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Human Resource Management in Public Service

Human Resource Management in Public Service
Paradoxes, Processes, and Problems

Sixth Edition
Additional resources:

June 2019 | 584 pages | CQ Press

Recognizing the inherent tensions and contradictions that result from managing people in organizations, Human Resource Management in Public Service: Paradoxes, Processes, and Problems offers provocative and thorough coverage of the complex issues of management in the public sector. Continuing the award-winning tradition of previous editions, this Sixth Edition helps students to understand complex managerial puzzles and explores the stages of the employment process, including recruitment, selection, training, legal rights and responsibilities, compensation, and appraisal. Grounded in real public service experiences, the book emphasizes hands-on skill building and problem solving. 

New to the Sixth Edition:

  • Ethics case studies have been added to all the chapters, enabling students to learn about a variety of ethical situations that come up in management.  
  • Updated and consolidated recruiting strategies offer students a window into the most current methods used in the recruitment process and provide insight into the job seeker’s perspective.  
  • New examples from a broad range of local, state, federal, and international settings enable students to apply key concepts to common management issues.
Managing People  
The Paradox Puzzle  
Pathways Through Paradoxes: Carpe Diem  
Key Terms  
Part I. Context and Challenges
1. The Public Service Heritage: People, Process, and Purpose
A Day in the Life of Maria Hernandez  
Some Challenges in Getting and Managing the Right People  
Some Basic Definitions  
The Structure and Role of Human Resource Departments  
Historical and Institutional Context  
Reforming Government in the Clinton, Bush, Obama, and Trump Years  
Human Resource Management Principles  
Ethics and Moral Management  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
2.. Legal Rights and Responsibilities: Laws Governing the Workplace
The Foundations of Employment Law  
The Employment Relationship  
Balancing Employer, Employee, and Societal Interests  
Privacy Issues  
Pre-employment Investigations: Truth, Personality, Health, Credit, and Criminal Records  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Part II. Processes and Skills: From Start to Finish
3. Recruitment: From Passive Posting to Social Media Networking
Factors in Recruitment: Employer and Applicant Perspectives  
Recruitment Steps  
Planning and Approval  
Position Announcements  
Recruitment Strategies  
Enhancing Recruitment Prospects: The Seeker’s Perspective  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
4. Selection: From Civil Service Commissions to Decentralized Decision Making
The Bases and Origin of Selection  
Criteria in Selecting Selection Tests  
Selection: Four Screening Phases  
Initial Reviewing and Testing  
Interviewing and Reference Checks: Narrowing the Pool  
General Considerations for Those Conducting Interviews  
Choosing and Negotiation  
Post-offer and Hiring Issues  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix: The Professional Commitment Statement for Job Seekers  
5. Position Management: Judicious Plan or Jigsaw Puzzle?
Three Types of Personnel Strategies  
The Origins of Position Classification and Management  
Job Design and Job Analysis  
Job and Position Descriptions  
From Jobs to Job Systems  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
6. Employee Motivation: Possible, Probable, or Impossible?
Pull, Push, or Drive?  
Human Resource Management and the Climate for Motivation  
Tools of Motivation  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
7. Compensation: Vital, Visible, and Vicious
Equity and Expectancy Theory  
Pay Determination  
The Perennial Pay Debate  
Labor Market Forces: External Competition  
Job Content: Internal Consistency  
Individual Considerations: Fairness and Individual Contributions  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix: Compensation for Graduate Degrees in Public Affairs and Administration  
8. Employee-Friendly Policies: Fashionable, Flexible, and Fickle
Family/Work Programs  
Health, Safety, and Wellness Programs  
Flexible Work Arrangements  
Traditional Benefits: Not-So-Employee-Friendly Trends  
Implementation, Assessment, and Evaluation  
Avoiding and Coping With Hostility at Work  
Best Places to Work  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix A: Questions for Employees and Employers Regarding Telecommuting Arrangements  
Appendix B: Some Questions to Answer When Considering Implementation of Employee-Friendly Policies  
Appendix C: Family-Friendly Policies  
9. Training and Development: Exploring New Frontiers
General Principles of Learning  
Training Strategies  
Organizational Training and Development  
Strategic T&D Integration  
Application: Ethics Training  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix: Needs Assessment and Evaluation for Training  
10. Appraisal: A Process in Search of a Technique
Appraisal Systems  
Rating Errors: The Underbelly of Appraisals  
Improving the Process  
Disciplinary Systems  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix: Corrective Actions  
11. Unions and the Government: Protectors, Partners, and Punishers
Background: Context and Evolution of Employee Relations  
Differing Views of Unions  
Paradoxes and Contradictions  
Trends and Variations  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix A: Tips for Managers When Dealing with Unions  
Appendix B: Tips for Unions When Dealing with Managers  
12. Collective Bargaining: Structures, Strategies, and Skills
Structure, Representation, and Collective Bargaining  
Strategies and Skills  
Bargaining-Related Reforms  
Hostility Versus Harmony  
Summary and Conclusion  
Key Terms  
Appendix A: Bargaining Checklist and Observation Sheet  
Appendix B: Mock Disciplinary Appeal Board Hearing  
Conclusion: The Future as Opportunity, Not Destiny
New Technologies, Human Competencies, Failures, and Reforms  
Taking Responsibility for Paradoxes  
Public Service as a Calling  
The Years Ahead  
Envoi: Dream While Awake  
About the Authors


Instructor Resource Site

Password-protected Instructor Resources include the following:      

  • An author-created Study Questions, contain short answer and essay questions for each chapter. 
  • Editable, chapter-specific Microsoft® PowerPoint® slides offer you complete flexibility in easily creating a multimedia presentation for your course.

“Highly recommended, comprehensive overview of HR, accessible to read and understand for students.”

Philip F. LaPorta
State University of New York

 “It’s a well-organized, thorough text book. I would recommend it for use.”

Karla M. Pope
William Carey University

“[Human Resource Management in Public Service] is an excellent comprehensive choice for graduate students who require a challenging and provocative read.”

John Sample
Florida State University

“I have taught the course for over 30 years and this is the best book on the market today.” 

Peter J. Bergerson
Florida Gulf Coast University

Human Resource Management in Public Service addresses public personnel management issue from a public manager’s perspective, not from a personnel specialist’s perspective.” 

Hugo Asencio
California State University, Dominguez Hills

Comprehensive exposition and analysis of public sector and non profit organizational human resources issues.

Dr Joseph Adler
Public Administration, Penn State Univ-Harrisburg
December 6, 2018

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1: The Public Service Heritage: People, Process, and Purpose

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ISBN: 9781506382333