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People And Work Essay

2065 words - 9 pages

1.0 Introduction Although aspects of personnel management can be traced back as far as the ancient Egyptians, its more recent history finds its source in the industrial revolution of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. The period was one of tremendous prosperity for the middle classes, though this prosperity was not generally shared with the employees manning the ever more numerous factories. Wages were low, conditions were poor and management was often harsh and feudal in style. Workers were often beaten - though usually only up to their fourteenth birthday. For other misdemeanours, e.g. singing, workers could be fined two or three days' wages. The second half of the ...view middle of the document...

The personnel manager has a special involvement in the livelihood of people, their working conditions, security of employment, reward and development. He is also a privileged guardian of personal information and confidences. All the above responsibilities of the manager should be carefully considered if the organization wants to achieve its goals and to avoid conflicts with the employees. But that specific responsibility may be considered as a problem. Management in general has been defined as "deciding what has to be done, and then getting other people to do it" (Legge, Karen 'Human Resource Management', 1997). If this is so, then personnel management must surely exist within every part of manager's job. As it was mentioned above, the personnel manager must deal with problems like the benefits, the skills and the development of the employee and the health and safety in the workplace.3.0 Problems for employees and employers 3.1 Benefits Most of the organizations see money as an incentive for people to work. The motivational force of an incentive is therefore crucial, and no organization should administer 'incentives' in ignorance of their true effectiveness. In many organizations, a clear distinction is still made between 'weekly paid' and 'salaried' staff. The whole basis of calculating the reward is often different and it has been said that an employee receives wages for 'what he does' whereas a salary contains an element for 'what he is'. Traditionally, salaried staff has received better terms of employment regarding such things as hours, holiday, pensions, etc., although with the collective bargaining these gaps are narrowing down in many cases. One important aspect of the benefit factor is the awareness for the pension provision. Pensions are increasingly seen as 'deferred pay' rather than a reward for a lifetime of employment, and as such are attracting more attention from employees and trade unions, and are seen as more negotiable than in the past. As the state pension scheme is changed and changed again, and its future form becomes more and more uncertain, greater attention is being given to company schemes. The state runs two basic schemes: a basic scheme and SERPS (State Earnings Related Pension Scheme). Every employee is obliged to contribute a standard amount to the basic scheme which provides an old age pension on reaching the age of 65 for men and 60 for women. For those employees who earn over a certain amount (known as the lower earnings limit) a percentage of salary earned between this limit and a higher salary level (known as the upper earnings limit) is also payable. The individual who has paid into SERPS as well as the basic scheme will receive a higher pension from the state on retirement in proportion to the additional amount that they have contributed. The employer also makes a contribution into the state pension scheme in a way similar to the individual employee. The state pension scheme is organized on a...

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