THEORETICAL HUMAN RESOURCE INFORMATION SYSTEM
Description of Task
This assignment is designed to:
Reflect critically on current management theories and practice.
Identify the diverse HR functions that may incorporate an HRIS and explain how these functions would utilise HRIS with reference to a specific job/ category of jobs in an organisation.
Analyse and critique the theoretical and applied approaches to HRIS in workplace practice.
Analyse and critique the process of developing and effectively utilising HRIS in modern organisations.
You are required to prepare a research paper which critically analyses how technology (specifically HRIS) is being utilised in two (2) HR functions in an organization and apply that to the organization of your choice that you are analyzing for this assignment.
In preparing your work, you need make certain the following directives are adhered to;
1) The organisation of choice needs to be a real company with operations in Australia and/or overseas.
2) Your paper will need to identify how technology is currently being utilised in your chosen HR functions, how it may be used in the future, and apply your findings to the organisation of your choice.
3) The two HR functions you choose to analyse should be amongst functions such as; recruitment, selection, induction, training,career planning, industrial relations, occupational health and safety, etc.
4) I t is recommended that you select a specific job and/or job classification within your choice organisation and apply points 1, 2 and 3 to that specific job and/or job classification. For e.g. If your choice organisation is QANTAS, it is recommended to look at Flight Engineers as a specific job within the choice organisation and analyse the effects of HRIS on 2 HR functions related to Flight Engineers.
5) You may find it helpful to undertake some research prior to making a final decision on which HR functions you choose.
THEORETICAL HUMAN RESOURCE INFORMATION SYSTEM
Singapore Airlines operates in over 64 destinations worldwide where in the year 2010, it was ranked position ten globally due to its international operations or international passengers carried (Wirtz, Heracleous, and Pangarkar 2008). One of the key players to the company’s success is the cabin crew, where Singapore Airlines for the past years has earned a reputation for providing effective services to the customers. The excellent performance by the company’s cabin crew can be attributed to the effective human resource management system where cabin crewmembers are critically assessed by the system (Wirtz and Johnston 2003). Due to the widespread technological advancement, Singapore Airlines has adopted the use of technology in managing the human resource functions of recruiting, training, remuneration, and compensation of its cabin crew. Therefore, this study aims at analysing Singapore Airlines’ human resource information system and its use in shaping the cabin crew. The study also focuses on the strengths and weaknesses of utilising the HRM systems in the company.
Human Resource Information System
HRIS is where a company utilises technology to perform the various human resource functions and practices. This is through adopting a human resource program or software that allows the HR practices to flow electronically (Noe, Hollenbeck, Gerhart and Wright 2006). Singapore Airlines consists of human resource management software that caters for the cabin crew through their operations in the company. For this study the main consideration will be on two human resource practices; that is recruitment and training of Singapore Airlines’ cabin crew.
HRIS in Recruiting Cabin Crew
Singapore Airlines has embraced technology in the process of recruiting the cabin crewmembers. The company utilises the HRIS recruitment software that involves making the recruitment process much easier and faster (Heracleous, Wirtz and Johnston 2004). The recruitment process is composed of various activities such as job advertisement, application processing, and selection of qualified employees. The human resource department utilises the software in determining the cabin crew requirements where they post the requirements online during job advertisement. For instance, by accessing Singapore Airlines’ website, one can identify the various requirements to join the company’s cabin crew. Some of the requirements include one must be a citizen of Singapore, must have a degree or diploma, and must be 18 years and over. Therefore, the system saves time by indicating these requirements online other than publishing them in newspapers and magazines, which would be costly for the company. The human resource systems also cater for the application process, where individuals aspiring to join the company’s cabin crew apply for the job electronically or online. Submission of applications online is done through the HRIS where it saves time and resources compared to receiving printed applications (Heracleous, Wirtz, and Pangarkar 2006). Online application attracts qualified cabin crew members since through them using HRIS is an indication that they are comfortable in managing technology. Online application is conducted through Singapore Airlines’ website where shortlisted candidates are engaged in a video interview. The individuals shortlisted after the online video interview are further invited for other interviews. This indicates the effectiveness of the company’s HRIS in the recruitment process since the video interviews are much more convenient compared to individuals traveling to the company’s offices. The human resource system enables the relevant managers and HR personnel to acquire the application information of the individuals and review it to hasten the hiring process of the cabin crew. Since Singapore Airlines’ operations are carried out worldwide, the managers may experience disparities in geographical locations. Therefore, obtaining and reviewing the application data through the HRIS indicates how logical the system is to the company.
HRIS in Training Cabin Crew
After the recruitment of the cabin crewmembers, Singapore Airlines engages the selected individuals in intensive training to ensure they understand their roles and duties. This intensive training is carried out using the human resource information system through inbuilt software that contains crucial topics to be analysed by the cabin crew (Hendrickson 2003). Singapore Airlines has the most comprehensive training program in the airline industry since the shortlisted applicants are engaged in training for four months. They are trained to enable them to identify the various functions of cabin crewmembers such as providing comfort and safety services to passengers throughout the flight. Therefore, the human resource information system contains various topics that are associated with the functions of a cabin crewmember. The topics include service procedures, communication and language skills, and food and beverage knowledge. Training is carried out electronically; that is, through the company’s portal or website where information regarding these topics has been stored by the human resource department.
Through the company’s HRIS, the successful applicants can access information regarding service procedures. This enables them to learn the different methods of administering services to the passengers during flights. The services are either safety or comfort related where the HRIS may contain videos to illustrate further. The systems promote in the effective learning process of service administration by the cabin crewmembers.
Communication and Language Skills
The HRIS contain programs and software aimed at training the successful applicants on how to communicate to passengers. The system also contains foreign languages where the trainees learn using audio-visuals to ensure effective communication between the cabin crewmembers and foreign passengers. The languages are taught using the company’s screens and projectors indicating the importance of HRIS to the company.
Food and Beverage Knowledge
This is a crucial topic contained in the human resource system since cabin crewmembers are associated with serving food and drinks to the passengers. Since passengers have different diets, the cabin crewmembers should know what and when to serve them. Therefore, through online data, the trainees learn about food and beverage where videos are available to illustrate on the topic. The system may also contain previous encounters dealing with how to cater for food complication issues by passengers.
Strengths of the HRIS
Using technology to facilitate the human resource practices illustrated, Singapore Airlines enjoys several strengths or advantages. For instance, through cabin crew applicants using HRIS to apply for the jobs, the company recruits computer-literate individuals since the application process may be slightly complex (Kavanagh and Thite 2009). The HRIS also assists the company in saving resources since technology is used in carrying out the human resource practices. The use of manual methods in training the cabin crewmembers may be too costly for the company since it may involve hiring and remunerating trainers.
Weaknesses and Recommendations of the HRIS
Despite Singapore Airlines experiencing benefits from the use of the human resource information system in conducting the HR practices, the company still experiences shortcomings from the systems. For instance, installation, running, and maintenance of the system might be too costly for the company (Laudon and Laudon 2004). The system requires resources such as electricity to run; hence, creating extra costs for the company. Another shortcoming is that the system may be too complicated for the cabin crew applicants to understand; hence, locking out potential or skilled individuals. Therefore, it is important for the managers and the HR professionals to design and install a cost-effective system; that is, they should consider the system’s consumption level and durability. The HR professionals should also design a system that is less complicated to enable individuals applying for jobs at the airline to comprehend the instructions and processes required.
It is from this study that one can learn on how Singapore Airlines utilise the human resource information system in carrying out the HR practices. The HRIS involves a company using technology to conduct the human resource functions such as recruiting, training, remunerating, and compensating the employees. In this case, the analysis was based on studying how the system is used in the recruitment and training process of cabin crews at the airline. In the recruitment process, applications and interviews are carried out online where shortlisted candidates perform a video interview. Training, on the other hand, involves the successful applicants accessing the company’s portal and website to learn on the various topics associated with cabin crew roles and functions. The use of technology to conduct the HR practices has several advantages such as being cost-effective and accurate. The systems are also associated with several weaknesses such as high installation and maintenance costs and may be too complicated for applicants to understand.
Hendrickson, A.R., 2003. Human Resource Information Systems: Backbone Technology of Contemporary Human Resources. Journal of Labor Research, 24(3), Pp.382-394.
Heracleous, L.T., Wirtz, J. and Johnston, R., 2004. Cost-Effective Service Excellence: Lessons from Singapore Airlines.
Heracleous, L.T., Wirtz, J. and Pangarkar, N., 2006. Flying High in a Competitive Industry: Cost-Effective Service Excellence at Singapore Airlines. Mcgraw-Hill.
Kavanagh, M.J. and Thite, M., 2009. Human Resource Information Systems: Basics, Applications, and Future Directions. Sage.
Laudon, K.C. and Laudon, J.P., 2004. Management Information Systems: Managing the Digital Firm. New Jersey, 8.
Noe, R.A., Hollenbeck, J.R., Gerhart, B. and Wright, P.M., 2006. Human Resource Management: Gaining a Competitive Advantage.
Wirtz, J. and Johnston, R., 2003. Singapore Airlines: What It Takes To Sustain Service Excellence–A Senior Management Perspective. Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, 13(1), Pp.10-19.
Wirtz, J., Heracleous, L. and Pangarkar, N., 2008. Managing Human Resources for Service Excellence and Cost Effectiveness at Singapore Airlines. Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, 18(1), Pp.4-19.