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This relatively new name (used to be “personnel”) implies, paradoxically, a non-human element to the way people are treated in the Free Enterprise System. Since human beings are not simply “supplies” that a business “accumulates” or “buys” or “stores,” there is a ready debatable question: “What education, training, experience should a Human Resources manager possess to do the job successfully?” A “business” background is not enough; there must be some psychological training, some communication skills, some sensitivity to social complications such as gender, dual earning households, parenting privileges, some sense of political trends, etc., and of course knowledge of insurance, retirement options, etc. It might even be suggested that an HRM should be able to demonstrate “humanity” in the form of compassion, identification, relations, and the like. The “human resource” does not simply reside in some supply closet, or warehouse of raw material where “resources” can be found. It is an insensitive term for human beings both seeking work and doing work. The topic is validated by current modern emphases on unemployment, employee rights, and changes in benefit trends in business. So, an essay could be called "What changed when "personnel" became "human resources"?
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