What is it like to work in HR?

Many people frequently ask me this question “what is like to work in HR?”

Well, fy speaking, then my answer varies greatly from person to person, for e.g. if person is aware of HR then obviously I will talk in broad spectrum but if person is unknown than I will explain basic fundamentals.

About this question, my brief answer is:

Human Resource (HR) includes an extensive scope of specialties within an organization. In small organizations an HR professional is able to handle all sort of specialties, which is not the case in large organizations wherein each specialty is performed by an individual   department. The role of an HR varies significantly among different departments – it ranges from pure administrative to executive role.

It is a misconception of people who thinks that HR is about carrying out functional activities like: Recruitment & Selection, Training & Development, Career Planning & Growth, Pay Roll Administration, Employee Welfare Benefits etc. In real sense, HR is just not confined to these stereotype functions which are simply meant to serve the materialistic purpose of the organization and its employees.

It is a big term which carries huge responsibility on the part of an organization in developing, utilizing, maintaining/retaining and co

mpensating the services rendered by its employees in order to meet the organizational goals and objectives.

Human Resource Development is one of the most significant/ crucial aspects of Human Resource Management. HRD is mainly concerned with the developing the skills, knowledge and competencies of people and it’s a people – oriented concept. Many companies use HRD functions which are as follows:

  1. Performance Appraisal
  2. Employee Training
  3. Employee Development
  4. Career Planning & Development
  5. Succession Planning & Development
  6. Organization Change & Development
  7. Involvement in Social & Religious Organization
  8. Involvement in Quality Circles
  9. Involvement in Worker’s Participation in Management

But as a part of cross argument, I will say with my little knowledge, observation and experience in terms of above functions

Performance Appraisal – It happens in suitable manner (procedures) but no corrective results – again a big gap between input (performance to process) and output (result).

E.G: Employee performing best, good, satisfactorily and dissatisfactory, finally gets same result due to a set procedures of gradation system. There is no procedure to promote / demote employees on fast track basis for their extra ordinary performance or poor performance, which not only discourage & affect the motivation of the employees who are working with zeal but also entertain the part of population who are not performing.

Employee Training & Development – As per Management Studies, Training is Investment not a Cost if provided effectively and appropriately. But in the companies after providing Training if also it adds to their self / professional development, employees don’t get opportunity to utilize the same due to lack of authority and responsibility provided to them. Ultimately at the end it proves to be Cost to the Company and frustration to the Employee.

Career Planning & Development – Introduction of Job Rotation and continuous Transfer had destroyed the employee Career Planning & Development. Unless & Until Management or HR Practitioners won’t realize the true meaning and concept of Job Rotation and utilize it effectively, there is no scope of Career Planning & Development in any Organization especially Government & PSU’s.

Succession Planning & Development – Same as I have said for Career Planning & Development.

Organization Change & Development – If change is good than it leads to development but if change enters without understanding the present practice it not only disturb the present cycle of working but also leads to create varied numbers of gaps between two sets of working procedures, which in long run can affect the company.

Involvement in Social & Religious Organization – This concept is good but if Management see this in positive manner and applied the same upto the bottom level.

Involvement in Quality Circles – It has been observed as well as experience that in long run Quality become extinct and only circles stays which works not for the company but for individual benefits. In short lack of understanding the concept and scope of quality circles hampered the long run efficiency.

Involvement in Worker’s Participation in Management – It doesn’t exist actually practically when it’s genuinely required.

HRD Functions as mentioned above and the arguments against it, is just my experience and observation, the intension behind is not to point out or criticize any present practices.

According to me: HR Department in consultation or with prior approval of Management should go for following activities:

  1. Intellectual Independence
  2. Cognitive flexibility
  3. Self Discipline
  4. Risk Taking
  5. Tolerance for ambiguity
  6. Perseverance (Determination)
  7. Lack of concern for social approval


I strongly feel that the primary intention behind sowing the seed of “HR” as a concept is lost somewhere. Therefore, the HR Practitioners, Professionals & Authors should try to bring a revolution in the field of HR and make it more rationalized so that it can endeavor an organization in taking better decisions which are free from bias and negative influence.

Thus, there can be endless discussions on this sensitive issue as opinions in regard to this keeps on differing from person to person.


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Suchi Shah says:

    Very informative, yet simple and easy for a layman to understand.
    Can be used as a very useful and effective source of data for the aspiring HR students..
    Quite appealing article.. Good job!

    1. Riddhi Patel says:

      Thanks Suchu
      Dont forget its u who had made it easy and simple

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