What Differentiates Human Resource Management From Personnel Management?

By Kiran Shetty | July 20, 2021

What makes up an organization? When the employer, together with his employees works alongside each other to accomplish a common objective, makes up an organization. This common motive can only be achieved when everyone working in the company is lead productively and effectively. Accomplishing the desired goals is crucial to personnel. According to an SHRM report, 89% admitted that they were positive that they may accomplish goals, and 86% resolved to do so. Two primary strategies are utilized by employers to manage the ones operating under them in their company. They are personnel management and human resource management.

In earlier days, Human Resource Management (HRM) wasn’t widespread. So the recruiting and payroll of the workers those days were taken care of by the approach of Personnel Management (PM). In popular terms, PM is referred to as Traditional Personnel Management. In modern days, the HR Management approach has emerged as an updated version of Traditional Personnel Management.

Personnel Management (PM)

PM is a traditional approach, utilized in older organizations to indicate the several tasks associated with the workforce. It includes everything from payroll and staffing to contractual responsibilities and different administrative responsibilities. This indicates that PM consists of all the duties concerning the management of the workforce. PM is an administrative function. The most important duty of a personnel supervisor is to ensure that all of the personnel’s necessities are realized. PM makes certain that every employee is working on the task assigned to them. This method of handling personnel emphasizes following the policies and regulations of the company.

Human Resource Management (HRM)

HRM is the exclusive and specially formulated department of management. It is involved in matters of the acquisition, maintenance, development, usage, and organization of workers. HRM coordinates in a way such that every employee may deliver quality performance to the enterprise. It cites a systematically operating strategy for the human resource to fulfill their requirements and demands, selection, training, reimbursement, and performance evaluation. In a nutshell, it is making use of the human assets of a company, most effectively and productively.HRM makes up a wide spectrum of obligations that consist of employment, recruiting process, training and development, employee services, payroll, business relations, health, working conditions, safety, appraisal and evaluations, and more.

Personnel Management Vs Human Resource Management

Here are a few briefly discussed points on the fundamental variations between Personnel Management and Human Resource Management:

  • Definition – The management branch handling the worker’s staff in the organization is referred to as Personnel Management. The department of management, that specializes in the effective utilization of the organization’s manpower is referred to as Human Resource Management.
  • Nature – The nature of Personnel management can be referred to as a routine function, while human resource management is a strategic one.
  • Manpower Function – Employees are treated as equipment or machines in Personnel Management. Whereas Human Resource Management treats the workforce as a crucial asset of the company. Treating employees at all tiers with honor is rated as “very crucial” to 67% of personnel, according to a survey. This is even more than compensation rated by 63% of personnel as very crucial.
  • Decision-Making Process – The decision-making process is sluggish in Personnel Management. However, it is relatively rapid in Human Resource Management.
  • Type of Initiatives – There’s a piecemeal distribution of initiatives in personnel management. In the case of HRM, there is an integrated distribution of initiatives.
  • Job Design – In Personnel Management, the division of labor forms the basis of job design. Whereas Human Resource Management utilizes personnel by dividing them into suitable teams or groups for carrying out any task. A survey of personnel showed that out of those who quit their job shortly after being hired, 23% stated that if they had obtained clearer direction of their function and duties, it might have made a difference in their decision.
  • Labor Management – The negotiations in the case of PM are primarily based on collective bargaining with the union leader. Contrarily, there’s no requirement for collective bargaining in the case of HRM, as there are individual contracts for every worker.
  • Remuneration – In PM, the payroll depends upon the job evaluation of the workers. Whereas in HRM, the idea of payroll entirely relies upon performance evaluation.
  • Stresses Upon – In PM, the stress is on abiding by regulations and guidelines of the organization. On the contrary, human HRM stresses integrating the abilities and knowledge of the workforce. Employees are more engaged if they are given opportunities to apply their skills and capabilities. Overall worker satisfaction with those opportunities is 77%.
  • Points on Focus – Personnel management generally focuses on normal workforce activities, including worker hiring, remunerating, training, and harmony. Conversely, human resource management focuses on treating personnel as valuable assets, that are to be valued, effectively utilized, and preserved.


Human Resource Management is a newer version of Personnel Management with some addendum. This way the limitations of the Personnel Management have been eliminated. It is also important to keep in mind that in today’s generation where every individual knows their rights, it is quite hard to retain and preserve efficient employees for a long time. Not any company can casually treat them as tools or machines. Therefore, HRM has been developed to unite the company with its personnel for the accomplishment of a common goal.