Personnel Research as an Function of Managerial Job (Objectives and Tools)!

An important function of the managerial job is to maintain control over the operations. This equally applies to the personnel management function. It is the duty of persons in charge of manpower management to keep a record of what is happening to the personnel so that evaluation can be made periodically of how effectively the human resources of the organisation have in fact been utilised.

Personnel research:

There are two important areas in connection with personnel research which are the functions of the personnel specialist or the operating line manager concerned with controlling manpower.


(i) The maintenance of personnel records or statistics; and

(ii) Evaluation or audit of the personnel programme.

A scientific approach to the problem organisation. For example, it may be necessary to analyse monthly the termination rate and compare the tennination rates among the several plants of the large organisation Again, good management would like to know what proportion of such employee terminations were a real loss to the organisation.


In addition, in case of terminations, management would like to know the reasons the terminations. This requires maintenance of proper records or internal statistics in addition; good management may even want to compare 2 other similar companies to find out how far its own personnel pokes have been effective. ,

The records maintained must help a personnel audit For example, a company, which has an appraisal programme covering all its employees would like to know how far such appraisal programme has achieved he (Objective of identifying promotable talent and thereby helping the individual build a career in the company.

Objectives of personnel research:

Personnel research is a multi-purpose tool employed to solve a variety of personnel problems. As pointed out by Carl E. Block the concept of Search can be applied to all organisational studies, be they large or small descriptive or analytical, major or minor, human or non-human broad or narrow in perspective, dimension and scope. Personnel research is concerned with the labour, management, general pubic governmental agencies, and customers.

More specifically, personnel research is conducted in order :


(I) To evaluate the present conditions of employment;

(ii) To product future conditions, events and behavioural patterns;

(iii) To appraise proposed policies, programmes and activities,

(iv) To identify the means and ways of strengthening, the abilities and attitudes of employees at a good or high level and on a continuing


(v) To revise the current policies, programmes, and activities to suit the requirements of changing times;

(vi) To keep the management abreast of the latest developments in the field of production, marketing, products, organisational practices, recruitment and selection procedure, wage and salary administration, etc.

Personnel research is aimed at improving organisational efficiency As rightly pointed out by A.F. Sikula, “The fundamental purpose of personnel

The following tools are employed in personnel research:


(i) Historical studies,

(ii) Survey research,

(iii) Statistical research,

(iv) Mathematical model building,


(v) Simulation,

(vi) Field or action research, and

(vii) Case studies.”

Personnel research is the primary responsibility of personnel department. However, it should be supported by the concerned line managers and executives at all levels of organization.