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Australia, together with most other developed and developing countries, faces a difficult demographic pattern in the first half of the twenty‐first century, due to a low…
Australia, together with most other developed and developing countries, faces a difficult demographic pattern in the first half of the twenty‐first century, due to a low and declining birth rate and an ageing population. This has led to an ageing workforce, with a relative shortage of younger entrants. One issue for government is what further steps they could initiate to persuade more people to remain in the labour force beyond the currently median retiring age of around 55 years. Employers will need to consider the degree to which they are prepared to reverse present negative attitudes towards employment of older staff, and workers need to resolve whether they need or desire to keep working and under what conditions. Boundaries constructed by government policy and employer actions, and their resolution by older individuals, form the content of this paper. The paper concludes that employers now face the management of up to four generational groups and resolving their intergenerational differences will present as a major future challenge. Revisiting practices for managing older workers will be essential and the paper offers suggestions for employers towards more effective utilisation of their older staff and more effective integration of workers of all age groups.
Introduces the four papers that are included in the Focus section of International Journal of Manpower, and which were presented at the International Conference on…
Introduces the four papers that are included in the Focus section of International Journal of Manpower, and which were presented at the International Conference on Quality, Innovation and Knowledge held in Kuala Lumpur in 2002. These papers have their central focus on the people element of quality, innovation and knowledge.
This article examines the concept of employability as applied to older workers. It argues that much of the lack of success experienced by older job seekers in securing employment may be based on the mismatch between what older job seekers believe employers want and what employers are seeking. It reports data from a small sample of older South Australians who were interviewed concerning their perceived employment choices, now and in the past, their self assessed skill currency, their judgements as to their employability, and their explanation for success or failure in seeking employment. Overwhelmingly interviewees believed themselves employable and their skills current, yet these optimistic beliefs are seldom confirmed by labour market success. Those who were successful seemed distinguished in two ways – either they had been able to tap into opportunities through personal networks or they had developed a new skill where the competition was less intense and this enabled them to command an income. Taking charge of their lives, analysing their situation in a strategic way, initiating actions where the likelihood of a successful outcome was higher, creating demand for what they could offer were all strategies that led to employment. However, such behaviours may not be typical of this age group. Interview data clearly showed that it was the more resilient individuals who coped more effectively and that these individuals were more successful in securing reemployment.
The need for a strategic shift in senior management philosophy which encourages and promotes a culture of total employee involvement towards the attainment of service…
The need for a strategic shift in senior management philosophy which encourages and promotes a culture of total employee involvement towards the attainment of service quality is one of the major competitive challenges facing the Australian banking industry in the 1990s. Some of these issues are addressed through a case‐study analysis of the origin, rationale and implementation of a quality service programme in the State Bank of South Australia. In examining these changes a historical outline of the State Bank of South Australia and an account of the research methodology used in the study form the introduction. This is followed by an analysis of the design and development of a programme of change and an identification of the key factors shaping the implementation of total quality management. In conclusion an assessment of the opportunities and constraints for the successful implementation of service‐quality delivery programmes in the Australian banking industry is given.
In Australia, globalization, together with economic and political developments internal to the country, has resulted in deregulation of the former institution‐based system…
In Australia, globalization, together with economic and political developments internal to the country, has resulted in deregulation of the former institution‐based system of industrial relations. The labor force is now more qualified, casualised and diverse than at any previous point in history. Human resource (HR) practitioners have responded by placing greater emphasis on aligning HR strategy with corporate strategy, devoting greater effort to performance management and exploring new forms of flexible work arrangements, increasing their reliance on legal expertise, and increasing their adoption of computerized HR management systems.
Addresses the impact which the currently occurring changes inorganizational culture towards a “lean and mean” philosophy are likely tohave on an ageing workforce entering…
Addresses the impact which the currently occurring changes in organizational culture towards a “lean and mean” philosophy are likely to have on an ageing workforce entering a new millenium. Gives a general overview of the changes which have occurred in the population and in the structure and management of organizations during the last decade and examines potential consequences which these changes might have for recruitment, ongoing management and disengagement of staff in the next century.
Considers the implications of Australia′s ageing population forfuture human resource management practice. Acknowledges that downsizingpractices which initially targeted…
Considers the implications of Australia′s ageing population for future human resource management practice. Acknowledges that downsizing practices which initially targeted older workers may have contributed to raising the profile of their vulnerability and suggests reforms will be needed in all key human resource functions to reduce bias, improve equity, and focus on the potential benefits older staff can contribute. Differences in health and safety records indicate that age alone does not differentiate between staff, and hence dismisses perceptions of older staff as more accident prone. Stereotypes which militate against hiring older staff need to be addressed and training practices will need restructuring to accommodate alternative training methods which encourage older staff to reskill. Discusses potential new mentoring roles. Proposes that performance criteria which measure contribution need to be developed for all employees so that rewards can be disentangled from length of service and ensure that jobs, not individuals, become the basis of evaluation.
Changing career patterns and the erosion of job security have led to a growing emphasis on employability as a basis for career and employment success. The written and psychological contracts between employer and employer have become more transactional and less relational, and loyalty is no longer a guarantee of ongoing employment. Individuals are thus expected to take primary responsibility for their own employability rather than relying on the organisation to direct and maintain their careers. The purpose of this paper is to identify and examine the assumptions underpinning the concept of employability and evaluate the extent to which employability has been adopted as a new covenant in the employment relationship.
Through a review of relevant literature the paper discusses current research on careers and employability and examines the available evidence regarding its adoption as a basis for contemporary employment relationships.
The paper finds that the transfer of responsibility for employability from organisation to individual has not been widespread. There is still an expectation that organisations will manage careers through job‐specific training and development. Employability has primarily benefited employees with highly developed or high‐demand skills. Employability is not a guarantee of finding suitable employment.
Employers can assist their employees by clarifying changes to the psychological contract, highlighting the benefits of career self‐management, and providing training and development in generic employability skills.
The paper questions underlying assumptions about employability and explores issues of relevance to human resource managers, policy‐makers, employers and employees.
The purpose of this paper is to ascertain to what extent organisations specifically use communication skills as a key criterion in their selection and subsequent…
The purpose of this paper is to ascertain to what extent organisations specifically use communication skills as a key criterion in their selection and subsequent development of managerial staff.
The paper presents empirical findings from semi‐structured qualitative interviews conducted with senior HR managers in large to medium sized organisations in Southern Australia.
This study suggests that HR practitioners regard communication skills as subsumed under a generic idea of leadership. There were no specific programs reported that explicitly targeted communication skills.
The findings contribute to knowledge concerning the nature of communication skills for managerial staff such as, interpersonal, verbal, written and listening skills. Further, time needs to be allocated to the audit of training in the development of communication skills so that HR professionals are clear on the action that needs to be taken.
The paper will be of value to researchers, HR practitioners and consultants in the management development field. The paper's main finding is that despite repeated claims that communication skills are important for successful managerial performance, HR managers only assess these informally during managerial selection and rarely target these skills in training staff for managerial positions. It is recommended that HR staff need to review these practices towards a more targeted communication skills appraisal that would measure the extent to which these skills are already apparent at selection and develop further following additional training.
Reports on the attitudes of a small sample of older women in educationto the future options of either continuing to participate in theirchosen profession or retiring…
Reports on the attitudes of a small sample of older women in education to the future options of either continuing to participate in their chosen profession or retiring early. Little interest was shown in early retirement, partly because it was not an attractive financial option for many of the sample and partly because the majority of the women expressed strong commitment to continued workforce participation. The study highlights how former discriminatory practices in access to superannuation membership have disadvantaged women by not providing them with comparable financial benefits when their organizations begin to downsize and offer voluntary separation packages. Concludes with the thought that organizations should re‐examine their stereotypes of older workers and implement policies which will use their talents more.