Reorganize the Personnel Department?

by Stanley Sokolik



This article focuses on organization of personnel department of big companies. Personnel-staff departments of larger firms are usually organized on a function- or task-oriented basis. This pattern seems to have developed as a natural concomitant of the increasing personnel expertise which has come about in the last twenty-five years. Growth in staff specialization has become possible only to make assignments on the basis of more specifically prescribed technical areas, e.g., compensation planning, benefits analysis, technical training, employee publications and college recruitment. Cries of the bankruptcy of personnel management have been heard for some time. Criticism of the personnel staff's ability to generate effective responses to new and growing problems from within and without the firm is never far from the formal and informal discussions of managers of every stripe, at times, even those who hold management positions within the personnel department. Historically, personnel-staff departments have been dominated by a task orientation derived from their structural arrangements and the pursuit of functional expertise on the part of their specialists.

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