High Performance Work Systems Essay

1616 words - 7 pages

Introduction
Online education is growing at a rapid rate. Higher education in the form of online learning is becoming more prevalent each year. (Barr and Miller, 2013) “Over 4.6 million students were taking at least one online course during the fall 2008 term; a 17 percent increase over the number reported the previous year.” (Allen & Seaman, 2009) With this being the case, the need to have a well working system and employees is high. Having a high performance working system (HPWS) is the key to this. A HPWS is a group of HRM practices that help to promote skill enhancement, knowledge, employee involvement and motivation. (Armstrong, 2012a; Bohlander and Snell, 2013) Any type of ...view middle of the document...

“Employees are typically thrilled when management solicits their opinions.” (Bogardus, 2004. p 163.) Bohlander and Snell (2013), state that egalitarian work environments typically are documented to be less stressful and have a higher degree of employee engagement. Employees who are involved in decision making feel more engaged, which can lead to a sense of pride about the organization. Because of this employees are more likely to perform at high levels, be more enthusiastic, and be less likely to leave their job for a different one. (Bohlander and Snell, 2012) Armstrong (2012a), states that a characteristic of a HPWS is when the employees feel that their job is worth doing. Which in turn, creates a strong bond between the fit of the job and the capabilities of the employee.
Sharing information with employees is a step towards employee empowerment and engagement. Not only does the act of sharing information create a higher degree of employee involvement, it enables the employees to react to everything in a more timely manner. By sharing information such as the business plan, strategies and business performance, employees are able to participate in problem solving and offerer suggestions for business improvements. (Bohlander and Snell, 2012) Shared information needs to flow both directions. Bogardus (2009), states that an employer who has or is developing a HPWS needs to know what motivates and satisfies the employees.
Performance reward and promotion opportunities can provide employees with motivation to pursue outcomes that benefits themselves and their team as well as the organization. “Variable pay not only motivates employees to what the organization want them to do, It ensures that employees feel the organization is fair and responsive to their individual contributions.” (Bohlander and Snell, 2013, p. 437) Liao et al. (2009), state that a study conducted by Allen, Shore, and Griffeth (2003), showed reward and the fairness of rewards offered was directly linked to job satisfaction and organizational commitment.
Knowledge development or continued training is essential due to the fact jobs that require little or minimal training are declining. (Bohlander and Snell, 2013) Technology continues to advance, which then requires skills and knowledge to advance as well to have an effective workforce. Employees become more “psychologically empowered” when they gain more knowledge, skills and abilities. (Liao et al., 2009) This in turn helps to generate an appreciation of the tasks performed, which can have an impact on the success of the organization.
Key Elements in a HPWS
High performance work systems need more than simply the four key elements described above. In order for a HPWS to work effectively the work structures and flow, HR policies and practices, information technologies, and leadership process need to be situated to provide the maximum support for employee performance and well-being. (Bohlander and Snell, 2012) Utilizing these...

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