Question – Assignment Example

1. and discuss the competencies that HR professionals need.  Advocate for credibility, a key indicator for outstanding performance. Must be credible to both colleagues and employees they serve. Be a visionary and be proactive in accepting change.
Cultural stewardship. Knowledge of best practices and an effective communicator.
Operational execution i.e. employee hiring, compensation, retention, training and promotion etc.
Strategist. Finding issues and solutions.
Great interpersonal skills and effective communicator
Talent management in line with organizational structure.
Superior understanding of the business they work for.
2. Outline the four dimensions of human resource management practices, including specific examples of human resource practices within each area. 
Staffing – Recruiting the right people for the required skills set for a job function.
Training - Developmental issues – through organizational learning capability e.g. Continued education.
Performance appraisals – Identifying productivity levels and how to improve on them including factor that affect productivity.
Compensation and benefits – Preparing a remuneration schedule in liaison with management commensurate with education, skills and experience.
3. Discuss four ways an HR department can ensure involvement with a firms strategic management process. 
By offering and demonstrating a core set of values to be adhered to by all employees. Motivating employees and seeking involvement.
Seek business issues and develop strategies to address them by setting clear objectives and reasonable timelines.
Developing strategic action plans by involving employees in all departments of the business. Leading in implementation of those action plans through designated leadership roles.
Constantly evaluating and monitoring the future of the business and refocusing appropriately on a needs basis.
4. Define disparate treatment and disparate impact. Discuss how reasonable accommodation differs from disparate treatment and disparate impact. 
Disparate treatment occurs when a protected group is treated differently at the work place whether or not discrimination was intended. Disparate impact on the other hand often occurs when employment conditions and decisions disadvantage such a protected group. Reasonable accommodation refers to a work environment modification in order to allow a qualified individual with a disability equal employment opportunity.
5. What are the differences among job analysis, job descriptions, and job specifications? 
Job analysis is a critical view of an assignment or work being done or needs done. Usually a vacancy for the job already exists or is being created after a needs assessment. Job analysis looks at job classification, how long it takes, supervisory or not and salary requirements etc. It is basically a precursor to preparing job description or specification.
Job description is a document with a printed description of what the person doing the job or is expected to do or what is involved in the job and who to report to.
Job specifications what’s needed to do the job and includes prerequisite skills set. This will often include education and experience levels. It has specific functions and is an internal audit of what it really takes to get the job done.
6. Forecasting indicates the need for skilled technical employees in your company will increase dramatically this year. If the company continues on its present course, it will experience a substantial labor shortage by years end. Something must be done fast, but management is concerned about maintaining its flexibility. Which of the options for avoiding expected labor shortages identified in the text would be most appropriate under these circumstances? Explain your answer. 
The three options discussed in the text that meet the threshold for consideration are; overtime, temporary employees and outsourcing. Since overtime adds significantly to the payroll and I’d rather stick to locally trained labor, I will go with temporary staffing as my first measure. It’s cheaper and significantly impacts productivity in the long run amongst other benefits. I would of course outsource as a last resort if there were extreme demand and there’s a real shortage of local talent. Ultimately, I am looking for a “fast” way to fill the labor gap and the approach must be flexible.
7. Traditional job interviews have demonstrated low validity in terms of predicting job performance. Describe how job interviews should be conducted in order to maximize their validity. 
Because there is little time to know the candidate, interviews must be structured to happen at the very end of the selection process. This should be preceded using unbiased tools to maximize on selecting the very best for the final interview. Resumes and curriculum vitas often only has information the candidate wants you to know, therefore use a structured application form so you can get the information you need. A three-layered format is proposed where the people with the correct education and skills set go through followed by telephone/conference interviews and finally background checks before the final interview. If the required skills are demonstrable like in the IT industry, inbuilt this to your structure and final interview.
8. Discuss the organizational analysis step in the needs assessment process, including the three types of analyses it involves. 
Evaluate current state of knowledge, skills and abilities of current or future employees. How do they align with the company’s goals, business climate including internal and external constraints? This will include the following;
Performing a gap analysis.
Identifying priorities and their importance using a ranking system or matrix.
Identifying causes of performance problems or areas of opportunity and Identifying solutions and growth opportunities.
Works Cited
Jackson, S. E., and Schuler, R. S. Managing Human Resources: A Partnership
Perspective Cincinnati: South-Western Publishing, 2000.