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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Essay on Management Capacity Report

Management Capacity Report on Human Resource Management
            There are questions a business organization is interested in: a) How is the organization doing? b) Why? and c) What should the organization be doing? All these questions relate to performance.  Every organization considers it very important to be able to know whether it is achieving its goals and whether something can be done to improve its present status and performance.  When speaking of organizational performance and productivity, it is also important to speak of employee performance.  Every Human Resource Manager knows that there is a close relationship between organizational performance and employee performance.  What direction the organization will go will largely depend on the performance of its employees.  Thus, it is very important for the members of an organization to be able to perform well as they have a direct effect on organizational performance. 
            Performance, however, is a result or an output which is also directly influenced by the kind of inputs by the organization.  If the organization has no input, i.e., the organization does not provide adequate skills, knowledge and training to its members, then this will reflect in their performance.  On the other hand, if an organization invests in quality inputs, i.e., the organization provides adequate skills, knowledge and training then output is better which can be manifested in the members’ performance. 

Training Needs
Every member of an organization is expected to produce a desired output and to meet a particular standard set by the organization.  Meeting these expectations is a must in order to maintain the competitiveness of every organization.  There are times however when the current performance level of a particular employee is short of the expected performance level.  It is in these times when training need arise. 
There are several reasons why employees do not perform well in the business organization.  People do not perform well because: a) they do not know what to do, b) when and where to do it; c) how to do it and d) why they should do it.  All these point to the training as the solution
            Training needs are determined by conducting performance appraisals.  Measuring a person’s performance is an aspect of Human Resource Management which is known as Performance Management.   It is defined as the “systematic process by which an agency involves its employees, as individuals and members of a group, in improving organizational effectiveness in the accomplishment of agency mission and goals.” (“Performance Management”)  It involves the alignment of mission and vision of the organization with the performance of its member.  It shows how important member performance is in relation to achieving corporate goals.  
The concept of Performance Management can best be explained using two different paradigms – the organizational level and the individual level.  At the organizational level, it involves identifying and determining the mission, vision, goals and values of the organization.  Performance Management at the organizational level means the development and formulation of goals and targets which would serve as a standard that will measure employee performance.  It also serves as a standard for determining the direction that the company is going and strategies that should be done to make the company go into the right direction. 
At the individual level, performance management involves the assignment of tasks and responsibilities to every employee.  It also involves the determination of expectations and the desired output from the member. Leveling of expectations is necessary so that the employees may be aware of what the organization expects from them.  Performance Management also involves the measuring of member performance and the giving of feedback to the members for them to be informed on whether they are measuring up to company expectations.    Once this is made, the company usually gives appropriate rewards for a job well done or proper training and development to those who need it.  
One of the goals of Performance Management is to improve and develop a member’s performance in the organization. (Robert Bacal, Management File - What is The Point Of Performance Appraisal)  Performance Management seeks to create that positive environment by which both the member and the organization may be able to change and grow as one.  Performance Management is important insofar as the management is concerned because of the following:  a) it enables the members to determine whether they are making progress on their tasks; b) it identifies those members who are not making satisfactory performance on the job and who need assistance in the form of training and development and c) it determines which among the members are performing satisfactorily.  Performance Management is likewise important to the members in the sense that it gives the employee the chance to determine what is expected of him and whether he is at par with the expectations of his superior officer. 

Training Needs in Baltimore Police Department
            No police department tolerates any act of violence or unnecessary use of force among its members.  Negligence and misconduct are prohibited especially among police officers who occupy a position of authority in the community.  As agents of the law, they are expected to act with highest standard of behavior.  As people look up to them, their actions must also be worthy of emulation and respect. 
The same is true for the Baltimore Police Department.  As Mayor Sheila Dixon has stated, “we have no higher duty than to protect everyone in Baltimore City from harm.  The Mayor together with the Baltimore Police Department has also implemented the public safety plan to make their mission a reality.  These are: a) Building partnerships with federal and state law enforcement experts, b) engaging citizens in the safety of their communities and strengthening the relationship with between police officers and citizens, c) aggressively targeting our most violent offenders, and d) getting illegal guns out of our city.

Past Incidences Indicating Lack of Skills
            The level of performance by the Baltimore Police Department will determine whether there is a training need among its members.     In 2007, Damon D. Smith, a 27 year old, jumped from the 10th Floor of a window at the Mercy Hospital while he was in custody of Baltimore Police (Justin Fenton, 2008, p.1). Newspaper reports say that Damon D. Smith was initially arrested by police officers on October 26, 2007, after he crashed his vehicle on Interstate 795.  At the time of his arrest, he had self-inflicted wounds and outstanding warrants as he was a suspect in the killing of his former girlfriend.  Despite the fact that he was suicidal, Baltimore Police Department failed to observe due diligence when they loosened his restraint when he went to the bathroom.  As a result, Smith was able to free himself and jump from the 10th Floor of the hospital leading to his death.  A perusal of the facts of this case will reveal that there was gross negligence on the part of the police officers in failing to take the proper precaution and in failing to protect their prisoners. 
            In March 2007, 7-year old Gerard Mungo Jr. filed a $40 Million personal injury lawsuit against the Baltimore Police Department.  According to newspaper reports, Gerard Mungo was sitting on a motorized dirt bike parked near his home when the Baltimore police officer allegedly “maliciously and unreasonably” grabbed Gerard by his shirt collar and dragged him off the bike.  The police officers said that dirt bikes are illegal in Baltimore.  The boy was subsequently handcuffed, photographed and fingerprinted simply because he sat on a dirt bike on a sidewalk.
In another case of excessive use of force, Baltimore Police Officer Salvatore Rivieri was suspended in February 2008 after he was caught on video manhandling a 14 year old teenager.  Newspaper reports say that the unfortunate event happened at the Inner harbor where Eric Bush and his friends were skateboarding.  Police Officer Rivieri approached the teenager telling them to stop skateboarding since it was illegal at the Inner Harbor.  The video caught by Eric Bush’s friend, which was subsequently uploaded in, shows Officer Rivieri grabbing Bush’s skateboard and throwing him to the ground.  
            In the first incident, the police officer knew that the suspect had a previous history of inflicting injuries on his own and that he was suspected of having previously hurt other people.  They also knew that the suspect should be restrained for him not to become a danger to himself and to other people. Yet nothing was done by the two police officers on duty at the time of the occurrence of the incident to prevent him from doing violence against himself.  It can be said that the police officers were negligent and they failed to take the necessary precaution of avoiding the injury.  This is an indication that there is a training need on the part of the police officers.
            In the second incident, the police officers who arrested Gerard Mungo was totally oblivious to the fact that the person they are arresting is a child.  While it may be true that dirt bikes are illegal in Baltimore, the same does not justify the force employed against the 7 year old child.  The police officers should have considered the age of the child and the infraction he committed.  This is another incident of excessive use of force by a Baltimore Police Department. 
In the third incident, the police officer did not have to use violence against the teenager.  The 14 year old boy does not pose any danger to the police officer or to other people.  The boy was not armed nor did he show any violent behavior against the police officer.  The situation that had happened between the police officer and the teenager could have been avoided if the police officer merely calmly advised the teenagers to leave the Inner Harbor.  Violence should not be resorted.  The police officer failed to properly assess the situation.  He did not comprehend that this is a situation which does not require him to use unnecessary force.  While the teenagers may have been defiant, the degree of force employed was uncalled for and unnecessary taking into account the situation. 

Recruitment Needs of Baltimore Police Department
            Another important criterion is that an organization must have a skilled workforce.  Recruitment is essential in maintaining a robust organization as it ensures that there is a steady supply of skilled and efficient police officers in the department.  There are many ways by which the police department can obtain efficient and skilled workforce.  One is by active recruitment which the department is currently doing as it has posted in its website that they are recruiting new officers.  Baltimore Police has identified that it will need around 240 to 300 new police recruits.  They also included in the announcement their offer for those interested in joining the department which are, among others, signing bonus, good pay, retirement package and condensed training period.  Compared to the other police departments, the offer is relatively competitive and can attract skilled and efficient police officers.   
            Moreover, the organization conducts a regular analysis of its present and future needs.  They ensure that they do not only have adequate supply of police officers but these officers have the skills necessary to perform effectively.  Recently, the Baltimore Police Department has announced that despite its active campaign to look for new recruits, they have been having difficulty reaching its target number of new recruits as only 7% of its applicants meet all the requirements of a Baltimore Police officer.  Most of the potential applicants have failed to meet the minimum requirements under the basic Maryland Police training Commission and so their applications have been denied. 

             These three incidences reveal that some of the police officers of the Baltimore Police Department do not know what level of force to apply to different situations.  This is a strong indication that the police officers do not have the skills and knowledge in the proper performance of their job.  While it is true that there are situations when the police officers should employ force to protect themselves or to enforce law and order, none of these incidences indicate that the use of force was justified.  In the first incident, they should have closely monitored the suspect as they already knew that he had previous suicidal acts.  In the second incident, the person involved was a child who should not have been treated like a common criminal by the police officers.  In the third incident, no violence is necessary in simply telling a teenager that skateboarding in a particular location is illegal.
            The Baltimore Police Department however has been doing well in other criteria such as the analysis of present and future human resource needs and the recruitment of skilled and efficient workforce. 


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