Human Resources used to be very simple. Hire employees. Train them. Make sure they get paid. Keep track of vacation. Around the time of World War I, the HR function was known as “personnel management.” The function was largely task-focused, centered on training workers and efficiently solving wage and working condition issues.Over time, research consistently showed that non-financial incentives were essential components of work. Managers began to realize that they needed to devote resources to their employees past task training and basic administrative duties.