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The Workforce 80: Hewlett-Packard to The Civil Rights Movement

May 21, 2002
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With the inauguration in 1922 of The Journal of Personnel Research, Workforce magazine's first name, the fledgling field of personnel was officially born. Workers were leaving fields for factories, and businesses were swiftly learning about the complexities of managing people in an industrial world. For the past 80 years, the publication has served as a mirror of the U.S. workplace, and a bellwether for HR, helping it to find its way in a turbulent world.

To mark its 80th anniversary, editors, writers, and distinguished members of the business and academic communities have created a special issue chronicling 80 events that have shaped HR. Together the stories -- offered without ranking -- are an impressive collection of people, trends, innovations, and events that have had a profound impact on human resources and the workplace.

This magazine is one of the oldest and one of the largest continuously published periodicals in the country. What is less well-known is that it has been a family enterprise for most of its history. Workforce publisher Margaret Magnus succeeds her mother, Betty Hartzell, who was publisher of what was then called Personnel Journal from 1974 to 1990, and Hartzell's uncle, Arthur C. Croft, who bought the publication in the late 1930s.

"Human resources fundamentally deals with human nature," Magnus says. "HR strives to bring out the best in everyone."

With a history that spans the full life of HR, Workforce has covered sweeping changes in the field from the industrial revolution to the information age. Throughout its tenure, HR has been at the vanguard of social change. Workforce is honored to have participated in helping to create its vision, tell its story, and chart its course.

Workforce, January 2002, pp. 26-56 -- Subscribe Now!


The Workforce 80 was written by Shari Caudron, Sarah Fister Gale, Samuel Greengard, James E. Hall, Carroll Lachnit, Susan J. Marks, Todd Raphael, Janet Wiscombe, and Eilene Zimmerman. The following people shared their time and expertise in the creation of the list: Thomas Dougherty, University of Missouri; Dave Ulrich, University of Michigan; Matt Miklave and Jon Trafimow, Epstein, Becker & Green, P.C; Bob Gitter, Ohio Wesleyan University; John Boudreau, Cornell University; Maria Greco Danaher, Dickie, McCamey & Chilcote, P.C.; Daniel Mitchell and David Lewin, UCLA; Judson MacLaury, historian, U.S. Department of Labor, and Arnold Packer, senior research fellow, Johns Hopkins Institute for Policy Studies.

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