Supriya Kummamuru’s Paper Proposal

Human Resource Function as an adaptable system, facilitating Viability of an organization: Analyses applying cybernetic concepts & models.

This paper analyses the design of an HR function in the context of an IT services organization. HR Management is a very important aspect of corporate governance. It is intimately linked with the demand for high productivity of an employee. Productivity is directly linked to profits of a company. So the major qualities as :’ How does the corporation get the maximum productivity from its employees? ‘. This question assumes great importance in the knowledge Industry. Given Human resources are the key building blocks of this Industry the Human Resource function has to be adaptive to the changes the Industry faces. A HR system must learn if it is able to acquire a pattern of behavior that is successful in a particular environment, which means not repeating unsuccessful actions and repeating successful actions.
The approach will be to use the Ashby’s theory of adaptation, & the Law of requisite variety. It has often been observed the HR Professionals and IT Professionals are at loggerheads with each other. There is a fundamental variety mismatch problem, the HR subsystem tries to regulate the professional subsystem defying the fundamental requisite variety equation. The HR function is not equipped with the required variety (translates to systems, processes, capabilities, competencies) to address the needs of the IT processional in terms of several parameters.
The HR function by itself in an organization is not viable..It will analyze the HR system from the questions given below.
Is the system adaptive?
The HR system should be able to observe the environment of the IT Professional and change its approach which can facilitate success for the associates. The implication is not to repeat successes or drop failures, understand the context and act. The HR system can adapt if it can learn a new pattern of behavior after recognizing that the environment has changed and that the old pattern of behavior is not working..
Is there a regulator meet the law of requisite Variety?
The current HR Practices are based on invalid perceived images of the professional system. This limits its decision making capability. i.e. “The amount of selection that can be performed is limited by the amount of information available”. The second point is it assumes the role of an regulator which fails because of its limited variety in comparison to the regulated system i.e. the Professional space.
What sub system does the HR as a function according to the VSM?
The above two requirements feed into analyzing it from a VSM perspective. System one at the lowest level of recursion is an individual developer and at the at the organization level it has been taken as the delivery unit or project unit which creates products and services applications. In this how does the function of HR connect. …The VSM addresses primarily functions, adaptive capabilities, information gathering and information distribution. It offers a theory of what an organization must do to be adaptive, to survive in a changing environment.

Cybernetic traditions:

  • 2) Control systems; automation; systems engineering
  • 4) Management

1 thought on “Supriya Kummamuru’s Paper Proposal

  1. Ranulph Glanville

    I share a disdain for HR with many, and tend to go along with some fairly cruel characterisations, so I am interested to know why its protagonists should behave as they do. Maybe you have a good answer. This is interesting. However, I am also concerned not only with the theoretical implications and difficulties you pint out, but also those motivational ones that might lead to a shift: acting is not at all the same thing as knowing!

    This might be a very valuable contribution, and I hope it lives up to my hopes! Thank you for raising them.


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