The Difference Between People Management And Human Resource Management

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People management originated in the UK in the nineteenth century amidst the factory conditions of the first Industrial Revolution- Enlightened capitalists such as Rowntree and Cadbury , who were often motivated by religious convictions, appointed ‘welfare officers’ to monitor and improve the conditions and lives of workers. However, with the rise of industrial trade unionism in the twentieth century another role evolved in people management – that of negotiation and communicating with the collective representatives of the workforce on behalf of the organization.
By the 1970s a fairly consistent set of activities and roles had developed for people management, which in most large organizations was perceived a specialist management
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The personnel management approach concerns itself with establishing rules, policies, procedures, and contracts, and strives to monitor and enforce compliance to such regulations, with careful delineation of a written contract. The human resource management approach however, tends to relax rules based on business needs and exigencies, and aims to go by the spirit of the contract rather than the letter of the contract.
Personnel management assumes people as an input for achieving desired output. Human resource management assumes people as an important and valuable resource for achieving desired output hence employees are treated as assets and not
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Human resource management on the other hand, is a strategic function which focuses on culture, employee's satisfaction and employee's participation.

Under personnel management, job design is done on the basis of division of labour and specialization, employees are provided with less training and development opportunities. Under human resource management, job design function is done on the basis of team work and employees are provided with more training and development opportunities.

In personnel management, decisions are made by the top management as per the rules and regulation of the organization. In human resource management, decisions are made collectively after considering employee's participation, authority, decentralization and competitive environment.
The differences between personnel management and human resource management appear to be substantial but they can be seen as a matter of emphasis and approach rather than one of the substance. Or, as Hendry and Pettigrew (1990) put it, HRM can be perceived as a ‘perspective on personnel management and not personnel management

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