SHRM Assignment Examining Different Human Resource Management Scenarios
Write a detailed report on SHRM assignment addressing the following parts:
1. In the face of growing optimism as the pandemic uncertainties are slowly lifting, many global business leaders look at recalibrating growth strategy through mergers and acquisitions.
a) Evaluate how people managers can use strategic human resource principles to optimally align organizational talent as a key determinant of competitive advantage to enhance the success of mergers and acquisitions.
b) Assume you are the HR Director of a major global electrical appliance manufacturer acquiring a local Malaysian appliance retailer cum distributor. Formulate THREE (3) strategic human resource initiatives that can help to achieve long-term organizational performance for the newly merged business.
2. The current dynamic and competitive environment sets a critical parameter for business organizations in prioritizing resilience through agile people management for a long-term sustained growth.
a) Apply strategic human resource management principles to examine how strategic human resource practitioners should realign skills and work designs in creating a high-performance work system shaping an agile future workforce.
b) Assume you are a medium sized organic food and beverage company owner impacted by the recent pandemic. You revisited your business strategy and decided to focus on building company resilience to face changing demands. As part of resilience building, develop THREE (3) strategic human resource programmes to promote workforce experience.
As stated in the SHRM assignment, behind any successful business organisation, there is an intricate and effective human resource management procedure that keeps providing the organisation with efficient and skilled employees. It is essential to recruit, retain and train these skilled employees who in turn contribute to the growth of the organisation itself. From case studies around the world, it has been seen that many organisations failed to grow or generate sufficient revenue as per the expectations due to lack of strategic human resource management. Lack of proper strategies to manage human resources or persisting issues regarding managing the human resources lead to increasing employee turnover rate that can not only tarnish the image of the company but can also affect the company in the long term. In this case, not only the company loses valuable employees who could have driven them forward, the company also encounters significant wastage of funds in training the employees. An estimate study states that in USA alone, organisations encounter wastage of around $30 billion due to millennial turnover. On the other hand, in the last one and half year, the world has seen the rampaging nature of the Covid19 pandemic that has swept through all the countries in the world and is still going on. Global lockdowns and federal instructions for limited capacity on-site work, the business organisations have faced significant numbers of problems regarding human resource management and in this time, strategic human resource management has become even more important in the context of business in a pandemic-hit world.
This essay covers four different scenarios regarding human resource management and also includes study of possible policies and programs that can be helpful for business organisations regarding effective management of human resources.
Strategic Human Resource Management
Question 1 Part a
During mergers and acquisitions, organisations often face challenges regarding selection and retention of employees as there are generally cuts in the employee count. As a result, it is often very difficult to determine which employees are to be retained and which ones are to be released. It is extremely important to follow strategic management principles and approach while undergoing through the decision-making process regarding retention and release of the employees. In general, there are five important steps involved in this regard. First step is creating new policies for the newly created organisational entity following a merger or acquisition. The second step is to identify the key employees and ensure they are retained by the new organisational entity. The third step is selecting and downsizing the employees. Fourth step is to create compensation strategies for retention and release of employees. Fifth and final step is the development of new employee benefit program that is focused on retaining the key employees.
It is extremely essential for the merged entity to specifically identify key employees as they are the main driving forces behind the success of the new organisational set up. It is often seen that during a merger or acquisition procedure, many key employees choose to leave the organisation(s) due to uncertain future and hence, it is the responsibility of the organisation to assure the key employees of their future and try retaining them with long term growth in mind. For example, in 2015, two food processing and manufacturing giants Heinz and Kraft merged together in a $100B deal. However, since the merger, the new entity’s initial target was to cut costs at a significant level in order to maximize profits and this policy had particularly negative impact on the human resources. With significant budget cuts, a significant number of employees were released while the employee turnover also increased citing the reasons of uncertain nature of their jobs. The result of this was so bad that people started calling the merger deal as “mega mess”.
Question 1 Part b
1 In the given case, a major global electrical appliance manufacturer has acquired a local Malaysian appliance retailer cum distributor. While the local retailer has merged into the larger global manufacturer, there are also a number of employees that either need to be integrated within the company or released if they do not fulfill the requirements of the company. The main vision behind retention or release of employees is to achieve long term organisational performance growth for the newly merged business. In this case, the HR needs to acquire and deploy specific strategic human resource initiatives in order to filter out the best candidates for retention who will help to boost the organisational performance. Some of these initiatives can be mentioned as;first initiative will be development of a pipeline of high quality job candidates needs to be done to ensure the company’s internal workforce always has a talented and skilled group of people who can really make a difference and boost the organisation’s growth. Secondly, the HR should introduce training and certification pathways that can help the employees of the local organisation can enhance their skills with certification that will increase their chances of retention and they will be able to contribute towards the growth of the organisation. Finally, it is also important to plan for employee and leadership succession within the merged business in order to motivate the employees to enhance their performances that in turn will help to boost the growth of the organisation.
While several initiatives have been discussed above, it is also essential that the HR has a clear-cut plan regarding deployment of the initiatives in order to avoid confusion and promote the participation of the employees into the specific programs.
Question 2 Part a
Strategic human resource management principals have developed to guide organisations towards an effective resource management environment that not only brings the best out of the employees but also boosts the organisational performance significantly. The key to an efficient and effective organisational performance is the high-quality performance of the employees once they have the right skill sets to fulfil their roles and duties. In this regard, it is essential for the organisation to assign employees to specific duties that match their skill sets. Some strategic human resource management principles that shed light on this process are as first, understand the mission, vision, objectives and goals of the organisation. Another principle is analysing the capabilities and skill sets of the employees. Next one is alignment of the employees’ skill sets with the company’s goals and objectives. Fourth is forecasting future human resource management requirements. Fifth is analysing and identifying the tools required for enhancing organisational performance. Next principle is developing strategy for creating a capable workforce through effective human resource management process. Finally, last principle is setting performance metrics to analyse employee performances and taking suitable actions for fulfilment of the performance metrics The purpose of all these detailed strategies and procedures is to ensure the HR has a clear-cut plan for the human resource management in order to enhance the employee performances and in turn the operational performance of the company. Aligning of skills and work design of the employees with the organisation’s strategic direction can help significantly to create a high-performance working environment that will continue to boost the growth of the organisation. For example, Amazon, the global ecommerce giant has been growing significantly over the past few decades and has emphasized specifically on human resource management along with the overall growth of the organisation. Employee reviews as well as research studies on the company state that Amazon has continuously upgraded its human resource management plan and has been trying to create a better working environment in which the employees will not only feel happy to work but will also have the chance to grow and upgrade their skills over the years.
Question 2 Part b
The recent pandemic has impacted all businesses considerably due to various factors including mass lockdowns around the globe, illness and death of workers and employees, diminishing and / or changing demands and others. As a result, the roles of HRs have also significantly shifted more towards proper handling and retention of employees as the recruitment procedures have also slowed down significantly due to lack of resources. However, at the same time, the demands for ecommerce have increased by a considerable margin especially those operating in the food sector as more and more people, forced to live within lockdown restrictions, have been preferring to place online orders for food and beverages as per their needs. This has been considered as a major opportunity by various organisations and most of them have resorted to online commerce individually or through partnerships with ecommerce giants. The HR for this organisation can similarly follow a similar trend and promote a number of strategic human resource programs to promote workforce experience with long term future in mind. First program is to create training programs for the human resources regarding management of operations in an ecommerce environment. The training programs can focus on several aspects including online inventory update and management, online order management and processing, delivery management and others. Second program is to develop strategic program for alternate shift system for the human resources in order to fulfil the new protocol of 50-60% on-site employees working together as set on the grounds of the pandemic and need for social distancing. Third and final program is to develop new employee engagement activities along with different reward programs to keep the employees motivated as well as improving the workforce experience.
From the overall study of human resource management including a few specific scenario-basedanalyses within this SHRM assignment, it can be said that strategic human resource management is one of the main factors that can help the business organisations to grow and enter new strategic directions even during the current pandemic times. The management of the organisations can develop strategic directions that the organisation can towards but the moves will never be successful unless there is a proper human resource management plan in place. It is the responsibility of the organisation to handle its employees effectively to bring the best out of them for a long-term growth. During specific cases like mergers and acquisitions, the companies come across a major dilemma of retention and release of the employees working for both the merged entities. When large organisations acquire small organisations, it is generally believed that most of the employees from the smaller entity are most likely to be released after the merger. However, this might be a major blunder for the organisation as even the employees from the smaller entity might have high degree of skills and experience in their respective roles. Hence, before merger or acquisition, the organisation should have a proper screening and selection plan that they can use to determine if the skills and experience of the employees from both entities have the required value in driving the organisation forward. The main objective of this process is to retain the most talented and skilled employees who can help driving the organisation towards long term sustainable growth.