C232 Study Guide-WGU

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What role does the planning function of human resource management play within organizations?

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What role does the planning function of human resource management play within organizations?

Strategic and short & medium range planning Align human resources with strategic mission of organization

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What role does the staffing function of human resource management play within organizations?

Recruiting and selection of people with the needed skills of jobs within the organization

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What are the types of employee compensation?

Direct and indirect

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What is the role of performance appraisals?

Measure and monitor employee performance

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How does HRM enhance human potential?

Through training and development

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HRM's work on improving the workplace environment focuses what two environments?

Physical and psychological

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What must management be aware of in order to maintain effective work relationships?

Employee rights

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What impact has globalization had on HR practices?

HR policies need international applicability and be cognizant (and inclusive) of other cultures

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What are the four implicit HR objectives?

Improve productivity Improve quality of work life Ensure legal compliance Foster ethical behavior

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How can HR managers make a significant contribution toward productivity improvements?

Work organization-processes/distribution organization of work design Work design-contents, methods, and relationships among jobs

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How do organizations improve the quality of work life? How have employees' attitudes regarding involvement with their work shifted?

Greater involvement in work-enjoy more autonomy and chance to have input

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Why is it important that HR mangers and personnel be familiar with the laws and regulations?

Protect employees, protect organizaiton, and avoid liability

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Define the term "moral philosophy."

Principles, rules, and values people use when deciding what is right or wrong

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How can HR professionals create a culture where ethical behavior is encouraged?

Create a positive work environment Hiring ethical individuals Provide ethical training Labeling and modeling ethical behavior Creating a well-defined code of ethics Establishing a open-door policy Providing an employee assisntance program

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Define the term "business ethics."

Values and principles used to decide whether the collective behavior of an organization's members is appropriate

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What are the six major trends have been identified as influencing the work environment?

Increased competition Costs and benefits associated with HR utilization Productivity changes (changes in technology, capital investment, economic changes, capital utilization, outsourcing, and government policies

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Internal Environment: Define "culture" and identify who shapes an organization's culture.

Organization's value system-identified people's values and assumptions about their willingness to work, their ethics, and the way they should be treated

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Internal Environment: Define technology.

Equipment and knowledge used to produce goods and services

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Internal Environment: How does technology influence an organization's structure?

Technology can influence how jobs are borken down and the overall heirarchy--flat versus vertical

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Internal Environment: Organizational size is an important factor in determining ________________.

HR activities

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Internal Environment: How does the economy influence HR activities?

Strong economy=tight labor market (low unemployment, higher wages, competitive recruitment, and desire for training)

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Internal Environment: How does international competition influence HR activities?

Changes in laws (tariff, NAFTA, import/export), foreign labor forces, and economic developments force competitiveness

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Define the term "SWOT".

Strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats--strengths and weakness are internal to the organization and things we can control; opportunities and threats are external to the organization and things we cannot control

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What is the purpose of a SWOT analysis?

play to strengths, moderate weaknesses, make the most of opportunities, and manage or eliminate threats

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What are the six HR competencies?

Provide transformational leadership Collaborate and resolve strategic challenges within the firm Encourage real employee invovlement Empower and facilitate learning as well as change and decision making Maintain a global business perspective

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HR Characteristics: What knowledge of the Business and Industry must an HR professional possess?

Firms business objectives, training in strategic planning, in-depth understanding of financial statements, familiarity with sales, marketing, and production techniques; and technological proficiency

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HR Characteristics: Why is important for an HR professional to have an understanding of the economy?

Understanding of labor market fluctuations, compensation strategy, and expectations of advising the firm

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HR Characteristics: Why is important for an HR professional to have analytical abilities?

Diagnose and solve problems; increasingly managing processes instead of activities; financial data and testing procedures and testing

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HR Characteristics: Why is the ability to influence others a critical characteristic of an HR professional?

Lends to personal credibility; know how to influence decision makers

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HR Characteristics: Why is a propensity for action needed by an HR professional?

Need to be proactive to prevent major problems

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HR Characteristics: What is meant by "engagement?"

Being aware and involved in structual changes

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HR Characteristics: Why is it important for HR professionals to have political awareness?

Integrating resources becoming a change agent

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HR Characteristics: Why is it important for HR professionals to be customer focused?

Serve external customers as well as internal needs (equity and justice)

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Define the term: HR generalist.

Knowledgable or works with all functional areas of HR (Training & Development, Compensation & Benefits, Employee and Labor Relations, Recruiting and Selecting Employees, and Health Safety and Security)

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Define the term: HR specialist.

In-depth knowledge about one or a few functional areas of HR

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Why is it important that the HR managers be at the top of the hierarchy?

To provide input regarding achievement of strategic objectives, HR policy formation, and power to implement fair and consistent HR policies

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What is the expectation of the HR department regarding change?

To stay up to date on latest best practices and innovative approaches to personnel problems and concerns, must be aware of issues facing firm/industry to be proactive instead of reactive

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How does the HR department help line mangers?

Empowers them to make things happen, keeps them up-to-date about legislation that may affect employees as well as health and safety standards

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Define "employment at-will."

Employer can hire, fire, or promote a person for any reason; employee also free to terminate the employment relationship at any time

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What are the consequences to employees of "employment at-will?"

Less financial security for employees

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What are the three exceptions to "employment at-will?"

Public policy exception, implied contract exception, and implied convenant-of-good-faith exception

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List one example of the Public-Policy exception.

Violates public interest--being fired because of refusal to "cook the books"

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What is an implied contract?

Contract created through actions

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What are the various ways implied contracts are created?

oral assurances, patterns of behavior, employee handbook

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List one example of the implied contract exception.

Supervisor tells employee he/she will have a job forever if his/her production level stays this high

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Define the Covenant-of-Good-Faith exception.

Each party in the employment relationship makes an implied promise to treat the other in good faith and fairness

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What are the benefits of a diverse workforce?

Innovation, creativity

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What is diversity management?

Strategy that helps promote recognition and respect for individual differences

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What is the result of diversity management within organizations?

Richer ideas, perspectives, and approaches to business issues

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Define the term diversity.

Similarities and differences between individuals, accounting for numerous aspects of personality and individual identity

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Define the term inclusion.

Everyone feels free to be who they are and can openly discuss differences without fear of reprisal or shame

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What is the Civil Rights Act?

Made it illegal to treat people differently because of their race

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What is Title VII the Civil Rights Act?

Made employment decisions based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin illegal

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What groups are protected under Title VII?

Minorities based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin

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How was the EEOC created?

By Title VII

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What is the purpose of the EEOC?

Enforced federal anti-discrimination statutes and provides oversight for all federal EEO regulations also acts as the investigative agent for complaints

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Define the term and provide an example of "gender discrimination."

Treating someone differently because of sex or gender--not hiring a woman of child bearing age because she might get pregnant

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Define the term and provide an example of "sex discrimination."

Treating someone differently because of sex--not promoting a woman to an executive position

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Define the term and provide an example of "gender identity discrimination."

Treating someone differently because of to which gender he/she identifies, being gay, or bi-sexual--firing someone because the company discovered he was transgender NOTE: while courts have recognized this, it is not protected under Title VII; many states do provide protection under state civil rights legislation

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What is sexual harassment?

Harassent directed at an employee because of his/her gender--two types: Quid Pro Quo (exchange of favors-sexual intercourse for a promised promotion) and hostile environment (creating a working environment that inhibits an employee's ability to perform his/her job duties--lude jokes, comments, and even posters if excessive)

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What is the purpose of the Age Discrimination in employment Act (ADEA)?

Prevents employment discrimination for those 40 and older

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Define the term "religious discrimination."

Discrimination based on religion or closely held beliefs or employee or known associates

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List one example of the religious discrimination.

Not promoting someone because he/she is married to someone of a particular religion

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How does the EEOC define "race"?

Ancestry, physical characteristics, race-associated illnesses, culture, perception, and association

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How does the EEOC define "color"?

Pigmentation, complexion, or skin shade/tone

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Describe national origin employment discrimination.

Discriminating against someone based on his/her ancestory: from a certain country or place; belongs to/identifies with a national, cultural, or ethnic group; or associates with a person from that group

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What was the purpose of affirmative action?

Right the wrongs of the past

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What protected categories are covered under affirmative action?

Women, African-Americans, Asians, Pacific Islanders, disabled, American-Indian/Alaska-native, and veterans

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Who must have an affirmative action plan?

Any firms doing business with federal government and if a business has been held liable for discriminating

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What are the three basic elements of an affirmative action plan?

Reasonable self-analysis, reasonable rationale for taking affirmative action, and reasonable affirmative action

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Why is establishing HR objectives and policies (phase 2) vital?

Because there is usually a gap between demand and supply so when it's time to meet the demand, the objectives and HR policies will guide who is selected

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What are the two types of action programs?

Attraction and reduction

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What action program is designed to increase the supply of the right employees in the organization?

Attraction--done through competitive salary, benefits, or work/life quality

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What should be included in redundancy planning?

Outplacement counseling, buy-outs, job skills retraining, and job transfers

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Why is the evaluation of HR plans and programs an important process?

Determine effectiveness of HR planning, demonstrate significance of HR planning and the HR department's role within the organization

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Civil Rights Act

Prohibit employers from discrimination against minorities (protects race, color, religion, sex, or national origin)

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Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA)

Basis--restricts child labor, provides minimum wage, and establishes overtime provisions

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Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA)

Requires equal pay for men and women for equal work (equal work is determined by effort, responsibility and special knowledge)

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Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA)

Prohibits discrimination against employees 40+ years of age

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Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978

Prohibits discrimination because of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions

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Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA):

Illegal to knowingly hire illegal immigrants--applicants must be "legally eligible" to work in the U.S.--citizens, nationals of U.S. and aliens authorized to work in the U.S.

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Americans with Disabilities Act

Prohibits discrimination based on disability (known or perceived)

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Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act

Prohibits use of genetic informaiton in employment decisions; employers cannot request, require, or purchase genetic information

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Define the term "recruitment."

Provide a pool of potentially qualifed job candidates

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What are the purposes of recruitment?

1)Determine present and future recruitment needs of organization in conjunction with HR planning & job analysis 2)Increase pool of qualified job applicants at minimum cost 3)Increase success rate of selection process by reducing the number of under/over qualified applicants 4)Reduce short-range turnover 5)Meet organization's responsibility for employment equity and legal/social obligations regarding workforce coposition 6)Increase organization and individual effectiveness both short and long term 7)Evaluate effectiveness of various techniques and locations of recruiting for all types of job applicants

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What does acronym "KSA" mean?

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities

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How does the book define knowledge?

Thoretical or practical understanding of a subject

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How does the book define skills?

Proficiencies developed through training or experience

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How does the book define abilities?

Qualities that enable a person to perform a particular task; abilities are more stable and enduring than skills

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Describe the purpose of recruitment.

Create a pool of qualified candidates

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What are the factors that influence a "promotion-within" policy?

1)Management belief (internal employees more qualified and prepared because of familiarity with people, procedures, policies and special characteristics) 2)Internal employees may feel more secure and loyal becaues organization provides them oportunities for advancement 3)Expense (can be less expensive in terms of time and money)

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What criterion do organizations think should be used for transfers?

Performance and merit

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What criterion do unions think should be used for transfers?


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What is job rotation?

Exposes employee to various aspects of organizational life (fills rolls usually of equal level within the organization)--usually temporary, used to relieve job burnout in high stress occupations/industries

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What is the purpose of a job posting?

Open invitation for all employees to apply for job vacancy

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List three examples of when a job posting might be seen by an employee.

Company webiste, bullentin boards, company newsletters, circulated in employee lounges, e-mail, or staff meetings

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Define the term "employee referral."

Current employee suggests candidate; programs generally reward employees for referring skilled job applicants who get hired--advantage is RJP

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What is the most common source of external recruiting in most industries?

Company website

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In what type of situations are employment agencies used?

Professional/managerial workers, skills workers--when employers would have difficulty finding needed skills, may only have seasonal or temporary demand, may not have resources to recruit

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What industries are most likely to use trade associations as a recruitment source?

Construction, skilled trades

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