Human resource management has replaced the traditional concept of labour welfare and personnel management. Human Resource Management (HRM) in its present form has evolved from a number of significant inter-related developments, which date back to the era of industrial revolution. Emergence of trade union movement led to the need of a person who could act as an effective link between the owners and workers. Thus, the concept of labour welfare officer came into being. His role was limited to the bare minimum welfare activities of employees. In fact, he was looked down by both the workers and the owners.
With the introduction of factory system, thousands of persons began to be employed under one roof. The job of hiring people for the organisation was given to one man, who later on was assigned the responsibility of recruitment, selection and placement of personnel. This led to the emergence of personnel officer in the first place and personnel manager, later on.
Human relations approach recognises human factor as the most imprtant instrument of success in an organisation. Fast changing technological developments, however, necessitated new skill development and training of employees. People came to be recognised as a valuable resource, which can be further developed. Increase in scope of the work led to replacement of personnel manager with human resource manager.
You may have observed that all these aspects are concerned with the human element in industry as distinct from the mechanical side of the enterprise. Thus, staffing is an inherent part of human resource management as it is the practice of finding, evaluating and establishing a working relationship with people, for a purpose.
It is important to understand that staffing is both a function of management just like planning, organising, directing, and controlling as well as a distinct functional area of management just as marketing management and financial management. Staffing, is therefore, referred to as both a line as well as a staff activity i.e., an essential function of the manager as well as an advisory role played by the Human Resource Department