Human resources management process and practices contribute greatly to accomplishing organization’s strategic objectives through its contribution to effective management and analysis of the human resources needs. The obligations of organization’s human resources management (HRM) are planning organization’s human resources, employees training and development, recruiting, selecting, transferring, promoting and demoting of the employees (Charles & Youngsun, 2010). Thriving an international human resource management (IHRM) is determined by labor market.
Change in operating environment affects expatriate manager’s performance in the foreign country. For expatriate managers to be fully oriented and adapted to the new business environment it costs an organization more as opposed to the ones run by local managers. In addition, government policies and regulations in a particular country may favor or hinder blossom of an organization. Some governments have very strict regulations on international human resource management practices and capabilities like its flexibility, movement and staffing (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009).
The United States culture is aftermath of a diversified ethnicity and races which came about due to immigration of people from various continents. Before this culture blending, she practiced western culture with characteristically unique social and cultural practices. The United States colonization by British played a key role in influencing present culture. These influences are reflected in the United States language (American English), legal system and inheritance. Additionally, African, Irish, Germany, France and Italy immigrants contributed to shaping the American culture. Innovation and fast growing media technology is also a contributing factor to modeling of the American culture. Individual’s social subcultures in the United States are distinctive and are characterized by affiliations in politics, social class, religion, ethnic group and occupation (Lane, 2010).
The United States has federal government which is comprised of three arms: the executive, legislative and judiciary. The United States president is the head of government and state, commander in chief of the armed forces and has mandate of ensuring that constitution followed (Lane, 2010).The legislature consists of the senates and House of Representatives; it is also known as congress. Its obligations include making laws and regulations, declaring the state of war, controlling currency value, imposing punishment on counterfeiting offences, and ensuring that taxes and revenues are collected. Judicial arm legally settles disputes, explains and interprets the governing laws.
The United States has fifty states each with its own judicial, executive and legislative system. These systems have the mandate to implement and enforce laws according to the United States constitution. Governors head the executive arm at the senate level. Its judicial system is comprised of municipal courts, state of Supreme Court, supreme courts and appellate courts. The United States has two dominant political parties, the Republican Party and Democratic Party at both state and federal level (Lane, 2010).
Business environment in the United States is conducive to organizations prepared to understand her multiplicity and intricacy and make intellectual choices in mounting their business strategy. New organization entering the United States market can be besieged by the abundant choices. Most individuals find it hard to determine where to locate, how to approach the market and the extent to invest. As it pertains legality, the United States has a lot of bureaucracy to handle. There are laws in all levels of governance starting from municipal entities, town and village governments, city, county, state government and federal government (Robert, 2001). According to the hierarchy of the United States laws on any social or business activity are not governed by federal law. State, county or municipal laws govern business and social activities in the United States.
Federal laws are unlikely to affect any business operation since they operate equally in all states applies uniformly through out the country unlike other laws like the local and state which differ from one region to another. Any organization’s operations are subject to local authorities and any other linked government entities. If an organization has property or its employees are located in particular area or perform their duties in certain location then the organization has to meet the respective obligations as per the jurisdictions (Boyden, 1984).
After it is determined that an organization is subject to a particular jurisdiction it will have the obligation to adhere to the required conformity reporting and remit taxes which are compulsory in a diverse forms. Any organization registered in a particular state is obliged to put together a report and pay taxes for sales in the state. Payment of taxes, salary and labor rates differ depending on the states or county. According to the state law cost of living, attendant social cost, cultural influence and environment competitiveness affect labor rates. In addition, State governments give incentives to business which create employment opportunities to the local people (Harlow, 1983).
There are various types of business organization structure in the United States which differ with states. A sole proprietorship is a business structure which is run by the owner of the business. He is responsible for paying taxes and incurs all losses and profits. In case of any legal disputes the business owner bears full responsibilities on behalf of the business and charged on his personal account or assert he owns. Its merit is that, it is cheap and easy to set up as compared to another business structures. A general partnership business is owned by two or more people.
Profits and losses are shared according to the signed partnership agreement. All members are responsible for a full amount of all liabilities of the business. Partnership member manage the business jointly as stipulated by partnership agreement. Just like in sole proprietorship it does not require state filling for business entity or a progress report (Tichy, 1983).
Limited partnership business structure resembles general partnership business in terms of structure and taxes implications. The difference from the later is that it does not allow the partners to manage the business. External investors who are not subject to the business liabilities can have share in the business. Limited liability partnership is a new business structure. It came up due to the need of reducing liability between partners. The laws governing this business structure vary between states. It remits taxes and partners’ liabilities are limited (Tichy, 1983).
A corporation is managed by board of directors on behalf of the stock holders. Board of director appoints people to operate the business. It can be owned by one or more stock holders. The directors, stockholders and officers of the company are secluded from the liabilities of the company, together with liabilities due to negligence in their corporate role, apart from some unusual situations. Owners of corporation are not responsible for tax charges.
The corporation files its own tax return and pays its own taxes. Additionally, the corporation is subjected to state franchise taxes or any other annual fees. Limited liability Company is a blend of corporation and a partnership type of business structure. Currently, it is a popular small scale business because it does not require large capital to run and it is flexible as compared to corporation business. Limited liability company organization’s article determines voting powers, profit and loss distributions and ownership percentages rather than stock ownership.
Limited liability Company is either taxed like a partnership corporation where by the profits and losses flow to the owners’ tax returns or it is taxed as corporation through filing of its own returns. The owners, business officers and directors are secluded from the company liabilities. Limited liability Company pays franchise tax which varies among states (Tichy, 1983).
Non profit corporations are mainly research firm, industry association, social organization, or a consulting group. Additionally, it can involve selling of products or services. This business structure has no owners, and profits are remitted back to the corporation to be reinvested. It is a challenging business venture because of the restriction imposed on non profit business. Other types of business structures in the United States are professional limited liability companies, professional corporations, and professional associations. They are created for professional fields which require licensing and malpractice liability like medical and legal fields. For this business to be approved owner license must be checked for conformity with the set criteria (Tichy, 1983).
In the United States industrial relation has three phases; science building, problem solving, and ethical. Science building phase is part of the social science. Its goal is to understand the employment relationship and its institutions through research. Industrial relations interconnect with labor economics, industrial sociology, labor and social history, human resource management, political science, law, and other areas. In the problem solving phase, industrial relations devise policies and institutions to help the employment relationship work well (Barney, 1991).
In the ethical phase, industrial relations include strong normative principles about workers and the employment relationship, especially the rejection of treating labor as a commodity in favor of seeing workers as human beings in democratic communities entitled to human rights. Industrial relations assume that labor markets are not perfectly competitive and thus in contrasts to mainstream economic theory employers have typically greater bargaining power than employees. Industrial relations scholarship also assumes that there are at least some inherent conflicts of interest between employers and employees and thus in contrast to human resource management and organizational behavior, the conflict is seen as a natural part of the employment relationship. Institutional interventions are methods for balancing the employment relationship to generate not only economic efficiency but also employee equity and voice (Amah, 2009).
Human resource department is one of the most important departments in an organization. This particular department of an organization carries out its duties or delegates them to another organization’s unit (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009). Additionally, an organization can obtain human resource management services from an external provider. Proper integration of these practices results in to a remarkable economic gains in an organization (Barney, 1991).These human resources management practices involve workforce planning, recruitment, induction, orientation, and on boarding, skill management, training and development, personal administration, wages and salary compensation, time management, pay roll, employee benefits administration, personal cost planning, performance appraisal and labor relation (Chaffee, 1985).
Common management styles in the United States are autocratic, paternalistic and democratic. In autocratic is also known as authoritarian. In this type of management managers make all the important decisions; closely oversee and control workers. Communication is one way and workers get orders from the manager which he expects to be obeyed. Paternalistic managers are more attentive to the social needs and views of their workers. Managers are concerned about workers happiness and act like a guardian. Manager consults his workers and allows discussions on the way forward regarding organization operations. After gathering employees’ views the manager decides on the right decision. In this management style, managers make concrete decisions because they consider that staff requires directions (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009).
A democratic style of management, managers trust employees and encourage them to make decisions. The employees’ decision are listened and considered in coming with organization’s final decision. In this style of management two way communication is important in order to achieve success. It comprises holding discussion groups for a member to agree on a particular decision. Managers give employee authority to make decision and listen to their advice. In this management style, managers must be prepared to support leadership skills in subordinates and decisions are made depending on the majority views (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009).
Cross cultural training is valuable in providing accurate expectations among expatriates manager and, therefore, it creates a greater possibility for them to meet their expectations. The more tailored and relevant the departure’s cross cultural training, the more the expectations are met. Having accurate expectations it positively affects employee’s cross cultural adjustment. Accurate expectations can be formed by a tailored and relevant departure cross cultural training. For the international assignment to be successful as with the selection process, it is critical that the family unit is regarded as a mutually supportive team.
It is important to train all family members on their new roles and responsibilities, since satisfaction of the employee’s partner or spouse and family has a significant impact on employee’s effectiveness overseas. I suggest that one year before manager’s departure; employee should devote time to study the culture and language of the destination country. In the foreign country, the expatriate managers should work with mentors who are responsible directly to the head office for assisting the managers with cultural problems that arise. The first year performance appraisal form should clearly indicate the expatriate’s primary job during year one as to learn and adjust to the host country. Training should aim at developing communication, leadership, conflict management, and other skills that fit some particular culture. Departure training should be tailored to the individual manager’s needs (Chaffee, 1985).
For effective transition I suggest a strategy which includes the sssessment phase; it should be comprehensive for expatriates because of the unique knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for foreign assignment. The typical management assessment instruments should be supplemented with instruments such as the cross cultural adaptability Instrument and the self directed learning readiness scale (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009).It should include individualized learning agreements. The learning agreement should include the scope of learning, how it will be learned, documentation, and evaluation.
It should contain departure training and orientation in order to create general awareness of the culture and basic language skills. It is important to include spouses and dependents, as well as the expatriate managers in this phase (Barney, 1991). On going support is necessary for success. The expatriate manager will need to acquire additional knowledge, skills and attitude after arriving in the host country. Periodic reassessment is very important for the success of the foreign assignment. The expatriate manager should receive as much feedback as possible. Guidance from a host country supervisor or sponsor would be ideal. Plans for enhancing strengths and ameliorating weaknesses should be clearly written. This support should be well planned and monitored for continuous improvement (Tichy, 1983).
During repatriation departure it important to have meeting and briefing on the process in order to prepare the manager on realistic expectation at his country. Both the manager and family should be informed in advance on repatriation process and advised accordingly on what is expected during the process (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009). Employee’s performance during his posting on the foreign country should be monitored, evaluated and recorded.
The employee and the company should agree on the best terms which suite both parties. To make repatriation effective employee should keep in touch with the company’s main office. Both parties should agree on what will a happen after repatriation in order to put in consideration both parties interests. It is important to inform the employee of the new task awaiting him back at home in order for him to prepare psychologically and know the work at hand in advance (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009). Employees change of working environment and personal relationship should be considered. The company should maintain communication with expatriate manager to reduce incidences of reintegration difficulties (Barney, 1991).
It is vital for any organization planning on repatriating its employee to consider the process’s impact on his career and personal relationships. During repatriation, employee’s personal relationship with friends is affected. This is one of key issues which should be addressed and in order facilitate smooth integration to evade any arising problems (Tichy, 1983). Family members and dependants play big role in repatriation program. They can avert employee’s attention and distract his working capability if they do not adjust to the move. This in turn can render the employee less productive and dissatisfied. Human resource should consider needs to consider strategies like repatriation counseling. It should also check on the family needs during this repatriation process (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009).
It is important to consider entry and exist of an expatriate manager. During the initial planning to send an expatriate manager to foreign countries, it is important for an organization to consider some factors like the expenses to be incurred in order to maintain the employee after repatriation. Companies should put in place measures to prevent employee turn over after they return home. Both parties should discuss and agree on conditions which can necessitate employee repatriation. These conditions include employee poor performance, family discontent, and failure to adapt to the new culture or dissatisfaction with the new job (Abang, MayChiun & Maw, 2009). For future preparations, organization should plan on how to prevent and handle crisis which may arise during the process of repatriation. Also, it should formulate policies to curb unpredictable shortcomings related to employee repatriation (Charles & Youngsun, 2010).
Abang, A. M., MayChiun, L., & Maw, K. L. (2009). Human resource practices and organizational performance. Journal of academic research in economics, 1 (2), 45-79.
Amah, O. E. (2009). Job satisfaction and turnover Intention relationship: The moderating effect of job role centrality and life satisfaction. Research and practice in human resource management, 17 (1), 24-35.
Barney, J. (1991). Firm resources and sustainable competitive advantage. Journal of management, 17(1), 1-10.
Boyden, L.R. (1984). Competitive strategic management. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Chaffee, E. (1985). Three models of strategy. Academy of Management Review, 10 (1), 34-68.
Charles, M. V., & Youngsun, P. (2010). Managing a global work force: challenges and opportunities in international human resource management. New York, NY: M.E Shape, Inc.
Harlow, H. F. (1983). Fundamentals human resource. Journal of business management, 55, 893-896.
Lane, C. (2010). Globalization and American popular culture. San Francisco, CA: Pearson Education, Inc.
Robert, S. (2001). An Investigation of business environment in the United States. International Journal of Management, 13 (2), 75-85.
Tichy, N. (1983). Managing strategic change: Technical, political, and cultural dynamics. New York, NY: John Wiley.