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Human Resources Definition. A Concept Review

Human resources definition

If you are here because you want to find out more regarding the human resources definition, the origin of the word and what the people responsible for the HR management of their company do on a day to day basis, then read on.

Human Resources Definition

The Human Resources definition is articulated as the department within a company that manages and deals with everything to do with the employees of that company. This includes recruitment, selection hiring, onboarding or welcoming, training, promotion, payroll, contracts and layoffs. In short, the Human Resources department works for the people who form the company, employee team. Human Resources are essential for any company to aid it in its growth and in hiring the best workers for any given position. It also works in aiding its companies employees in their training, growth and development.

The term Human Resources is commonly abbreviated as HR. In the last few years, many HR professionals have proposed new ways of naming the profession. With the suggestion of changing it from the outdated name of Human Resources to something more current. Examples of its name rebranding include Personnel Management, People Department, People, and People & Happiness. Have you heard of any other names used to describe HR? If so, leave us a comment below this article.

The definition of Human Resources: its origin

The first person to coin the phrase Human Resources was the economist John R. Commons. His book, entitled “Distribution of wealth,” was published in 1984. However, it was not until 1910-1920 that the term HR first became popular. It was then that companies began to regard their workers as capital assets within their businesses.

The rise of Human Resources departments occurred between the end of the First World War (1914-1918) until the Great Depression (1929-1933). During this period new laws appeared which required businesses to undergo certain social processes. From that, the HR departments began to grow and assimilate to what it is today. This has evolved the definition of Human Resources to be a much more exhaustive and relevant concept.

Responsibilities of the Human Resources department

The main functions and responsibilities of the Human Resources department include the processes of recruiting new team members, managing employees and arranging their dismissals or dismissals from a team. Besides this, it also takes care of:

The importance of the Human Resource Department

Today, the presence of HR departments and HR managers is essential for any company, regardless of its size. An HR department is nowadays necessary to enable the proper functioning of any company. Additionally, it is the only department that manages and ensures the well-being of the people that make the company. Furthermore, they are also integral in times of emergency; demonstrated by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is their job to manage employee shifts and make sure employees feel supported and are working well from home.

What are the benefits of having a Human Resources department?

  • Improve the skills and abilities of employees
  • Increase team performance
  • Increase employee engagement
  • Ensures a career plan for employees
  • Hire new talent
  • Guarantees interpersonal internal communication
  • Bear the administrative burden of the team
  • Watch over the company culture and employer branding
  • Provide both professional and personal support to employees  

Human resources definition

The digitisation of Human Resources

Another recent change that has occurred in the Human Resources departments has been the incorporation of programs and software which specialise in the management of employees and documents. In recent years, most companies have begun to digitise their HR processes which would normally fall under the responsibility of HR managers. These processes include managing absences, leave, payroll, contracts, flexible compensation and other tasks. This automation of tasks means that HR professionals can dedicate the time saved to what really matters, the happiness of their employees.

At Factorial we want to help HR managers! Don´t waste time with meaningless administrative tasks but rather focus on the people working within their company! This will be directly be reflected in the care and value that your customers and potential clients will receive from your team.

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