HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
Location of Institution
Human Resource Management System
Section 1: Topic and Research Question Restatement
Human Resource Management System (HRMS) is considered a major breakthrough in the human resource sector. The software entails a centralized program that generally overlooks the management of all issues pertaining to employees. Since its creation, many companies in different countries have adopted its use, and according to research, many have commended its ability to considerably reduce loads of paperwork and its time-saving ability. Moreover, HRMS is ever advancing to better standards that can perform more employee managerial tasks (Aggarwal and Kapoor 2012, p.5). The various tasks the software can perform include; managing employees’ data such as date of admission into an organization, salary, number of working hours, date of birth, and promotions; and ensuring the effective security of the firm’s information (Aggarwal and Kapoor 2012, p.4). Nevertheless, like much other software, HRMS have a weakness in terms of confidentiality. Despite the fact that all the employees’ data and vital information about the company is stored in the software, its security is not 100% guaranteed. It has loopholes that may be used by the wrong people to access the information stored, therefore running the risk of fundamental information beings in the possession of harmful hands. Hence the research aims to establish the possibility of a breach of confidentiality and privacy of employees’ and the potential consequences of the occurrence of any breach.
An exploratory qualitative research technique will be used in the investigation of a possibility of breach of employees’ privacy via the Human Resource Information System. The qualitative research approach is selected due to the various advantages it presents that will be highly beneficial in the research of the study topic. The techniques used in the qualitative approach will offer the researcher the opportunity to reduce biased data since I will be able to study the characteristics of the data source and hence be able to judge the transparency of the information (Lewis 2015, p.475). During interviews, I will be able to build a personal relationship with the participants hence establishing trust ((Taylor, Bogdan, and DeVault 2015, p.99). Additionally, qualitative research provides flexibility in terms of time the research will be conducted and the options to shift to other methods in case it does not work out (Lewis 2015, p.475). Moreover, information gathered can be from previous works hence presents a window for complexity and clarity while analyzing data.
For the collection of data, a case study will be adopted since it presents the researcher with a platform to understand the possible occurrence of the research topic in real life (George 2019, p.192). I will be able to get a broader comprehension of why what and how the overall phenomena work. Moreover, a case study will aid in acquiring in-depth and realistic extensive information through a thorough inquiry from the researched.
The research shall be conducted at Deloitte Company in Australia. The company is estimated to comprise of about 3200 employees and is located in Grosvenor Place, George Street in Sydney (Deloitte 2017). Owing to the large labour force, there exists the possibility to choose an essential sample size that will be fundamental in acquiring precision in the data collected. Furthermore, Deloitte Company is a good research setting since it has adopted the use of HRMS system in managing all the employees’ data. The specific type of HRMS system the company use is the payroll, time and labour management program (Deloitte 2017). Consequently, it stores vital information about the employees that could be scandalous if in possession of the wrong people. The research will be carried out in the human resource department where the participants will be comfortable (Taylor, Bogdan, and DeVault 2015, p.70). Moreover, the rooms are quiet and hence there will be a minimal disturbance. Similarly, there will be no possibility for the interviews to be overheard by other people thereby providing the interviewees with the environment to be open to provide honest information (Bryman and Bell 2015, p.412). Furthermore, I have a close friend working at Deloitte company in the HR department making it easier to get research access.
The research targets to include only employees that have over two years working experience in Deloitte Company since they have the relevant needed knowledge of the effects of the Human Resource Management System. Also, the target is aimed mainly towards human resource personnel as they have the first-hand information on the way the HRMS program works. However, the research will also target a small number of other employees in another sector since it is their information stored in the system, therefore, are at risk of privacy breach.
For the research, a non-probability sampling technique will be adopted since it is the best way to gather data for exploratory qualitative research. Consequently, it will aid the researcher in obtaining a rich theoretical framework that is fundamental in qualitative research (Palinkas et al. 2015, p.5341). The specific type of not probability sampling the research will employ is purposive sampling where the researcher will choose samples based on already known knowledge about the company (Palinkas et al. 2015, p.535). Based on the knowledge of the experience and working position of employees, the researcher will be able to choose those who present the best possibility of getting precise and adequate information about the research topic. Furthermore, expert purposive sampling will be used to select employees in the HR department and those with needed experience outside the human resource sector.
Qualitative research does not limit the number of participants a researcher can use (Boddy 2016, p.427). On the contrary, the qualitative approach requires a researcher to use a sample that will attain saturation of information (Boddy 2016, p.429). Therefore, the sample size to be used will be of 50-80 people, 50 from the HR department and 30 from other departments. The size will aid in attaining adequate data needed for the qualitative research.
The Procedure of Data Collection
An in-depth interview is an important qualitative data collection technique that entails face-to-face interaction between the researcher and the researched (Alshenqeeti 2014, p.39). The research will schedule in-depth interviews with the sample size on the organization’s premises, specifically an office in the human resource department. The method is highly beneficial to the research due to its explorative nature ((Morris 2015, p.115). It presents the advantage of the researcher being able to track changes in the interviewees’ behavior enhancing the ability to understand the information retrieved (Alshenqeeti 2014, p.39) Moreover, the researcher will be able to probe the researched for more information and ask many questions (Morris 2015, p.13). Additionally, Dictaphone can be used to record the entire interview for use in future
Legal and Administrative Procedures
Prior to an in-depth interview and generally the whole research, access permit shall be obtained from the Deloitte security department and also from the personnel management to allow entry into the premises and interview of employees. The researcher will adhere to all rules and regulations pertaining to the research to avoid any ethical misconduct (Flick 2014, p.109). The interviewees will also be contacted and permission asked to interview them.
Maximizing Response Rate
The maximum response rate for the research will be achieved by creating trust with the interviewees. A trusting relationship can be achieved by assuring the interviewees of the protection of identity by use of pseudonyms (Denscombe 2014, p.160). Moreover, the researcher will aim to create a friendly environment to ensure that the participants feel comfortable to share data. A friendly environment can be achieved by the researcher volunteering information about themselves in order to avoid the interaction seem like an interrogation (Flick 2014, p.51). Maximum response shall also be achieved by enabling transparency in the interview by notifying the interviewee of the full intention of the research (Denscombe 2014, p.162). The researcher will further provide incentives to the researched such as refreshment to further motivate them to respond to questions.
Secondary data is information that is retrieved from previous researches. Using archival data in the research will have important advantages for the qualitative research (Bryman and Bell 2015, p.391). Secondary data will shed more insight into the breaching of employees’ privacy via the use of the HRMS program (Merriam and Tisdell 2015, p.294). Moreover, it will aid in providing more clarity into the researched topic by comparing the finding to the previously researched work (Silverman 2016, p.65). Additionally, secondary sources are readily available thus will save time and expenditure (Merriam and Tisdell 2015, p.295). Secondary data will further help to make the primary data more specific by bridging the gaps in shortages in the obtained data.
The validity of the Research Design
To ensure that the data obtained is credible, the researcher will take several measures to enhance the validity and reliability of the research design. For instance, the researcher will take into account any individual biasness that may impact any information received (Ary et al. 2018, p.150). Also, the researcher will engage other researchers in the in-depth interview process and data analysis stage to minimize errors and biasness. Moreover, the researcher will compare all data obtained and maintain consistency during analysis (Silverman 2016, p72). The researcher will further acknowledge any form of prejudice while sampling to avoid obtaining influenced data (Ary et al. 2018, p.152). The use of more than one data collection technique will also help in obtaining credible findings.
Moderators guide are the general instructions of the systematic way to conduct interviews (Goodell, Stage, and Cooke 2016, p.6). The guide will help keep the interview questions consistent and also aid in keeping the questions on track. The research will use the best-recommended moderators guide for qualitative research (Goodell, Stage, and Cooke 2016, p.7). It will consist of the data, place, and time of the interview, the questions to be asked during the interview, and all other activities scheduled to occur during the interview.
The approach of Asking Questions
The interview will consist of systematic open-ended questions to ensure the maximum response rate. The following approach will be adopted.
- General questions will be asked prior to specific inquiries
- Behavior questions will precede attitude questions.
- Positive questions will be asked before negative questions.
- Aided questions will follow independent questions
- Respondents categories will precede interviewers’ categories.
The interview will comprise of eleven questions and follow up questions asked for not more than three hours. 10 minutes’ break will be granted halfway through the interview to enhance concentration.
|Questions||Time allocated estimates (minutes)|
|1||Welcoming introductory questions about the researcher. A brief explanation of the purpose and duration of the interview.||5|
|2||For how long have you worked with Deloitte?||5|
|3||What information about yourself have you given to the human resource personnel?||10|
|4||Do you consider the information the HR department has about you private?||15|
|5||What do you know about the HRMS system?||10|
|6||Has there ever been an incident that any one person used information in the HRMS system against you?||20|
|7||Describe the security measures of the HRMS program?||15|
|8||Do you know of any occurrence of the HRMS software being hacked?||10|
|9||If yes in question 8 above? What were the consequences of such an occurrence?||20|
|10||What measures do you think should be carried out to avoid any breach of employees’ privacy?
|11||Is there any more information you would like to add?||20|
The qualitative thematic content analysis will be used to identify patterns of responses in the recorded interview responses. Familiar data will be collected, coded and common themes identified for compiling a final result copy (Elo et al. 2014, p.216). The deductive approach will further be used to establish the similarity or difference between the findings and hypothesis (Elo et al. 2014, p.216). The steps involved in the qualitative thematic content analysis include:
- Familiarization with the theme, which entails reading and revising the themes
- General initial codes, which involve comprising data in a systematic and meaningful manner (Neuendorf 2016, p.216). The coding shrinks the data into small meaningful chunks.
- Theme searching in order to find specific themes that match the codes
- Review of themes, which entail the modification and development of preliminary themes to establish whether they make sense and are supported by the data (Neuendorf 2016, p.217).
- Definition of themes, where the themes are refined to identify the essence of each theme.
Section 2: Feasibility and Ethics
Feasibility refers to the attainability of the proposed research (O’Cathain et al. 2015, p.32). It takes into account the cost, time frame and required access for the success of the research. Owing to the personal relationship I have with the HR personnel, it will be possible and easier to obtain the necessary access to complete the research. Moreover, I will establish credibility by making sure I adhere to the policies of the organization and maintain the required degree of confidentiality (O’Cathain et al. 2015, p.32). Consequently, it will enhance the procedure of gaining access.
The research will be conducted in accordance with the principles of ethics in research. Therefore, the research will aim to avoid any harm to the participants. The possible harms to the participants include emotional and psychological harm, an invasion of participants’ privacy, stress, financial harm since the interview duration may not be counted as working time by the HR personnel (Holloway and Galvin 2016, p.53). The extent of harm may be reduced by avoiding any question that may cause discomfort (Holloway and Galvin 2016, p.561). Moreover, gaining permission from the participants to ask certain questions will help avoid invasion of privacy.
The knowledge obtained from the research will be beneficial in exposing any loopholes in the HRMS system that may lead to the breaching of employees’ privacy. Therefore, organizations can correct the loopholes for ethical use of the software. Moreover, the finding will serve as motivation to other researchers to undertake more study in the field and thereby invent more ways of evading the possibility of employees’ privacy invasion.
Section 3: Strengths and Limitation of Proposed Study
- The research will be conducted in a real-life setting hence will provide real results.
- Methods of data collection reduce the risk of biased information. It is easier to track interviewees’ reaction and thus easier to judge honesty degree.
- The interviewers will be able to ask to follow up questions and thus obtain saturation of information.
- Interviews are highly insightful, consequently presenting a range of information that can be obtained easily.
- The sample size is not limited and since the research is done locally using simple research tools, it is cost effective.
Limitations of the Study
- In-depth interviews consume a lot of time.
- Ethical restrictions may hinder the collection of some important information.
- There may be delayed analysis of data due to the possible wide extent of variation in responses.
- Participants may expect costly incentives which may make the study more expensive.
- There exists the possibility of imprecise findings if the participants provide incorrect information either deliberately or unknowingly.
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