Resourcing Human Resource

Posted in Human Resources Articles, Total Reads: 1332 , Published on 06 November 2013

Is human resource a source of energy?

Perhaps everyone will agree to the fact that one of the most pronounced problems of this time is energy crisis. Almost the entire world is running after the problem of energy crisis, finding out its root causes, suggesting solutions for it and even researching new sources of energies as alternatives.

But a very few people have thought of a crisis in human resources. If we assume human resource as a form of energy (as power can be measured in terms of horse power, why a term like man power cannot be applied as a unit of energy?). If we are really bothered about wasted watts or wasted horse power, why we are not bothered about wasted man-power?

image:David Castillo Dominici,

Energy is defined as the capacity to perform a work. Can we safely assume the capacity of a human being to work physically or mentally as a form of energy? If yes, then what type of energy this is? Is this Renewable or non-renewable?

As per the definition of the two, it is difficult to ensure whether human energy is renewable or non-renewable in nature. Firstly, once utilized, it is not exhausted. Even efficiency increases with utilization and with accumulation of experience. However, if the rate at which the renewable energy is consumed exceeds its renewal rate, renewal and sustainability will not be ensured. Such analogies can be valid for human resource as well. Probably various theoretical approaches like motivation theories, role-efficacy etc. comes into play when we talk about rejuvenating human resources. Another factors like culture, environment etc. are also of well consideration.

Now, the question is, “Is this form of energy is also facing a crisis like the other forms as well?” In general renewable resources work as a solution to the energy crisis. What about human resources?

Looking into India, the following facts are sufficient to establish that we are facing a crisis in human resources as well.

  • Human development index of India suggests a poor resourcing paradigm of human resources in the country.
  • Huge number of children within the age group 6-14 is still uneducated. Literacy rate (74% as per 2011 census) of India also suggests the same.
  • Prevalence of unskilled labor provides evidence of the same.
  • Employability of resources can be another angle to look at such a crisis.

Which one should we prioritize?  Is it energy crisis or human resource crisis?

As a solution of energy crisis we think of renewable resources. Now the question arises:

Is human resource renewable? The answer may be diplomatic and if debated it may even challenge a set of traditional theories and laws.

Challenging law of conservation of mass and energy:

Law of conservation of energy says, “Energy can neither be created nor destroyed.”

Is the impetus gained by someone to do a task is not a form of energy? And the source of energy is either focus on goal, an achievement orientation or a motivating force or something like that. However, creation of human energy is possible by setting a clear goal to satiate his/her career anchor and destruction is also possible by withdrawing the same. If we are tired we feel we are low in energy and demotivated to do some of the tasks.


Human resource is a form of energy. It can be created and destroyed. And alteration is also possible and is not very tough as well. The need of the hour is to resource human resource in a way to solve the crisis faced by it and once done it will trigger the chain reaction to solve the energy crisis as a whole.

The article has been authored by Manas Pratim Bora, IIM Ranchi



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