Evolving Practices in Human Resource Management: Responses to a Changing World of Work

By Allen I. Kraut; Abraham K. Korman | Go to book overview

through electronic performance monitoring and potential invasion of employee privacy issues, conventional methods like interviews and surveys will still be valid, even though electronic media may speed up data collection and processing. Although the detailed documentation of molecular tasks and job boundaries seems useless when work assignments are in flux, we believe that careful analysis of work behaviors is still necessary to prevent behaviorally empty, unmeasurable competencies. However, broadly defined human attributes or competencies should be informed not only by work behaviors but also by macrolevel descriptors (for example, corporate strategy, context, and roles).

Continuous change demands a system of warnings and databases that can identify and facilitate significant work changes. Electronic performance monitoring provides the opportunity to capture significant work changes on the spot. On-line services like O*NET and expert systems may help in cutting the costs associated with updating work-analytic information.

Finally, let us suggest that a common principle underlies these recommendations: unlike traditional job analysis, instead of being overconcerned with documenting molecular tasks and job boundaries new forms of work analysis should focus on contributing useful inputs to the process of continuous organizational innovation. Knowing what is done and how it is done are necessary steps in determining what should be done and how we should do it. Work analysis is a vehicle that will help us bridge this gap.


References

Arvey, R. D., Salas, E., & Gialluca, K. A. (1992). Using task inventories to forecast skills and abilities. Human Performance, 5 (3), 171–190.

Barrett, G. V., & Callahan, C. M. (1997, Apr.). Competencies: The Madison Avenue approach to professional practice. In R. C. Page (Chair), Competency models: What are they and do they work? Practitioner forum presented at the Twelfth Annual Conference of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, St. Louis, MO.

Bergquist, W. (1993). The postmodern organization. San Francisco: JosseyBass.

Bernardin, H. J. (1992). An analytic framework for customer-based performance content development and appraisal. Human Resources Management Review, 2, 81–102.

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