Letter: Happy employees are good business

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The Independent Online
Sir: You appear to be running a vendetta against personnel directors and specialists (View from City Road, 12 May). That might result from your own perceived excellence as an employer; but when you base it on such weak evidence as that produced by the centre for economic performance at the London School of Economics, your readers deserve better.

The report's central assertion - that management/employee relations are in some unmeasured way worse in workplaces employing a personnel specialist - does not stand up to scrutiny. It appears from the report that 93 per cent of respondents in such workplaces rate management/employee relations as 'good to very good'. In the others, they report a slightly higher respondent rating at the 'very good' end of the scale. That may be the arithmetic of what they counted, but it is misleading and downright wrong to surmise that personnel specialists worsen employee relations.

Many highly respected academic studies reinforce what practical managers in many organisations know: that those who integrate their strategies for the business with their planning and practice in the development and management of people are much more likely to succeed than those who do not.

Yours faithfully,

GEOFF ARMSTRONG

Director General

Institute of Personnel

Management

London, SW19

16 May

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