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Personnel Management

Course CodeVBS107
Fee CodeS3
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment


This course will develop your ability to manage personnel, such as recruitment, training and controlling. Emphasis is placed on knowledge and methods that will improve workplace morale and productivity.

Employees in any business are it's most important assets. Like any assets employees need to be carefully managed and nurtured in order to perform at optimum levels. Topics covered include staff training, workplace conditions, work teams, positive discipline, handling grievances and complaints and much more.

One very important skill for any human resource manager is listening.  This is a skill where the supervisor is informed by other team members about any relevant aspects of work in progress. Listening helps a supervisor identify potential problems and find solutions to those problems. An important aspect of listening is attending to how things are said, the emotional content of the message that expresses possible frustration, disappointment, resentment or other negative emotions. The supervisor who notes both the content and the tone of a message is better able to identify potential problems and to resolve them quickly.

Lesson Structure

There are 10 lessons in this course:

  1. Human behaviour
    • Individual and group behaviour
    • Perception
    • Gestalt theory of perception
    • Influences on perception: behaviour, appearance, expectations, primary effect, attribution, schemas
    • Perception and reality
    • Selective attention
    • Central traits
    • Attribution
    • Kelley's theory of attribution
    • Changing perceptions
    • Defence mechanisms
    • Psychologically healthy individuals
    • Influences on human behaviour
    • Socialisation
    • Family influence
    • Influence of school
    • Influence of peers
    • Influence of society
  2. Workplace communications
    • Communication defined
    • Variables affecting communication: context, nature and quality of the transmitted message and the received message
    • Effective communication
    • Listening effectively
    • Giving clear instructions
  3. Workplace conditions
    • Unions
    • Duty of care
    • Workplace safety
    • Costs of illness and injury
    • Lifting and manual handling
    • Protective equipment
    • Workplace bullying and violence
    • Workplace design; physical and psychological factors
    • Colour
    • Office landscaping
  4. Controlling Operations
    • Supervising staff: listening, informing, leading
    • Managing a project
    • Applying standards
    • Monitoring performance
    • Regulating progress
    • Giving directives and introducing change
    • Dealing with contingencies
    • Developing contingency plans
    • Problem solving methodology
    • Stock control
    • Quality control
    • Production control
    • Labour utilisation control
    • Financial control
  5. Recruitment and Induction
    • Advertising a position
    • Interviewing
    • Interview guidelines
    • Interview questions
    • Types of questions
  6. Staff training
    • Responsibilities of a trainer
    • Factors affecting learning: Attention, intelligence, self esteem. etc
    • How we learn
    • Memory
    • Assessing training needs
    • Sources of information for a needs assessment
    • Communication skills for trainers
    • Body language
    • Reasons that people do not learn -communication barriers
    • Developing conversation
    • Effective questioning
    • Motivating learners
    • Principles of learning
    • Adult learners
  7. Work teams
    • Conformity -Heiders Balance Theory
    • Different styles of handling conflict
    • Delegation
    • Delegation situations: High Experience/Low Motivation; High Experience/High Motivation etc
    • Conflict handling tequniques
    • Dealing with anger (in yourself and in others)
    • Negotiation
    • Joint problem solving approach
    • Mediation
    • Negotiation problems
  8. Positive Discipline
    • Static and dynamic principle
    • Giving praise
    • Enforcing rules
    • The disciplinary interview
    • Changing behaviour -classic and operant conditioning
    • Reinforcement
    • Punishment
  9. Grievances and Complaints
    • Detecting a problem
    • Guidelines for dealing with grievances
    • Reducing grievances
    • Applying the formal problem solving technique
  10. Monitoring and Reporting
    • Monitoring performance
    • Observation
    • Regular review
    • Scheduled evaluations
    • Report writing
    • Work study
    • Techniques of work study
    • Work measurement

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


  • Explain how perception, learning and prior experience influence human behaviour
  • Identify and practice communication skills that will improve your ability to effectively receive and transmit messages in the workplace
  • Explain factors that contribute to overall workplace conditions and can affect workplace culture
  • Explain basic supervising practices for controlling business or department operations
  • Identify essential processes in the recruitment and induction of employees
  • Describe the key elements of planning and conducting effective staff training
  • Describe how team processes can be used to improve performance and productivity
  • Identify methods to establish and maintain discipline through positive means, such as reinforcement and increasing motivation
  • Describe strategies for reducing dissatisfaction and handling dissatisfaction when it arises
  • Explain the importance of monitoring workplace processes and performance, and how to report your observations

How to Influence Staff?

In order to control (supervise) staff, a supervisor must use three key skills:

  • Listening
  • Informing
  • Leading

This is a skill where the supervisor is informed by other team members about any relevant aspects of work in progress. Listening helps a supervisor identify potential problems and find solutions to those problems. An important aspect of listening is attending to how things are said, the emotional content of the message that expresses possible frustration, disappointment, resentment or other negative emotions. The supervisor who notes both the content and the tone of a message is better able to identify potential problems and to resolve them quickly.

This is a skill that allows a supervisor to accurately convey information or instructions to other team members. Clear and timely informing helps the supervisor inform others of a project’s progress, and to communicate what is expected from them. Good informing is free of all ambiguity.

This is central to both listening and informing, and is recognition of a supervisor’s responsibilities and command. A critical element of good leadership is the ability of a supervisor to make decisions based upon the input and consensus of all involved. Some leading communications are recognition of good performance and rewarding it appropriately; correcting poor performance; and continuously motivating the employees or project team.



Production control is one of the many aspects of the control function. There are many definitions of what comprises production control. There is no ideal system. Every enterprise is different, but no matter what method of organisation is adopted, production must be planned and controlled so that products are supplied in the right quantity and quality, at the right time, and at the minimum cost. In small organisations, memory and experience are relied upon, to a large extent, in planning and control. Larger organisations need an efficient, flexible system to plan and control the mass of information, materials and machines.

In manufacturing businesses, two problems are faced which are not necessarily compatible:

  • How to keep the works facilities occupied with optimum effect.
  • How to meet the requirements of the customers.

Therefore there are major matters which must be kept under observation. These are:

  • The maintaining of customer delivery schedules, which also involves compliance with quality standards.
  • The achievement of planned production outputs, in term of both volume and product mix.
  • Compliance with budgeted cost standards, which involves the achievement of planned efficiencies in the utilisation of labour, machines and materials.

The production control department is responsible for most of the information input which is necessary for the control of these matters, which also concerns quality, materials (stock), machines and labour controls. This then, can be applied to Food and Beverage Control, Front of House Control or Housekeeping Control.

Production control is often overlooked or under utilised by catering management. Goods should be carefully controlled from entry to bar, restaurant and kitchen. They should also be controlled during motion from these areas to the customer. Bad control or lack of control promotes wastage of materials and labour, pilferage, over production, and poor menu planning. It is in this area that many control systems are used, such as, restaurant and kitchen checking systems, daily sales analysis, cash handling systems, stores requisitions, kitchen percentage budgets etc. Therefore, the following statements are desirable:

  • Daily control - expressed in readily available physical units.
  • Weekly control - summarising the daily controls, but using costs as much as possible.
  • Weekly control summary - expressing the weekly result from several associated departments in a concise form for the higher management.
Control indices provide a rapid indication of the control situation. These usually express actual results as a percentage of budget or the allowed standards. For example, budgeted bed occupancy for the week may be set at 60%, whereas the actual was 70%, hence 70/60 x 100 = 117% (approximately). Therefore, anything over the standard (100) is good, that is, budget or better, anything below 100 is bad and requires corrective action.



Meet some of our academics

Denise Hodges Promotions Manager for ABC retail, Fitness Programmer/Instructor, Small Business Owner, Marketing Coordinator (Laserpoint). Over 20 years varied experienced in business and marketing. More recently Denise studied naturopathy to share her passion for health and wellness. Denise has an Adv.Dip.Bus., Dip. Clothing Design, Adv.Dip.Naturopathy (completing).
Lyn QuirkM.Prof.Ed.; Adv.Dip.Compl.Med (Naturopathy); Adv.Dip.Sports Therapy Over 30 years as Health Club Manager, Fitness Professional, Teacher, Coach and Business manager in health, fitness and leisure industries. As business owner and former department head for TAFE, she brings a wealth of skills and experience to her role as a tutor for ACS.
Tracey JonesWidely published author, Psychologist, Manager and Lecturer. Over 10 years working with ACS and 25 years of industry experience. Qualifications include: B.Sc. (Hons) (Psychology), M.Soc.Sc (social work), Dip. SW (social work), PGCE (Education), PGD (Learning Disability Studies).
Kate GibsonKate has 12 years experience as a marketing advisor and experience as a project manager. Kate has traveled and worked in a variety of locations including London, New Zealand and Australia. Kate has a B.Soc.Sc, Post-Grad. Dip. Org Behaviour (HR).

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