Recent Question/Assignment

ASSESSMENT TASKS
Assessment 1: Literature review/essay (20 %) – Individual Task
Word count: 1500 (excluding the reference list).
Due date: Online: Week 4 – Wednesday14 March by 11.59pm
Rubric: Marking criteria are available on the unit website.
The first assessment task is worth 20 marks, and requires students to write an essay on one of the following topics:
1. Identify and critique some of the challenges that organisations face in implementing performance management practices.
2. Increasingly, a potential employee’s use of social media is a consideration for employers. Discuss why employers have this new focus in their recruitment and selection policies.
Instructions to students:
1. As part of this task, students are expected to undertake a comprehensive literature review on the selected topic, and support their arguments by referencing academic literature strictly using quality text books and journal articles of relevance. Students are expected to use both the course textbook AND a minimum of six (6) peer reviewed journal articles (published between 2009 and 2018). (Note: Wikipedia is not an academic reference).
2. The work must be word-processed, and must follow an essay format (please refer to the essay outline provided on the unit website), including correct referencing (Harvard style), formatting, layout and grammar. In relation to referencing, the work must include accurate and detailed in-text referencing as well as a list of references.
3. Note plagiarism – the use of others’ words without attribution – is considered a severe offence, and will lead to serious consequences (including subject failure).
4. The work must be submitted electronically through the Assessment Dropbox in the unit website on VU Collaborate by the above-mentioned due date.
5. All extensions of time are required to be supported by a Special Consideration application. It is essential that you keep a copy of your assignments for your records until after final results are finalised.
6. Feedback on the essay will be made available within three (3) teaching weeks.
RECOMMENDED READING
In addition to the required reading materials, the following list of references is relevant and recommended for this unit. Other similar quality references can be found by searching the VU Library catalogue.
Bratton, J & Gold, J 2012, Human resource management: theory and practice, 5th ed., Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, UK.
Kramar, R, Bartram, T, De Cieri, H, Noe, R, Hollenbeck, J, Gerhart, B & Wright, P (2014), Human resource management: Strategy, people, performance, 5th ed., Sydney: McGraw-Hill.
Representative Academic Journals
· Academy of management journal
· Academy of management review
· Asia pacific journal of human resources
· British journal of industrial relations
· Equal opportunities international
· Industrial relations journal
· Human resource management (US)
· Human resource management journal (UK)
· Harvard Business Review
· MIT Sloan Management Review
· International journal of human resource management
· Journal of industrial relations
· Journal of management
· Journal of management studies
· Labour and industry
· Personnel review

Example answer from lecture
Identify and critique some of the challenges that organizations face in implementing performance management practices.
Most organisations recognise its human resource to be a valuable asset as human resource offers the intellectual capital to create success for organisations in the unforeseeable future (Kagaari 2011). Thus, the HR system is one of important components that can help organisations achieve a competitive advantage and become more effective and efficient – assuming organisations strategically manage and develop their employees to work consistently towards organisational goals (Bowen & Ostroff 2004: Prowse & Prowse 2010). To assess the employees’ or organisations’ performance, the process can be managed by implementing performance management practices (Kagaari, Munene & Ntayi 2010: Saunila, Tikkamaki & Ukko 2015). Performance management (PM) practices involve activities that ensure the company and its employees to work accordingly to the organisational strategies, goals and objectives (Kagaari, Munene & Ntayi 2010). PM aims to focus on employee’s attention, and motivates behaviour for the purpose of implementing the organisation’s strategy; this is because PM is considered to be a comprehensive process where all aspects of an organisation are believed to have an effect on performance (Saunila, Tikkamaki & Ukko 2015). However, when implementing, there are some challenges that organisations face in implementing PM. This includes a lack of top management support in PM as well as performance evaluation often fails due to bias in the process (Bowen & Ostroff 2004: Lee et al. 2012: Nankervis et al. 2014).
The first challenge that organisations face when implementing PM is that there is a lack of support from top management (Bowen & Ostroff 2004: Dong 2008). Top management is a group of senior managers engaged to supervise the progress of implementations who are also critical for the organisational success (Dong 2008: Zwikael 2008). Senior managers undertake various tasks on a daily basis, for instance, leading and managing changes such as entailing new visions for organisational purpose, as well as providing guidance to the organisational cultures (Boak, Martin & Thompson 1997). When there is a lack of support from senior managers in PM practices, according to the HR strength theory, this reveals that the legitimacy of authority link between the HR system and top management within the
organisation is broken (Bowen & Ostroff 2004). This is a result from senior managers put low priority on the implementation of PM in which managers fail to perceive the importance of employees and, do not involve HRM professionals in the strategic planning process (Bowen & Ostroff 2004: Waal & Counet 2009).
The second challenge associated to PM implementation is the bias of performance evaluation (Bassett & Meyer 1968: Lee et al. 2012: Nankervis et al. 2014). The performance evaluation programs assist the organisation to review, develop and utilise the knowledge and abilities of employees (Nankervis et al. 2014). For instance, behavioural-based approaches such as peer review which experts review the performance, creativity or quality of work produced by others in the same area of competence (Lee et al. 2012). Another behavioural-based approach which is popular in some organisations involves employees to conduct a self-review (Nankervis et al. 2014). A self-review involves an employee appraises one’s own performance so that the manager can provide coaching and reveal improvement needs without creating the threating atmosphere from manager-initiated feedbacks (Bassett & Meyer 1968). Despite these behavioural-based approaches are the most accurate approach of assessing employee behaviour, the bias in these approaches are still inevitable (Nankervis et al. 2014). According to the HR strength theory, this means the consistent relationships over time between employees and the HRM practices are ineffective hence some specific behaviours – in this case – giving a false performance evaluation is displayed (Bowen & Ostroff 2004). Furthermore, bias results from employees being treated unfairly due to the conflict of interest which commonly occurs in peer review approach (Lee et al. 2012).
As challenges in implementing PM are identified and critiqued above, these challenges can be overcome by providing a training program along with line management involvement (Atan, Raghavan & Mahmood 2015: Ryu & Kim 2013). By providing a training program, the employees’ performance issues can be addressed whether the issues are needed to be eliminated or improved (Atan, Raghavan & Mahmood 2015). Additionally, training also increases employees’ motivation which in turn can motivate employees’ relationship with the HRM as well as improve the individual’s performance; consequently, the negative or bias performance evaluation can be mitigated (Atan, Raghavan & Mahmood 2015: Selvarajan & Cloninger 2012).
Furthermore, involving line managers in HR practices can be beneficial to organisations as line managers can immediately respond to people-related business issues as soon as the issues arise while HR professionals can focus on strategic issues rather than basic HRM routines; hence PM practices can also be prioritised as line managers are observing employees’ performance in close proximity (Ryu & Kim 2013).
In summary, the implementation of PM practices allows organisations to scrutinise and assess organisations’ own or employees’ performance whether the performance works in accordance to the organisational goals, strategies and objectives or not (Kagaari, Munene & Ntayai 2010). However, organisations need to overcome challenges that may face during the implementation of PM practices such as a lack of top management support as well as the bias in performance evaluation process. Numerous studies suggest recommendations which to overcome challenges and improve HR systems, for instance, providing a training program may increase employees’ motivation to consistently to organisational goals and improve relationship with HRM which this recommendation, in turn, mitigate the negative and bias in performance evaluation (Atan, Raghavan & Mahmood 2015: Selvarajan & Cloninger 2012). As well as involving line managers in HR practices where immediate responses can be given to people-related business issues which also save HR professionals time when dealing with basic HR issues, this consequently increases the priority of PM practices in organisations (Ryu & Kim 2013). Thus, human resource is a valuable asset to organisations as HR contributes the intellectual capital to organisations; a component which needs to be observed, evaluated and improved in close proximity so the contributions can gain a competitive advantage and create success towards all organisations in the desirable future (Kagaari 2011: Prowse & Prowse 2010).
References
Atan, J, Raghavan, S & Mahmood, NHN 2015, ‘Impact of Training on Employees’ Job Performance: A Case Study of Malaysian Small Medium Enterprise’, Review Management, vo. 5, no. 1/2 pp. 40-50.
Bassett, GA & Meyer, HH 1968, ‘Performance Appraisal Based on Self-review’, Personnel Psychology, vol. 21, pp. 421-430.
Bowen, DE & Ostroff, C 2004, ‘Understanding HRM-firm Performance Linkages: The Role of the “Strength” of the HRM System’, Academy of Management Review, vol. 29, no. 2, pp. 203-221.
Dong, L 2008, ‘Exploring the impact of top management support of enterprise systems implementations outcomes’, Business Process Management Journal, vol. 14, no. 2, pp. 204-218.
Kagaari, J, Munene, JC & Ntayi, JM 2010, ‘Performance management practices, employee attitudes and managed performance’, International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 24, no. 6, pp. 507-530.
Kagaari, JRK 2011, ‘Performance management practices and managed performance: the moderating influence of organisational culture and climate in public universities in Uganda’, Measuring Business Excellence, vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 36-49.
Lee, CJ, Sugimoto, CR, Zhang, G & Cronin, B 2012, ‘Advances In Information Science: Bias in Peer Review’, Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, vol. 64, no. 1, pp. 2-17.
Nankervis, A, Baird, M, Coffey, J & Shields, J 2014, Human Resource Management: Strategy and Practice, 8th edition, Cengage Learning, Melbourne, Australia.
Prowse, P & Prowse, J 2010, ‘Whatever happened to human resource management performance?’, International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 145-162.
Ryu, S & Kim, S 2013, ‘First-line Managers’ HR Involvement and HR Effectiveness: The Case of South Korea’, Human Resource Management, vol. 52, no. 6, pp. 947- 966.
Saunila, M, Tikkamaki, K & Ukko, J 2015, ‘Managing performance and learning through reflective practices’, Journal of Organisational Effectiveness: People and Performance, vol. 2, no. 4, pp. 370-390.
Selvarajan, TT & Cloninger, PA 2012, ‘Can performance appraisals motivate employees to improve performance? A Mexican Study’, The International Journal of Human Resource Management, vol. 23, no. 15, pp. 3064-3084.
Waal, AA & Counet, H 2009, ‘Lessons learned from performance management systems implementations’, International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 58, no. 4, pp. 367-390.
Zwikael, O 2008, ‘Top management involvement in project management’, International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 387-403.
This assessment item is a 1500 essay. Once you submit your essay, you will be able to see the Originality Report (via Turnitin) which you can then use to improve your essay. You will be able to submit multiple files per submission and submit your files more than once.Please bear in mind that a maximum similarity rating of 20% has been established for this unit. In other words, the amount of original content in your report, must be 80% or higher.
This assessment accounts for 20% of your grading. Therefore, make sure to submit your best piece of work.
RUBRIC – ASSESSMENT 1 (ESSAY)
Discussion and Analysis (35%)
Fail

Pass

Credit
Distinction
High Distinction
Discussion and Analysis
Limited discussion of the learning area to be investigated. Little or no analysis of the unit and relevant HRM theories/models. Limited levels of independence and critical thinking in reaching conclusions. Merely 'parroting arguments or making assumptions on matters open to dispute. Limited rationale provided.
Reasonably clear and comprehensive discussion, with some analysis of the unit and relevant HRM theories/models. Adequate levels of independence and critical thinking in reaching conclusions. Further rationale required.
Clear and comprehensive discussion and analysis of the unit and relevant HRM theories/models. Reasonably high levels
of independence and critical thinking in reaching conclusions. Clear rationale provided.
Clear and comprehensive discussion and very good analysis of the unit and relevant HRM theories/models. High levels
of independence and critical thinking in reaching conclusions. Clear rationale provided.
Clear and comprehensive discussion and excellent analysis of the unit and HRM theories/models. Very high levels
of independence and critical thinking in reaching conclusions. Clear rationale provided.
Research (35%)
Fail
Pass
Credit
Distinction
High Distinction
Research
No evidence of research.
Limited use of some sources to support description and analysis.
Reasonable use of some sources to support description and analysis.
Very good use of a variety of sources to support description and analysis.
Highly effective use of a variety of relevant sources to support description and analysis.
Citing and Referencing (15%)
Fail
Pass
Credit
Distinction
High Distinction
Citing and Referencing
No referencing or highly inconsistent
Inconsistent and inaccurate
Some inconsistent and inaccurate
Referencing is mostly accurate and
Text is fully referenced. All
and inaccurate referencing in relation to Harvard conventions.

referencing in relation to Harvard conventions

referencing in relation to Harvard conventions.
consistent in relation to Harvard conventions although occasional mistakes may remain.
citations and end of text references are accurate in relation to Harvard conventions.
Writing and Presentation (15%)
Fail
Pass
Credit
Distinction
High Distinction
Writing and Presentation
Highly inaccurate and/or unclear structure, expression, grammar, spelling and presentation.
Significant inaccuracies and/or lack of clarity regarding structure, expression, grammar, spelling and presentation.
Some inaccuracies and/or lack of clarity are present regarding structure, expression, grammar, spelling and presentation.
Writing is mostly very clear and accurate regarding structure, expression, grammar, spelling and presentation.
Writing is very accurate and clear regarding structure, expression, grammar, spelling and presentation.
Overall Score
Level 5 0 or more
Level 4 50 or more
Level 3 60 or more
Level 2 70 or more
Level 1 80 or more

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