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In the contemporary time, the world of work is modifying and it is characterized by international mobility, outsourcing, new labour laws, talent shortages, shifting demographics, globalization, and an aging workforce (Byars and Rue, 2006). For this reason, how, and where individuals work will as a result transform organizational cultures and structure. In fact, over the next few years, the convergence of social trends, demographic, and dominant business will only speed up these modifications sweeping through current workplace (Muller-Carmen et al., 2008). On the other hand, the function of human resource management is also modifying.  Human resource leaders are currently under amplified pressure to express outcomes from their employees’ policies and practices (Wood, 1998). In fact, such leaders are aware of the relationship between organizational success and the individuals within the organization. Furthermore, they understand that individual linked matters necessitate being at the core of the boardroom agenda. As a result, human resource managers are highly encouraged to formulate and put into action people strategies which support the organizational objectives and boost the transparency and accountability around the management of people (Beardwell and Claydon, 2010).

It is apparent that managing people in an organization is not a simple task. Nevertheless, to ensure productivity and efficiency of the organization, human resource managers should put into effect strategies to ensure efficient management of people (Bratton and Gold, 2007, Boxall, 1998). One of the major reasons individuals generally give for resigning from their job is frequently more than their immediate management or superior. Managing people in an organization should not be merely perceived as simply a responsibility, rather an extremely significant skill that human resource managers should continually hone and enhance to handle the varied personalities in an organization (Clark, 1993). Research has revealed that the most significant but difficult job of a manager is managing people. Managers must lead, inspire, motivate, and encourage them, whilst still they are expected to employ, fire, and assess the workforce.  Efficient management of people in an organization necessitates an understanding of job design, motivation, group influence and reward systems (Ulrich, D., 1998). This paper will critically evaluate how the management of people in organizations has changed or may change over the next ten years. In answering this question, the paper will focus on the current trends and development in the management of people, the need for different skills requirements and the management of knowledge and talent, external factors including demographic changes, the United Kingdom government’s involvement currently under consideration in areas such as pensions, age of retirement, and youth opportunities.

Theoretical Framework

The theoretical concepts reviewed in this essay evaluate the preposition that organization success is greatly determined by the way people in that particular organization are managed. This implies that efficient management of people is linked with high degree of organizational performance whereas inefficient management practices are linked with low organizational performance (Wood, 1998). This assessment has been performed under the theoretical framework ‘managing people in organizations’. This theoretical framework is an umbrella concept which includes both human resource management (HRM) and organizational behaviour (OR) (Ulrich, 1997). Furthermore, leadership concepts and its impacts on the performance of organization are also encompassed in the theoretical framework.

In the contemporary society which is characterized by increased competition between firms and other modifications including globalization and competition, organizational management necessitates putting in to action strategies deemed efficient to manage people efficiently (Boxall, 1998). This is deemed as one of the main ways to improve the productivity and enhance success of the organizations as they will be able to compete efficiently in the business market. Efficient human resource management, efficient leadership and proper organizational behaviour are required in order to achieve this objective. Human resource management is defined as the process of bringing organization and people together to ensure the attainment of the set goals and objectives (Wood, 1998). Human resource managers have various responsibilities some of them including recruitment of personnel, training of the workforce, managing people, and motivation of employees to ensure that the organizational goals are met. In the contemporary society, the roles and responsibilities of human resource managers are shifting from screener and protector to that of change agent and planner (Golding, 2010).

Furthermore, efficient leadership skills are a necessity if a leader is to manage people efficiently. With the highly modifying business environment, good and competent leaders with the necessary skills are the only drivers of ensuring that organizations emerge successful. It is apparent that efficient management of people in an organization necessitates an understanding of job design, motivation, group influence and reward systems (Marchington and Gemgulis, 2000). People can be motivated in various ways, for instance, training the employees which allow them to have the required knowledge and skills for job performance, pay linked to performance whereby employees are paid depending with their performance, and offering reward systems amongst others (Marchington and Gemgulis, 2000). This will allow the employees to identify themselves with the organization thus work towards the achievement of the organizational goals.

Recent Trends in Managing People

The role and responsibility of the human resource management has turned out to be very essential in the contemporary society. This is due to the many challenging and significant functions of HR managers all of which are very vital for organizational success (Hall and Torrington, 1998; Adams, 2007). One of these key functions is the management of people. Studies have revealed that in the present time, the management of people in organizations has highly changed and developed and it is anticipated to change of the next ten years (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010; Stein and Nueno, 2010).

The current quality management standards ISO 9004 and ISO 9001, centres highly on people centric organizations (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). In this case, organizations presently necessitates to prepare themselves so as to address appropriately people centred matters with much commitment from the senior managers, with improved thrust on human resource concerns, especially on training (Guest, 1997). Furthermore, some scholars such as Handy supported future organization models such as Triple I, Federal and Shamrock (Marchington and Gemgulis, 2000; Griffin and Moorhead, 2011). He believes that, these organizational models centres on individual centric concerns and requires redefining the future role and responsibility of human resource professionals (Pfeffer, 1995).

In the year 2009, PricewaterhouseCoopers carried out a survey in over fifty countries where they studied how business leaders are reacting to the current issues and changes taking place (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). During the survey, some of the leaders pointed out that in order to cope with such issue as the global financial crises and adapt their organizations, there is need to modify people management processes and practices. Most of the leaders, about seventy nine percent anticipated boosting their investment and focus to the techniques of managing people through change (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). This encompasses redefining the staffs roles and responsibilities in the organization. Furthermore, an equal number of 79 percent intended to modify their strategy for talent management, whilst 68 percent intended to amplify their investment in talent development and due to the financial crises (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). These forecasted modifications revealed that, the present people management processes and practices were not sufficient enough and furthermore, did not support such organizations during the crises. The anticipated people management practices by such organizations are deemed to be a shield of protecting them in case of similar crises amongst others emerging business issues in the present and in the future.

After the economic downturn of 2008, most companies saw the need of taking a greater interest in the discipline of managing people (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). This encompassed the assessments of costs, profitability and productivity of their numerous roles against the performance of related teams in the market (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). Consequently, organizations have been able to categorize excess persons in underperforming teams, thus offering a business case for reassigning of individuals into areas in the organization requiring human resource. In particular, this has greatly worked in companies with headcount freezes, permitting profit centres to develop in spite of a reduction in employees or overall freeze across the organization (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010).

The rewards systems in most organizations have also modified. Most organizations are now aware of the reward models fit to ensure employee motivation, and thus, increasing organization productivity (Budhwar and Aryee, 2008). One such model is pay linked to performance. This means that, the employees are paid depending with their performance meaning that high performers receive higher pay whereas pay performers receive low pays. Although this model is faced with major challenges as measuring performance, it has proved to be very efficient as those employees who have value for money always work towards improving their performance signifying overall improvement in organizational performance (Budhwar and Aryee, 2008; Becker and Gerhart, 1996; Graeme, 2006).

High productivity can only be achieved if the employees are well motivated. Companies usually make use of pay linked to performance as a tool of improving motivation amongst employees (Taylor et al., 2007). Research has proved that employee tend to link their performance with the amount of pay they receive (Lawler, et al., 1995). Furthermore, employees will increase their productivity standards if their performance is well rewarded. Although, pay is not the only factor that results to employee motivation, research has revealed that, it is a very influential method of communicating a company’s direction, values, and standards of quality and performance expectations. In this case, pay should be linked with the business in order to ensure effective delivery of the company’s operations. In this globalized economy, pay is an essential factor for improving workforce performance (Byars and Rue, 2006).

Companies have also developed compensation programs with a main aim of motivating the staffs to perform their best. In the United States, compensation programs gained a lot of importance when companies recognized that they were at a high risk of losing market to foreign competitors (Pfeffer, 1995). These programs were launched with an aim of eliciting personnel cooperation and amplify effort on job in order to increase the companies’ effectiveness by making the products better and more competitive (Pfeffer, 1995). Such programs encompassed merit pay, variable pay, alternative pay and pay for performance. Both the management and the staffs agree that pay linked to performance is very desirable. According to studies, the workforce feels that their performance level should be the main variable in deciding the amount of money to be paid (Lawler et al, 1995). The majority of employees also believe that performance is an important indicator of pay increase. 

Furthermore, human resource managers are effectively managing their employees by offering workplace learning. Generally, workplace learning assists in boosting employees’ skills. Studies have revealed that boosting skills base within an organization helps in strengthening the business and potentially, organizations sales (Lancaster, 2009; Pfeffer, 1994). This may be as a result of well and highly motivated employees who will be able to carry out their tasks properly; therefore, increasing the organizations productivity. Usually, the strength of an organization is generally measured by its productivity, sales margins, revenues and profit margins. Apparently, workplace learning results to highly rating of an organization by its customers and supplies based on service offering. A highly rated organization means that its sales margins are also high as such an organization has gained customer confidence and loyalty, and this will accelerate in improving the performance of such an organization in terms of sales increment and revenues in general (Bielawski and Metcalf, 2005; Paauwe, 2009).

The current business environment is characterized by high competition between organizations (Bielawski and Metcalf, 2005). For this reasons, organizations are seeking ways in which they can be able to become more competitive in the market, thus reducing the risks of closing down. The need for organizations to be dissimilar from their competitors, and offer better services compared to their rivals is driving organizations to emphasize on acquisition of specific skills development through workplace learning (Rivera, 2007). By ensuring that the staffs have adequate and relevant skills linked on how they can improve the performance of the organization to compete effectively in the market is very beneficial. Such employees will be able to formulate efficient strategies, unique from their competitors including customer service strategies and production of high quality products which are some of the factors that will assist in attracting and retaining customers (Rivera, 2007). One advantage of being competitive in the market is that an organization can be able to attain its goals and objectives, and at the same time, various costs including promotional costs will be cut down. This means that an organization’s financial performance will continue to accelerate.

It is apparent that workplace learning enhances the attraction as well as the retention of staff (McNamara, 2011). The training that employees are given boosts their capabilities, and as a result, they are willing to continue working for the company. This leads to improved reduced employee turnover and increased productivity. According to studies in the near past, employee attraction and retention has become increasingly of paramount in building the capabilities of the organization to make sure they have a sustained competitiveness (Clifford and Thorpe, 2007; Storey, 2007). Staff retention to a company is of an importance. This is due to the fact that the company maintains the employees who already have the required skills and are already competent as well as efficient in their working. In addition, it helps the company to save money that could otherwise be used for recruiting and training more employees (Clifford and Thorpe, 2007).

According to the valence theory, the staffs must feel that the pay being provided by the company is significant in satisfying their requirements. Even though some researchers claim that the most universal tool for satisfying people’s needs is money, its value however varies from one person to the other. This means that, a pay linked to performance program can only work best when pay is extremely valiant to the individuals covered by it. However, the valence can only be determined through research and in this case; companies should carry out a thorough study amongst the workforce in order to determine the degree into which their work performance can be determined by pay increase. This is evidenced by the fact that increase in productivity amongst employee can only be realized if such staffs are well motivated through proper means. Furthermore, in situations whereby the company’s management requires the motivational force of employees to be pay for performance, it is essential to consider the groups of persons who have a need for money. Otherwise, the program may not be effective in achieving success (McNamara, 2011).

The Need for Different Skills Requirements and the Management of Knowledge and Talent

Studies have proven that over the current years, highly knowledgeable and skilled jobs have and are still greatly increasing at a very high rate, whereas low skilled jobs are declining (Mckeena and Beech, 2008). This as a result necessitates future skills mapping via appropriate human resource management initiatives. For example, research has also proven that Indian organizations are also experiencing modifications in management cultures, systems and philosophy as a result of the international arrangement of Indian organizations (Banfield and Rebecca, 2008). This has necessitated for a requirement for the development of multi skills. This means that organizations need individuals with different skills and knowledge in order to fill the emerging positions requiring such skills. Studies have however revealed that such skills can only be obtained through organizational training rather than classroom learning. For this reason, human resource management has embarked on workplace learning and training in order to ensure that their employees obtain the necessary skills for work performance (Wilson, 2009; Price, 2007). Such learning is provided through team training, holding seminars and the workers also learn through the organizational websites. Furthermore, organizations experiencing high productivity are characterized by individuals with varied and efficient skills. This implies that in order to ensure the achievement of the organizational goals thus success, organizations need to ensure that their workforces possess the right skills for the right jobs (Legge, 2004; Golding, 2010). This will also enhance organizational efficiency in the current globalized and competitive business environment.

The guidelines for the management of knowledge and talent encompass employee development, redeploying the workforce and retaining best talents (Althoff, 2005). The main focus of the management of talent is facilitating and developing individuals, as research has revealed that the quality and efficiency of an organization is determined by the individuals it hires and has onboard (Scullion and Collings, 2010; Silzer et al., 2009). What follows after an organization has employed and deployed is retaining and nurturing talent, which is deemed as very essential for organizational success. Talent management, also referred to as human capital management is a discipline that has highly evolved presently and includes procedures right from employing people into an organization, to developing and retaining the same (Silzer et al., 2009). In this case, the management of talent encompasses recruitment, selection, competency management, training, learning and development, and succession planning amongst others. These are believed to be a significant process that facilitates organization to compete efficiently and stand out in the market place if well managed (Schweyer et al., 2009).

Currently, the management of talent is one of the most essential human resource functions; the discipline is developing each day. Some of the contemporary trends in talent management encompass the following;

  • Talent war: one of the most challenging aspects of human resource management is finding and retaining the best talent (Schweyer et al., 2009). Human resource survey consultancies have offered their perception that organizations worldwide are facing a shortage of talented workforce, and in addition, it is frequently a very hard task retaining them. Further, studies have also revealed that there is a clear relationship between overall productivity and talent issues (Cotts et al., 2010).
  • Technology and talent management: the contemporary society is characterized by rapid technological growth. This technology has been introduced into almost all activities, one of them being the development of people. Organizations have highly utilized online staff portals in providing easy access to staffs to numerous schemes and benefits. Additionally, the staffs may also manage their careers via these portals and it also assist organizations understand their staffs better (Schweyer et al., 2009).
  • Promoting talent internally: people are employed if their skills and abilities match with the organizational requirements. Afterwards organizations facilitate learning and development for the staffs in order to boost such skills and furthermore, retain such people into the organization. This is referred to as staff retention. An empowered or enabled person implies an empowered organization. Moreover, organizations should be aware of their skills inventories in order to be able to develop the right person for succession planning within.
  • Population worries internationally: globe populations are either aging or young. For instance, through statistics, 60 percent of the European working population is estimated to be over 60 years by 2050. In contrast, such countries like India are characterized of a young working population and this is projected to continue even in future time. Therefore, it is true saying that population demographics are a distributing aspect for people managers. Further studies have also projected that in the near future, demographics modifications in the United States will result to dearth of ten million employees (Scullion and Collings, 2010).
  • Talent management to rescue human resource: human resource has been required to center on qualitative factors more and equally than quantitative factors such as head count. By means of talent management, human resource managers are devoting more effort on maintaining and designing workforce scorecards and surveys in order to make certain that talent is cultivated and developed continuously (Armstrong, 2006).
  • Upsurge in employer of choice initiatives: employers also can assist in increasing the efficiency of their organization. This they does by performing a variety of task some of which may include assist in improving the organization’s brand value in the eyes of its clients, and most of all employers assist in attracting the best and right talents in their organizations.  

During the financial crises, most organizations were not able to retain their talent and instead they opted for layoffs with an aim of cutting cost and saving cash. 69 percent of the United States companies and 63 percent of the United Kingdom companies took the most severe measures of lessening headcount (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). In spite of this, most companies hoped to amplify headcount after the crises; nevertheless, this reduction affected and is believed to affect business competitiveness in future. As a result, organizations have come up with more agile techniques of deploying and reallocating talents in areas it is most required. Studies have proven that, doing this whilst still keeping the staffs engaged and motivated is very essential for organizational success (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2010). As the majority organizations move through recovery, most of which went through severe headcount reduction are currently facing the costly exercise of reemploying and reskilling due to increased demand.

Demographic Changes

Demographic changes are one of the factors that has characterized the current times. The world population is either aging or young. However, research has shown that most countries across the world including the United States, the United Kingdom are characterized by a rising number of an aging population especially in the workplaces (Golding, 2010). In the United States, the elderly aged 75 and above years and the minority elderly aged 60 plus years have continued to grow at a much faster rate than the general population. Studies have in fact projected that in the near future, demographics modifications in the United States will result to dearth of ten million employees. Through statistics, 60 percent of the European working population is estimated to be over 60 years by 2050. In contrast, such countries like India are characterized of a young working population and this is projected to continue even in future time. This aging population trends implies that there will be demographically less persons working and a large number depending upon them (Golding, 2010). Furthermore, affluence will be determined by a small proportion of talented individuals producing wealth.

The United Kingdom Government’s Involvement Currently under Consideration in Areas Such As Pensions, Age of Retirement, and Youth Opportunities

The United Kingdom government has greatly been involved in various areas including pensions, age of retirement and youth opportunities. For instance, the government proposed to do away with the Default Retirement Age starting the year 2011. The objective was to offer larger opportunities for individuals aged 65 plus years to take part in the labour market. This is also deemed to increase the economy’s productivity potential at the same time ensuring fairness and equity for the older staffs. This was also believed to act as a barrier for those employers who make use of compulsory retirement age.  However, the retirement age is projected to rise to 68 years by 2046 or earlier.

In the United Kingdom, pensions fall under various categories including basic state pension, occupational pensions, state second pension and individual pensions amongst others. The state offers basic pension aimed at preventing poverty at old age. Men and women above 65 and 60 years consecutively were entitled to state pension until 2010, when policies were put in place to rise the age for women in order to equal that of men.

In order to empower youths, thus allow them to take part and benefit from various activities believed to foster their social and personal development, the government has introduced the Youth Opportunity and the Youth Capital funds. This is also aimed at empowering the youths and offering them with more alternatives and sway over facilities and provision in their area. Through these funds, the youth will have a core responsibility as project leaders, decision makers and grant givers. For the two years 2006 to 2008, the government offer a substantial resource of %u0141115 million. This is a chance for modifying and improving facilities and provision to the youths and offer activities they will employ which will make a difference.

Conclusion

Management of people in organization is of paramount especially in the contemporary society which is characterized by various modifications including by international mobility, outsourcing, new labour laws, talent shortages, shifting demographics, globalization, and an aging workforce. For this reason, how, and where individuals work will as a result transform organizational cultures and structure. In fact, over the next few years, the convergence of social trends, demographic, and dominant business will only speed up these modifications sweeping through current workplace.  Efficient management of people in an organization necessitates an understanding of job design, motivation, group influence and reward systems. This paper has revealed that the trends in the management of people in organizations has changed and is projected to change in the next ten years as a result of the above mentioned modifications. Furthermore, the need for different skills requirements and the management of knowledge and talent has also modified due to the increase of highly knowledgeable and skilled jobs and a decrease of low skilled jobs. Furthermore, the increased competitiveness in the contemporary society calls for organizations to have different skilled and talented persons. The demographic changes as discussed in the paper implies that there will be demographically less persons working and a large number depending upon them. Furthermore, it is clear that the United Kingdom government has involved itself extensively in areas such as pensions, age of retirement and youth opportunities. In summary, efficient management of people in organization will improve performance, productivity and profitability. 

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