Essay/Plan Please select one topic.
TOPIC 1: Critically analyse whether it is part of a healthcare organisation’s role to address social issues, such as affirmative action, for example. In your analysis, you should also address the following concepts:
Equal employment opportunity
TOPIC 2: Evaluate how well a healthcare organisation with which you are familiar, manages both its human capital and its social capital. From a strategic HR perspective outline how you, as the health administrator, would improve management of both types of capital.
TOPIC 3: Develop an ethically-based workforce management plan that incorporates an employee well-being and retention strategy, and the concept of corporate social responsibility. Justify the workforce strategies that are incorporated in your plan.
Whichever topic you choose, you will need to access and reference at least ten (10 peer-reviewed journal articles, as well as textbook/s to help you deepen and expand your reflections for this assessment task.
The healthcare organizations have the primary role of addressing social issues in the society such as affirmative action. Human resource management in the healthcare setting has grown in the recent decades and many healthcare organizations are expected to ensure that their practices promote the workplace inclusivity. Even the richest multiethnic societies have in many instances failed to guarantee a fair distribution of health, as well as healthcare amongst individuals with diverse racial along with ethnic backgrounds, especially among healthcare professionals (Cowlishaw, 2004). Increasing the racial, as well as the ethnic diversity of the current healthcare employees is necessary for the sufficient proviso of culturally competent care to the Australia’s mushrooming communities. Affirmative action promotes diversity in healthcare organizations that will assist develop the access to healthcare for the underrepresented, promote research in deserted fields of societal requirements, plus improve the pool of healthcare executives along with the policymakers to fulfil the needs of the different population. The growing disparities in the healthcare organizations have compelled organizations to reconsider their human resource strategies towards promoting inclusion to reduce cases of social injustices. The human resource too that has become important in eliminating these disparities has been through affirmative action. The healthcare professionals from the minority groups in Australia such as the Aboriginal and the Torres Islander populace are underrepresented in healthcare organizations. This demands that there is the need to promote affirmative action in healthcare organizations in Australia to address this growing disparity in the workforce in Australia. Therefore, addressing disparities in the human resources through affirmative action practices will result in appropriately recruiting more healthcare professionals from disadvantage backgrounds, especially the minorities in Australia (DeCieri & Kramar, 2005).
Therefore, there is the need for the healthcare organizations in Australia to address social issues, such as affirmative action to promote equity in the workplace. This is will play a primary role in promoting the diversity and inclusivity in the healthcare organizations that will promote access to care among diverse groups in Australia. The paper will critically investigate the role of healthcare organizations in addressing social issues, like affirmative action. This analysis will examine concepts of equal employment opportunity (EEO), workplace diversity; social responsibility; and employee wellbeing.
Australia is a country with rich diversity in terms of ethnicity that means that there exist huge disparities in the society, especially when it comes to human resources in the healthcare organizations. For many years, Australia has struggled to bridge the gap in the healthcare sector through initiatives, such as affirmative action to promote equality in the workplace. Recognizing the need for diversity in workplace in the healthcare sector becomes the role of healthcare organizations towards addressing social needs through programs such as affirmative action (Kalev, Dobbin & Kelly, 2006). Affirmative action is powerful instrument that ensures that there is equality in the healthcare organizations because it allows the inclusion of the minorities to become part of the workforce, including women. Thus, it should be the role of the healthcare organizations to develop affirmative action programs in the workplace that will ensure that the excluded population from taking part in the workforce (Sharma, 2016). These organizations should be guided by the fact that affirmative action is an important tool that will enable them to generate equality of opportunity in addition to outcome of minorities plus women in Australia and for the advantage of all people in Australia, to encourage diversity via unbiased representation of minorities in the workplace in the healthcare sector (French & Strachan, 2004).
Affirmative action has been designed to eliminate discrimination based on ethnicity, race, religion, age, employment, and gender. Signatories to the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) seek to forbid plus eradicate racial discrimination in all its forms. As party to ICERD, Australia bans racial discrimination via Commonwealth, state, as well as territory regulations. This ICERD has been essential in promoting affirmative action towards promoting employment opportunities for minority groups and women in Australia (Grobler, Moloi & Ayres, 2017). Therefore, the healthcare organizations should address social issues through programmes of affirmative action that is attained in practice through helping individual people from different ethnic and racial backgrounds to become more “successful”. Thus, it is the role of the healthcare organizations to develop affirmative actions in their workplace to provide more opportunities for professional development among health professionals from different ethnic and racial minorities, including women through promotion (Renu & Crowther, 2007). There is the need to ensure that women and minority groups are given more career growth opportunities to ensure that they assume management positions like other health professionals that are majority in Australia. Many Australians from the minorities and women have the challenge of doubt of their self-worth that makes them to shy away from taking up opportunities that will promote their professional growth (Marsden & Moriconi, 2009). The healthcare organizations should ensure that they eliminate this doubt of self-worth by ensuring that these healthcare workers are only places in positions in the workplace plus provided training of learning prospects where they have the necessary dedication, knowledge, capabilities, as well as qualifications (Brown, 2008).
In addition, the healthcare organizations should develop affirmative action policies that will enable the disadvantaged members of the society in the healthcare sector to benefit from the programs of the affirmative action. The affirmative action policies should be designed in a manner that will perceive the disadvantage individuals with multiple along with professional identities rather single entity. This implies the policies designed to address the social issues faced in the healthcare sector should see the minorities and women in terms of personal and professional identities. These policies should believe in and respect these health workers as people that have their own goals, principles, shortcomings, as well as foibles. Therefore, the affirmative action promoted by the healthcare organizations should endeavour to help the individuals to become more victorious, at growing variety, or at helping recipients who would put in to the objectives of the affirmative action (AA) themselves (Bairoh, 2007).
Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)
The EEO is an important concept for employers, especially in the healthcare sector in Australia towards creating policies that prohibit discrimination in workplace. EEO makes sure that everybody has equivalent access to accessible employment by making sure that places of work are open from harassment, as well as discrimination. This comprises making sure rules; policies, practices, as well as behaviours are just and do not unswervingly or indirectly discriminate illegally. The significance of recruiting along with retaining the most excellent talent or human resources with specific skills is the primary motivator of EEO policies (Crompton & Lyonette, 2011). The healthcare organizations have the role of promoting EEO policies by ensuring that the recruiting and retaining good staff and lowering staff turnover is at it bests. The healthcare organizations ensure that the recruited human resources are retained through different policies within the organizations to reduce staff turnover. The health organizations should ensure that all recruitment, selection, placement, as well as training decisions made by the management will be made on a non-discriminatory platform and will be founded only on individual’s job-related qualifications along with capabilities with respect to pertinent functions of the job (French & Strachan, 2004).
In addition, the healthcare organizations through the EEO ensures that the eliminate and guarantee the deficiency of discrimination in employment process in all grounds listed under the Equal Opportunity Act 1984 that include marital status, age, sex, pregnancy, family responsibility, gender, race, sexual orientation, religious or political conviction, disability among others. This means that the healthcare organizations should give all people equal opportunities in employed and not discriminate based on the above grounds. The healthcare organizations founded on the EEO policies must eliminate, as well as ensure that there is no sexual and racial harassment in employment whereby they should ensure that the EEO policies are functioning and that any form of harassment in employment should be reported to the necessary authorities for action (Gough, 2006).
The primary role of the healthcare organizations through affirmative action is through promoting workplace diversity. These organizations should ensure that the employees understand the factors, which are pushing healthcare facilities and care systems to become culturally competent. There is the need for health care organizations train the workforce to embrace cultural competence that is key towards developing a diverse workplace where the underrepresented individuals will be accommodated (Coombs & King, 2005). This will ensure that the trained staff in competence will accommodate all races in the workplace rather than discriminating them. These organizations should endeavour to encourage workplace multiplicity by undertaking action to eradicate and prohibit unfounded discrimination, direct or indirect, as well as harassment in the place of work. They should offer prospects to employees from all contexts to supply their ideas into programs, policies, along with services through team meetings on monthly basis. In addition, the staff should be provided with training in addition to education in line with diversity, harassment, as well as discrimination to boost diversity awareness and make sure that conformity with anti-discrimination along with industrial regulations (Storseth, 2006).
The recruitment and selection processes should be tailored to attract candidates from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. The recruitment and selection process should be designed to attract a huge pool of candidates from diverse backgrounds. Therefore, the health care organizations have the role of ensuring that the recruitment and selection process attracts a large pool of applicants that will ensure that the hiring process includes all the racial groups in Australia. This will ensure that the hired workers are from diverse groups and not from the majority groups (Bairoh, 2007). The process of recruitment should take into consideration the interests of the minority groups including women, where the recruitment criteria should include them to ensure that there is a diverse workplace in the healthcare organizations. In addition, the recruitment and selection process should be transparent, equitable, as well as procedurally fair (Sinclair, 2006).
The healthcare organizations have the role of promoting diversity in the workplace through developing supportive environment that meets the diverse needs of the workforce. The organizations should constantly consult with the workforce to enhance people management practices. They should also circulate flexible working arrangements policy on a yearly basis to make sure that workforce, both males and females are aware of, and have access to, flexible working conditions. The healthcare organizations should create a diverse workplace through offering in-house professional development sessions to share knowledge that will significantly boost diversity in the workplace (Letvak, 2005).
Social responsibility is a novel standard in healthcare governance that promotes the role of human resources in the workplace. It is the newest of the three aspects of the corporate social responsibility (CSR). Several organizations are becoming more and more active in addressing social issues that affects people directly or indirectly. Healthcare organizations have the role of ensuring that CSR is promoted by ensuring that the needs of the workforce are met. The management should development programs that are designed to promote the welfare of the employees as part of their social responsibility (Renouard, 2011). The healthcare organizations have the role of developing the broader expectations that its employees have for their superiority of their working life. This means that the organizations should treat all human resources uniformly and offer equal prospects for all the workers despite age, gender, race or religion. This will be essential because the employees will become satisfied since they are treated fairly by the organization. Thereof, the healthcare organizations have a role of ensuring that the employees are motivated at all time to boost their efficiency towards providing safe and high-quality care to the clients. The staff should be treated with the utmost respect and ensuring that they are provided with fair working conditions. In addition, the hiring practices must be fair and promoting the staff with non-discriminatory practice in the workplace. The healthcare organizations should develop social programs that should will ensure that the welfare of the staff are taken care to boost their morale within the organization. For instance, the organizations can offer different benefits and incentives that will further motivate the employees as part of its social responsibility (Nunes, Rego & Brand?o, 2010).
According to Jarman et al (2016), enhancing the health of workers is valuable, since healthy plus proficient employees is a benefit for the agency. The last decades has seen an increased attention in the health along with the health of the personnel. This has been partly propelled by the growing healthcare costs; however, is also because of the consciousness that the economy in developed world such as Australia has changed considerable. More so, the healthcare sector has seen the tremendous changes in the manner workforce’s needs should be me to boost their productivity. The healthy, safety, as well as welfare of the workforce is a vital element in HRM and in the relationships amid organizations and the staff. Employees are the greatest assets of the organization and the human resource managers have the role of ensuring that their wellbeing is taken care at all times (Jarman et al., 2016). Healthy employees are critical players towards their productivity that translates to that of the organization. Healthcare organizations have a role of creating favourable and safe working conditions that promote the health of the employees. Employees work best in workplaces that are safe and are free health hazards.
The healthcare organizations have the role of supporting employees through health promotion programs that is geared to promote their health towards promoting their productivity. The organizations should provide health strategies that will provide education to the employees of lifestyles that will promote their health and those that affect negatively their health. The education programs should include informing the employees regarding dangers of smoking plus assisting quitting, encouraging physical activity through providing sports infrastructure or course, as well as encouraging workers to exercise plus informing regarding a vigorous diet plus making it probable for health workers to have lunch at workplace (Miller, 2016). In addition, the health organizations should provide flexible working hours for the employees and remote work, including workforce in enhancing the working atmosphere plus permitting contribution in organizing the work. The program should be designed that it promotes mental health through offering stress management courses, as well as psychologist consultation (Gough, 2006).
The changing trends in the workplace have demanded the change in the strategies that will effective handle social issues, especially those concerning human resources. The growing social issues in the healthcare organizations demand the need to address them through approaches that are focused on human resources. Human resources play a leading role in the healthcare organizations where strategies should be tailored to promote their welfare. Diversity in the workplace has been found be crucial in the modern workplace, especially in the healthcare sector where there are dynamic changes occurring. The affirmative action should be promoted in the workplace where anti-discrimination practices should be promoted to guarantee a favourable working atmosphere for the workforce. Therefore, the recruitment and selection process should ensure that the right people are selected to work which is the primary role of healthcare organizations. Motivation is an important competent in the workplace among the employees through social responsibility and employee wellbeing. Motivated employees are motivated and work to attain the goals of the organization. It is clear that healthcare organizations have a crucial role in developing strategies that will address social issues through programs such as affirmative action and diversity.
Bairoh, S. (2007). Current Debates on Classifying Diversity Management: Review and a Proposal. SHS Intressebyra IB (oy Casa Security Ab), Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, Helsinki.
Brown, S. L., (2008) Diversity in the Workplace: A Study of Gender, Race, Age, and Salary Level. UMI Number: 3297416 by Pro Quest Information and Learning Company.
Coombs, A. & King, R. (2005). Workplace discrimination: experiences of practicing physicians. Journal of the National Medical Association. 97(3); 467–477.
Cowlishaw, G. (2004). Racial positioning, privilege and public debate. In: Moreton-Robinson A, editor. Whitening race: essays in social and cultural criticism. Canberra: Aboriginal Studies Press, 59-74.
DeCieri, H. & Kramar, R. (2005). Human resource management in Australia: Strategy, people, performance, (2nd ed.). McGraw-Hill, Macquarie Park, NSW.
French, E., & Strachan, G. (2004). Equal opportunity outcomes for women in the finance industry in Australia: evaluating the merit of EEO plans. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources. 45 (3); 314-32.
Gough, R. (2006). Employee relations, the labour market and work organisation. In Teicher, J., Holland P., and Gough R., (eds), Employee Relations Management: Australia in a Global Context. Pearson Education Australia: Sydney.
Grobler, K. C., Moloi, J & Ayres, L. (2017). Investigating the Management of Diversity in Former Model C Schools in Gauteng. Journal of Social Sciences, 53(1); 45-56.
Jarman, L., Martin, A., Venn, A., Otahal, P., Blizzard, L., Teale, B., & Sanderson, K. (2016). Workplace Health Promotion and Mental Health: Three-Year Findings from Partnering Healthy@Work. PloS one, 11(8), e0156791.
Kalev, A., Dobbin, F., & Kelly, E. (2006). Best practices or best guesses? Assessing the efficacy of corporate affirmative action and diversity policies. American Sociological Review, 71(5), 589–617.
Letvak, S. (2005). Health and safety of older nurses. Nursing Outlook. 53(2); 66–72.
Marsden, D. & Moriconi, S. (2009). The Value of Rude Health: Employees’ Wellbeing, Absence and Workplace Performance. CEP Discussion Paper 919. LSE: London, UK.
Miller, J. (2016). The well-being and productivity link: a significant opportunity for research- into-practice. Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance. 3(3); 289 – 311.
Nunes, R., Rego, G. & Brand?o, C. (2010). The rise of independent regulation in health care. Health Care Analysis. 15(3):169–177.
Renouard, C. (2011). Corporate social responsibility, utilitarianism, and the capabilities approach. Journal of Business Ethics.;98(6):85–97.
Renu, J. & Crowther, D. (2007). Corporate Social Responsibility and the Empowerment of Women: An Indian Perspective. Social Responsibility Journal, 3(4); 40 – 48.
Sharma, A. (2016). Managing diversity and equality in the workplace. Sharma, Cogent Business & Management. 3(1): 1212682.
Sinclair, A. (2006). Critical Diversity Management Practice in Australia: Romanced or Co- Opted?”in Alison M. Konrad, Pushkala Prasad and Judith K. Pringle (eds), Handbook of Workplace Diversity, Sage, London, 511-530.
Storseth, F. (2006). Changes at work and employee reactions: Organisational elements, job insecurity and short term stress as predictors for employee health and safety. Scandanavian Journal of Psychology. 47(6), 541–550.