Free «HRM Consultant's System's Analysis Paper» Essay Paper

HRM Consultant's System's Analysis Paper

Introduction

Due to the fact that the situation in the world becomes more competitive and unstable than it was in the past, most firms continue to seek alternatives for gaining competitive advantage. Consequently, they are focusing more on innovative sources through the human resource management (HRM) practices (Carpenter & Sanders, 2014). The HRM practices have been defined in regard to multiple aspects. It is considered as a system that attracts, develops, motivates, and retains high-quality employees in order to ensure the effective implementation and survival of the organization as well as its associates. HRM refers to the policies, practices, and the systems that influence the behavior of the employees, their attitude and performance (Mondy & Mondy, 2013). The HRM practices are designed and conceptualized in a way that provides internal consistency and that the practices are structured and implemented to ensure that the firm’s human capital contributes to the achievement of the business objectives. According to the definition, it is evident that HRM is an important function that significantly influences the operation efficiency of the organization since it deals with employees who play an important role in determining success of the organization (Mondy & Mondy, 2013). Proper management and attention to the needs and concerns of the organization workforce lead to productive and highly skilled employees. The paper will focus on the key functions of the HRM practices.

Overview

Designing and implementation of human resource management practices are very instrumental to the success of the organization. The presence of the robust HRM practices ensures that the goals and objectives of the company are achieved in a timely manner (Carpenter & Sanders, 2014). Designing of effective HRM system impacts the individual and organizational success. The presence of HRM system brings consistency in HRM practice and enhances the human relations in the firm. Furthermore, it provides that the staff is focused on the implementation of the strategic goals through improvement of the employee skills, knowledge, and motivation (Carpenter & Sanders, 2014). Well-designed HRM further increases the involvement of the employees and empowers them to follow the set individual and corporate aims. It also ensures that the recruited employees are provided with an on-going development through intensive training, thus promoting their commitment to the organization (Mondy & Mondy, 2013).

Implementation of the HRM practices impacts the organization in different ways. Presence of highly efficient HRM practices ensures that the company offers high rewards to its employee since it has the ability to attract and retain highly qualified, creative, and skilled individuals who consequently contribute to the overall development of the organization (Mondy & Mondy, 2013). The firm, which involves such system, follows innovative HRM strategies that put emphasis on the promotion arrangement that focuses on the long-term orientation of the employees, thus reducing staff turnover. Furthermore, well designed and implemented HRM practices ensure that cost cutting strategy does not affect the employees since it might essentially demotivate people in their functions, thus lowering the organizational performance (Mondy & Mondy, 2013). Therefore, HRM system has the potential to enhance performance of the company when there is congruency between the human resource practice and the organizational culture.

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Analysis

Selection and Placement

Recruitment and selection is one of the most important human resources. However, if recruitment and selection are not done appropriately, it usually has a wide reaching implication for the firm on the long term basis (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013). The recruitment focuses on the ability of the firm to involve new employees, to keep the organization operating, and to improve the quality of human capital employed in the company (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013).  It deals with the aspects of how the employee are recruited, selected and inducted to the firm in order to ensure that they will show good performance, which is suitable for achieving the organizational outcomes. The recruitment process forms the main driver for the satisfaction of the managers with the services provided by the human resource department within the organization.

The main HR goal in regard to the recruitment and selection is usually to identify its best sources, hiring the best candidates and keeping the firm competitive in the job market (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013). The HR is tasked with the establishment of job requirements and responsibility, the involvement of individuals with such outlined attributes chosen from the volumes of job resumes.  The role of HRM in recruitment is critical since it ensures that people employed in the organization have sufficient skills, knowledge, and capabilities. It has been noted that if people recruited to the firm do not correspond to the requirements, the organization experiences difficulties in  achieving both short term and long term goals (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013). The employees may be underqualified or overqualified, hence might not be able to discharge their duties adequately.

 
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At British Airways, the HRM ensures that the candidates with the right skills are recruited by the company in order to enhance its competitiveness in the airline industry. Due to this process, only those candidates whose potential is compatible with company’s goals are recruited (British Airways, 2010). The firm uses rigorous recruitment methods such as IQ test and psychometric test in order to ensure that only the candidates with appropriate skills are hired. British Airways understands that if they employ people with insufficient skills, it will pose serious implications to the passenger safety and the ultimate reputation for the firm. The company further stresses more the investing in the people (Pederson, 2010). Hence, the recruitment is usually a rigorous process mostly in regard to the training and development of the employees. British Airways further places more emphasis on the attributes such as integrity and honesty, whereas internal control is usually integrated in the recruitment process to check such attributes (British Airways, 2010).

Training and Development

Training employees and supporting their development are the major roles of the HRM in the firm, and it ensures that both new and old workers gain the required skills due to the dynamic nature of the job market (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013). For the old employees, development ensures that staff gets essential knowledge on an on-going basis. Training and development of the programs enhance the employees’ capabilities and the potential of the company. It is established that when an organization invest in its employees through knowledge and skills, the investment is usually returned due to their productivity (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013). The development program can either focus on the individual or team performance. In human resource management, it is a standard practice for the employees to be trained where possible in order to satisfy their own career needs and those of the organization. Training can be provided through a task-oriented program that strives at enabling the individual’s staff to accomplish better results of their current job (Entrekin & Scott-Ladd, 2013). On the other hand, development is usually career oriented and prepares an individual for higher responsibilities in the firm. Therefore, the organization has the responsibility for developing and implementing employees’ system that enables the firm to achieve such objectives. Furthermore, as an HR strategy, training and development establish a flexible environment due to the fact that employees enhance their competence and create a trust-based relationship with their superiors.

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British Airways has a well-structured training and development program. It incorporates different programs in the training and development structures. Training forms the major part of the program, and the company invests a lot of resources to ensure that such plan is replicated across the entire company (British Airways, 2010). The major training program used by British Airways was established by Colin Marshall and dubbed “Putting People First”. Consequently, more than 40,000 employees were considered as enrolled and incorporated staff at all managerial levels (British Airways, 2010). The main objective of such program was to modify the employees’ behavior and to align to ever-shifting needs of the company. Furthermore, training and development plans of British Airways are designed to enhance the employees’ attitude in the similar way they design the seat entertainment program, thus encouraging the staff to improve the quality of services. In addition, the employees’ development at British Airways is performed on the basis of performance and skill (British Airways, 2010). Thus, evaluation is used as a benchmarking tool for more training and development. This ensures that the employees are motivated, skilled, and contended to the company’s workforce.

Performance Management

Performance management is a crucial HRM function. Its ultimate goal is usually to improve the inclusive output and efficiency by maximizing distinctive performance. As a principle, the performance management focuses on improving individual and shared performance, communication of the supervisors and staff regarding the management expectation as well as improvement of communication between the senior management, staff, and supervisors (Ashdown, 2014). According to its definition, performance management is a continuous process that identifies measures and develops performance within an organization through linking the individual staff performance and objectives to the overall mission and goals of the company. Moreover, it is a continuous process of establishing the goals, monitoring performance, as well as receiving and giving ongoing training and feedback (Ashdown, 2014). The performance management requires from the HR managers to ensure that the employees’ activities and output are congruent with the organizational goals and objectives.  Therefore, it establishes a direct linkage between the set goals and objectives, hence making the employees’ contribution explicit. From the HR perspectives, it is believed that connecting the performance objectives of the staff with the organizational goals serves as the purpose for creating shared understanding of the needs to be accomplished within the organization (Ashdown, 2014). Consequently, the employees are committed to the achievement of their goals, thus contributing to the overall success of the organization.

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At British Airways, performance management has been identified as a major problem facing the company. As explained in the 2009-2010 annual report of the organization, British Airways established a mission titled “compete 2012” that entails specific metrics, which have been developed to follow the progress of the plan (British Airways, 2010).  Some of the metrics are used as a basis for promotion and rewarding. In order to achieve such goals, British Airways has joined corporate mission statement and the individual staff’s target through communication of the common vision. Furthermore, performance management is used to determine the new salary levels, shares, and bonus within the firm.  Though previously the performance of the employees was evaluated only on a basis of the result accomplishment, British Airways has diversified its criterion (Pederson, 2010). Now more than half of the managers are evaluated based on the results, while the other half is determined using the mean employed to achieve such results through the use of “Managing People First” program. Such rating process has become annual and formal part of the HRM manager’s annual performance appraisal. The presence of such effective system in performance management has made the firm one of the most profitable airline in the world and improved its service record (British Airways, 2010).

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Career Development

The human resource management plays a significant role in enhancing career development for the employees. It implies that the process, in which employees progress through a series of stages, is characterized by a different set of activities, tasks, and relationship (Mathis & Jackson, 2010). It has also been described as the ongoing efforts made by the firm that emphasize enhancing and inspiring of the company’s human resource in the light of both organization and employees’ needs. Career development within the firm is also essential since it ensures that employees’ effort is rewarded appropriately, thus increasing their commitment to the firm (Mathis & Jackson, 2010). From HRM perspective, failure to motivate the employees and to reward their contribution through career development often leads to the staff shortage or high employee turnover. However, when the company allocates resources for the development of the career, such effort improves the morale, boost the employees’ productivities, thus making the organization more efficient. It has been noted that HRM department bears the responsibility of providing information about policies that facilitate employees and development of the individual career plans (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010). The HR managers are expected to serve as catalyst that improves the process of staff career development by providing evaluation metrics that act as the basis for career development for the employees. Moreover, they typically assess the employees in order to ensure their readiness for the job mobility. In addition, HRM manager tends to be the primary source of the information about the job opening within the firm, training course, and other staff development opportunities (DeCenzo & Robbins, 2010).

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At British Airways, the employees’ technical and analytical capability has been refined through the delivery of projects, whereas formal training has been improved through the training and development program. British Airways permit the employees to be involved in different projects as a part of their career development (British Airways, 2010). For example, the analyst is allowed to become involved in a wide range of tasks such as operations, catering, fuel, commercial, and network, etc. Such program ensures that the employee gained a wide range of experience that makes them competitive in their areas of practice. At British Airways, skills are recognized, and productivity is measured through performance appraisal metrics and offers an evidential framework for facilitating career progress (Pederson, 2010). It is also a policy for the firm to hire internally for major post in order to enhance the employees within the firm and ensure that they are given an opportunity to progress and only resort to external sources when the required competence is unavailable internally.

Succession Planning

The human resource management department is required to plan and inform the company board in regard to succession plan when the employees exit or retire from the company.  Such efforts ensure that there is a smooth transition from one employee to another without impact on the company’s operations (Mathis & Jackson, 2010). According to the definition, the succession planning is described as a process of identifying and developing the capacity of the internal employees with the potential to fill the position when the current holder exits or retires. It is apparent that many staffs leave a company due to varied reasons, but the most common is usually due to inability to make progress an aspect that leads to job contentment. Thus, one of the major ways to combat such occurrences in the retention plan is usually through ensuring the presence of explicit succession planning process that is communicated to all employees within the firm (Mathis & Jackson, 2010). In another firm, succession planning is known as talent bench since such company usually involves talented people who are ready to take the job when it is vacant. However, the HRM role in succession planning is usually to identify high potential employees who are capable of advancing to the positions within higher responsibilities (Mathis & Jackson, 2010). They further ensure that the employees are groomed and prepared for promotion to a new position. Furthermore, it ensures diversity in the talent bench, which is enhanced through formal succession planning process. However, it is a standard practice for the HRM department to plan the process and to ensure clear communication to the employees.

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The British Airways management has employed an autonomous style of leadership that ensures that they can operate without the presence of its current leaders. Delegation is usually the core process, thus ensuring that junior staff has the potential to assume the responsibility when employees exit, retire or become promoted to the higher positions (Pederson, 2010). Though the company has a well-established succession plan, it also seeks external leaders to join the firm since it anticipates that outsiders usually have the potential to bring new ideas and benefits to the company. However, in the company, succession planning is usually a continuous process as opposed to the annual affair. Consequently, British Airways have a team of skilled staff ready to assume leadership position when they become vacant (Pederson, 2010). The company further emphasizes the delegation of responsibilities, which is an aspect that ensures that all employees are conversant with the mode of operation in different areas, thus enhancing their competency.

Recommendations

Although British Airways has significantly strived to align its process to the HRM practices, which is an aspect that has promoted its competitiveness, a number of improvement are required in order to ensure the effectiveness of each function in regard to promotion of the company’s goals and objectives.

  • Although British Airways has a well structure selection and placement process, it is recommendable for the company to include job simulation in the recruitment process. IQ and Psychometric Tests are not enough to ensure that the firm gets suitable candidates. Job content stimulation will enable the firm to monitor how effectively recruited individual execute their tasks, thus ensuring that only those who perform in accordance with the set standards are recruited.
  • Although British Airway has a well-developed staff training and development plan, it is recommendable to incorporate bilingual workshops that will encourage and emphasize the importance of training using different languages. Consequently, this will expand the employees’ global marketability, and this aspect enhances their communication with different stakeholders in various countries.
  • In order to improve performance managing system at British Airways, it is recommendable for the management to communicate the appraisal system explicitly to the employees in order to reduce ambiguity and confusion. This will also enable the managers in the firm to skillfully appraise their subordinate staff effectively.
  • Though British Airways relies on performance appraisal as a basis for career development of its employees, it is recommendable for the firm to integrate merit system principle in the process. This will ensure that the employees are selected for the development without regard to marital status, religion, nation of origin, and in accordance with the constitutional rights. Furthermore, this will enhance the employees’ satisfaction with the system since promotion will be based on the merit and individual performance.

 

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