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TRANSITION PHASE - HRM to SHRM

The first thing that needs to be done is to provide an actual definition and analysis to
what it actually means to be SHRM. In order to define this concept, it is first important
to actually explain what is meant by human resources in general. Appleby & Mavin
(2000) explain that

Human resources are the efforts, skills, and capabilities that people contribute to an
employing organization which enable it to continue in existence. Although difficult to
define, SHRM is generally perceived as a distinctive approach to managing people which
seeks to achieve competitive advantage through the strategic development of a highly
committed and capable workforce.

The definition that is provided here explains that human resources is really about the
skills that the people of an organization bring together in order to keep it alive. In
addition, the authors explain that moving into the realm of SHRM is about managing the
human capital of an organization in such a way as to achieve some type of competitive
edge. Having not only a committed workforce, but also having a workforce that is highly
trained for the job that must be performed achieves the competitive edge. Moving in this
direction is where human resources become SHRM.

TeleVox Software, Inc. is a technology-centered company


based in Mobile, AL. Since 1992, TeleVox has provided
software communication applications to the healthcare
industry and other commercial markets. Today, TeleVox
counts more than 12,000 practices, clinics, hospitals, organizations and businesses as
clients. Our software solutions cover a broad range of messaging and communication
applications, all designed to improve doctor-patient and business-customer
communication.

The scope of our technology encompasses:

• Outbound Message Delivery


Delivers automated appointment confirmations and other notifications.
• Inbound Inquiry
Provides access to test results, appointment information, billing statements.
• Survey Delivery
Gauges patient and customer satisfaction, measures practice and business
performance.
• Web Design & Hosting
Provides custom-built interactive websites and a host of additional features and
services.
• On-Hold Messaging
Supplies custom on-hold programs in high-quality digital format.
PROBLEMS AND OPPORTUNITIES

It should become clearer that a transition from simple human resource management to
strategic human resource management is not going to be something that is going to result
in just opportunities for human resource departments. Instead, there are also going to be
problems and areas of concern along the way. All of these areas must be addressed and
dealt with my HR departments if they are going to be part of the strategic process in
companies in the future.

It describes the key areas of concerns that are needed to be considered while moving the
company from HRM to SHRM. It also describes the problems that the Company actually
faces while going through the transition period.

KEY AREAS OF CONCERN

The identification of the key areas of concerns that necessitate to be addressed before
implementing the Transition process was made by the company. At Televox Software,
these areas are as follows:

Accountability for Performance


First, with the transition to strategic human resources at the Televox, HR departments are
going to be held accountable for the work that they perform. This means that they cannot
simply sit on the sidelines and expect to reap the benefits of being treated like part of the
management team without gaining some of the pressures and responsibilities that come
with actually being part of the management. This is going to result in HR managers and
departments having to actually justify their existence. They are going to have their own
goals and objectives that will have to be met. Even more, they are going to have to
answer to the senior management of the companies for which they work, as well as the
investors of the companies, when the decisions they have undertaken to obtain qualified
employees or to hold on to employees do not go as planned. They are also going to be
expected to communicate problems and concerns more openly, rather than lurking in the
shadows waiting to be noticed by those in power.

Strategic Measures
Another area of concern for Televox is that, the whole function of HR need to be
confronted that is human resource personnel can no longer be people who sit and shuffle
paper. It will not matter if we are talking about the HR manager or the associate sitting in
the office. The fact of the matter, everyone who works in the HR department is going to
have to be trained not only in how to interview and hire employees, but also how to
develop plans to deal with strategies that will move a company forward. In fact, it does
not seem far-fetched at all to assume that more time will be spent by those in HR
departments developing strategies and analyzing what is working and what is not as it
relates to employee operation and performance.
Additional responsibilities for Personnel
Of course, with all of these areas of concern will come many opportunities and benefits
for HR departments to work toward SHRM. First, this is the chance for those who work
in HR departments to truly be taken seriously as leaders and managers. They can come
out of the shadows and stop being seen as employees who are removed from the actual
work that is being done in the company. Instead, they can be viewed by employees as
being relevant to the operations of the company. As a result of raised expectations with
the HR Personnel, these individuals should possess the abilities to truly be effective
leaders. There should be effective communication by leadership in the critical areas as it
is the key to winning organizational trust and confidence.

Adaptive Employees
At the same time, all of this promises success for more than just the companies or those
who work in HR departments. The change from human resource management to SHRM
will mean that employees will be recruited with the idea that they are truly valuable, and
how they are treated is important for the future of individual companies. Of course, for
employees and potential employees, this will also spell added responsibility. Employees
will have to show that they have the skills and qualifications that are necessary for the
specific job or function they will play within the company. However, they will also need
to show that they can learn and expand as the strategic plans and goals for the company
change. Just as HR managers will have to adjust, the move to SHRM means employees
will be affected, and they will have to change as well.

Application of SHRM in TELEVOX

It always takes a long process to adopt the new systems and maintaining the status quo.
After analyzing the above mentioned key areas, Televox Software moved to transition
with the application of SHRM. While implementing and turning the processes into
SHRM, there were a lot of challenges they faced.
Some of the issues were prominent to be addressed, as well as proposing the best way out
for the concerns.

Communicating the Job Expectations


Proper communicating the Job Expectations to the employees is very important in the
successful implementation of SHRM in an Organization. At Televox, new employees are
not always given the full range of their duties until they have already been on the job. It
is true that they are given the specific duties of the job for which they are hired.
However, they are often not told that they will be cross-trained to handle duties of other
employees with those employees are not available to help customers or are on vacation.
This sometimes leads to employees who are not happy with the job once they are hired.

Need for Skilled Employees


A move to SHRM at the company will mean that the full range of expectations and duties
will be provided to employees from the beginning. In fact, a move to SHRM would
mean that the HR department would seek out employees who enjoy the challenge of
actually having to take on duties that are outside of their specific roles within the
company. At Televox Software, such skills are lacking. Instead of hiring people who are
only skilled at one job, and only want to be skilled in that job, those who make hiring
decisions would work to gain employees that want to be well-versed in many duties
within the organization.

Feedback Consideration
At the same time, a move to SHRM would make the company realize that having skilled
employees who are motivated by the strategic plans for the company have to be
compensated and treated with respect and dignity. Currently, the company shows its
respect for employees in basic ways, such as to give away free lunch and other items.
However, when it comes to listening to employee concerns about working conditions, the
company is not always responsive, either openly or in future moves of the company. The
organization needs to show more openly that it takes employee concerns seriously, and
that it realizes the employees are trained and skilled enough to know when to provide
feedback about working conditions that should be taken seriously by management.

Resistance to change by existing employees


Of course, it must be understood that moving closer to full SHRM is not going to be
something that can occur in a short amount of time. The reason for this is that Televox
Software has dozens of employees that have been with the company for years. Adjusting
to a way of doing business that focuses more on employee skills may be something that is
not taken seriously by existing employees. The result is going to be some who are on
board with the SHRM measures, and some who are not. All employees will have to be
brought up to speed with the new plans, or some employees will have to be informed of
the consequences of not getting on board with the new strategic plans for the company.

Conclusion

In the end, the research and actual application of SHRM shows that moving in this
direction is good for companies. However, the research should leave no doubt that the
transition is difficult, and it does require changing well-established attitudes and roles.
These are attitudes that have existed for decades, and they are not going to change
quickly. On the other hand, as with many things that occur in the world of business, as
companies realize that advantages that come with SHRM, more will move in that
direction and require acceptance of the policies that come with it. However, if all of this
comes together, the end result should be a great improvement in how companies operate.
The research shows that companies that are involved with SHRM perform at a higher
level. The research also shows that these companies are in a better place to provide
world-class service.