Human Resource Management

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Health and Safety

Based on Human Resource Management (4th Edition) by Alan Price - published by Cengage

(...) Health and safety are workplace issues with considerable organizational and legal implications for HR and other managers. Naidoo and Wills (2000) identify a number of benefits to organizations from the promotion of health in the workplace:

1. 'Hard' benefits - such as improvements in productivity as a result of reduced sickness, absence and staff turnover.

2. 'Soft' benefits - including enhanced corporate image.

Changes away from large, labour-intensive manufacturing organizations towards more fragmented, technology-based industries have dramatically altered the nature of occupational health over the last few decades - in developed countries, at least. Boyd (2001) argues that health and safety (as a topic) occupies a somewhat rhetorical role in HRM literature. Boyd looked at HRM and the management of health and safety in the airline industry and found that airlines have adopted a short-term cost-cutting approach to both in response to increasingly competitive trading conditions. The focus has been on reducing operating costs, achieving immediate productivity gains and prioritising profit over employee health and safety.


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