What was the Industrial Revolution, and how did it change the structure of work in the United States?

According to your textbook, approximately 90% of laborers in the United States worked on farms at the end of the 18th century. By 1900, this percentage had dropped to about 50% of laborers. Based on your readings this week, please answer the following questions:

  • What was the Industrial Revolution, and how did it change the structure of work in the United States?
  • What effect did this shift in economic systems (from a largely agrarian society to an industrial society) have on workers and their families?
  • Over the past 50 years, how has technology changed the workplace even further?
  • In what ways are your career options different from those of your parents and/or grandparents?
  • Discussion 2As you have read in the text, sociologists analyze data gathered in society and within organizations to understand more about the social problems that can occur within society related to organizations (e.g., globalization, environmental issues, etc.). Analyzing data also helps sociologists understand how social problems can occur within organizations in relation to specific groups (e.g., women, older workers, etc.). Gathering and analyzing data to understand these workplace issues is not only the job of sociologists as part of research projects, but also the job of human resources (HR) practitioners within organizations. Human resource practitioners often perform research about their workforce to understand how workers feel about their environment or their experiences of work.

    To help you answer the questions below, please read the article “Becoming an Evidence-Based HR Practitioner” and watch the video, HR meets Science at Google with Prasad Setty.

    Answer the following:

    • How does using data-based evidence help HR practitioners in organizational decision making?
    • In the video, Prasad Setty presents the ways Google has used varied forms of research for evidence based decision making. Based on the video, what types of research have they used and for what types of issues?
    • The article and text you read this week present examples of research methods. Sometimes HR wants to understand the experiences of specific groups in their work force.  If you were an HR practitioner and wanted to understand the experiences of the older workers (those aged 55 and older) in your organization, what research methods would you use to do so? State the type of research method and explain why you have chosen this method to understand your older workers.
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