Effective HRM requires an HR information system (HRIS) to provide current and accurate data for purposes of control and decision making. The system is composed of procedures, equipment, information, methods to compile and evaluate information, the people who use the information, and information management.

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HR information system (HRIS)

network of procedures, equipment,

information, and personnel to provide data

for purposes of control and

decision making

 

Computers are not only used for storage and retrieval of information but for broader applications. These applications include production of basic reports, HR calculations, long-range forecasting and strategic planning, career and pro­motion planning, and evaluation of HR policies and practices.

A well-designed HRIS can serve as the main management tool in the align­ment of HR department goals with the goals of long-term strategic planning. As HR issues have been increasingly recognized as critical factors in strategic plan­ning decisions, the ability of the HRIS to quantify, analyze, and model change has enhanced the status of the HRIS in many organizations.

Global competition is putting increasing pressure on U.S. managers to make better and faster deci­sions. HR information technology can improve HRM and contribute to the competitive advantage.

In addition to the major uses of computer technology, with a PC, the HR professional can take advantage of a variety of information services. An on-line service designed especially for HR departments is the Human Resource Informa­tion Network, a subsidiary of BNA. It provides up-to-the-minute information in several categories, including news, research, software, and services, covering all disciplines of HRM. SHRM has an on-line database that per­mits users to quickly search more than 24,000 citations of books and articles.

In developing an effective HRIS, an organization must address privacy is­sues in advance. A data-privacy policy can make the HRIS a positive factor in employee relations rather than a mistrusted disseminator of sensitive personnel information.

 

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