the organizational context

4 Definition-HRM HRM means a process of planning, organizing, directing and controlling of procurement (recruitment & selection), development (training), compensation (salary, wages & other benefits), appraisal (actual performance & potential performance), maintenance (welfare & record-keeping), and separation (retirement, resignation, retrenchment, etc) of employees or personnel or HR of the organization in order to achieve personal, organizational and social goals effectively and efficiently.

5 Definition-HRM In this definition, there are two types of functions for the HR Manager Managerial functions-planning, organizing, directing and controlling Operative functions- procurement, development, compensation, appraisal, maintenance and separation Here, the HR Manager is applying all managerial functions positively in each of the operative functions to maintain equity, equality and justice. In some operative functions (compensation, appraisal, maintenance and separation) s/he has to maintain equity, while in some others (procurement, development, etc) s/he has to maintain equality and individual and social justice. It is also implied that HR (employees) must play their duties to achieve the organizational and social goals effectively and efficiently

6 Definition-Business Business is a process of carrying out economic activities (providing goods and services) by any individual or organization or corporation or partnership firm or franchisee in order to generate profit (return on investment) within the legal and moral framework This definition implies that any business activity/decision has three aspects: Economic, Legal and Moral (ethical). One aspect cannot be compromised for another

7 The Organization An organization is made of economic and social (human) elements and operates within the legal framework In an organization the human element cannot be compromised for the economic element

8 What is Ethics? Ethics is a set of moral principles or values Ethics are the principles, norms and standards of conduct governing an individual or group Ethics is a rational inquiry into how to act and how to lead one’s life

9 What is Business Ethics? Business ethics are moral principles that define right and wrong behaviour in the world of business Business ethics is the evaluation of business activities and behaviour as right or wrong Business ethics is the application of general ethics to business behaviour These definitions say that business ethics is nothing but an extension of individual/group ethics to business situations. Also it can be understood that there can’t be different moral standards for personal life and business life. Business ethics is essentially an applied ethics.

10 What is HRM Ethics? HRM Ethics is “the affirmative moral obligations of the employer (business) towards the employees to maintain equality and equity justice” Do not treat people (employees) simply as a means for our own purposes without their full and free consent, because they are ends in themselves

11 Hard and Soft HRM Hard HRM- where employees are viewed instrumentally as a means to achieve organizational goals Soft HRM- where employees are viewed as a subject-in- themselves. Soft HRM promotes employee rights, empowerment, involvement, participation, etc Both soft and hard HRM can be considered as ethical under “utilitarianism” concept (greatest good to greatest number), but deontological theory may accept only soft HRM as ethically correct and not hard HRM (Deontological ethics or deontology is an approach to ethics that focuses on the rightness or wrongness of intentions or motives behind action such as respect for rights, duties, or principles, as opposed to the rightness or wrongness of the consequences of those actions.)

12 Stakeholder theory and HRM ethics It says that “the corporation and its managers are responsible for the effects of their actions on others” and that “the corporation should be managed for the benefit of the stakeholders, that is, those who affect or can be affected by the corporation” This theory also supports “utilitarianism” in HRM ethics

13 To what extent should the organization follow HRM ethics? Here, the two ethical concerns are 1.To what extent should people be used as a means to an end 2.To what extent the mgt has to act in the interest of the employees The last part of the definition of HRM “effective and efficient” utilization of HR supports the first concern The part “to achieve personal/individual goals” in the definition supports the second concern The definition of HRM clearly says that organizational interest cannot be compromised while doing justice to employees and vice-versa

14 Areas of HRM ethics Basic human rights, civil and employment rights. E.g. Job security, feedback from tests, openness and consultation over matters which affect the employees Social and organizational justice. E.g. procedural justice, egalitarianism, equity and equal opportunity Equity/Distributive justice (proportionate pay for proportionate contribution), autonomy and respect Safety in the workplace Respect, fairness and honesty based process in the workplace Privacy (Egalitarianism (derived from the French word égal, meaning equal) is a political doctrine that holds that all people should be treated as equals and have the same political, economic, social, and civil rights)

15 Is HRM as a function full of conflicts? Yes Rhetoric of HRMReality of HRM FlexibilityMgt can do what it wants De-layeringReducing the no. of middle mgrs Downsizing/RightsizingRedundancy New working patternsPart-timers to replace full-timers EmpowermentMaking people take risk/responsibility Training & DevelopmentManipulation/Exploitation EmployabilityNo job/employment security Recognizing individual contributionUndermine the trade union and collective bargaining Teamwork/synergyReducing the individual’s discretion

16 Employees’ rights and duties RightsDuties To workLoyalty to the firm For just compensationRespect for current legal and moral norms To free association and strikeRespect the rights of the employer For privacyJust contribution to the organization For freedom of speechMaintain secrecy/confidentiality To due processCooperation with boss/subordinates For participation For healthy and safe working conditions To job satisfaction

17 Employers’ rights and duties RightsDuties Demand minimal productivity from employees No discrimination in rules for recruitment and conditions for firing Loyal cooperation from employeesFair compensation Requirement of correct behaviour at the workplace Work oriented code of conduct No disruption in workAcceptance of criticism from workers Peaceful ways of settlementAcceptance of labour court jurisprudence in conflicts Improving QWL

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