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Based on Chapter 24 of Human Resource Management in a Business Context (2nd Edition) by Alan Price - published by Thomson Learning

Pages 682-683 of Human Resource Management in a Business Context include a full discussion on this topic. (Very) short excerpts are given here

(...) The SHRM surveyed 170 senior HR professionals in the USA to find their views on the top 10 trends for human resource management (Patel, 2002). The following themes were identified as most significant from a choice of 85:

  1. Use of technology to communicate with employees.
  2. Rising health care costs.
  3. Increased vulnerability of intellectual property.
  4. Managing talent.
  5. Greater demand for high-skilled workers than for low-skilled workers.
  6. Labour shortage.
  7. Change from manufacturing to information/service economy.
  8. Increase in employment-related government regulations.
  9. Focus on domestic safety and security.
  10. Ability to use technology to more closely monitor employees.

These views represent an American perspective, but practitioners in other countries would probably identify with a number of these trends. (...)

(...) Raich (2002) argues that the HR function is clearly shifting from being a "service provider" to a "business partner" but the requirements and needs of this new role can also be met by line managers or external providers. Hence the change of roles is both an immense opportunity and a threat for human resource managers. Raich (ibid) considers that the HR function of the future will be significantly from that in the past and that organizations need to recognize this in order to make the most of knowledge workers and knowledge professionals. According to Boxall and Purcell (2000) strategic literature is increasingly emphasizing intellectual capital, learning processes and organizational adaptability. They argue that HRM specialists could play a central role because questions of how to attract, motivate and develop workers with scarce but critical abilities, and developing effective processes of work organization are fundamental to knowledge-based competition.

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