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Employee Discipline and Management Issues In

Human Resources
Siena Heights University
By: Matthew Eiseler

Have you ever wondered the job description of a human resources
employee or manager? Until taking the Human Resource Management class
at Siena Heights University I never really understood the importance a
human resource department has on an organization. The human resource
department deals with employee well-being and is responsible for payroll,
hiring, firing, benefits and keeping up to date with state and federal tax laws.
In this paper I will discuss employee discipline and management issues that
a human resource department deals with on a daily basis.
Recruitment- Hiring- Training
One of the most important things a human resources department does
is recruits, hires and trains new employees to meet the needs and goals of
an organization. Before a human resource department can hire new
employees they must determine the short and long term plans and goals of
an organization. Recruitment is defined as a process that provides the
organization with a pool of qualified job candidates from which to choose.
Before companies recruit, they must implement proper staffing plans and
forecasting to determine how many people they will need (Dias, 2011, pg.
92). Once the best candidate for the job is hired it is the human resource
departments duty to guide and train the employees to meet the goals of the
organization. For most organizations the first step in training employees is

some form of orientation. One of the goals of orientation is for new

employees to gain an understanding of company polices and see how their
specific job fits into company plans. If an orientation is done right, it can
help get the employee up to speed on various policies and procedures, so
the employee can start working right away. It can also be a way to ensure all
hiring paperwork is filled out correctly, so the employee is paid on time
(Dias, 2011, pg. 246).
Interpersonal Conflict
Another issue that the human resource department may deal with is
interpersonal conflict when tensions are thought to be symptomatic of
organizational life. Organizational support groups are put in place by human
resources departments as an alternative to counseling when a persons
distress is thought to be caused from work. Many workplace stress
management programs focus on teaching employees how to cope with the
effects of stress individually and this approach considers the impact that
workplace culture and relationships have (Rafferty, 2011, par. 5). This
means when an individual needs help with stress management the
individuals working life should be considered to establish whether or not
there is any relational context between organizational matters and the
symptoms an individual presents. Individuals are more susceptible to stress
when relationships at work are not supportive, which makes them more likely
to take time off sick. This supports the view that lack performance and
attitude reduces (Rafferty, 2011, par. 9).

Conflict Resolution
A common issue that the human resource department deals with
frequently is conflict resolution amongst employees and managers.
Workplace conflicts are very common, there are very few organizations
where all the employees get along. Because of this, conflict resolution is a
necessary component of the, and those in human resources or a leadership
position must be skilled in conflict resolution techniques. In order to resolve
conflicts it is important to first listen to employee issues of all parties
involved and try to understand the nature of the conflict. Next it is the job of
human resources to arrange a meeting with all involved employees to
discuss the issue. It is important to give everyone involved a chance to speak
because it gives a better understanding of what is causing the conflict. It is
important for HR to address the conflict immediately so it does not escalade
and further affect employee performance but it is also important not to jump
to conclusions because conflicts amongst staff can easily affect the
demeanor and performance of staff. When HR deals with conflict resolution it
is important that they remind employees the importance of teamwork in
order to meet organizational goals.
It is important for the human resource department to work towards
preventing conflicts in the work place. In most organizations employees work
in teams or with other people and the most important way to prevent
conflicts amongst employees is with communication. Many issues or conflicts
arise from employees feeling left out on decision making and changes made

in the work place. Meetings involving all staff are important to keep everyone
in the loop regarding changes to the way things are to be done. All staff
should participate in meetings and workshops that improve communication
skills and encourage employees to voice their concerns, listen to others'
concerns and rebuild trust (Glauser, 2011, par. 2).
Morale in the Workplace
Another important task for the human resource department is to boost
employee morale. Employee morale is defined by the employee's outlook,
optimism, self-concept, and assured belief in themselves and their
organization, its mission, goals, defined path, daily decisions, and employee
appreciation (Meilman, 2001, pg. 53). Morale is a state of mind or
willingness to work which in turn affects individuals and organizational
objectives. Employees with high morale tend to have higher work
performance, better quality of work, low absenteeism and good discipline.
Maintaining high employee morale is one of the best things a human
resource department can do in order to instill loyalty and maintain a
productive and efficient work place. It is the job of human resources to help
influence morale in the work place. This is done by making employees feel
they have a meaningful and satisfying job while giving them job security,
benefits and fair wages. It is important for managers and HR show concern in
employee tasks because if an employee feels management doesnt care
about their tasks or services they are providing then the employee could also
choose not to care about their tasks, managers or organization. It is

important that employees know what is expected of them and how they are
performing, without knowing it can be difficult for an employee to work
towards meeting organizational goals efficiently. Recognition is also very
important in boosting morale, employees are likely to have a better attitude
when they are being complimented on the hard work they put into their jobs
on a daily basis.
Investigations and Terminations
One of the most difficult jobs for a human resource department is when
they have to terminate employees. It is a job very few people like to do but is
necessary for success of an organization if employees are not being efficient
and productive. In most cases before the termination process the HR
department is responsible for some sort of investigation. Workplace
investigations are performed for many different types of situations that occur
in the workplace. Some of the reasons for workplace investigations include
the following:
violations of workplace rules and procedures, substance abuse,
discrimination complaints, harassment complaints, threats against others,
abusive behavior, work place theft, vandalism and other sabotage, safety
issues, attitude problems, retaliation claims and security breaches (Woska,
2013, par. 4). When investigating issues that occur it is important to
complete the investigation as quickly as possible. After gathering all the
information and evidence the human resource department must determine

whether it is more probable than not that the reported misconduct occurred.
In situations where it is determined that termination is the action to be
taken, counsel may recommend that the next higher standard of proof be
used, which is called a clear and convincing evidence (Woska, 2013, par.
42). When it comes time to terminate the employee, HR can help guide the
conversation and minimize damages to both the company and the employee.
The role of HR during this process is to help the employee leave with dignity.
The human resource department plays a key and vital role in the
success of any organization. It is very important that HR recruits, hires and
trains the right people in order to meet organizational goals. The HR
department must provide resources in order to help employees to deal with
stressful issues inside and outside of work so they can be productive and
efficient to the mission and goals of the organization. They must resolve and
work towards preventing conflicts amongst management and employees in
order to preserve a productive workforce. HR must work on boosting
employee morale which is done by making employees feel they have a
meaningful and satisfying job while giving them job security, benefits and
fair wages. Lastly, if employees are not performing up to expectations or
violating the terms of their agreement it is the job of HR to investigate and
terminate the employee.

Work Cited
Dias, L. (2011). Human resource Management. ISBN 13: 978-14533194-3-7. Downloaded Jan 20,2014 from

Glauser, W. (2011). Hospital turning to a team-based conflict resolution. CMAJ:

Canadian Medical Association Journal= Journal De I'Association Medicale Canadienne.
183(13), E977.
Harris, A. (2006). Employment law and occupational health- A practical
handbook. Sutton: Reed Business Information UK.
Meilman, P. (2001). Human resource issues in university health services. Journal
of American College Health, 50(1), 43-47.
Rafferty, J. (2011). Making good connections. Sutton: Reed Business Information
Woska, W. J. (2013).Legal Issues for HR Professionals: Workplace Investigations.
Public Personnel Management, 42(1), 90-101.