Managing Human Resources

John Jones and Smith (JJS) is a market research company in Dartford, Kent. Establish in 2000 they are one Britain’s fastest growing market research agencies. Using the most sophisticated analysis techniques the service they provide is both quantitative and qualitative enabling JJS to answer the why and how of an issue and not just the what, where and when. In order for their clients to receive the greatest benefits from their services value is added to the result with interpretation, recommendations, and advice.

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JJS started with three directors Mary John, Sally Jones and Mark Smith, two Research mangers and a hand full of market research interviews. (See appendix figure 1 for JJS organisational Hierarchy) The company have now grown with even more research managers and over 50 interviewers in order to meet the demand of the growing number of clients. JJS clients include the Yell Group, who is one of JJS’s main clients, The Royal Bank of Scotland and Virgin Atlantic Airways. In this assignment I will be discussing the influence and Impact HRM has of JJS.

The different approaches there are to HRM and then examine JJS’s approach. Then concluding with how JJS’s HRM approach affects their clients as well as the organisation as a whole. Approaches to HRM There are many approaches to HRM with many theorist and research each given us their interpretation of the perfect HRM model or descriptions. An organisation can choose to adopt the model that reflects or best fits the company’s objectives and culture. With every different model there is also as many ways of classifying them.

For example Legge (1995) devised a four way Classification, breaking the models down into four categorises: However both classification and others have been challenged, as they do not offer precise definitions of these classifications. According to Price (2005) pg38 there are “two sources of confusion (a) confusion over the different types of classification” for example it seems there is a contradiction between Storey’s ‘Prescriptive’ and Legge’s ‘Normative’, what is the difference? “(b) Lack of clear definition for each classification” As the definitions is not clear some models are not able to classify.

Take the Harvard model (1984) (see appendix figure 2) for example although it emphasises employees as resources, it does stress humans cannot be manage in the same way as other company resources. Therefore contesting the above classification as it can be viewed as ‘critical evaluative’ or ‘prescriptive’ or a mixture of both. Bratton and Gould (1999) argue, “Many of the key elements of HRM model are drawn from organizational behaviour theories, such as motivation, team building and leadership. ” Storey (1989) breaks into this down into two forms the ‘hard’ and ‘soft’.

The hard approach according to Price (2005) pg36 “focuses on the resource side of human resources,” which is illustrated by the Michigan and Harvard models. The hard approach relates as storey (2001) pg9 put it as the “managing of headcounts in as rational a way as any other factors of production. ” Although the Harvard model states human resources should be treated differently to other resources the Michigan model (1984) (see appendix figure 3) has a tough, less humanistic edge, expressing that employees are resources in the same way as any other business resource.

The hard approach also reflects on the businesses whose main focus is on finance. Appendix figure 4 illustrates the different influences on the development of HRM demonstrating the root and concept of the each approach. By contrast the illustration shows the soft approach “traces it roots to the human relation school and emphasises communication, motivation, culture, values, involvement and training and development” Storey (2001) pg9. As the hard focuses on resources the soft stresses on the human aspect. The soft models suggest HR managers should become; The best way to interpret JJS’s HRM approach is to use the Harvard interpretation.

As JJS is a market research agency it is therefore providing a service, like most services it begins with an intangible product, as there is no physical evidence until the data is gathered and processed. Another characteristic of a service is that there is a need of people to perform the service, and so with JJS therefore make the call centre employees an essential resource. The Harvard view along with JJS agrees that the managers and the directors have the greatest power. However they all agree that they have to find a middle ground, where they need to take into account the interest of the various stakeholders.

Beer et al. (1984) the creators of the Harvard model argue that when “managers determine the appropriate human resource policies and practices for their organisations they require some methods of assessing the appropriate or effectiveness of those polices. ” Like the Harvard model, one can interpret JJS’s HR polices to be influenced by two factors: Stakeholder interests: JJS understand that when creating their policies this is an important factor. As Beer et al. stated, “the enterprise will fail to meet the needs of these stakeholders in the long run and it will fail as an institution.

” So whether it is government legislation or the wiliness of the sample at hand all the stakeholders influence the HR polices. Situational factors: New laws, market conditions, task technology or workforce characteristics also influence the HR polices. For example JJS are commissioned to do a big job in a specific amount of time however the majority of students have gone home due to end of term break. When addressing the policies it can be broken into four areas of topic:

1) Human resource flows: As the call centre is occupied with mainly part-time employees i. e. student and mothers, the staff turnover is low however it is replaced quickly for example when the 3rd year students leave they are replaced with 1st years. Even the flow work needs to be managed, as the managers need to ensure that when one job finishes a new one start. 2) Reward system: JJS reward system is an integral part of the policy as it designed to attract, motivate and keep. The pay reward scheme is as follows after every 500 hours the employees are entitled to a pay rise along, as their work has been efficient they also get a bonus for introducing a friend who has completed there probation period.

3) Employee influence: Although the managers’ word is final the employees can have an input if they feel deadline is unreachable or the script needs to be clearer. The same also with the clients their word is finial but the managers can advise them on the best way to receive good result. 4) Work system: Each member of JJS is given a booklet containing what their job entails and what is expected of them along with the booklet they also receive the MRS (Market Research Society) code and guideline. So together they can help provide productive and efficient results.