Staffing Nature, Functions, Process, Importance, and Factors

Table of Contents:-

  • Meaning of Staffing
  • Definition of Staffing
  • Nature of Staffing
  • Staffing Functions
  • Process of Staffing

Meaning of Staffing

Staffing is that fundamental aspect of the process of management which is concerned with the acquisition, utilization, and retention of a competent and contented workforce. It is the process of identifying, assessing, placing, evaluating, and developing individuals at work.

Organisations require the services of a large number of personnel, These personnel occupy various positions created through the process of organising. Each position within the organization plays an important role in making specific contributions towards achieving the organizational objectives. Therefore, the person who assumes this role must have adequate qualifications to meet its requirements.

Staffing is an exceedingly crucial function of management. For any organization to achieve success, it is imperative to consistently attract and retain the right employees for various positions. The ability to effectively fill these roles with suitable employees is an important factor in determining the overall success of an organization.

Definition of Staffing

According to Mc Farland, “Staffing is the function by which managers build an organisation through recruitment, selection, and development of individuals as capable employees”.

Theo Haimann states that – “Staffing pertains to recruitment, selection, development, and compensation of subordinates”.

According to Harold Koontz and Cyril O’Donnell, “Staffing is defined as filling positions in the organisation structure through identifying workforce requirements, inventorying the people available, recruitment, selection, placement, promotion, appraisal, compensation, and training of needed people”.

Nature of Staffing

The nature of staffing is explained as follows:

  1. Managerial Function
  2. Continuous Activity
  3. Pervasive Activity
  4. Efficient Management of Personnel
  5. Appropriate Selection and Placement
  6. Universal Function
  7. Dynamic Function

1) Universal Function: Staffing is a universal function as it is the responsibility of every management.

2) Dynamic Function: As changes occur in staffing procedures, policies and the emergence of new practices, staffing becomes a dynamic function that requires adjustments to be made.

3) Appropriate Selection and Placement: Following proper recruitment procedures and carefully selecting the most suitable candidate based on the job requirements effectively achieve it.

4) Managerial Function: The staffing function is one of the most important managerial acts alongside planning, organising, directing, and controlling. The effectiveness of these four functions depends upon the manpower which is available through the staffing function.

5) Continous Activity: The staffing function is not a one-time activity, rather, it is a continuous process that persists throughout the life of an organization. It encompasses recruitment, transfers and promotions that take place within the workforce.

6) Pervasive Activity: Managers across various industries perform staffing as an important function. Its execution depends on various factors such as the nature of the business, company size, qualifications and skills of managers, etc.

Across various scales of businesses, organizations execute the staffing function differently. In small companies, the responsibility of performing this function generally rests with top management. In medium-scale and small-scale enterprises, the personnel department of the organization performs it, especially.

7) Efficient Management of Personnel: The basis of the staffing function is efficient personnel management within an organization. A systematic and well-defined procedure, which includes recruitment, selection, placement, training and development, remuneration, etc., efficiently manages human resources.

Staffing Functions

Department of Human Resource Management especially looks after various problems and issues relating to the workforce. Normally, the scope of its activities includes the following functions:

Staffing functions:

  1. Employment
  2. Compensation
  3. Training and Development
  4. Working Conditions
  5. Personnel Records
  6. Integration
  7. Welfare Services
  8. Industrial Relations

1) Compensation

This function is focused on determining appropriate and fair compensation for the employees in the organisation for their contribution to the organisational goals. Personnel can receive compensation both in terms of monetary as well as non-monetary rewards. While determining the compensation for employees, several factors need to be considered.

These factors include the employees’ essential needs, job requirements, legal provisions related to minimum wage, and the compensation offered by competitors, etc. To establish appropriate wage levels, the personnel department can make use of certain techniques like job evaluation and performance evaluation.

2) Employment

The responsibility for employment consists of appointing the best possible talents suitable to the requirements of the enterprise. This function includes various activities like job analysis, manpower, demand analysis, recruitment, selection and placement. Before appointing the people, manpower requirements are estimated in terms of number and quality.

Following this, various sources of manpower supply are tapped. The applications of various applicants are screened and the selected applicants are required to take certain tests and appear in the final interview. The employment function is complete when the workers join the organisation and are placed in the right jobs.

3) Training and Development

Training and development of personnel is an important step that follows the selection process. Management must train each employee and also develop him for higher jobs in the organisation. Effective personnel development is necessary to increase their skills in doing their jobs and in satisfying their growth need.

For this purpose, the personnel department will devise appropriate training programmes. There are many methods available for both on the job training and off the job training purposes. A good training programme should include a mixture of both types of methods. It is important to note that the personnel department is responsible for organizing training sessions, not only for new employees but also for old employees to update their knowledge in the use of the latest techniques of production.

4) Welfare Services

The department provides various welfare services, which relate to the physical and social well-being of the employees. They may include provisions for cafeterias, restrooms, counselling group insurance, education of children of employees, recreational facilities, etc.

5) Industrial Relations

These days, personnel managers mainly discharge the responsibility of industrial relations. Personnel managers help in collective bargaining, joint consultation and the resolution of disputes if they arise. This is because the personnel manager is equipped with comprehensive knowledge and possesses the working knowledge of various labour laws and regulations.

It is important to point out that the responsibility of fulfilling the requirements of various labour laws like the Factories Act, Industrial Disputes Act, etc., rests with the personnel department personnel manager can do a great deal in maintaining industrial harmony within the organization.

He is responsible for establishing and overseeing various committees on discipline, labour welfare, safety, grievance, etc. The manager helps in laying down the grievance procedure to address and resolve employee grievances. He also gives authentic information to the trade union leaders and tries to convey to them the personnel policies and programmes of the enterprise.

6) Integration

This function aims to achieve a reasonable reconciliation of the interests of the personnel with those of the organisation. The important problem related to integration is communication. The personnel manager must provide an efficient system of communication to ensure two-way traffic of personnel programmes and policies because many a time industrial disputes arise because of poor communication. The personnel manager should always keep himself in contact with the trade unions to understand their grievance and remove them so that harmony is maintained in the organisation.

7) Personnel Records

The department maintains the personal records of the employees working in the enterprise. It keeps full records of their achievements, training, transfer, promotion, etc. The organization also maintains numerous other records relating to the behaviour of personnel, such as absenteeism, labour turnover, personnel programme and policies of the organisation.

8) Working Conditions

Mere appointment and training of employees are not sufficient, they must be provided working efficiency. Working conditions certainly influence the motivation and morale of the employees. The measures to ensure the health and safety of the employees are also included.

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Process of Staffing

The staffing process of management includes all those activities that are concerned with the procurement, development, compensation, integration and maintenance of personnel. The elements or steps of staffing are as follows:

Step 1: Manpower Planning

This is the first step in the staffing process. Manpower planning is essentially the process of getting the right number of qualified people into the right job at the right time. It is a system of matching the supply of people (existing employees and those to be hired or searched for) with the anticipated job vacancies within an organization over a specific period. Manpower planning is concerned with the flow of people into, through the inflow, progression, and outflow of personnel.

Step 2: Job Analysis

Job Analysis (JA) is a detailed and systematic study of job roles, aimed at understanding the nature and characteristics of the people to be employed in various jobs. It involves the collection of necessary facts regarding jobs and their analysis. Job analysis also provides the basis for determining what types of information should be obtained from the applicant, previous employers, and other sources. The job analysis helps determine the qualifications, skills and experience required for various categories of employees.

Step 3: Recruitment

In this step, management will attempt to identify and attract candidates to meet the requirements of anticipated or actual vacancies. The actual recruitment of potential employees is traditionally done through newspaper and professional journal advertisement.

Step 4: Selection

Following recruitment, those candidates who have applied for the position advertised must be evaluated and chosen whose credentials match the job requirements. The steps in the selection process include completing an application form, an interview, and a physical examination.

Step 5: Placement

It implies putting the selected candidates in the right jobs. Each selected individual is assigned a suitable job according to his qualifications. After the selected candidates join the organisation, they are placed in appropriate jobs. Placement is the process of matching the candidates with the jobs in the organisation. In this process, every selected candidate is assigned a job that best aligns with their skills and qualifications. The purpose of placement is to fit square pegs into square holes (i.e., the right person to the right job) so that the efficiency of work is high and the employees get job satisfaction.

Step 6: Induction and Orientation

Once selected, the employee must be integrated into the organisation. The induction and orientation process includes the introduction of the new employee to the work group, and acquainting him with the organisation’s policy and rules.

Step 7: Training and Development

Through training and development, the organisation tries to improve the employees’ ability to contribute to the organisation’s effectiveness. Training is concerned with the improvement of the employees’ skills. Development is concerned with the preparation of the employee for additional responsibility.

Step 8: Performance Appraisal

A system designed to measure the actual job performance of an employee compared to designated performance standards.

Step 9: Compensation

It refers to fixing the wages/salaries and other monetary benefits for the employees. The wage and salary structure should be fair and provide incentives to employees.

Step 10: Promotion and Transfer

Employment decisions in the areas of monetary rewards, promotions, transfers and demotions will be made based on the outcome of the performance appraisal. Promotion means moving employees to positions of higher responsibility based on their merit/seniority.

Step 11: Separation

Voluntary retirement scheme, turnover, layoffs, and terminations must also be a concern of management.


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