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Introduction

Thoughtful reflection on the “Big Picture” of what Van Duzer (2010) describes as the creation-fall-redemption-consummation framework clarifies humankind’s connection to the Scripture. It’s more than reading the words and seeing how people fit into the equation because it’s still a mystery on why God did what he did and intends to do in the future. The Big Picture does tell us what happened and how God gave us a chance to redeem ourselves.

Big Picture Thinking

Van Duzer (2010) identifies the meaning of the creation story showing us that the “Big Picture” teaches us that God is mostly known for his redemptive activity and pointing out that the briefness of the “creation movement” as outlined in Scripture should make us think of God’s greatness and power. Genesis 1:27 tells us, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (King James Version). This lays out the story of the beginning of creation and how God made man in his image. Later in Genesis 9:3, God gave man dominion over everything on earth, but this was not good enough for man. Instead, man disobeyed God which led to him being cast out of the garden of Eden. From that day forward, man became responsible for his own needs being reduced to tiling the ground for his own food (Genesis 3:23, King James version). Working leads into what Van Duzer (2010) refers to as the Genesis tasks where individuals and institutions are subjected to following God’s plan.  God’s plan leads to people becoming fruitful by carrying out tasks to fill the earth thereby leading meaningful lives by organizing themselves to do expressive and inventive work.

The insubordination by Adam and Eve broke man’s covenant with God causing “the first-order breach is the rupture of the relationship between God, on the one hand, and men and women, on the other” (Van Duzer, 2010, p. 56). This led to the death of man who needed to be redeemed. Ephesians 1:7, “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” (King James Version). God redeemed humankind by sacrificing his son Jesus Christ, who died on the cross to atone for man’s sins. Jesus’ death made it possible for humankind to restore their relationship with God in every possible manner. Humankind still needs to work at reconciliation and the focus should be to honor and praise God to reach greater heights. In the Big Picture, the last part of the creation-fall-redemption-consummation framework is consummation. To reach consummation or completeness, God’s plan will need to be carried out as prophesized in Revelations 1:4, “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away” (King James Version). All Christians are waiting for this day and what a joyous day it will be and at that point maybe God will let us in on the mystery of the Big Picture.

Strategic Function of Human Resource Management

Understanding HRM is essential to an organization’s ability to compete in today’s marketplace. HRM is a set of programs, functions, and activities that management uses to maximize both employee as well as organizational effectiveness by recruiting, selecting, training, developing and managing its staff. Kramer (2014) expands this definition by distinguishing that “HRM is associated with more than just managing employees, but also involves managing people, such as sub-contractors, consultants and people on non-employment contract, as well as also possibly managing other organizations in the production of goods and services” (p. 1072). The HRM process is concerned with managing employees within the organization from recruitment to retirement ensuring along the way that they have an environment that is conducive to working collaboratively with everyone. HRM’s strategic value to an organization is unlike other physical assets because HRM “human assets cannot be duplicated and therefore become the competitive advantage that an organization enjoys in its market(s)” (Mello, 2015, p. 5). Strategically, organizations need to ensure HRM policies and activities assist in developing employees to be successful and motivate hard working employees to continue their careers with the organization. Following are some of the obstacles to strategically develop employees to carry out the organization’s mission

Employee Retention

Organizations always try to hire the best qualified person at the most competitive price. Once an employee is on board, employers should attempt to keep well performing employees as long as possible because it saves money. To accomplish this, organizations need to invest in their employees by providing competitive pay and benefit packages, training, awards and an outstanding work environment. Organization’s that do not invest in their employees may be less attractive to prospective employees causing them to have a more difficult time recruiting and retaining employees (Mello, 2015). Retaining employees is so important because recruiting, selecting and training new employees often exceed 100% of the yearly salary for the position being filled with the organization also having to deal with work disruptions and the losses of organizational memory and seasoned mentors (Al-Emadi, Schwabenland, & Wei, 2015). The difficulty in recruiting and retaining employees causes inefficiencies in the organization negatively impacting their competitive position. To alleviate this, organizations need to understand what it takes to recruit and retain their employees.

Metrics

To validate its HRM processes the organization should establish metrics so it can see trends, monitor its successes and failures. Mello (2015) mentions that 90 percent of Fortune 500 organizations evaluate HRM operations on the basis of three metrics: employee retention and turnover, corporate morale and employee satisfaction, and HR expense as a percentage of operational expenses. These metrics offer a limited way to measure HRM, but measuring HRM can be a complex tasks. Chrysler-Fox and Roodt’s (2014) study found 19 themes to measuring HRM with clearly linking the organization’s strategy to what employees are doing as the number one theme. It’s important from a strategic perspective to ensure all work being done is to support the organization’s mission. This is accomplished by aligning an employee’s work with the activities they perform that support the overall business strategy. As Mello (2015) points out “there are no “perfect” metrics, however, as the appropriate human capital metrics would depend on the organization or business unit’s strategy” (p. 11).

Work Environment

Most organizations believe that providing good pay, benefits and rewards will led to happy productive workers. Zadeh, et al., (2018) study on the importance of specific workplace environment characteristics found that important environment characteristics may vary by employee sex, setting, and nature of healthcare work involved. This study reveals that one type of environment will not work for all employees so organizations will need to do a balancing act when it comes to creating the right environment for employees to thrive. One way of doing this is to survey employees and ask them what is important to them. Based on the data collected an organization could develop a plan for managers to follow on how to improve the work environment.

Conclusion/Recommendations

HRM processes within an organization are critical to the strategic well-being of an organization. Without recruiting and retaining the most important asset (people) that an organization has, it is doomed to fail. HRM as one of the essential ingredient in an organization’s attempt to compete successfully in today’s marketplace must be accomplished at the strategic level to be successful. HRM activities must be integrated within all facets of the organization so managers and employees see how important it is to everyone.

References

Al-Emadi, A. A., Schwabenland, C., & Wei, Q. (2015). The vital role of employee retention in human resource management: A literature review. IUP Journal of Organizational Behavior, 14(3), 7-32. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.liberty.edu/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.liberty.edu/docview/1703567195?accountid=12085

Chrysler-Fox, P. D., & Roodt, G. (2014). Principles in selecting human capital measurements and metrics. SA Journal of Human Resource Management, 12(1), 1-13. doi:10.4102/sajhrm.v12i1.586

Kramar, R. (2014). Beyond strategic human resource management: is sustainable human resource management the next approach? The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 25(8), 1069–1089. doi:10.1080/09585192.2013.816863

Mello, J. A. (2015). Strategic human resource management. (4, Ed.) Mason, OH: South-Western.

Van Duzer, J. (2010). Why business matters to God: (And what still needs to be fixed). Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic.

Zadeh, R. S., Shepley, M. M., Owora, A. H., Dannenbaum, M. C., Waggener, L. T., & Chung, S. S. (2018). The importance of specific workplace environment characteristics for maximum health and performance: Healthcare workers’ perspective. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 60(5), e245–e252. doi:10.1097/JOM.0000000000001248

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