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How to Measure Human Resource Management

by Jac Fitz-Enz and Barbara Davison
McGraw-Hill Trade; 3rd edition
351 pages, $49.95

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Human Resources departments are ever-evolving components of an organization’s decision hierarchy, and measuring their effectiveness is valuable for HR managers looking to position their divisions as vital, value-added partners. How to Measure Human Resource Management is a tool for evaluating and improving Human Resources to keep departments in step with a company’s bigger picture without losing sight of individual employee issues.

Integrating these concerns into an easy-to-understand method that can be communicated to senior decision-makers makes How to Measure Human Resource Management a worthwhile investment for HR managers. If you are trying to balance a people-based approach to HR cost-effectiveness that also employs quantifiable methods for measuring productivity, this book is a must have.

Achieving maximum productivity is a major aspect of a company’s success equation, but measuring that productivity and conveying it to upper management is the often overlooked part of the process. The book teaches managers formulas for evaluating HR activities and costs, including staffing, training, employee turnover, and pay and benefits systems.

Methods for collecting data on the quality and quantity of work show how to look beyond the numbers to gain insight into workflow patterns and use technology to achieve a company’s varying aims. This third edition updates sections on technology and its unique role in the field of Human Resources. An added chapter on employee communication balances the technology sections and equips managers to make the tough human capital decisions their jobs demand.

The authors believe a new type of HR professional emerged in the 1990s with more of an emphasis on the business aspect of personnel administration. The new professionals’ focus is on participating in the business and they typically view the work site as a place to learn and evolve. With the technological leaps in the ‘90s, they shifted from a “You can’t measure what we do” attitude to a belief that their bottom line effectiveness could be measured. How to Measure Human Resource Management accepts this evolution and equips managers with the tools they need to succeed in an increasingly competitive, “justify your existence” reality. The straightforward axiom whose message threads throughout the entire book is “Without data we have only opinions.”

The authors establish that linking HR activities to short-term business objectives and long-term goals gives professionals a connection with businesses and their ultimate mindsets. A section on managing intellectual capital expertly analyzes challenges that managers face and includes strategies for providing guidance. Any HR manager who recognizes that their organization can’t afford to carry individuals who are not contributing to their strategic aims will appreciate this book. It offers proven methods for analyzing, justifying and improving HR functions.
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