Preparing to Manage Human Resources Course Reviews

Preparing to Manage Human Resources is a course offered on Coursera and authored by John W. Budd.

Preparing to Manage Human Resources Course Reviews
Preparing to Manage Human Resources Course Reviews

The course focuses on providing learners with the foundational knowledge and skills required to effectively manage human resources within an organization. The course covers a wide range of topics related to HR management, including recruitment, selection, performance management, compensation, employee relations, and legal considerations.

Throughout the course, learners are introduced to key concepts and theories in the field of HR management. They learn about the role of HR in supporting organizational goals and strategies, as well as the importance of aligning HR practices with the overall business objectives. The course delves into various HR functions, offering insights into how to attract, retain, and develop a talented workforce.

Key topics covered in the course include:

  1. HR Planning and Strategy: Understanding how HR planning aligns with business strategy and how HR can contribute to organizational success.

  2. Recruitment and Selection: Exploring effective methods for recruiting and selecting qualified candidates, considering factors such as job analysis, job descriptions, and interviews.

  3. Performance Management: Learning how to set performance expectations, conduct performance appraisals, provide feedback, and address performance issues.

  4. Compensation and Benefits: Understanding different compensation structures, benefits packages, and the role of incentives in motivating employees.

  5. Employee Relations: Exploring strategies for managing employee relations, promoting a positive work environment, and handling conflicts and grievances.

  6. Legal and Ethical Considerations: Gaining insights into the legal framework of HR management, including equal employment opportunity, labor laws, and ethical considerations.

  7. Diversity and Inclusion: Understanding the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace and how to create an inclusive environment.

The course incorporates case studies, real-world examples, and interactive activities to help learners apply the concepts they've learned. By the end of the course, participants should have a solid understanding of the fundamental principles of HR management and be better equipped to contribute effectively to their organization's HR practices.


Course Content:

One way or another, all employees are managed. But approaches to managing employees varying from employee-to-employee, job-to-job, manager-to-manager, organization-to-organization, and country-to-country. This course provides a foundation for developing your own approach to skillfully managing employees by illustrating alternative human resource management (HRM) strategies, introducing the importance of the legal context, and thinking about what motivates employees. This will then give you the factual and conceptual basis for developing specific, critical HRM skills in subsequent courses on hiring employees, managing performance, and rewarding employees. Don't know anything about HRM? That's OK! Leave this course with a new-found understanding of the range of options available for managing employees, a grasp of what makes workers tick, and the readiness to develop your own HRM skills.

The course Preparing to Manage Human Resources by John W. Budd on Coursera is divided into 4 modules. Here is a detailed breakdown of the modules:

Module 1: Alternative Approaches to Managing Human Resources

Welcome to the first week of this course! This section starts with an introduction to the course, and then we'll spend two lessons looking at alternative ways of managing human resources. After completing this module, you will be able to… • Explain why managing people is important. • Compare strategies for managing human resources. • Evaluate the fit between an organization’s HR strategy, a manager’s style(s), and the business environment. • Recommend strategies and styles for managing people in a particular situation.

What's included

12 videos  1 reading  4 quizzes

12 videosTotal 79 minutes
  • Video: Welcome to the HRM Specialization!6 minutesPreview module
  • Video: Embrace Your Role as a Manager (Course Introduction)7 minutes
  • Video: About the Instructor7 minutes
  • Video: Human Resources? That’s Not Very…4 minutes
  • Video: HR Basics5 minutes
  • Video: The Historical Evolution of HRM6 minutes
  • Video: Contrasting Organizational Strategies6 minutes
  • Video: Alternative Managerial Styles7 minutes
  • Video: External Influences on HR Strategies6 minutes
  • Video: The Importance of Organizational Strategy for HR Strategy6 minutes
  • Video: Speed Dating with HR Executives5 minutes
  • Video: Ideas Matter10 minutes
1 readingTotal 10 minutes
  • Will the Real HRM Please Stand Up10 minutes
4 quizzesTotal 120 minutes
  • Different Approaches to Managing People30 minutes
  • Course Readiness and Personal Goals30 minutes
  • Lesson 2 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 3 Practice Quiz30 minutes


Module 2: What Makes Employees Work? Money, Of Course!

Welcome to the second module of this course! We'll be focusing on the monetary reasons for working, and the lessons for managers that result. After completing this module, you will be able to… • Explain how money can motivate some workers. • Identify key managerial concerns if workers are self-interested and view work economically. • Develop strategies for addressing these key concerns using insights from economics.

What's included

10 videos  2 readings  4 quizzes

10 videosTotal 60 minutes
  • Video: Why Worry about Why Employees Work?2 minutesPreview module
  • Video: The Many Meanings of Work4 minutes
  • Video: Working for Money3 minutes
  • Video: The Daily Grind6 minutes
  • Video: Opportunism and Shirking6 minutes
  • Video: Incentives, Incentives, Incentives6 minutes
  • Video: Information Signals and Screens6 minutes
  • Video: The Commodification of Work5 minutes
  • Video: Labor Supply and Demand9 minutes
  • Video: Labor as More than a Commodity8 minutes
2 readingsTotal 20 minutes
  • HR Pros Ignore Economics at Their Own Peril10 minutes
  • Everything You Need to Know About the Employment Relationship in One Tweet10 minutes
4 quizzesTotal 120 minutes
  • Monetary Aspects of Work30 minutes
  • Lesson 1 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 2 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 3 Practice Quiz30 minutes


Module 3: What Makes Employees Work Revisited...Non-Monetary Motivations

Welcome to the third module of this course! We'll be focusing on the non-monetary reasons for working, and the lessons for managers that result. After completing this module, you will be able to… • Explain at least four different reasons that people work not related to money. • Identify key managerial concerns when workers work for different non-monetary reasons.• Develop strategies for addressing these key concerns using insights from psychology and sociology. • Justify the (in)application of insights from economics, psychology, and sociology in different situations.

What's included

9 videos  3 readings  4 quizzes

9 videosTotal 72 minutes
  • Video: Work is About More Than Money3 minutesPreview module
  • Video: Seeking Fulfillment from Work9 minutes
  • Video: Finding Identity in Work7 minutes
  • Video: Society Expects Me To Work7 minutes
  • Video: Caring for Others8 minutes
  • Video: Serving Others7 minutes
  • Video: Fairness and Justice8 minutes
  • Video: The Power and Limitations of Theories of Human Behavior10 minutes
  • Video: Work Complexities Mean Managing is Complex9 minutes
3 readingsTotal 25 minutes
  • Does 5 to 9 solve 9 to 5?5 minutes
  • The Metaphor of the Octopus Worker10 minutes
  • To Tip or Not to Tip, That is the (HR Policy) Question10 minutes
4 quizzesTotal 120 minutes
  • Non-Monetary Aspects of Work30 minutes
  • Lesson 1 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 2 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 3 Practice Quiz30 minutes


Module 4:  The People Manager as Part of a Complex System

Welcome to the fourth and final module of this course! In this section, we'll finish laying a foundation for managing human resources by looking at the constraints faced by managers, especially the legal environment. After completing this module, you will be able to… • Explain at least four constraints that influence how human resources are managed in a particular organization. • Compare the ways in which the law does and does not see employment as a typical contractual relationship. • Create a list of legal and illegal HRM practices in your country. • Judge when to use strategies for managing people that go beyond what the law requires.

What's included

16 videos  3 readings  5 quizzes

16 videosTotal 106 minutes
  • Video: The Goals of Every People Manager4 minutesPreview module
  • Video: You Can’t Always Do What You Want7 minutes
  • Video: Managing Unionized Employees4 minutes
  • Video: The Front Stage, Backstage Manager5 minutes
  • Video: The Employment-at-Will Baseline6 minutes
  • Video: But True Employment-at-Will Doesn't Exist8 minutes
  • Video: Disciplining and Dismissing Employees for Just Cause9 minutes
  • Video: It’s a Complicated Legal World for Managers6 minutes
  • Video: U.S. Employment Law9 minutes
  • Video: U.S. Labor Law9 minutes
  • Video: Employment and Labor Law: Non-U.S. Examples7 minutes
  • Video: Pay Attention to the Law, But Don't Be Paralyzed By It4 minutes
  • Course Re-cap: Putting it All Together5 minutes
  • Video: Interview with HR VP5 minutes
  • (Optional) Video: Careers in HRM7 minutes
  • Video: Looking Ahead to the Other Courses3 minutes
3 readingsTotal 30 minutes
  • Labor Relations 101 as Told Through the Musical Newsies10 minutes
  • Thank You Wells Fargo...For Reminding Us of the Nature of the Employment Relationship10 minutes
  • Reflection Exercise: Create a Mad Lib (optional, quick, and hopefully funny)10 minutes
5 quizzesTotal 150 minutes
  • Managing in a Complex System30 minutes
  • Lesson 1 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 2 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Lesson 3 Practice Quiz30 minutes
  • Looking Back30 minutes



As a former participant of the Preparing to Manage Human Resources course by John W. Budd on Coursera, I found the experience to be incredibly insightful and beneficial for my understanding of human resource management. The course provided a comprehensive overview of various aspects of HR management and equipped me with practical skills that I could immediately apply in a professional setting. Here's my review of the course:

The course content was well-structured and covered a wide range of topics relevant to HR management. From recruitment and selection to performance management, compensation, and employee relations, each module offered in-depth insights and real-world examples that enhanced my understanding of HR practices.

Professor John W. Budd's expertise was evident throughout the course. His engaging teaching style, combined with his extensive knowledge in the field, made complex concepts easy to grasp. The lectures were clear and well-organized, and Professor Budd's ability to connect theoretical concepts with practical scenarios was particularly commendable.

The inclusion of case studies and interactive activities further enriched the learning experience. These activities provided opportunities to apply the concepts learned in realistic situations, which enhanced my critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Additionally, the peer discussions allowed for valuable exchanges of ideas and perspectives from learners with diverse backgrounds.

One of the standout features of the course was its focus on aligning HR practices with strategic organizational goals. This emphasis on strategic thinking highlighted the significant role that HR professionals play in contributing to an organization's success beyond administrative tasks.

The assignments and assessments were appropriately challenging and required thoughtful analysis and application of the course material. While they demanded time and effort, they were instrumental in reinforcing my learning and ensuring that I could effectively implement the concepts covered.

The course platform was user-friendly, and the resources provided, such as readings, videos, and supplementary materials, were readily accessible and well-curated. The platform's interface facilitated seamless navigation, making it easy to track progress and engage with fellow learners.

Overall, the Preparing to Manage Human Resources course exceeded my expectations. It provided me with a solid foundation in HR management, equipping me with the knowledge and skills needed to excel in my professional endeavors. The combination of Professor John W. Budd's expertise, engaging content, and practical applications made this course a valuable investment in my career growth. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking to enhance their understanding of human resource management and contribute effectively to their organization's HR practices.


What you'll learn:

After completing the Preparing to Manage Human Resources course by John W. Budd on Coursera, participants can expect to acquire several key skills in the field of human resource management. These skills are designed to enable learners to effectively manage personnel and contribute to the success of their organizations. Here are some of the skills that participants can expect to develop:

  1. Recruitment and Selection Skills: Learners will gain a thorough understanding of recruitment strategies, job analysis, candidate selection techniques, and interviewing skills. They will be better equipped to identify and attract top talent for various roles within their organizations.

  2. Performance Management Skills: Participants will learn how to set performance expectations, conduct fair and effective performance appraisals, provide constructive feedback, and address performance-related challenges. These skills are essential for enhancing employee productivity and development.

  3. Compensation and Benefits Knowledge: The course equips learners with knowledge of different compensation structures, benefits packages, and incentive systems. This understanding helps in designing competitive compensation plans that attract and retain skilled employees.

  4. Employee Relations and Conflict Resolution: Participants will acquire skills in fostering positive employee relations, addressing conflicts, and managing workplace grievances. These skills contribute to a harmonious work environment and higher employee satisfaction.

  5. Legal and Ethical Awareness: The course provides insights into HR legal frameworks, including equal employment opportunity laws, labor regulations, and ethical considerations. This knowledge is crucial for ensuring compliance with laws and ethical standards in HR practices.

  6. Strategic HR Planning: Learners will grasp the importance of aligning HR practices with overall business strategies. This skill helps HR professionals contribute to the achievement of organizational goals.

  7. Diversity and Inclusion Understanding: Participants will develop an understanding of the significance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. They will be better prepared to create inclusive environments that celebrate diversity and promote collaboration.

  8. Communication and Interpersonal Skills: Throughout the course, participants will engage in discussions, case studies, and activities that enhance their communication and interpersonal skills. These skills are vital for effective collaboration and interaction with employees.

  9. Analytical and Problem-Solving Abilities: The course materials often involve analyzing HR scenarios, making informed decisions, and solving HR-related problems. These skills are valuable for addressing various challenges that arise in managing human resources.

  10. Strategic Thinking: By understanding how HR practices align with business objectives, participants will develop strategic thinking abilities that enable them to contribute to long-term organizational success.

Overall, completing the Preparing to Manage Human Resources course equips learners with a comprehensive skill set in human resource management, enabling them to play pivotal roles in shaping a productive and engaged workforce within their organizations.



John W. Budd is a respected scholar and expert in the field of human resources and labor relations. He is widely recognized for his significant contributions to research, teaching, and writing on topics related to employment relations, labor economics, and human resource management.

Dr. John W. Budd holds a distinguished position as a professor in the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management. He is also affiliated with the Department of Work and Organizations within the same institution. With his extensive academic background and professional experience, he has earned a reputation as a thought leader in the areas of employment practices, labor markets, and the intersection of HR strategies with organizational success.

Dr. Budd's expertise spans a wide range of topics, including but not limited to:

  1. Labor Relations: He has conducted in-depth research on labor unions, collective bargaining, and the dynamics of labor-management relations. His work has contributed to a deeper understanding of the factors influencing negotiations, workplace cooperation, and conflict resolution.

  2. Human Resource Management: Dr. Budd's research in this area explores the impact of HR practices on employee performance, satisfaction, and overall organizational outcomes. His insights shed light on how effective HR strategies can lead to a competitive advantage for companies.

  3. Workplace Policies: His research delves into various workplace policies, including compensation, benefits, and performance management. This research informs organizations about the design and implementation of policies that promote employee well-being and productivity.

  4. Labor Economics: Dr. Budd has made significant contributions to the study of labor markets, exploring issues related to wage determination, job quality, and the economic implications of labor-related decisions.

  5. Employment Law and Regulation: His work has also touched on the legal and regulatory aspects of employment, providing insights into the relationship between HR practices and compliance with labor laws.

Dr. John W. Budd's expertise is not limited to his research endeavors; he is also an accomplished educator. He has a track record of teaching and mentoring students at both undergraduate and graduate levels. His engaging teaching style, combined with his real-world insights, makes him a sought-after instructor in the field.

In summary, John W. Budd is a prominent figure in the realm of human resources, labor relations, and labor economics. His extensive research contributions, teaching proficiency, and commitment to advancing the understanding of workplace dynamics have earned him a reputable standing among academics, professionals, and researchers in his field.



The Preparing to Manage Human Resources course by John W. Budd typically encompasses a range of requirements to ensure that participants can engage effectively with the content and successfully complete the course. While specific requirements may vary, here is a general list of expectations commonly associated with such courses:

  1. Access to a Computer and Internet: Participants should have access to a computer or device with a reliable internet connection to access course materials, lectures, discussions, and assignments.

  2. Basic Computer Skills: A fundamental understanding of using computers, navigating websites, and accessing online resources is necessary to engage with the course platform.

  3. Language Proficiency: Since the course is likely to be delivered in English, a basic to intermediate proficiency in English is essential to comprehend course content, interact with fellow learners, and complete assignments.

  4. Course Enrollment: Successful enrollment in the course is a prerequisite. This might involve registering and paying any associated fees, if applicable.

  5. Time Commitment: Participants should be prepared to allocate a certain amount of time each week to engage with course materials, watch lectures, participate in discussions, and complete assignments.

  6. Active Participation: Engagement with discussions, activities, and assignments is crucial for a comprehensive understanding of the material. Active participation also enhances learning through interaction with both instructors and fellow learners.

  7. Openness to New Concepts: The course may introduce participants to novel concepts, theories, and practices related to human resource management. A willingness to learn and explore new ideas is essential.

  8. Critical Thinking: Participants are encouraged to think critically about the course content, apply concepts to real-world scenarios, and engage in thoughtful discussions and analysis.

  9. Reading and Writing Skills: Effective reading and writing skills are essential for comprehending course materials, participating in discussions, and completing written assignments.

  10. Access to Required Materials: Participants might be required to access textbooks, articles, case studies, or other materials that are essential to the course. Ensuring timely access to these materials is important.

  11. Technical Requirements: Some courses may have specific technical requirements, such as software installations or compatibility checks, to ensure smooth participation in online activities.

  12. Completion of Assignments: The course may involve quizzes, assignments, group projects, or assessments that contribute to the learning process and final evaluation. Timely completion of these assignments is crucial.


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