TRANSITION PHASE - HRM to SHRM

The first thing that needs to be done is to provide an actual definition and analysis to what it actually means to be SHRM. In order to define this concept, it is first important to actually explain what is meant by human resources in general. Appleby & Mavin (2000) explain that Human resources are the efforts, skills, and capabilities that people contribute to an employing organization which enable it to continue in existence. Although difficult to define, SHRM is generally perceived as a distinctive approach to managing people which seeks to achieve competitive advantage through the strategic development of a highly committed and capable workforce. The definition that is provided here explains that human resources is really about the skills that the people of an organization bring together in order to keep it alive. In addition, the authors explain that moving into the realm of SHRM is about managing the human capital of an organization in such a way as to achieve some type of competitive edge. Having not only a committed workforce, but also having a workforce that is highly trained for the job that must be performed achieves the competitive edge. Moving in this direction is where human resources become SHRM. TeleVox Software, Inc. is a technology-centered company based in Mobile, AL. Since 1992, TeleVox has provided software communication applications to the healthcare industry and other commercial markets. Today, TeleVox counts more than 12,000 practices, clinics, hospitals, organizations and businesses as clients. Our software solutions cover a broad range of messaging and communication applications, all designed to improve doctor-patient and business-customer communication. The scope of our technology encompasses:
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Outbound Message Delivery Delivers automated appointment confirmations and other notifications. Inbound Inquiry Provides access to test results, appointment information, billing statements. Survey Delivery Gauges patient and customer satisfaction, measures practice and business performance. Web Design & Hosting Provides custom-built interactive websites and a host of additional features and services. On-Hold Messaging Supplies custom on-hold programs in high-quality digital format.

PROBLEMS AND OPPORTUNITIES It should become clearer that a transition from simple human resource management to strategic human resource management is not going to be something that is going to result in just opportunities for human resource departments. Instead, there are also going to be problems and areas of concern along the way. All of these areas must be addressed and dealt with my HR departments if they are going to be part of the strategic process in companies in the future. It describes the key areas of concerns that are needed to be considered while moving the company from HRM to SHRM. It also describes the problems that the Company actually faces while going through the transition period. KEY AREAS OF CONCERN The identification of the key areas of concerns that necessitate to be addressed before implementing the Transition process was made by the company. At Televox Software, these areas are as follows: Accountability for Performance First, with the transition to strategic human resources at the Televox, HR departments are going to be held accountable for the work that they perform. This means that they cannot simply sit on the sidelines and expect to reap the benefits of being treated like part of the management team without gaining some of the pressures and responsibilities that come with actually being part of the management. This is going to result in HR managers and departments having to actually justify their existence. They are going to have their own goals and objectives that will have to be met. Even more, they are going to have to answer to the senior management of the companies for which they work, as well as the investors of the companies, when the decisions they have undertaken to obtain qualified employees or to hold on to employees do not go as planned. They are also going to be expected to communicate problems and concerns more openly, rather than lurking in the shadows waiting to be noticed by those in power. Strategic Measures Another area of concern for Televox is that, the whole function of HR need to be confronted that is human resource personnel can no longer be people who sit and shuffle paper. It will not matter if we are talking about the HR manager or the associate sitting in the office. The fact of the matter, everyone who works in the HR department is going to have to be trained not only in how to interview and hire employees, but also how to develop plans to deal with strategies that will move a company forward. In fact, it does not seem far-fetched at all to assume that more time will be spent by those in HR departments developing strategies and analyzing what is working and what is not as it relates to employee operation and performance.

Additional responsibilities for Personnel Of course, with all of these areas of concern will come many opportunities and benefits for HR departments to work toward SHRM. First, this is the chance for those who work in HR departments to truly be taken seriously as leaders and managers. They can come out of the shadows and stop being seen as employees who are removed from the actual work that is being done in the company. Instead, they can be viewed by employees as being relevant to the operations of the company. As a result of raised expectations with the HR Personnel, these individuals should possess the abilities to truly be effective leaders. There should be effective communication by leadership in the critical areas as it is the key to winning organizational trust and confidence. Adaptive Employees At the same time, all of this promises success for more than just the companies or those who work in HR departments. The change from human resource management to SHRM will mean that employees will be recruited with the idea that they are truly valuable, and how they are treated is important for the future of individual companies. Of course, for employees and potential employees, this will also spell added responsibility. Employees will have to show that they have the skills and qualifications that are necessary for the specific job or function they will play within the company. However, they will also need to show that they can learn and expand as the strategic plans and goals for the company change. Just as HR managers will have to adjust, the move to SHRM means employees will be affected, and they will have to change as well. Application of SHRM in TELEVOX It always takes a long process to adopt the new systems and maintaining the status quo. After analyzing the above mentioned key areas, Televox Software moved to transition with the application of SHRM. While implementing and turning the processes into SHRM, there were a lot of challenges they faced. Some of the issues were prominent to be addressed, as well as proposing the best way out for the concerns. Communicating the Job Expectations Proper communicating the Job Expectations to the employees is very important in the successful implementation of SHRM in an Organization. At Televox, new employees are not always given the full range of their duties until they have already been on the job. It is true that they are given the specific duties of the job for which they are hired. However, they are often not told that they will be cross-trained to handle duties of other employees with those employees are not available to help customers or are on vacation. This sometimes leads to employees who are not happy with the job once they are hired. Need for Skilled Employees A move to SHRM at the company will mean that the full range of expectations and duties will be provided to employees from the beginning. In fact, a move to SHRM would mean that the HR department would seek out employees who enjoy the challenge of actually having to take on duties that are outside of their specific roles within the

company. At Televox Software, such skills are lacking. Instead of hiring people who are only skilled at one job, and only want to be skilled in that job, those who make hiring decisions would work to gain employees that want to be well-versed in many duties within the organization. Feedback Consideration At the same time, a move to SHRM would make the company realize that having skilled employees who are motivated by the strategic plans for the company have to be compensated and treated with respect and dignity. Currently, the company shows its respect for employees in basic ways, such as to give away free lunch and other items. However, when it comes to listening to employee concerns about working conditions, the company is not always responsive, either openly or in future moves of the company. The organization needs to show more openly that it takes employee concerns seriously, and that it realizes the employees are trained and skilled enough to know when to provide feedback about working conditions that should be taken seriously by management. Resistance to change by existing employees Of course, it must be understood that moving closer to full SHRM is not going to be something that can occur in a short amount of time. The reason for this is that Televox Software has dozens of employees that have been with the company for years. Adjusting to a way of doing business that focuses more on employee skills may be something that is not taken seriously by existing employees. The result is going to be some who are on board with the SHRM measures, and some who are not. All employees will have to be brought up to speed with the new plans, or some employees will have to be informed of the consequences of not getting on board with the new strategic plans for the company.

Conclusion
In the end, the research and actual application of SHRM shows that moving in this direction is good for companies. However, the research should leave no doubt that the transition is difficult, and it does require changing well-established attitudes and roles. These are attitudes that have existed for decades, and they are not going to change quickly. On the other hand, as with many things that occur in the world of business, as companies realize that advantages that come with SHRM, more will move in that direction and require acceptance of the policies that come with it. However, if all of this comes together, the end result should be a great improvement in how companies operate. The research shows that companies that are involved with SHRM perform at a higher level. The research also shows that these companies are in a better place to provide world-class service.

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