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Corporate Social Responsibility and HR Connection Case Study

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Updated: Jun 13th, 2020

Introduction

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has often been left to the marketing department. However, the human resource department has a very active role to play in CSR. Cooke (2011) explains that many managers are of the opinion that HR managers should not be involved in activities that touch on leadership. However, there are scholars who have linked the two concepts. This essay analyses the relationship between human resources and corporate social responsibility. In addition, it highlights the importance of CSR to a company.

The Role of Culture

One of the issues that link human resources with corporate social responsibility is culture. Organizational culture determines whether the company will be successful or not. The culture is created and spread by people, and the human resource department is responsible for the people who work for the company. Grimshaw, Rubery, and Almond (2011) argue that HR can determine the organizational culture by hiring the right people for the company. This can be done by aligning the personalities of the employees with the culture of the company (Shen 2011). For example, if the company likes the 8 AM to 5 PM culture, then all employees should agree with this culture. Any employee who describes himself or herself as a nocturnal will not fit in the company.

Guest and Woodrow (2012) also add that leadership links HR with CSR. HR chooses people for every job position in the company. If there is a vacancy in the company, then it is up to HR to determine the best candidate for the job. Kotler and Keller (2009) assert that HR affects leadership through the selection of leaders. CSR, on the other hand, affects leadership. Gond et al. (2014) explain that CSR builds on the public image; the way people look at the company. In turn, the public image reflects on the leadership of the company. If the image is good, then people will believe that the leaders in the company are good. In fact, potential employees will want to join a company that is perceived to have good leadership.

Strategic Goals and CSR

A third factor that can be cited is the company’s strategic goals. Both CSR and HR affect the strategic goals set by the company. Caldwell et al. (2011) reveal that HR is regularly consulted in the drafting of strategic goals. These are guidelines that allow the workers to work in a particular direction, which fulfills the stakeholder’s desires. In the same breath, CSR allows the company to achieve its goals (Yang, Colvin & Wong 2013).

At this juncture, it is important to highlight the importance of corporate social responsibility. The biggest advantage is that CSR creates a magnificent public image for the company. This image is then used to lure clients and more business, thereby adding more profits for the company. In addition, CSR allows the company to interact freely with the public. Thus, it can fit the expectations of the customers into the company’s strategic plan.

Conclusion

In conclusion, HR and CSR have a strong connection. There are scholars who argue that HR should not be involved in detailed corporate activities. However, it is almost impossible to separate the two. Three major components link the two concepts. These are leadership, strategic goals, and culture. Whereas the HR chooses leaders, CSR ensures that the leaders stay on top. On the other hand, CSR helps the company realize its strategic goals while HR facilitates the realization of the set goals. Lastly, CSR develops the culture for the public, whereas HR determines the organizational culture.

Reference List

Caldwell, C, Truong, DX, Linh PT, & Tuan A, 2011, ‘Strategic human resource management as ethical stewardship,’ Journal of Business Ethics, vol. 98, pp. 171–182. Web.

Cooke, FL 2011, ‘Social responsibility, sustainability and diversity of human resources’, In AW Harzing & AH Pinnington (Eds.), International human resources management, 3rd ed., Sage, London. Web.

Gond, J, Igalens, J, Swaen, V, & El Akremi, A 2011, ‘The human resources contribution to responsible leadership: An exploration of the CSR–HR interface’ Journal of Bussiness Ethics, vol. 98, pp. 115–132. Web.

Grimshaw, D, Rubery, J, & Almond, P, 2011, ‘Multinational companies and the host country environment’, In: AW Harzing & AH Pinnington (Eds.), International human resources management, 3rd ed., Sage, London. Web.

Guest, D. E, & Woodrow, C, 2012, ‘Exploring the boundaries of human resource managers’ responsibilities’, Journal of Bus Ethics, vol. 111, pp. 109–119. Web.

Kotler, P, & Keller, KL 2009, A framework for marketing management (4th ed.), Prentice Hall, New York, NY. Web.

Shen, J 2011, ‘Developing the concept of socially responsible international human resource management’, The International Journal of Human Resource Management, vol. 22, no. 6, pp. 1351–1363. Web.

Yang, N, Colvin, C, & Wong, Y 2013, ‘Navigating corporate social responsibility components and strategic options: the IHR perspective,’ Academy of Strategic Management Journal, vol. 12, no 1, pp. 39–56. Web.

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