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The Journey of asylum seekers and their rights to education, employment, welfare benefits, housing, health and social services in the UK

Introduction

In the essay, I will be focusing on the asylum seekers in the UK. The focus of this essay is to see how their rights to education, employment, welfare benefits, housing, health and social services are exercised in the British society. I will start by defining what an asylum seeker is. The journey will consist of different stages which are first of all seeking asylum and the rights that they get with the status. The second stage will be to see how the rights change when they are granted refugee status. And the last stage will be to examine what they need to achieve in order to become British citizen.

An asylum seeker is person who has submitted an application for protection under the Geneva Convention and is waiting for the claim to be decided by the Home Office (2011). Asylum seekers should have the right to live in safety which is ultimately more important than the right to remain in one’s own community or country. When strategies have failed, and when people have developed a well-founded fear of being killed, injured or abused, they must have the option to escape from the danger which is threatening them.

The UK has an obligation under international law to protect people fleeing persecution. The UK has committed itself to the principles of universal declaration of human rights (1948) which includes the rights to seek and enjoy asylum in other countries. As signatory to the convention, the UK is responsible for guarantying that those with refugee status enjoy equal rights to the UK citizens (UNHCR, United Nations High Commissioner For Refugees, 1951).

Each individual will have his own reasons of seeking asylum. It could be that they are facing persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion. In too many cases and in too many countries, people who have succeeded in fleeing from violations of human rights in their own homeland are confronted with further threats in the country where they have sought asylum.

While refugees are technically the beneficiaries of international protection, they may in practice be at constant risk of intimidation or assault, either from members of the host community or their own compatriots. Also refugee women and girls are confronted with specific protection problems, especially in the situations where established social structures and values have broken down, and where the local authorities lack the capacity to enforce law and order. Sexual violence and exploitations are some major issues, which have only recently started to attract systematic international attention (Helton, 1994). I will also illustrate an example of sexual exclusion, two gay men who said they faced persecution in their home countries have the right to asylum in the UK, the Supreme Court has ruled. Homosexuals are as much entitled to freedom of association with others who are of the same sexual orientation as people who are straight (BBC, 2010).

Asylum seekers don’t have many rights in the UK. The Reception Directive defines an asylum seeker as a non-EU national who has made an application for asylum in respect of which a final decision has not yet been taken. In the UK, eligibility for support under the Asylum Support Regulations and Interim Provisions Regulations starts when a claim for asylum under the Refugee Convention or a claim under Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights (‘ECHR’) has been recorded by the Secretary of State but not determined. In practice, therefore, asylum seekers who fulfil the eligibility criteria may be left without support due to delays in recording a claim or where it is disputed that a claim has been brought forward. The Home Office may in fact decide not to record an asylum claim if it is a second claim that does not disclose new evidence. Although, following a High Court judgment, the Home Office has extended section 4 (hard cases) support to such cases, it is arguable that the domestic requirement that a claim must be recorded to trigger entitlement to support is unlawful under the Directive (Justice, 2005). They have access to free health care from the NHS (National Health Service), if you receive asylum support from the UK Border Agency you may qualify for extra free healthcare such as NHS prescriptions, dental care, sight tests and vouchers to help you buy glasses.

To get this you need to obtain an HC2 certificate, which is issued by the UK Border Agency on behalf of the Department of Health and is evidence that you cannot afford to pay for these things yourself. The certificate is for you and any dependants you have. It is valid for six months. They also have the right to support and accommodation if they meet the requirements for it. They will not be provided housing in London. Very limited housing may be available in the south-east of England. While they are providing their housing, they must stay at the address they are given unless if they are given permission to move.

The UK Border Agency provides different housing at different stages of an application process. If an asylum seeker qualifies for housing when they first make an asylum application, the UK Border Agency will place them in what they call initial accommodation, which gives them somewhere to live for the first two or three weeks.

After this they will usually move to a different housing facility. It will normally be in the same region of the country as the initial accommodation, and in the region where their case owner works. Asylum seekers will not be able to choose where they want to live if they are provided housing facilities by the UK Border Agency (Home Office 2011).

Asylum seekers can practice their own religion, and are expected to show respect for people of other faiths. They are treated fairly and lawfully regardless of their race, age, religion, sexual orientation or any disability. The children of asylum seekers applicants have the same right to education as all other children (5-16) in the UK (Home office 2011). Schools commit much time, effort and resources to integrating the asylum-seeker pupils in a positive and supportive manner. Several schools have well-established and effective arrangements for the admission and induction of the newly arrived pupils and provide sound teaching support. Unfortunately, not all schools are well informed about basic procedures and guidance on the education of asylum-seeker pupils (Ofsted, Office for Standards in Education).

Asylum seekers will not normally be allowed to work while the Home Office is considering their asylum application, except in very limited circumstances. In this paragraph, it will be noted what those circumstances are. The majority of asylum applicants are not permitted to work while the Home Office considers their application. This is because entering the country for economic reasons is not the same as seeking asylum, and it is important to maintain a distinction between the two. However, if an asylum seeker has waited longer than 12 months for a decision to be made on their asylum application; under strict circumstances, the Home Office may grant them with a temporary work permit.

Currently, most new asylum applications receive a decision within 30 days. However, if an application has been rejected, the applicant may request permission to work if they have made asylum-based further submissions which have been outstanding for more than 12 months. This will primarily affect people who have already made further submissions. Anyone making further submissions now is unlikely to be become eligible to apply for permission to work (Home Office 2011).

Since 1980, 6000-7000 asylum applications per annum, by people originating from countries such as Iran, Iraq, Ghana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Poland, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka (Crisp and Nettleton,1984). In 2007, 19 of every 100 people who applied for asylum were recognised as refugees and given asylum. Another 9 of every 100 who applied for asylum did not qualify for refugee status but were given permission to stay for humanitarian or other reasons (when these figures were published, 17 of every 100 applications had not yet resulted in a final decision).

In some cases, individuals are forced to remain in detention centres while the decisions are being made. Those removal centres are used for temporary detention, in situations where people have no legal right to be in the UK but have refused to leave voluntarily. Some of those detained in any of these centres can leave at any time to return to their home country. If the Home Office has refused to give a given asylum seeker the permission to stay in the UK and their appeals (if any) against the decision have failed, they must return to the country that they come from. If those asylum seekers do not return voluntarily, Home Office will enforce their removal and they may detain them until they return them to the homeland.

If asylum seekers decide that they want to return to their home country, they can do so at any stage of their application for asylum. They must tell their case owner if they decide to go. Asylum seekers should also tell their legal representative, if they have one (Home Office, 2011).

Asylum seekers also have the right to appeal which is usually called fresh claim. When a human rights or asylum claim has been refused or withdrawn or treated as withdrawn under paragraph 333C of these Rules and any appeals relating to that claim is no longer pending, the decision maker will consider any further submissions and, if rejected, they will then determine whether they can result to a fresh claim. The submissions will amount to a fresh claim if they are significantly different from the material that had previously been considered. The submissions will only be significantly different if the content had not already been considered; and taken together with the previously considered material, created a realistic prospect of success, notwithstanding its rejection (Home Office, 2011).

A question that arises is whether the UK would have to change the practice of detention of asylum seekers in accommodation centres (such as Oakington and Harmondsworth) in the light of the Reception Directive. Article 7(2) allows Member States to ‘decide on the residence of the asylum seeker’ for reasons of public order, public interest or ‘where necessary, for the swift processing and effective monitoring of applications’. This provision seems to address the Oakington justification, but it does not seem to cover detention. The provision covering detention, on the other hand (Article 7(3) in combination with Article 2, allows for confinement to a particular place ‘when it proves necessary, for example for legal reasons or reasons of public order’. There is no specific reference to the swift processing of applications. However, the provision is deliberately open-ended and non-exhaustive. The UK Government argues that domestic practice is not affected, while JUSTICE, on the other hand, argues that the provision must be interpreted very restrictively.

Those detainees can be family, single mothers, single person, foreign national prisoners who have completed prison terms for serious crime but who then refuse to comply with the law by leaving the UK (Home office 2011).

There are at least 280,000 people living in poverty in Britain after having their leave to remain refused. Some of them are appealing those decisions. Some just go completely underground, taking their chances on the streets of the UK with no money or shelter (Independent news, 2007).

The second stage will be to receive refugee status if the application is successful. From there, they will have the rights to work, to education (included university access), health, travel but they are not allowed to go their home countries until they are granted British citizen. A convention travel document issued to an adult will usually be valid for 10 years if they have permission to stay in the United Kingdom permanently (known as ‘indefinite leave to remain‘). Indefinite leave to remain (ILR) is an immigration status granted to a person who does not hold right of abode in the United Kingdom (UK), but who has been admitted to the UK without any time limit on his or her stay and who is free to take up employment or study, without restriction. When indefinite leave is granted to persons outside the United Kingdom it is known as indefinite leave to enter (ILE). If they have temporary permission to stay in the United Kingdom (known as ‘limited leave to remain‘). Limited leave to remain (LLR) is an immigration status which will allow a person to stay in the United Kingdom for a period of two or five years according each individual’s case, their convention travel document will usually be valid for the same period as your permission to stay here, up to a maximum of five years ( Home Office, 2010). Under the terms of the 1951 UN Refugee Convention, a state has the right to withdraw refugee status from any individual once it is safe for that person to return to their homeland ( Human Rights Watch,1995).

There is a waiting period before applying for the citizenship which is normally five years. They also require evidence to cover the relevant five- year period, because they will to see if you were in the country. The document which they require can be P60 tax certificates; or; an employer’s letter confirming employment; or a benefits letter confirming job seekers’ allowance claimed; or a benefits letter confirming incapacity benefit claimed; or documentary evidence confirming pension received.

If they commit an offence for example drink driving, being involved in any kind of criminal activities, the waiting period can increase to ten years.

There is a fee which must be paid in full according to the status. If you are single person and want to apply for naturalisation the fee is ?836 and for couple, its ?1294 (Home Office 2011).

There is a written test which is required before applying called evidence of knowledge of English and life in the United Kingdom and there is charge of ?35. The next step will be to attend the nationality checking service which cost ?60 for single and ?90 for couple, and can be different depending on which county council you decide to go to (Home Office, 2010). The nationality checking service is provided by local authorities (for example your county council or city council)

A local authority can accept and forward your application to us. They will ensure that your form is correctly completed, and they will copy your documents and return them to you. They will ensure that your application is validly submitted and that the unavailable requirements for citizenship are met. However, they will not give you nationality advice.

All applications for citizenship are subject to enquiries to ensure that the statutory requirements have been satisfied. Because of these enquires, we anticipate that applications may take up to six months to complete. Some applications may be dealt with more quickly and some may take longer, depending on the nature of the enquiries to be carried out.

To conclude this essay, I would to say that my view on the asylum seekers has changed. First of all, the government should change some policies about the asylum seekers because the UK is a country which respects human rights. My main concern was the way detention operates in case of an asylum case being refused. Children should not be in the detention centre. Child asylum and the detention of children for immigration purposes has been the subject of widespread media attention, and Channel 4’s Dispatches programme on Monday 29 November discussed 3 cases (Home Office, 2010). The government should make an end to the detention of children for immigration purposes, and should work with a number of charities representing children and asylum seekers to achieve this end.

My other issue is that the government should let those people who want to work while they are waiting for decision on their immigration to be made because the state losses by having to support them financially. For example, by issuing a temporary work permit, because some of these asylum seekers are intellectuals and the fact they forced to rely on benefit might create a level of low self-esteem. Citizenship’s fees should be revised as in my opinion, they are in elevation. There have undoubtedly been positives (as well as, presumably, negatives) from past patterns of immigration.

Now, however, they must focus, without the left/right prisms, on agreeing future economic migration policy. Politicians, in preparing the ground for debate, must put aside party politics.

They need to assess how many people can live sustainably in the UK, and turn our conclusions into policy. They have a finite resource: land. It is about that, and about housing, infrastructure, public services, water, and the effects of climate change, communities and government’s responsibilities to its citizens (Guardian, 2011).

References
BBC (2010) asylum seekers [online] available from bbc.co.uk/news/10180564.stm> [ 7 July 2010]

Guardian(2010) immigration [online] available from http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/apr/18/david-cameron-opening-door-immigration-debate [18 April 2011]
Helton, A, ‘ Refugees and human rights’, In Defense of the alien 1994, New York, 1994
Human Rights Watch, return to Tajikistan: Continued Regional and Ethnic Tensions, New York, 1995.
Independent news (2007) starving asylum seekers [online] available from < http://independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/asylum seekers are-left-to starve -in-britain-397576.html> [22 October 2007]
J. Crisp and C. Nettleton, Refugee Report. British Refugee Council, 1994.
Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, s 103(1). New appeal rights were introduced by the Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants, etc.) Act 2004 in two circumstances: (a) for failed asylum-seeking families refused support on the ground that they failed to leave the UK voluntarily (s 9); and (b) in relation to the withdrawal or refusal of section 4 (hard cases) support (s 10).
OFSETD (2003) asylum education [online] available from < http://ofsted.gov.uk> [October 2003]
Home Office( 2010) asylum and immigration [online] available from [ April 2010]

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Free Essays

How has Human resources management (HRM) evolved to become a strategic, integrated and coherent approach to employment?

Introduction

Human resources management (HRM) has evolved over the decades to become a strategic, integrated and coherent approach to the employment, development and well-being off the people working in an organisation. Duncan (2001) has highlighted that the evolution of HRM impacts on the management of intellectual capital with organisations making them a source of competitive advantage. The existing literature also highlights the importance strategic human resource management (SHRM), to create organisational potential by ensuring that the organisation has all its needs to attain sustained advantage. However, it becomes a value adding function leading to integration and adaptation.

IKEA

Maintaining a strong IKEA culture is one of the most crucial factors in the continued success of the concept” – Ingvar Kamprad, Founder of IKEA

IKEA’s Innovative Human Resources Practices and Work Culture have focused on key positive human resources management initiatives and their evolution to achieve strategic objectives and goals of the company. Of note, the history of IKEA can be traced back to 1940’s when Kamprad formed IKEA on the basis of contemporary business model of the company thus engaging in retail of flat packed home furniture (best and most successful innovation) and other house wares. The IKEA case study shows how human resource management (HRM) approach that focuses on nurturing and developing staff as a means of achieving corporate aims has led to growth, success and creativity of the company

A key description of IKEA HR style of management is that a strategy for HRM is included largely in its corporate strategy.. Notably, the IKEA business strategy has evolved over a number of years comprising of creative and innovative designs at affordable cost. In 1955, IKEA created a bridge between itself and its competitors through the introduction of furniture that could be dismantled and packed into flat packages thus making it convenient for buyers to carry and easily transport furniture to their respective home and also reducing the cost of the furniture as the buyers could assemble the items themselves with use of company instructions. One cannot contend the facts that IKEA has aligned it organisation as a low cost producer of a standard “no frills” product. Notably, IKEA adopts cost leadership and also known to have differentiated it products.

What is Employee Engagement?

While each company may assign different meanings to employee engagement, the most common key to effective engagement will be embedded in the flexibility of approach most appropriate for each individual firm. For example, the company may consider a ‘best practice’ and then establish the likely result of this practice in its workplace.

Kahn (1990) described engaged employees as being fully physically, cognitively and emotionally connected with their work roles. However, Macey et al (2008) defined employee engagement as a term used to depict the degree to which employees are concerned with, dedicated to, enthusiastic, and passionate about their work. William Kahn’s landmark study on engagement did not however have a direct focus on the person; Gubman argued that where the person works and what the person does is a major component of engagement. Kahn did however acknowledge that individual differences might influence the kinds of roles employees’ find engaging or disengaging as well as personal experiences of meaningfulness, safety and availability of resources. Moreover, engagement has been seen to involve dynamic use of emotions and behaviours, with cognitions. Finally, engagement may be considered as an antecedent to job involvement in that individuals who practice deep engagement in their roles should come to classify with their jobs.

Why is engagement an important issue in the organisations todayFor any organisation to be successful, it must have an engaged employees. Disengagement of employees affects business success. Research done by Towers Perrin, shows the organisations with higher levels of engagement outperform their competitors in terms of performance and profitability on aggregate by 17%. In 2002 Watson Wyatt found that the high commitment organisations outperformed those with low commitment by 47%. According to a survey conducted by employee Benefit research (2008) dissatisfied employees decided to retire because they had felt undervalued, in order words employees who choose to retire had not been highly engaged in their work Kahn in his concept of engagement points out that lack of commitment, motivation can affect organisations performance. To this, Seeman (1972) added that restoration of meaning at work can help enhance employee’s motivation and attachment to work. Employees’ survey can be used effectively to measure an organisation engagement levels.

The key components of Positive Human Resources Management and Culture that have been mentioned in the case study have been discussed in the following discussions:

Work Culture:

The link between organization culture and HRM is clear. HRM activities contribute to the development of an organization’s culture and provide it with a competitive edge by stimulating and reinforcing the specific behaviors needed to achieve the organization’s objectives

“Maintaining a strong IKEA culture is one of the most crucial factors behind the continued success of the IKEA concept’ from the founders style it is evident that, IKEA treasures the organizational culture as one of the key Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM) elements that have led to the creation of an effective and efficient workforce

It may not be possible to define an ideal culture or to prescribe how it can be developed but one thing is certain; the embedded culture of any organisation can exert considerable influence on organisational behaviour thus leading to increased performance. In IKEA positive HR policies were supported by a strong and nurturing culture that promoted diversity and creativity. According to Spiers Lopez, Ikeas culture promotes family like quality that made relationships between employees strong and open thus leading to creativity and innovation as the diverse backgrounds and perspectives of employees mimic the diverse workplace. IKEA beliefs that a diverse workforce will help improve business results, strengthen its competitiveness and make IKEA a better place to work for it co-workers and this promotion of diversity can be a source of employee engagement. In order words it can be noted that IKEA HRM has being linked with its culture and notably this has help the organisations performance.

It should be noted that it is the existence of organizational culture that induces a collective sense of belonging across the organization at every level can be seen in IKEA.

Cost awareness and consciousness is another IKEA values that goes in hand with its business. It can be seen in the case study that in IKEA this leads to overall cost reductions and duplication of tasks is reduced creating a lean operational base, thus strengthening the key strategic goals. In IKEA constant openness and adaptability to Change is encouraged and stressed as it leads to creating agile workforce which can work under the stress of changing and turbulent market place. Of notes IKEA foundations of openness to change was the key to contiguous success and employees were encouraged to keep coming up with new idea and methods to do things. Zero Error that leads to low rework and achieving the aims in one cycle rather than deploying more resources and time to finish the same task is another important factor IKEA values.

POSITIVE HUMAN RESOURCE PRACTICES AND CULTURE IN IKEA

IKEA Vision was to create a comfortable place for it co-workers in Spiers-Lopez statement “IKEA values the individual. We make people comfortable here and enable people to grow”. Motivation is the force that causes people to do things as a result of individual needs being met. Steers and Porter (1991) defined Motivation as set of forces that cause people to behave in certain ways, however Mitchell (1982) states that motivation is the degree to which an individual wants and chooses to engage in certain specified behaviours. It should be noted that the key role played by SHRM has been in attracting, keeping and motivating high performers in the contemporary business environment. Depiction from IKEA case study highlights that the IKEA’s SHRM policies have led to significant fall in employee turnover, i.e. from page 10 of the case study given, fall in employee turnover to 6% in 2001 to 56% in 2002, and only 35% in 2003, thus prominence rise drift in motivation of the employees to be a part of the organization above longer durations than before. The costs of turnover can be notably high which involve both explicit and implicit costs.

Maslow hierarchy of needs

Application of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs in workplace

In the light of data provided in the IKEA case study it should be noted that motivational techniques used by the company have ranged between Maslow’s hierarchy of needs i.e.: psychological, safety, love, esteem, and self-actualization.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs evidently identifies the responsibility of employers to present a workplace environment that encourages and enables employees to discharge their own distinctive potential. The establishment of such needs will promote individual employee engagement and retention and the organisation in achieving its strategic aims.

However, In IKEA it is important to note that the need of an employee varies in psychological makeup, position, experience etc it is therefore important to integrate non financial rewards with financial rewards to achieve greater employee engagement and retention.

The design of work environments that provide a sense of challenge and meaningfulness for employees has become a priority for the managers of IKEA. Drawing upon Kelly and Albert (2005), it has been highlighted that individuals are in diverse stages of their psychological increase and have different unmet needs, therefore highlighting the diversity of motivational factors that are fitting for each individual. For this reason IKEA then dropped their application of traditional standardized policies to make an effective use of resources being allocated for the purpose of motivating individuals; as IKEA’s vision was to “create a better everyday life for the many people” which include the employees, customers and community at large.

IKEA has invested so much on motivational approaches resulting in substantial cost for the company; however it should still be noted that the company should streamline its motivational offerings. It is suggested that the company should analyze the techniques based on their integrative nature and should put aside techniques that are either unpopular or have other similar techniques in practice. It is evident that IKEA will go extra mile to satisfy its employees need in order for them to gain their engagement i.e. IKEA shift from the standardised and uniformed policies to a set of initiatives that supports life balance and diversity and this will not only motivate employees but also promote employee engagement.

Flexibility and Work Life Balance in IKEA:

Flexibility was the cornerstone of IKEA’s human resource management. With flexibility IKEA gave due importance to the fact that employees had a life beyond work; therefore incorporated policies that would help employees achieve life balance.

Notably, various research beliefs that a flexible working condition is vital to retain employees in the organisation. IKEA introduced flexible working conditions for its employees e.g. creation of quiet rooms for relaxation, prayer or meditation; lactation rooms for the benefits of nursing mothers; and entertainment rooms for receiving friends and family. These initiatives have led to the view of IKEA as a paternalistic company where employees felt a sense of belong and security.

IKEA traditionally observed six holidays every year in the late 1990’s to further enhance flexibility among employees IKEA initiated six holiday schedule, flexitime, and telecommuting. IKEA promoted a range of personal techniques like allowing employees to schedule their work with their spouses’ working hours. Although it should be noted that such personal flexibility provided motivated workforce, i.e. Lori Schilling an IKEA employee from California said the flexibility policy was a major help to her when she adopted a child in 2003 where she arranged to work only on alternate fortnightly however the management of these techniques have been complex. The advantages of the flexible working arrangements presented in IKEA case study includes reduce absenteeism, improve staff commitment, increase retention rates and reduced employers cost that all subsequently turn into better overall performance of the organization. Therefore it shows a positive relationship between the flexible working conditions and the psychological contract between the employees and the employer.

Learning, Training and Development:

According to Armstrong (2006, p. 531), Human Resource development (HRD) is concerned with provision of learning, development and training opportunities in order to improve individual, team and organisational performance.

Training is referred to as planned acquisition of knowledge, skills and attitudes required to perform well in a given role Gunnigle et al (2006), development is the acquisition of skills and abilities that are required for future roles in the organisation. IKEA encouraged its employees to pursue courses that had potential application to retail sector and also gave bonus for employees who stayed with the company for one year.

Mentoring is one of the key techniques used by IKEA in deciding training and development requirements of each individual. Spiers-Lopez said mentoring made employees feel supported, and helped them grow within the company. Gibb (1994) has defined mentoring as “a relationship in which an individual takes a personal interest in another’s career and guides or sponsors that person” (p. 47). Drawing upon David (2004), mentoring can be linked with career advancements and mobility, especially for the minorities and women. Therefore, it should be highlighted that the method is being successfully used within IKEA to wholly motivate workforce to stay with the company. The ongoing training also helped employees to stay in touch with the latest within the industry and also to benchmark their performance against best practices across different industries.

IKEA has used initiatives that lead to unbeaten reflective practice, e.g. the program titled “Paddle Your Own Canoe” is a self assessment tool that trained employees to take responsibility for their own careers and gain knowledge they required to move into higher positions within IKEA system in future ; mentoring is therefore part of succession planning but may require a lots of managers time and effort It should be noted that such reflective practice has led to the development of culture that supports employees in taking responsibility of their own actions and allow them the necessary resources to improve the knowledge gaps that can be the underlying reasons for these lapses. Notably, in IKEA on the job training is a vital tool used by the company in early 2003 and this allowed employees to train actively with the person whose job they would like to hold in the future. IKEA encouraged transfer of employees between departments so that the value creative knowledge is disseminated across the organization to a certain extent than staying with a small group of employees.

Recruitment and Selection:

There has been a strong link between the psychological contract of an employee and the recruitment process that they have been passed through. It should also be noted that recruitment and selection process are very important in keeping the fresh ideas coming into the organization (Rolf, 1999). The case study has highlighted that IKEA has focused at recruiting and selecting new employees that share similar values and beliefs so that they do not have any problem in integrating into the corporate culture of the company and facilitate the process of achieving strategic goals of the company.

While IKEA has promoted the policy of hiring for within, they therefore has developed an “OPEN IKEA” system where jobs are open for in-house employees first. It should also be noted that IKEA furthermore developed another system called ‘Enterprise’, which is aimed at hiring new workforce and this has transferred the recruitment process to internet, where the delays in recruitment process can be minimized and positions can be filled quickly without any loss of valuable time.

How can IKEA promote employee engagement?

To promote for high level of employee engagement in any given organisation there is a need to actively manage IKEA organisations culture. Notably, the culture of IKEA values people, by providing enriched job is more likely to promote employee engagement. Consequently, organizations considered as an ‘employer of choice’ are more likely to attract and retain the best talent and have higher levels of engagement. Effective communication is another factor that can promote high level of engagement in IKEA. Different methods of communication can help drive high levels of employee engagement. Of note, Communication played an important role in IKEA. Analysis from the IKEA case shows that with a view to promote open communication, IKEA adopted a flat formation with no hierarchical distinctions. Communication does not only keep the employees in the picture but it also enhance motivation and commitment needed for organisations goal thus it can help improve relationship which can lead to high level of engagement in IKEA. Leadership style has been proven to help promote high level of engagement. In IKEA leaders are expected and encouraged to behave the way they expect their co-workers to behave valuing respect, encouraging initiatives and creating a feeling of well-being.

In conclusion, to achieve long term success of IKEA there is a need to high level of employee engagement. When organisations show that they truly and genuinely care and value employees through it policies they tend to generate and engaged workforce. IKEA has shown several initiatives that promote employee flexibility and well being and thus these initiatives have been proven to promote employee engagement in organisations.

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www.papers4u.com

www.shrm.com leveraging employee engagement for competitive advantage : Hr’s strategic Role (2007)

www.ecch.com w

ww.ICFAI.com / Ikeas Innovative Human Resource Management Practices (2005)

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Applying Marxism to contemporary issues of work and employment

Introduction

Marx’s extensive writings about society, economics and politics, hold that all society progresses through class struggle. He was particularly critical of capitalism. Marx argued that current society is run by the wealthy middle and upper classes purely for their own benefit and predicted this would produce internal tensions (and eventually self-destruction and the rise of a new form of society, socialism). Marx’s ideas of ownership of production, alienation and power relationships may play a key role in explaining contemporary issues in work and employment such as lack of job security, having a voice within the workplace and discrimination.

As stated in “The workplace and social democracy in the post-crisis age”, the financial crisis and recession have caused a change in attitudes towards employment relationships. More now than ever employees worry about job security. Marx belonged to a period of industrial society, whereby factories had thousands of employees all under one authoritative figure, the Boss or Manager. Job Security in this era was not a massive issue as it is now in contemporary times. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation in 1999 published the results of Job Insecurity and Work Intensification survey and showed that job insecurity had steadily been rising since the second world war. The majority of job insecurity lay in the manufacturing industries and blue-collar workers during the 1970’s and 1980#s but at the beginning of the 1990’s professional and managerial workers had their first great exposure to job insecurity. The information age which we now live in has cost many civil servants their jobs, due to streamlining of systems through computer technology. White collar workers were much less prepared for the changes affecting their occupation. Because redundancy had never occurred to these workers before, the idea of unemployment caused most to experience anxiety and insecurities. Some argue this is an overreaction when compared to the bigger issue of insecurity experienced by the working classes (Giddens, 2009). Anxieties from job insecurities can lead to “loss of control” and a link has been made between job insecurity and poor overall health (Burchell et al, 1996). This feeling of helplessness against impending unemployment can be explained by Marx’s theory of alienation. Blauner (1964) argued that the introduction of automation to factories has reduced worker alienation. Automation has helped to “integrate the workforce and gave workers a sense of control over their work that had been lacking with other forms of technology”. Evidently having a sense of ownership towards your work and feeling part of a community diminishes alienation and in turn will diminish any sense of job insecurity: as workers will feel their role within the workplace is needed. Richard Sennett (1998) conducted a study of workers in a bakery which had an automated high-tech production line. Ironically none of the workers were actually bakers but workers trained in how to use the machinery, but only how to use the machinery. The “bakers” had no physical contact with the bread at any point. Computers decided every aspect of the baking process. However, despite the workers being skilled with computers, not one was trained in how to fix the computers when they broke, causing massive disruption amongst the production line. Sennett found that the workers wanted to be useful and fix the computers but did not because the automation had destroyed their autonomy. Computer technology within the workplace has not only led to an increase in workers’ skills but also a group of clerical, service and production workers who lack autonomy in their jobs, are alienated from their work, and lack job security.

Another issue concerning work and employment in the UK currently is the movement of work. In a bid for maximum profit, some companies have moved the work from its country of origin to developing countries, where the work is cheaper. Now British companies such as Primark and Matalan have been accused of exploiting workers in these other countries because of their extremely low pricing. It is widely known that transnational factories in developing countries use sweatshop conditions, child labour and pay exploitative rates of pay. Any codes of conduct put in place are either sneakily avoided or completely disregarded altogether: “research consistently revealed an inadequate, if not poor, level of integration of CSR and Code compliance responsibilities in the internal structure of MNEs and suppliers” (ILO, 2003). However, as wrong as we may think this is, it could be argued that there has just been a shift in location of exploitation. Marx argued that the bourgeoisie, or the owners of production, exploited workers during the period of feudalism. Society was divided into peasants who worked on the land and nobles who were paid in terms of both crops and labour in return for protection, during this period wages were practically unheard of. For Marx, owning land and being able to take food from peasants if fundamentally different from being a peasant working on the land. Peasants (according to Marx) were a group with shared interests and attitudes and nobles were another. This still applies to today’s world of transnational corporations (TNCs). TNCs open factories in developing countries where cheaper labour can be found. The motives between TNCs and nobles are not all that dissimilar. Although TNCs have the resources to choose where to place their factories, such as technology, money and power, whereas nobles were born into a position of power and had no desire to move as they were meant to serve a duty to protect the fundamental relationship between owner and producer are still the same. Nobles wanted to extract maximum surplus and gain power, peasants wanted to be free or at the very least have more to eat. The introduction of towns and technology created a possibility for “free” labour it actually only led to new classes such as bankers and guilders and thus created new conflicts. In modern day society Marx’s theory of class conflict and exploitation is still relevant. TNCs take the role of the nobles or the owner of production and sweatshop workers take the role of peasants, exploited for their cheap labour in order for the TNCs to gain maximum profit and inevitable more power.

Increasing intensity of international competition, particularly from Far Eastern countries, where wages are lower, weakens unions’ bargaining power (Western, 1997). In the early development of modern industry, workers had little or no political rights and very little influence over the conditions of work in which they were employed. Unions were developed in order to restore this imbalance of power between workers and their employees. Through Unions workers influence within the workplace was considerably increased. Originally, unions were set up as defensive organizations; workers could stop any overwhelming power that employers enforced on workers’ daily lives. Now, workers have negotiating rights with employers (which means they can press for economic benefits and any problems within the workplace can be discussed). Unions have essentially enabled workers to have a voice within the workplace and in turn have helped the working classes battle through their struggle with the bourgeoisie, as Marx highlighted. “Of all the classes that stand face to face with the bourgeoisie today, the proletariat alone is a really revolutionary class. The other classes decay and finally disappear in the face of modern industry, the proletariat is its special and essential product.” Marx depicted the working classes as in a constant resistance to acquire a voice/power and the introduction of Unions, especially the dramatic influence Unions gained after the second world war, has made this a possibility. However, alongside international competition, there are several other factors that have created a fall in union density within industries. High levels of unemployment due to recession in the world economic activity, particularly during the 1980s has weakened the bargaining power of labour and the introduction of right-wing governments such as Margaret Thatcher in 1979 led to an aggressive assault on unions throughout the 1980s. These attacks on unions can be seen replicated in the recent conservative coalition government as well. But possibly the most prominent of union failings was seen during the National Union of Minors strike in the UK in 1984-5. Marx believed that “the proletariat … is a revolutionary class” and that at some point the working classes would rise against the owners of production. However, this is unlikely to occur any time soon. Union membership has declined considerably in industrialized countries and right-wing governments are not the only source of blame. High unemployment and more flexible production decrease the force of unionism (unionism works well when many people work together in large factories and there is a collective atmosphere). Having considered this though, Unions are highly unlikely to disappear. Workers individually have very little say or power when it comes to their employment and rely heavily on unions to provide this type of support. The collective strength that unions give to workers enables the proletariat to carry on with their struggle against the bourgeoisie and as long as unions continue to work hard in stabilizing their position within the economic and political sphere then trade unions are likely to be here to stay. However, the chances of their ever being an uprising as Marx has suggested in his writings is dubious. Dwindling memberships to unions suggest people are losing faith in union support and this implies that workers have almost given up in their “struggle”.

One of the aims of unions is to eradicate discrimination within the workforce. Discrimination in the workplace has always been a recurring issue. Gender divisions within the workplace have never been eradicated, nor has ethnicity (not fully anyway). Divisions of labour between genders have been evident in humanity for thousands of years. Inequality in modern day society is seen as wrong. From an economic view point not making use of everyone’s maximum potential regardless of their gender, class or ethnicity is wasteful. From a Marxist perspective, societies that have inequality will suffer. But for women, it can be questionable if women are in the job market at allWomen suffer from a dual burden (Young, 2000). In modern society women are expected to maintain a job whilst dealing with domestic chores and childcare. Because of these responsibilities thrust upon women, women are more likely to be found in certain job sectors which tend to be low in status. Women are more likely to be found in “poor quality” jobs (part time, temporary, low pay, long hours, unpleasant, few benefits). Again this seems unlikely to be choice (or not “free” choice) but some have argued that these jobs reflect women’s preference for jobs compatible with home life and child care. Marxist feminists argue that men benefit from family life at the expense of women. Women as mothers are pressured by culture to have children and to take time out of the labour market to bring them up. These children become the workforce of the future at little or no expense to the capitalist class. This also benefits men, because it means that women cannot compete on a level playing field for jobs or promotion opportunities if their first priority is looking after children. But this male dominance is not universal. Some men are even discriminated against in the workforce due to their class or ethnicity. Factors such as language skills intervene causing racial preferences within the workplace. The “job application culture” we live in requires individuals to give off first impressions that dazzle, however many companies look for image or whether you would “fit” in to the company. Not having UK qualifications may make applications harder (if an employer does not recognise a level of qualification he is likely to disregard it). Ethnic minority groups come under discrimination, however not all the time and not everywhere. In some companies whereby international relations are crucial to their business, languages skills may come in useful. But still discrimination occurs, whether it is gendered or ethnic. Arguably not making full use of a persons’ skill is wasteful. Economically it should not matter who a person is or what a person looks like for a job to get done. And Marx, in this instance, is correct in stating that not making full potential of every worker will cause society to suffer. Not just at the level of the company, but also at the level of the individual.

Bibliography:

Blauner, R. (1964) Alienation and Freedom (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press)

Burchell, B. Et. al (1996) “Job Insecurity and Work intensification: Flexibility and the Changing boundaries of work” (York: YPS

ILO (2003) “Business and code of conduct implementation: how firms use management systems for social performance” (Geneva: ILO), mimeo

Jameson, H. 22 March 2011, “The Workplace and social democracy in the post-crisis age”, Policy Network, http://www.policy-network.net/articles/3981/The-workplace-and-social-democracy-in-the-post-crisis-age, Accessed 25th March 2011

Marx, K. Communist Manifesto.

Sennett, R. (1998) The corrosion of character: The personal consequences of work in the new capitalism (London: Norton)

Western, B. (1997) Between classes and market: Postwar Unionization in the Capitalist Democracies (Princeton: Princeton University Press)

or put poshly – appropriate the fruits of our labour

but

here is the problem

according to marx

in the evil capitalist system

the capitalist (the factory owner) pay the exchange value of labour for an individuals service

which is only enough to keep him alive

but the capitalist gets the use value of his labour (the total value of the labour)

or put poshly – appropriate the fruits of our labour

but

here is the problem

according to marx

in the evil capitalist system

the capitalist (the factory owner) pay the exchange value of labour for an individuals service

which is only enough to keep him alive

but the capitalist gets the use value of his labour (the total value of the labour)

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Development of Employment Law

Abstract

Employment law faces amendments since its inception. Its aim was to charter employee rights against unjust employers. This paper analyses employment law based on the key sections that include essential bills. It also views external factors that lead to the formation of the employment law.

Introduction

The United Kingdom employment law has developed considerably in recent times. This was mainly done to shield employees from unjust employers. However, that is not the only cause for the push for improved employment law. As we will see in the paper, employment laws can be pushed by other factors such as political promises by governments, compliance to foreign policy and pressure from other countries.

The Unfair Dismissal Act

The Unfair Dismissal Act 1971 was a vital step in employment law under the Industrial Relations Act. Since its inception, employers lost their freedom to dismiss employees as they wish (Bell, 2006). For an employer to sack an employee, it has to happen through the right legal framework. Employees have their rights protected through this act meaning dismissal should be based on very strong grounds such as gross misconduct. The Act gives little privilege to employers on instances where they can terminate the employment of an individual. This means that before the employer does so, he or she must be ready to defend the action in front of an Industrial Tribunal (Blanpain, 2007). Employers dislike this regulation due to the high number of regulations it has.

According to The Guardian, the new proposal by Beecroft presents a delicate situation for the survival of the Unfair Dismissal Act. The proposal gives all laid off workers the same status and allows them to claim compensation (Turner, 2013). This means it will be a matter of ‘how much’ compensation to give to employees. This bill has elicited mixed reactions with equal numbers expected to support and reject it. In the case of employees rightfully dismissed, the bill indicates they can successfully claim compensation. This might be pleasant news for the ‘unfaithful’ employees, but bad news for honest business persons. Small firms are likely to fall prey to this directive. Employees who seek reinstatement after termination will also be affected. The advice most lawyers would give is for the employee to claim compensation and move on to another employment opportunity.

The Equal Pay Act

The legislators established the Equal Pay Act 1970 to consider women employees. To date, women receive the same pay as their male counterparts where the same work rate is involved. The Act also binds employers to set up contracts that promote equality between men and women (Blanpain, 2007). Where a contract favors a man more than a woman, the Act asserts that the woman shall receive same benefits as the man. However, there are provisions for limitations under the Act which apply when the woman is pregnant or retires (Kidner, 2006). Benefits of women facing such prejudice follow the Sex Discriminatory Act and Pension Act respectively.

Sex Discrimination Act

In 1986, the Sex Discrimination Act was amended to guarantee that discrimination in small companies, households and employment, and at retirement age, was eradicated. This proved to be a significant step under the employment laws. In 2008, the Act got a further boost with new regulations (Hardy, 2011). The Act introduced regulations on employee harassment and discrimination claims on grounds of pregnancy and maternity leaves. The regulations bind the employer to third party harassment claims from the employee. For instance, an employer should defend an employee acting on company interests against a customer. The employer should be tied in a suit involving the two parties. If necessary, the employer should be entirely responsible for the employee including the legal suit fee involved.

The Act helps solve disputes; a case in London in recent years is the acquitting of a CEO of a top performing company (Turner, 2013). He proved in court that one of his employees blackmailed him to get a promotion and added benefits. The court report indicates that employee turned genuine public sexual advances from her boss into blackmail. Most of the witnesses supported the plaintiff in alleging it was an act of sexual discrimination. Despite all that, the defendant still won the case.

The Race Relations Act

The Race Relations Act of 1976 applies to discriminations involving race, color, nationality and ethnic groups (Bell, 2006). This is extremely beneficial to employment law especially when relating to groups considered as minorities in working environments. The Act covers employees through all stages of employment starting from how companies should recruit workers, their training and transfer, promotion opportunities, employee benefits, terms for employee termination and eventually conditions defining unfair employee treatment (Cushway, 2007). This legislation covers both direct and indirect discrimination claims. Case laws by tribunals get published for future referencing especially for similar cases.

The Act offers exemptions when referring to jobs that require genuine occupational qualification (GOQ). This refers to cases where the job description refers to either specific ethnic groupings or races (Lewis, 2004). Such workplaces include restaurants or the film industry for actors and models. For instance, Chinese restaurants commonly hire employees of Chinese descent for obvious reasons. Therefore, cases with no qualifications to meet the criteria for such exemptions are easy to handle. This Act also assists employees who find themselves in such environments but do not belong to the said groupings (Kidner, 2006). In this case, an employee with an African descent working in a Chinese restaurant or an Italian restaurant gets the necessary cover.

Benefits for Women Employees

Following developments in employment law, more women have been encouraged to pursue professional careers. This is because highly rated jobs have become within the rich of women due to the developments. This explains the significant rise in the number of women in the corporate world. The amendments in the Sex Discriminatory Act 1986 mean homosexuals get same benefits like any other employee. This is now in line with the European Union’s Foreign Policy to ensure that homosexuals receive the same treatment as heterosexuals (Lewis, 2004). This is no longer a Human Rights issue but a political issue. It is a challenge for the government especially when critics challenge homophobic violence.

The Equal Value Amendment 1983 is an improvement of the Equal Pay Act 1970 which gives women benefits based on the work rate. The two laws are still more or else the same; the former was instituted to comply with EU directives. The Part-Time Workers clause under the Employment Act 1995 is also less significant for such employees who bear that title (Bell, 2006). A part-timer contract is not as weighty as a permanent employ meaning the employer can terminate employment without notice. This is a great disservice to such employees.

Benefits to Persons with Disability

The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (DDA) and a further amendment that upgraded it to the Disability Discrimination Order 2006 (DDO) aim to end discrimination facing people with disability (Hardy, 2011). This law was developed to encourage people with disability to seek opportunities in different sectors. Their rights extend to areas of employment, education, buying or renting property, and access to goods and services. The same law created seats for people with disability in public boards. Under the EU directives, all marginalized groups should be represented in such bodies.

The Transfer of Undertakings

Employees from transfers of business faced contract termination in past times. However, through the European Union directives, the UK legislature formed the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) TUPE 1981. The regulations cover employees who transit between two different managements. The second employer is bound to maintain employees under the first employer. TUPE 2006 replaced TUPE 1981 with additional provisions that include outsourcing of staff. TUPE case laws are particularly direct, and their referrals easy to use. There are numerous previous cases showing different compensation amounts paid to employees. Tribunal judges use such information to give verdicts on current cases (Bell, 2006).

Development of Employment Law under Coalition Governments

Britain had two eras from different governments that spearheaded the changes the electorate desired. In 1979 under Margaret Thatcher, the Conservative Party ascended into power with enormous expectations that were accomplished in the first decade. Economic growth was a main characteristic in the Conservative era. Eventually, the Labour Party clawed back into power after 18 years under a young and vibrant Tony Blair. Dubbed the ‘New Labour’, the party took over the reins in 1997 and achieved a total economic turnaround in the first years of administration (Pitt, 2009). The public’s expectations were so high leading to numerous policy improvements.

The 1997 Labour Party implemented new policies freely unlike the 1979 Conservative Party which implemented policies over fear of court battles. The new Government aimed at solving the national social concerns that the Conservative Party ignored. The government introduced the National Minimum Wage (NMW) for employees based on their age, and whether one is an apprentice (Holland, 2012). However, an employee has to be at the school leaving age to get the wages. Unlike the NMW, the Equality Act 2010 was drawn due to pressure from external forces, especially other EU countries (Hardy, 2011). Despite the forceful implementation, employees have equal rights regardless of gender, age, religion, race and sexual orientation.

Recent moves by government and opposition leaders to curb unions affect the development of employment law. In as much as unions have rights of their members at heart, their leaders end up taking advantage of union positions. As witnessed in the past, decisions by the union chiefs do not reflect the opinion of the majority of union members (Pitt, 2009). The new proposal stating that for a union to carry out a strike it would need majority backing from members is beneficial to the government. The move is also politically instigated due to the financial support offered to political parties.

With the recent move by Tory MPs to push for a referendum by 2017, the odds on some sections of the employment law hang in a balance. The referendum’s aim is to hand over the decision to the public to either stay or pull out of the European Union; this is according to an article “Tories fight off 11-hour filibuster over EU referendum laws” in The Telegraph dated July 18th 2013. According to many silent voices, leaving the EU might be a wrong decision with regards to long term plans (Turner, 2013). For instance, in the event Britain manages to pull out of the EU, then it is possible that new laws might not meet international standards (Holland and Burnett, 2013). Sensitive laws affecting the public including the employment law will be left in the hands of legislators to decide.

However, the opposition indicates that the referendum calls might be a hoax from the Conservative Party to try and misdirect the public. According to an article “EU referendum bill: MPs back in/out poll by 304-0” in The Independent dated July 5th 2013, the Labour Party say the referendum issue is not a matter of national interest. Douglas Alexander, the shadow Foreign Secretary, said that the move was a sign of weakness and not strength. He added that it was a sign of external electoral threat spiced with internal leadership threats.

The Agency Workers Directive (AWD) 2010 was a brilliant idea in solving unemployment cases. More people have since been employed through this initiative (Hardy, 2011). However, its regulations under employment law are rather displeasing to employers. Initially, the joint cost for outsourcing workers from an agency was low compared to permanent workers due to extra costs (Holland, 2012). Currently, the government requires that agency and permanent workers be paid same (Benny and Jefferson, 2012). This indicates that an employer will pay extra for the agency worker. In addition, employers tend to avoid tribunal cases involving such workers.

Case Laws

Case laws are written materials containing judges’ explanations on rulings made. Judges may refer to rulings made earlier or statutory laws. Some current cases may be similar to previous cases (Turner, 2013). In such instances, judges may make similar rulings or alter the ruling based on self-understanding. Reference is still made to the previous case, and reason for deviation also stated (Cushway, 2007). This shows that the same altered ruling can be used later in the future. Statute laws on the other hand, are additional laws mostly from assented bills. At times, they offer further interpretation on the main law.

Conclusion

Employment laws are subject to further amendments in the future whether internally or through external influence. As long as Britain will still be a member of European Union, it has to stand with other members under common directives. This makes some British statesmen call for the disintegration of the EU. Whether the move will succeed, is a story for another day. What is essential currently is that the government ensures favorable employment laws for its people to ensure economic growth.

References

Bell, A. C. 2006. Employment law: textbook series. London, Sweet & Maxwell.

Benny, R., Sargeant, M., & Jefferson, M. 2012. Employment law, 2012 and 2013.

Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Blanpain, R. 2007. The global workplace: international and comparative employment law: cases and materials. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

Cushway, B. 2007. The employer’s handbook: an essential guide to employment law, personnel policies and procedures. London, Kogan Page.

Hardy, S. T. 2011. Labour law in Great Britain. Alphen aan den Rijn, The Netherlands,

Kluwer Law International.

Holland, J. A. 2012. Employment law 2012. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Holland, J. A., & Burnett, S. 2013. Employment law. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Kidner, R. 2006. Employment law 2006-2007. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Lewis, D., & Sargeant, M. 2004. Essentials of employment law. London, Chartered

Institute of Personnel and Development.

Pitt, G. 2009. Employment law. London, Sweet & Maxwell.

Turner, C. 2013. Unlocking employment law.

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Free Essays

Employment law

Abstract

There are two employees both of whom are having difficulties with the employer Computer plc (the company). At this initial point, it is noted that both employees have been employed for a period of more than two years and therefore both employees could potentially bring actions for unfair dismissal, or would potentially be eligible for redundancy payment, if either of these situations are deemed to be appropriate[1]. In the case of Norman, he has not actually been dismissed but is facing an increasingly difficult working position whereas Duncan has been dismissed by the company and therefore both situations will need to be dealt with individually and the law applied individually.

Introduction – Norman

Norman is employed on a permanent, full-time contract and originally this contract stated that he would be required to work within a specific geographic region. Attempts were made by the management team to change his contract of employment to include a much broader mobility clause, which the company is now seeking to enforce by requiring Norman to move to any other part of the country, originally on a temporary basis, but potentially on a permanent basis.

Insertion of Mobility Clause

Norman stated that he was unhappy with this new two year contract, but continued to work for the company for a prolonged period of time and therefore it could be argued that he had, by implication, accepted the change of terms. Of particular relevance is the Aparau case[1]. In this case, a mobility clause was inserted into a contract as a change which the employee never accepted but did continue to work for the company for a period of over a year. As the mobility clause has not had an immediate effect on their day-to-day working, the fact that they have continued to work could not be seen as an implied change to the contract, which has been accepted. Based on this, it is argued, in this case, that Norman has not accepted the change to his contract of employment and therefore the mobility clause requiring him to change his location of work to anywhere in the UK would not be applicable to him[2].

Constructive Dismissal

The question therefore moves on to consider whether this would be deemed to be a sufficient change of contract that Norman could refuse to work for the company and resign and argue that he had been constructively dismissed, which would potentially give rise to a claim of unfair dismissal. In order for unfair dismissal to be claimed, the individual must necessarily have actually been dismissed, unless there is some action by the employer which is so substantially in breach of the contract of employment that it is reasonable for the employee to consider themselves dismissed. As noted by Lord Denning, constructive dismissal takes place where the actions of the employer are such that the employee can argue that the breach has gone to the heart of the contract and the employee can no longer be held to be bound by such a contract[3].

In order for constructive dismissal to be established, it would be necessary for Norman to show that there had been a repudiatory breach of contract and this is done on an objective basis, meaning that the personal situation of Norman in relation to his wife would not be relevant in considering whether or not the employer has behaved in a way that would be deemed to be in repudiatory breach.

Consideration would also need to be given as to whether the actions of the employer were within the range of reasonable responses and given the background to the reason why the vacancy became available in Exeter, there is at least a potential argument that the employer had acted in a reasonable manner by requiring Norman to cover the role of the Exeter sales representative for a period of time[4]. This discussion in relation to the reasonable responses shown by the employer would also be relevant if it came to the situation that Norman was arguing unfair dismissal from his position[5].

Based on the analysis here, it is argued that Norman were to be moved to Exeter on a potentially permanent basis, it could be deemed reasonable that there has been a breach of the contract. Based on this Norman could argue that he had been constructively dismissed, although it would however be necessary to look in more detail at the situation of the employer to see whether there are other sales representatives who may have been available and how reasonable it was to select Norman[6].

Finally, therefore, it would be then be possible for Norman to argue that he had been unfairly dismissed and to establish a schedule of losses which would reflect what he had lost from losing his position with the company[7]. It is probable that the company might argue that Norman had been dismissed for some other substantial reason such as the business needing to have an individual placed in Exeter in order to cover the injured sales representative. It would be necessary to look in more detail at the precise situation within the company and how reasonably it had acted when it came to selecting Norman as the individual to cover the region and whether there would have been other individuals who would be more suitable or more amenable to this transfer.

Summary for Norman

Based on previous case law, it is argued that the mobility clause would not have been incorporated into Norman’s contract and therefore any attempt to move him outside of the geographic location of his original contract could potentially be viewed as a repudiatory breach and he could argue that he had been constructively dismissed. This would then allow him potentially to bring an action under unfair dismissal, if he could show that the employer had behaved in an unreasonable manner towards him. This would be both an objective and a subjective test and therefore more information would be required in relation to the situation within the employer company, although on the face of it, Norman has a strong argument to support the claim for unfair dismissal against the company.

Introduction Duncan

As was also the case with Norman, Duncan has been employed by the company for a period of more than two years and therefore has protection from being unfairly dismissed. Duncan has been subject to a disciplinary procedure in relation to his performance and has been more recently dismissed as a result of having alcohol in his blood system after a lunch time trip to the pub. However, a complication has arisen in relation to this latter issue, as it became apparent that he was spiked by another employee and did not knowingly consume alcohol. The key issue here therefore is whether or not Duncan has been fairly dismissed and whether the company has followed the necessary disciplinary procedures in order to effect his dismissal[8].

Unfair Dismissal

The main statutory provisions which are relevant in this regard are contained within the Employment Rights Act 1996 which lays out the rules in terms of determining whether or not the dismissal is fair or not (Section 98). The requirement is put on the employer to show the reason for the dismissal and to show that the reason is fair or potentially fair.

In this case, it is stated that Duncan was dismissed due to alcohol having been found in his blood system, something which is deemed to be gross misconduct in accordance with the contract of employment. On the face of it, therefore, and based on the case of Abernethy[9], an argument could be presented by the employer that, based on the facts which were known to them at the time of the dismissal, it is reasonable and fair to dismiss Duncan. However, a difficulty emerges with this argument being presented by the company, due to the fact that the company had been made aware of the events which led up to Duncan testing positive for alcohol and the fact that he had been spiked by his colleagues.

Although it is noted that there have been concerns in relation to Duncan’s performance at work and he has been subject to several meetings in relation to this, the facts here indicate that Duncan was in fact dismissed by virtue of his alcohol intake. The position would be different if the company had gone through an informal process of attempting to improve the performance of Duncan and had ultimately dismissed him on the grounds of conduct and performance, but this is not the case and the issues here revolve around whether or not his dismissal for gross misconduct of having been drinking during a lunch break was on balance, fair and reasonable.

Case law has argued that determining whether or not there has been an incidence of gross misconduct which would justify the dismissal of Duncan is a mixture of both fact and law[10].

Although it is stated that consuming alcohol is deemed to be gross misconduct, when applying this to the facts resented here, there is a strong argument that the reasonable response from an employer when faced with these facts would not be deemed as being gross misconduct, because the individual had not willingly consumed alcohol and therefore it would be potentially unreasonable for the employer to dismiss on this basis. This is particularly relevant when considered alongside the fact that the individual who undertook the spiking is not facing any form of disciplinary action.

Disciplinary Procedure

A further issue has emerged regarding the way in which the disciplinary procedure was undertaken, as Duncan was told that there would be no point in appealing his dismissal. This raises the question as to whether or not the ACAS code has been followed and failure to follow this code could result in an uplift of compensation for Duncan, if he is found to have been unfairly dismissed[11].

When a tribunal is faced with the decision as to whether or not an individual has been fairly dismissed, it will look not only at the reasons for dismissal but also if there are multiple reasons. Each individual reason will then be looked at to see whether the employer has acted reasonably, based on all of the information available. It is this latter issue that potentially presents Duncan with the best opportunity to argue that his dismissal was unfair as, by refusing to take into account the fact that he did not willingly consume alcohol and this has now been proven by the confession of his colleagues, it could certainly be argued that to consider him for gross misconduct would be unreasonable[12]. The test in this case was laid out in Burchell which is to look at what the employer reasonably believed at the point of dismissal; therefore, as it had not been made apparent that Duncan had not voluntarily drunk alcohol, there may have been some argument that the employer could have presented that it had acted fairly. Despite this, and with reference to the facts presented here, it is suggested that the dismissal of Duncan for consuming alcohol which he did not voluntarily consume, with no reference made to the individuals who spiked his drink, would not be deemed to be a reasonable reaction and the dismissal would therefore be deemed to be unfair. By refusing to allow an appeal to take place, this would be in breach of the ACAS disciplinary codes and this would potentially result in an uplift of up to 25% on the compensation awarded[13].

Summary for Duncan

Although Duncan was subject to disciplinary procedures in relation to his performance the issue that has been raised here is in relation to gross misconduct by virtue of alcohol consumption. There is reasonable evidence to suggest that dismissing Duncan because of the consumption of alcohol would not be a reasonable reaction from his employer, based on the evidence that has been provided in relation to the fact that Duncan was in fact spiked. Failure to allow him an appeal was also a potential difficulty for the company and could result in an uplift of the compensation being received.

References

Abernethy v Mott, Hay & Anderson [1974] ICR 323

Allders International Ltd v Parkins [1981] IRLR 68

Aparau v Iceland Frozen Foods plc [1996] IRLR 119

Bell, A (2006) Employment Law. Sweet & Maxwell p.137

Bournemouth University Higher Education Corporation v Buckland [2009] IRLR 606

British Home Stores Limited v Burchell [1978] IRLR 379.

Burnett, S and Holland, J (2012) Employment Law 2012, Oxford University Press, p.227

Collins, H (2010) Employment law. Oxford University Press p.167

Emir, A (2012) Selwyn’s Law of Employment, Oxford University Press, p.509

Employment Act 2008

Employment Rights Act 1996

Iceland Frozen Foods Ltd v Jones [1982] IRLR 439

Sandwell & West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust v Westwood UKEAT/0032/09

Western Excavating (ECC) Ltd v Sharp [1978] ICR 221

Categories
Free Essays

Do women still face a glass ceiling in employment?

Abstract

The following study focuses on the problem of gender inequality in employment. While general employment opportunities for women has significantly improved over the past decades, many scholars and researchers argue that women still meet obstacles with regard to being promoted into top-level management positions. Such barriers to women’s career progressions are popularly known as the glass ceiling.

The following research seeks evidence of the glass ceiling on the global labour market by an in-depth analysis of relevant statistics and data on gender inequality. The research revealed that indeed, the glass ceiling still exists on the labour market. Women are strongly underrepresented in management-level positions. Additionally, female executives are paid lower wages compared to their male counterparts. The glass ceiling is largely a consequence of insufficient government efforts towards breaking the glass ceiling as well as of masculine corporate culture that often do not support women’s individual development.

Introduction

Historically, women were facing disadvantages in all spheres of life including health, education, politics and the labour market. Over the past decades, international bodies took steps to tackle the problems of gender inequality and women’s empowerment. In 2000, the United Nations listed gender equality amongst its Millennium Development Goals to be achieved by 2015. UNICEF constantly develops new programmes aiming at equitable education access for girls and boys so that they have equal career opportunities (UNICEF, 2012). In turn, in 2010 the EU established the European Institute for Gender Equality focused on eliminating sex discrimination and protecting women’s rights in the member states (Purcell et.al., 2006).

Without doubts, these steps brought numerous benefits to women. The enrollment ratio of girls to boys in primary and secondary education is equivalent to 97.2 (2010), while the female labour participation rate, measured as a percentage of all females ages 15 and above, reaches 51.2% (2011). Also the gender pay gap has gradually narrowed (World Bank, 2012). While the women’s situation on the labour market improved, they still face significant challenges with regard to career advancement to senior executive positions. According to the consulting company, Accenture, women share only insignificant proportion of senior level positions. Moreover, female senior executives are paid lower wages than male senior official. This phenomenon relates to both the developing world as well as the most advanced economies such as the US, the UK and Australia. In turn, the World Economic Forum revealed that the world’s largest employers fail to establish optimal environment for women’s professional development (The World Economic Forum, 2010). These facts suggest that the gender glass ceiling, the invisible barrier to women’s career advancement, still exist on global labour market, preventing women from promotions to senior level positions.

The aim of this research is to seek evidence of the glass ceiling on the contemporary labour market. First, the essay briefly discusses the concept of the glass ceiling. Second, it demonstrates evidence of the gender ceiling based on selected international and national studies on gender inequalities. Finally, the essay concludes key findings and presents policy recommendations.

The glass ceiling

The term “glass ceiling” was used for the first time in 1984 by the editor of Working Women magazine, who states that “Women have reached a certain point –I call it the glass ceiling – in the top of middle management and they’re stopping and getting stuck” (Boyd, 2012, p.1). However, the official definition was introduced in 1991 by the US Department of Labour. The glass ceiling was described as “artifice barriers based on attitudinal or organizational bias that prevent qualified individuals from advancing upward in their organization into management-level positions”[1] (Boyd, 2012, p.2). Cotter et.al. (2001) postulate that the glass ceiling cannot be used to describe all forms of gender inequalities in employment. He proposes four criteria that help defining this phenomenon. First, the glass ceiling can be acknowledged if gender inequalities cannot be proved by other job-related features of employee such as education, experience or skills because these features are the same for female and male employees. Second, the glass ceiling can be assumed if the degree of gender inequalities at management level is higher than such the degree for non-managerial and nonprofessional positions. In case gender inequalities are the same at all different employment levels, a “common pattern of gender inequality” (Cotter et.al., 2001, p.4) is observed rather than the glass ceiling. Third, the glass ceiling does not refer only to the current shares of female and male representatives in the executive boards, but also to potential promotions within a particular time period. The authors explain that current proportions largely reflect previous conditions. For instance, if women decide to leave jobs more often than men due to expected poor career opportunities, automatically more men will be in the executive board even if promotion rate were even. Fourth, the glass ceiling is strongly related to career trajectories. Gender inequality grows with career advancement – at higher career level women face more discrimination cases than at lower career levels[2] (Cotter et.al., 2001).

The concept of the glass ceiling has often been criticized. The opponents argue that in practice the glass ceiling does not exist. Women face career barriers due to their own choices such as childbearing or family responsibilities. These decisions have an impact on lower wages and delayed career advancement. Thus, the institutional and structural settings cannot be blamed for gender inequalities at work (Boyd, 2012). Also Simpson and Altman (2000) argue that the traditional concept of the glass ceiling needs to be reinterpreted. Their studies revealed that young women are equally treated to their male counterparts in terms of career advancement and wages. However, career development is more challenging for elder women who are often refused promotions. Thus, the glass ceiling is punctured. The authors also postulate that the glass ceiling appears more commonly at top management level, at which men are more likely to be promoted. Thus, the glass ceiling should be seen as time bounded.

Evidence of the glass ceiling in employment

While gender inequalities are strongly visible in developing countries, advanced economies are characterized by almost equal access to education and employment for women and men. In this context, the fact that women are strongly underrepresented in the senior executive management constitutes perhaps the best proof of existing glass ceiling. Numerous international and national studies seem to undertake the glass ceiling topic, seeking evidence of its presence in employment.

Following the Grant Thornton estimations, in 2011 female representatives accounted for 20% of senior management positions globally. These statistics were based on 6,000 interviews with employers in 40 countries. As Appendix 1 shows, there are great disparities with regard to female senior management positions amongst the countries. Russia, Botswana and the Philippines are characterized by the highest rates of women in senior management. Surprisingly, the world’s most advanced economies such as the US, the UK or Germany have the rates falling below the global average rate. These figures indicate that in spite of available financial resources, the most advanced economies do not give a priority to women’s empowerment and their career development and thus, also do not constitute a role model for developing world in this area (GrantThornton, 2012).

Another cross-national research on employment equality was conducted by the consulting company, Accenture in 2006. The study included 590 executives from six countries (UK, Australia, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the Philippines). Research provided solid evidence of the glass ceiling in these countries. First, in 2006 women accounted for between 39-46% of the total labour force. At the same time, they represented from 4% (Switzerland) to 13% (Austria) of senior executive roles. Additionally, female managers were on average paid 79% of men’s salaries. Accenture also prepared the Global Glass Ceiling Index informing how thick the glass ceiling is with regard to three areas:

individual (professional competence and ambitions, career planning);
company (transparent promotion process, training programmes and mentoring);
society (equal career opportunities, government policy on women’s rights).

As Appendix 2 shows, the glass ceiling existed in all countries, but also in all three researched areas. Governments were mainly responsible for the thickness of the glass ceiling. The interviewees argued that government legislation did not support adequately women’s career development. The interviewees also admitted that corporate mentoring and coaching programmes were not designed to meet women’s needs and thus, did not facilitate women’s career development. Overall, employers were more committed to gender equality than national governments (Accenture, 2006).

Additional evidence of the glass ceiling can be gathered from the Corporate Gender Report 2010, prepared by the World Economic Forum. The research included 100 largest employers from the OECD countries and the BRIC countries. The research revealed that the majority of women in these companies performed entry- or middle-level roles, while on average 5% of female employees held the CEO-level positions. This report also identified general norms and culture in researched countries as well as masculine corporate culture as two key barriers to women’s advancement to senior leadership. Finally, the report informed that 18% of companies did not monitor salary differences between women and men, while other 15% established salary tracking policies but did not implement corrective measures. It suggests that a significant proportion of companies do not treat gender pay gap as a sign of women’s discrimination (Zahidi and Ibarra, 2010).

While the above-presented studies provide solid evidence of existing glass ceiling, it is crucial to briefly discuss a country-level analysis conducted by Ernst and Young. It is one of the most recent analyses of the glass ceiling (2012), which reveals new information on the phenomenon and adds value to this research. The survey included 1,000 adult women in the UK who jointly agreed that the glass ceiling was present on the British labour market face. More importantly, women argued that the concept of a single ceiling to enter the senior executive board was outdated, as they experienced multiple barriers throughout their career development. Ernst and Young defined four major challenges for women, namely motherhood, age, qualifications and experience as well as lack of role models. Not only can these barriers affect women at any time throughout their careers, but all of them (or a few of them) can appear at the same time. It proves again that women are constantly disadvantaged with regard to career advancement (Woods, 2012).

While the glass ceiling is confirmed by numerous analyses, some researchers come to very different conclusions on this phenomenon. This fact needs to be emphasized. For instance, the study of the US labour market conducted by Gayle et.al. (2009) revealed that women were more successful than men in terms of career development. Women were equally likely to be promoted as their male counterparts. Surprisingly, women were more likely to be promoted within the internal structures rather than by receiving an outside offer. Female executive tended to earn slightly higher wages than men. The authors explained visible gender inequalities in the executive market by “unobserved factors” (Gayle, 2009, p.28) such as tough unrewarding assignments, high competition, or indignities that are characterized for the senior management environment and that discourage women from climbing the career ladder. In case of women performing executive duties, these factors encouraged them to early retirement. Interesting findings also come from the aforementioned research conducted by Simpson and Altman (2001) on the British market. The glass ceiling affected elder women’s careers; however, it did not impact young women under 35. Young female generation was raised assuming that gender equality was their natural right, given at birth. Due to this perception and career-oriented minds, they are perceived by the employers as ‘high flyers’ (Simpson and Altman, 2001, p.195) rather than as women – they are treated equally to men in terms of career advancement. However, as women establish new priorities later in their lives (i.e. family), the employers see them again as women. Thus, their career promotion becomes more challenging at this later stage.

Conclusion

To conclude, the following research provided solid proofs that the gender glass ceiling still exists in employment across the globe. Not only women represent less than 20% of senior management roles globally, but they are also paid lower wages for performing executive duties compared to their male counterparts. The analyses conducted by Accenture and the World Economic Forum prove that the government policies seem to be significant obstacles to eliminating the glass ceiling in employment. The governments do not pay enough attention to equal career opportunities for men and women and they constantly fail to develop adequate policies to facilitate women’s advancement. Also companies seem to challenge women’s development in their workplace. The companies are typically characterized by a masculine corporate culture. They often fail to establish salary tracking systems and to correct wages disparities. Finally, the mentoring and coaching programmes offered by the companies are often inadequate to women’s individual needs and block their potential development. It is worth adding that the most recent analysis, conducted by Ernst and Young, reveals that currently women face multiple challenges in career advancement rather than a single ceiling. These multiple barriers often appear at the same time what seem to make women’s career progression more questionable.

In order to tackle the problem of the glass ceiling, the following policy recommendations were drawn:

The companies need to be forced to take equal career development issues seriously. Norway seems to be a good example to be followed. Norwegian companies are required to have 40% women in their management board. While such a percentage is quite challenging for most countries, setting lower but obligatory quotas is expected to work well.
The companies should also be encouraged to create own lists of good practice with a particular focus on women’s needs. Such companies can become role models, inspiring other companies to take similar actions, what is expected to result in improved working conditions for women.
Targeted actions should be implemented. Industrial and professional associations should actively challenge unfair practices and policies to provide better career opportunities for women (Purcell et.al., 2006).

List of references

Accenture (2006). The anatomy of glass ceiling. [online] Available from: http://www.accenture.com/at-de/Documents/PDF/TheGlassCeiling.pdf (Accessed on 28.11.2012).

Boyd K.S. (2012). Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity and Society: Glass Ceiling. Thousand Oaks: SAGE, pp. 549-552.

Cotter D.A., Hermsen J.M., Ovadia S. and Vanneman R. (2001). The Glass Ceiling Effect. Social Forces. 80(2), pp. 655-682.

Gayle G.L., Golan L. and Miller, R. (2009). Are there glass ceilings for female executivesPittsburgh: Carnegie Mellon University.

Grant Thornton (2012). Grant Thornton International Business Report. Women in senior management: still not enough. London: Grant Thornton International Limited.

Purcell K., Elias P. and Wilton, N. (2006). Looking through the glass ceiling: a detailed investigation into the factors that contribute to gendered career inequalities. Coventry: Warwick Institute for Employment Research.

Simpson R. and Altman Y. (2000). The time bounded glass ceiling and young women managers: career progress and career success – evidence from the UK. Journal of European Industrial Training. 24(2). Pp. 190-198.

UNICEF (2012). Basic education and gender equality [online database] Available from: http://www.unicef.org/ (Accessed on 28.11.2012).

Woods D. (2012). Glass ceiling is ‘outdated’, Ernst and Young survey of 1,000 women reveals. [online] Available from: http://www.hrmagazine.co.uk/hro/news/1074417/glass-ceiling-outdated-ernst-young-survey-women-reveals (Accessed on 28.11.2012).

World Bank (2012). The World Development Indicators. [online database] Available from: http://data.worldbank.org/indicator (Accessed on 28.11.2012).

Zahidi S. and Ibbara H. (2010). The Corporate Gender Gap Report 2010. Geneva: World Economic Forum.

Categories
Free Essays

Evaluation of an Employment Development Plan of Saudi Aramco in Saudi Arabia

Introduction

One of the biggest challenges of the modern business era is the retention of a talented and skilled workforce for business organizations. Business organizations are required to employ a dynamic strategy to respond to the needs and aspirations of their workforce. A smart, well designed employee development program can benefit a business organization to great extent in this regard. Prior research indicates that employee development program is linked to higher levels of performance and output. It can create a reservoir of knowledge which can enable business organizations to do better than their competitors.

The aim of the proposed dissertation would be to investigate employees’ development plan at ‘Saudi Aramco’ operating in the Saudi Arabia. Saudi Aramco is the state-owned oil company of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It is also a fully integrated, global petroleum and chemicals company. It is a world leader in exploration, production, refining, distribution, shipping and marketing petroleum products with operating in various parts of the world. The company manages the world’s largest proven conventional crude oil reserves of 259.7 billion barrels. Its average daily crude production in 2011 was 9.1 million barrels per day (bpd). It also has stewardship over the world’s fourth-largest natural gas reserves of 282.6 trillion standard cubic feet. The company’s headquarters is in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Its subsidiaries and offices span across the Kingdom. The company also maintains offices in North America, Europe and Asia. Like any major multinational firm, Saudi Aramco has a diverse workforce belonging to various nationalities. The company has more than 56,000 employees from 70 nations; around 7500 of those are expatriates (Saudi Aramco, 2012). The diverse workforce present in the organization needs to be managed in an efficient and effective manner.

The dissertation will try to identify the importance of ‘employees development plan’, investigate the current practices of the company’s employees development plan, evaluate its effectiveness, and identify common obstacles for employees development plan at the company. The dissertation will also propose some recommendations based on its findings for creating a viable employees development program. The dissertation will be divided into five chapters.

The first chapter will be comprised of the introduction, overview of the research, background, and research objectives. The second chapter will detail the research methodology. The third chapter will present a literature review and theoretical background of the research. Fourth chapter will present the findings and analyze the data. Finally, chapter five will present the results and conclusions of the research.

Research Objectives

Investigate to what extent does the company care for its employees through its employees development plan
Identify the significance of employees development plan
Investigate practices of employees development plan
Evaluate the effectiveness of employees development
Identify most common barriers for employees development plan

Research Questions

What is the employees’ attitude towards the company regarding its employees’ development plan
How employees’ development plan benefits the objectives and goals of the company
What is the significance of employees’ development plan for both the company and its employees
To what extent do the employees consider the employees’ development plan at the company efficient
What are the common barriers associated with the employees’ development plan at the company
Literature Review

Definition of employee development plan

Employee development plan has been defined as a set of planned efforts by an organization which facilitates the learning and acquaintance of knowledge, specific skills and behaviors for its employees; all of which are essential for them to be successful in their current jobs (Goldstein, 1993). Dotta (2009) defines it as a “sequence of concurrent activities, initiatives and programs that an organization is involved with to maintain, improve and enhance the skills, capabilities and performance levels of its workforce and other staff members”. Employee development plan encapsulates various individual development plans. According to Department of Defense of USA (2006), an individual employee development plan is “a tailored written plan developed by the supervisor and employee outlining the employee’s developmental objectives and the developmental activity for achieving these objectives. The purpose of an employee development plan is to increase the current proficiency, development, and progression of the employee through a systematic development plan”.

Based on aforementioned definitions, several important points can be stated:

Employees’ development plan is aimed at enhancing the capabilities and competencies of an organization’s workforce.
Employees’ development plan is designed according to training and development need analysis and employee-supervisor negotiation; both of which are governed by organizational goals and objectives.
Employees’ development plan is also crucial for the progression of a career path. Indeed employees development plan and career path complement each other. Although it is not necessary that an employee development plan is linked to specific positions; it is common for organizations to train and develop their employees to occupy critical positions in future.
Employees’ development plan first identifies the developmental objectives of an organization’s workforce. These objectives form the basis of several developmental activities designed to achieve these objectives. It identifies why, what and how to enhance the capabilities and competencies of employees.

Significance of employee development plan

In today’s business environment, which is characterized as multi-faced, highly complex, extremely competitive, and dynamic, organizations are required to be very flexible and adaptable in order to survive and succeed. Employee development, a practice that seeks to assist organisations in meeting their business goals through continuous learning and development (Harisson, 2009) is a critical element for achieving that flexibility and adaptability. So much that often human resource development personnel are qualified as ‘agents of change’ (Harisson, 2009). It is only through continuous, effective learning and development of employees that modern day organizations can acquire the essential competencies to adapt to a new conjuncture.

Best Practices in Employee Development Plan

Numerous studies have recommended several successful approaches towards employee development programs. There is a general consensus among researchers regarding the foremost need for an organization to conduct an analysis of its existing needs and requirements (Jacobs and Jones, 1995; Clegg et al, 2005). According to Jacobs, (1995) an employee development can be rendered meaningless if it does not respond to the organizational needs. Existing needs and requirements can be identified through an effective market analysis, analysis of existing and future labor trends. (Clegg et al, 2005).

Apart from the needs’ assessment, several best practices have been identified by human resource practitioners and researchers. A survey of best practices of 71 companies practicing employee development activities identified three underlying factors important for an effective employee development plan. These are: (1) individual development plans should be developed for key and high potential employees (2) the individual development plans and practices should be strictly aligned with organizational strategies and goals, and (3) the entire workforce should be facilitated for its progression through the developmental process (Reynolds, 2005). Another study prepared by LSA Global (2008) reveals that an effective employee development plan should share the following characteristics:

(1) Strategy driven: employee development plans should be linked with business strategy

(2) Positive cost/benefit ratio: return on investment of employee development plan should be ensured

(3) Employee development plan should be supported by key strategies, systems, structures, policies, and practices.

(4) It should be driven through various channels apart from formal training.

(5) Employees’ abilities should be maximized through shared ownership of development plans

(7) Learning by doing: “real” tasks and on-the-job projects within training environment should be offered

(8) Knowledge and skills acquired should be transferred back to the job:

(9) Development plan should be linked to other people-related programs (for instance they should be conducted by line managers).

(10) Continuous learning process

Rationale for the Current Research

Although there is a large array of literature on human resource development, practitioners often come under criticism for doing very little to evaluate the learning and development solutions that have been designed to deliver whereby significant and often scarce resources are allocated blindly in development plans that are considered to be effective (Harisson, 2005). When undergoing financial stress, organizations often downsize human resource development budgets. Human resource development personnel undergo tight scrutiny in justifying their expenditures and are required to prove the effectiveness of their employee development plans. Thus evaluation of employee development plan is a viable solution.

The importance of evaluation in further signified as the learning and development theory and practices in the modern day is undergoing a considerable change in order to keep up with new circumstantial requirements. In fact, one of the major changes occurring nowadays and in the upcoming years is the organizational changes driven by ‘higher integration between coaching, organisational development (OD) and performance management’ (CIPD survey, 2010: pg.6). Similarly, Sloman (2007) made several important propositions regarding the ongoing change in the employee development practices and approaches (see appendix 1). The shift in the learning and development approach and employee development practices signifies the importance of evaluating the current practices of an organization to see whether they are abreast with the prevailing best practices.

Additionally, employee development approaches and practices of the oil and gas rich Middle Eastern countries and the Gulf Nations is an under-researched area in HRM literature. Moreover, the available literature regarding employee development practices generalizes the Middle East and the Arab World rather than addressing individual countries or companies (Harry, 2007). The existing gap in the literature pays way for the current proposed study to evaluate the employee development plan at Saudi Aramco in Saudi Arabia.

Research Methods and Approach

Research Philosophy

Identifying a research philosophy is imperative for designing a viable research method as it determines the manner in which information regarding a research problem/question is collected, evaluated and applied. Researcher have identified mainly three research philosophies namely positivist and interpretivist and realist (Galliers, 1991).

A positivist research philosophy perceives reality as a constant phenomenon; something that can be perceived objectively (Levin, 1988). It is a stance of a natural scientist. According to Hirschheim (1985 p.33), “positivism has a long and rich historical tradition. It is so embedded in our society that knowledge claims not grounded in positivist thoughts are simply dismissed as ascientific and therefore invalid”. Interpretivism, on the other hand, seeks to understand reality from a subjective perception in order to make sense of motives, actions and intentions of those that they study. They emphasize the social construct of the reality (Husserl, 1965). Interpretivists contend that reality and its perceptions can be better understood by placing people in their social contexts (Hussey and Hussey, 1997). Realists believe that the existence of reality is independent of human thoughts, emotions and beliefs.

The research philosophy underpinning the proposed research is interpretivism. The research aims to evaluate the employee development plan of Maersk Oil through the perceptions, attitudes and beliefs of its employees, managers, and executives; thus it aims to gain subjective insights for evaluation.

Research Approach and Strategy

A research approach can be either deductive or inductive. The premise of a deductive approach is to test a hypothesis, explain casual relationships and enable generalization of a theory. On the other hand, inductive approach focuses upon building a theory by understanding a phenomenon or seeking an answer for a question. The approach adopted for the proposed research is inductive, as this study will look to identify the weaknesses or strengths or the current employee development plan at Saudi Aramco, and answer several proposed questions pertaining to its evaluation.

The research strategy for this study will be exploratory as it will aim at providing insights and understanding of the nature of the phenomenon under study in new light. Within the exploratory approach, this study will utilize both qualitative and quantitative data. On one hand, statistical analysis will carried out for the survey responses which will be distributed among the employees of a company, whilst interviews will be conducted with some senior officials and employees in order to gain insights regarding the evaluation of the employee development program. It will complement the understanding gained through the data analysis results.

Data Collection

According to Yin (1994), there are five ways of collecting data; these are “experimental, surveys, archival analysis, history, and case studies”. This research will utilize a survey strategy. According to Kelley et. al, (2003) “the survey strategy refers to the selection of a relatively large sample of people from a pre-determined population, followed by the collection of data from those individuals. The researcher therefore uses information from a sample of individuals to make some inference about the wider population”. For the purpose of evaluating the employee development plan, a questionnaire will be prepared, reviewed, and distributed to a random sample of Saudi Aramco employees. Survey strategy will allow the researcher to collect a large amount of data within in short time with minimum costs and efforts (Naresh et.al, 2003). Interviews, the qualitative form of collecting data within survey method, will be used concurrently. Semi-structured interviews will be designed and conducted of several senior officials at the company.

References

CIPD (2010), ‘Annual Survey Report : Learning and Talent Development’, Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, {online}
http://www.cipd.co.uk/NR/rdonlyres/BC060DD1-EEA7-4929-9142-1AD7333F95E7/0/5215_Learning_talent_development_survey_report.pdf (cited on 13th September, 2012)

Clegg ,S. et all, 2005: Managing Organizations: An introduction to Theory and Practice. Sage

Cohen N., 2002?Pressure on AP Moller to Be Open,” Australasian Business Intelligence, April 23,

Department of Defense of USA (2006) The individual development. {online} http://www.usuhs.mil/chr/idp.pdf (cited on 13th September, 2012)

Dotta, P.(2009) ‘What Is an Employee Development Plan?’ {online}: http://www.ehow.com/about_5161579_employee-development-plan.html (cited on 13th September, 2012)

Goldstein I. L., 1993 “Training in Organizations” (3rd Ed.) Pacific Grove, California: Books Cole

Harrison, R. (2005) Learning and development. 4th ed. London: Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

Harrison, R. (2009) Learning and development. 5th ed. London: Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

Harry. W (2007) Employment Creation and Localization. The crucial human resource issue for GCC. Int Journal of Human Resource Management. Vol. 18, no.1, pp 132-146.

Husserl, E. (1965), Phenomenology and the crisis of philosophy, New York: Harper Torchbooks.

Hussey, J. & Hussey, R. (1997), Business Research: A practical guide for undergraduate and post-graduate students, London: MacMillan Press Ltd

Jacob, R L and Jones, M J. (1995) Structures on Job Training- Unleashing Expertise in the Work

Place. San Francisco. Berrett Koehler.

Kelley, K., Clark, B., Brown, V., and Sitzia, J (2003) Good practice in the conduct and reporting of survey research. Int. Journal for Quality in Health Care. Volume 15, Issue 3 Pp. 261-266.

Levin, D. M. (1988). The opening of vision: Nihilism and the postmodern situation.

London: Routledge.

LSA Global (2008) ‘Top 10 training best practices for effective learning and development programs’. {online} http://jobfunctions.bnet.com/abstract.aspx?docid=375846 (cited on 13th September, 2012)

Naresh,M. et.al.,(2003) Methodological issues in cross-cultural marketing research. International Marketing Review. 13 (5) 7-43

Reynolds, S.(2005) Training and development managers share best practices and courseware through LearnShare. Toledo Business Journal. 5(2) 155-163.

Saudi Aramco (2012) ‘About Us’ {online} http://www.saudiaramco.com/en/home.html (cited on 17th September, 2012).

Sloman, M. (2007) ‘The changing world of the trainer: emerging good practice’, Oxford: Elsevier Butterworth-Heinemann.

Yin, R. K. (1994) Case Study Research. Design and Methods. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, Inc.

Categories
Free Essays

Youth Unemployment and Attitude towards Employment: Comparative Study between Migrants and Non-Migrants

Introduction and Background to the Research Area

The United Kingdom’s youth unemployment refers to the rate of unemployment among those individuals who are aged between 18 and 25. These figures are often used as part of political discussions to measure the general position of the economy, however it is contended in this research paper that there is a lack of understanding in terms of the factors that lead to youth unemployment in the first place. By targeting the background reasons, greater improvements can be achieved. The latest statistics or the rate of unemployment among youths in London shows that there are several individuals under 25 years of age who are not employed, which currently stands at 20% (Glaser and Rice, 2008).

In this research paper it is suggested that there are substantial difference between migrants and non migrants within an area and that this could in fact offer a strong explanation as to why youth unemployment is so prevalent in modern society. Migration refers to the movement of people from one place to another specifically in search of some economic or social benefit. Migrants refer to the people who move from one place to another in search of better opportunities, while non-migrants are the local people. Politically there have been several heated debates on the topic of employment among migrant youths and non-migrant youths, which has necessitated this study to establish the attitude of both sets of groups towards employment.

For example in Hackney, London, the number of employed migrant youths is higher, compared to that of non-migrants. However, the percentage of the migrant youths who are employed is higher than that of non-migrants. This suggests that non-migrants have a higher positive attitude towards employment than non-migrants The high rate of unemployment among young people in the country and London, in particular, has forced some media personalities and politicians to term it the “lost generation” (Hackney, 2013)

This paper aims to look at the attitude of youths towards employment by comparing the migrants and non-migrants in Hackney, London. It is believed that the attitudes of these young individuals might be the major reason why there are high levels of unemployment among young people in this region and more generally elsewhere.

Aims & Objectives of the Research

The rate of unemployment among the youth population has been a problem that has raised several debates among politicians and media commentators. However, it has been argued that the attitudes of the youth in Hackney, London, have been the major reason behind the increasing rate. The main objective of this paper is to examine the reasoning or the suggestion that it is the attitudes of these young people towards employment that makes them miss the opportunities to land some. The research aims to achieve its overall objective by seeking the views of the youths in Hackney, London, towards employment.

Purpose of the Research

The outcome of the research will be based on the findings from the data collected through interviews, which will later be analysed. The outcome will depend on the method of data collection, which will involve interviews conducted with the youth in the area, in order to test the hypothesis. It is anticipated that the results of this study will help the community in understanding what its young people want, in terms of employment, in order to support them in their growth and career development. In addition, the result will also offer guidance to employers when allocating the available opportunities to either migrants or non-migrants.

Importance of the Research

This research is important in the field of both academic studies and career development, as its results will enable the students, their parents and teachers to understand how best to equip these youngsters by focusing the latter’s attention on their future employment opportunities. It will also help potential employers in selecting the right people for various positions in their companies or organisations.

Research Approach

It is suggested that the best method for collecting data in this qualitative study is through the use of interviews. The aim of the interview will be to have the respondents reflect on their feelings towards employment and past experiences, while also attempting to communicate freely with the interviewers in such a manner that both interviewer and interviewee come to a mutual agreement concerning the experiences’ meanings. The format of the interview could involve informal chats or discussions between the researcher and the respondents regarding their responses (Salter, 2010). If the respondents want to give further information or expand upon anything they have said, the interviewer will then ask additional questions and encourage the respondents to give further information or explanations. The interviewer will have to clarify that it will be an open process and that the interviewee is free to question or ask for more detailed explanations, talk in a manner with which they are comfortable, or even pause, if they wish to do so. The responses should not be evaluated as being right or wrong by the researcher. The researcher should make it clear to the respondents that they are free to make any comments or give any information that they wish. The focus of the interview will be on the participants and attempting to ascertain their attitudes, values, opinions, experiences and beliefs.

Methodology

This research will take the form of structured interviews, which will be used as the method of data collection. The standardised interview or structured interview is typically used in quantitative research. The sample of the study will include 300 migrant youths into the country and 300 non-migrant youths. The migrant and non-migrant youths will be interviewed in order to establish their attitudes towards employment, in an attempt to confirm or disapprove the hypothesis that non-migrants have a negative attitude towards employment. The reason for interviewing the two sets of individuals is to find out whether the problem is confined to the migrant youth population, or both migrant and non-migrants. The structured interviews will take the form of questionnaires, which will be given to the interviewee by the interviewer who, in this case, is the researcher. The questions that will be used in the study will be literature informed. This means that the results will have been compiled and the questions will have a range of options. The formulation of the questions in the survey will be done by considering the existing literature. In addition, interviews will be used as the survey questions will actually be literature informed. The reliability and validity of the research will be measured by using the semi-structured interviews. Another significance or importance of the use of interviews is that they should help in obtaining additional information that may have been ignored by the current literature review.

Ethical Considerations

The safety and confidentiality of the respondents will be the major priority of this research. This will be undertaken by considering the benefit/analysis ration, and also through the use of information that is available to conduct the assessment and supervision of the study as it continues. The participants will be handled with the utmost care and they will be assured of the highest levels of confidentiality. Before any participant is involved in the research, their formal consent will be sought, in writing. The researchers will need to take care not to divulge any sensitive information that might have been provided by the respondents for their own safety. If there are any unpredicted findings in the study, as it progresses, the participants will be informed accordingly. The participants will be reassured that, in giving information, they will not be obliged to reveal any information which they chose not to do so.

Suggested Existing Literature

Several existing texts will be used as part of a detailed literature review to gain a background understanding of the issues facing the region and the general trends associated with unemployment. The following indicative initial bibliography is suggested as a starting point for the research project.

Blaikie, N. (2003). Analyzing quantitative data: From description to explanation. London: Sage.

Ford, M R 2009, The Lights in the Tunnel: Automation, Accelerating Technology and the Economy of the Future, Acculant Publishing.

Glaser, D, and Rice, K 2008, “Crime, Age and Employment.” American Sociological Review 24, no. 5: 679–686.

Greenberg, DF 2009, “The Dynamics of Oscillatory Punishment Processes.” Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 68, no. 4: 643–651.

Hackney 2013 “Hackney Facts and Figures Leaflet” Available at: http://www.hackney.gov.uk/Assets/Documents/facts-and-figures.pdf

Hochstetler, A, and Shover, N 2010, “Street Crime, Labor Surplus, and Criminal Punishment,” 1980–1990.” Social Problems 44, no. 3: 358–367.

International Labour Office. 2009, Bibliography of unemployment : covering the period 1920-1929, Geneve.

Isabel, T 2008, Bibliography of Unemployment and the Unemployed, Burt Franklin Publisher.

Moss, P, and Tilly, C 2009, Hiring in Urban Labor Markets: Shifting Labor Demands, Persistent Racial Differences. New York: Plenum.

Rifkin, Jeremy 2008, The End of Work: The Decline of the Global Labor Force and the Dawn of the Post-Market Era, New York: Tarcher–G.P. Putnam’s Sons.

Rusche, G, and Kirchheimer, O 2007, Punishment and Social Structure. New York: Columbia University Press. Reprint, New York: Russell and Russell.

Salter, H. 2010. Interview secrets. London: Collins.

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Research Proposal: Youth Unemployment And Attitude Towards Employment: Comparative Study Between Migrants And Non-Migrants

Abstract

Nigeria’s adolescent & young adult population (aged 15-24) is currently facing a crippling problem that will endanger the future of the nation. The median age data from the world.bymap.org website is used to define the term “youth migrant and non-migrant population, or youth population”. The median age of the migrant and non-migrant population throughout the developing world does remain in a late adolescent phase with ages ranging from the 15th birthday until the 24th birthday (world.bymap.org, 2013, median age). This study expects to find that youth population attitudes toward unemployment will be similar in the migrant and non-migrant populations. I seek to examine this assertion by carrying out a qualitative investigation on the relatedness of unemployment among the youth and their attitudes based on a population analysis of the youth among the indigenous non-migrant locals and migrant immigrants in Nigeria.

The migrant and non-migrant youth population is primarily located in Latin America and on the African continent to which Nigeria has a median population age of 19.1 (2010 Est.) (world.bymap.org, 2013, median age). Global unemployment rates among the youth population are on the rise (indexmundi, 2013, 1). The same case is observable in Nigeria where the number of unemployed youths accounts for more than half of the total number of unemployed people in the country (Youth Speak Community, 2013, 1. It has been suggested that attitudes of the youth may be the main reason behind the high levels of unemployment among the youth.

Introduction

The global rate of unemployment indicates high levels of unemployment among the youth. The median age data from the world.bymap.org website is used to define the term “youth migrant and non-migrant population, or youth population”. The median age of the migrant and non-migrant population throughout the developing world does remain in a late adolescent phase with ages ranging from the 15th birthday until the 24th birthday (world.bymap.org, 2013, median age). In fact, the rate of growth of unemployment among the youth population is higher that the case of adults (Alanana, 2003).

The reported incidence of youth unemployment is even higher in developed economies as compared to emerging and developing economies. However, in the recent years the cases have been so sporadic in developing countries especially in Africa (Alanana, 2013). This is because according to Alanana (2013), the numbers of the youth population is increasing at an alarming rate as compared to the rates at which job opportunities are being created. The case of unemployment among the youth in Africa is alarming and is currently a threat to social-economic stability and peace.

Nigeria is also a major immigrant destination in West Africa with over one million immigrant population. The youths accounts for a majority of the immigrant population. This represents about 0.7 percent of the population. The case of unemployment among the youth cuts across both the locals as well as the immigrants (Alanana, 2003). This paper purposes to analyse the case of unemployment among the migrant and non-migrant youth population in the country and how the attitudes affects the rates by analysing unemployment among the local youths and the immigrant youths in Nigeria.

Problem statement

Generally, the rate of migrant and non-migrant youth unemployment in Nigeria is very high. However, the rates of unemployment among the youth are incomparable to the older male working population in the country. Several reasons may be behind the abnormal differences in the unemployment rates between the youth and the adult population. Several studies have associated the differences in the unemployment rates between the migrant and non-migrant youth populations and other adults to the attitudes posed by the youths regarding job specifications. Other studies referenced in Alanana (2013), Youth unemployment in Nigeria: some implications for the third millennium have indicated that the local youth are very selective towards jobs as compared to immigrant youth. This dissertation will examine the extent of truth in this statement by generally observing the link between unemployment among the youths and their attitudes and also examine the attitudes of immigrant and local youths towards employment opportunities in the country.

Research objectives

This research study will be guided by the following objectives:

To analyse the link between unemployment among the youth and their attitudes
To analyse the difference in unemployment rates between local youths and immigrant youths
To examine how attitudes affects the differences in unemployment rates of the local youths and immigrant youths.

Organization of the study

This study will be divided into five chapters. The introduction will provide the background and need to study how attitudes influence unemployment in the country. This will also include a description of the research hypothesis, objectives, questions, limitations, assumptions, significance, and the approach adopted in the investigation. The second chapter will provide a detailed analysis of literature review of previous investigations relevant to the research problem. The third chapter will provide the research methodology that will be used in addressing the hypothesis and the research questions. Chapter four will represent all the data that will be collected and analysed in this planned study. Finally, the fifth chapter will delineate on the conclusions that will be drawn in the study as well as the recommendations.

Literature review

For the development of an effective gap analysis, this study will analyse several previous imperial investigations and authentic statistics on unemployment among the youth in the world and specifically in Nigeria. The literature review will focus on the unemployment among locals and immigrants on a general perspective globally as well as local perspective in Nigeria.

The literature reviewed in this study will be sourced from credible sources such as national and international newspaper sources that cover Nigeria, government publications and other academic journals to ensure that the process of gap analysis is founded on a comprehensive, valid, sound and reliable set of data. The study will focus on most recent studies and publications dating back to a maximum of 7 years ago to ensure the data used in the study represents the most recent situation as far as unemployment among the youth is concerned.

According to Youth Speak Community (2013), Nigeria, which is Africa’s most populated country, has one of the highest unemployment rates in the world. By 2011, the unemployment rate was at about 24 % of which the rate of unemployment among the youths was estimated to be about 50% (Youth Speak Community, 2013). However, the case is similar in many other African countries such as South Africa, Kenya, and Ghana, which have unemployment rates of 25%, 40 %, and 11 % respectively (Youth Speak Community, 2013).

The most critical issue affecting Nigeria and Nigerians today is the issue of unemployment and subsequently the problem in the future of unemployment is with current levels of youth unemployment in Nigeria (Bakare, 2013)Bakare states that World Bank statistical data list Nigeria’s youth unemployment rate at 38% (Bakare, 2013) but Bakare believes the real rate of Nigerian youth unemployment is closer to 80% (Bakare, 2013). The rate of youth population education continues to increase with Nigerian universities producing 150,000 graduates per year (Bakare, 2013), however; the rate of job production has not kept to pace with the production of university graduates per year (Bakare, 2013).

The focus of Nigeria’s future as a result of the youth unemployment problem is also part of the research agenda of the Nigerian Universities. The Department of Business Administration and Marketing, at the Delta State University are in the process of determining how the current youth unemployment crisis will impact Nigeria’s economic and social future. According to Salami (2013), The problems Nigeria faces tomorrow will depend on how the youth population of Nigeria matures as adolescents into adulthood. “Records from the National Population Commission (2001) indicate that youths under the age of 30 constitute over half of the approximately 150 million Nigerians. According to Doreo Partners (2013) unemployment rate in Nigeria is growing at the rate of 16% per year with the youth impacted the most and accounting for three times the general unemployment.” (Salami, 2013) Damilola (2013) describes the rise in unemployment in Nigeria as “one of the major social problems affecting the growth and development of this country.” (Damilola, 2013) The situation is described as so dire the population of Nigerians cannot meet basic needs due to the lack of jobs. Damilola also describes a problem of cronyism in Nigeria that awards jobs to college graduates with political connections rather than based on individual merit. The suggestion by Damilola is for the youth to be “creative and learn different vocational skills.” (Damilola, 2013)

A startling report by the Department of Sociology at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria has indicated that youth unemployment has led to a rise in violent crimes (Ajaegbu, 2012) The overall level of despair of the youth population is blamed for the level of youth unemployment. “By using the deprivation theory proposed by Ted Gurr, this study has explored the proximate and ultimate causes involving the youths in violent crimes. If factors that create the feeling of deprivation and frustration created by unemployment are addressed, Nigeria’s youths will not engage in violent crimes.” (Ajaegbu, 2012)

According to the Christian Science monitor, the youth unemployment problem leaves the Nigerian youth population so despondent that militant groups are better able to prey on these populations and recruit them into criminal organizations. “The vulnerability of unemployed youth in Nigeria’s northeast leaves them open to Boko Harem’s narratives, which have only been augmented by weak governance and the poor delivery of basic services. Boko Haram members, who live in the city’s poor communities, command the loyalty of those who have languished into poverty.” (Parker, 2013) This issue of militant groups in Nigeria leaves the migrant and non-migrant youth population prone to exposure of issues relating to criminality and recruitment into militant groups.

Methodology

The survey response questionnaire will be of a qualitative research design to measure the subjective response from the migrant and non-migrant youth population in Nigeria. The focus of the survey questionnaire will be to assess the sentiment, or feelings, of the youth population with regard to their current and future employment prospect. Qualitative research involves the use of a subjective inquiry into the survey questionnaire, which is necessary to establish a base for analysis to include meaningful words, observations, stories, individualities, and chromatic renders with minimal consideration of the number of participants (Higgs & Cherry, 2009). This approach will enable the investigation and examination of the youth unemployment issue with a small sample population, and hence allowing the investigation to proceed with a limited budget. Furthermore, since the investigation requires a deeper analysis and explanation on the links between attitudes and unemployment among the youths, the use of qualitative methodology will allow the study to analyse the objectives effectively.

The data will be collected from each participant of the sample population using interview questions derived based on the objectives identified in the introduction. The data will be coded by linking a number (1, 2, etc.) to each survey response question. The investigation will collect data via semi-structured interviews. After data collection is the analysis process. The analysis will be based on the observer’s impression as the main analysis technique. The use of observer’s impression has been proven to be simple and effective in producing in-depth analysis (Higgs & Cherry, 2009).

Ethical statement

Generally, this study will observe all the ethical requirements in all the processes of data collection and analysis as is expected under an Internal Review Board (IRB). Some of the factors that will be considered include protection of participants’ privacy and confidentiality.

Conclusion

From the above introduction, it is evident that unemployment among the youth in Nigeria is a major social and economic issue in the country. Developing a deeper understanding on the reasons behind the high levels of migrant & non-migrant youth unemployment is necessary to ensure effective steps are taken to deal with the issue. This study will provide an examination and render a conclusion to the notion of the assertion that attitudes of the youth contribute to the high levels of unemployment. This will expand the current knowledge on the issue of youth unemployment and hence allow policy makers to have a better understanding of the issue for effective policy development

References

Alanana, O. O., Youth unemployment in Nigeria: some implications for the third Millennium, Global Journal of Social Sciences, 2 (1), 21-26. 2013

Bakare, Bilikis. “Addressing youth unemployment in Nigeria.” BusinessDay |. 2013 http://businessdayonline.com/2013/11/addressing-youth-unemployment-in-nigeria/ (accessed November 21, 2013).

Higgs, J. & Cherry, N., Doing qualitative research on practice’, in Higgs, J., Horsfall, D. & Grace, S. 2009 (eds.), writing Qualitative Research on Practice, Rotterdam, Netherlands: Sense Publishers

F., J. “Why is youth unemployment so high?.” The Economist. 2013. http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2013/05/economist-explains-why-youth-unemployment-so-high (accessed November 21, 2013).

Salami, Youth unemployment in Nigeria: A time for creative intervention. International Journal of Business and Marketing Management, Vol. 1(2); pp. 18-26, July 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.resjournals.org/IJBMM/PDF/2013/July/Salami.pdf

Damilola, Saanu. “Nigerian Tribune.” How to tackle youth unemployment in Nigeria. 2013 http://www.tribune.com.ng/news2013/index.php/en/component/k2/item/18043-how-to-tackle-youth-unemployment-in-nigeria.html (accessed November 21, 2013).

Parker, Gillian. “In Boko Haram country, Nigeria’s new crackdown brings mixed feelings.” 2013. The Christian Science Monitor. http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Africa/2013/0528/In-Boko-Haram-country-Nigeria-s-new-crackdown-brings-mixed-feelings (accessed November 21, 2013).

Youth Speak Community, Youth Unemployment In Nigeria: Shocking Statistics, Facts And Why The Future May Not Be So Bright Afterall. 2013 Retrieved from http://risenetworks.org/2013/05/16/youth-unemployment-in-nigeria-is-there-hope-for-nigerian-youth/

“Median Age – world statistics and charts as map, diagram and table.” Median Age of the World. 2013 http://world.bymap.org/MedianAge.html (accessed November 21, 2013).

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Employment Law: Equal Pay for women in the workplace

Research Question

Has the Equality Act 2010 improved the way women are treated within the workplace with respect to equal pay?

Hypothesis Statement

The pre-existing struggles that women have been faced with in regards to equal pay have not been addressed by the recent reforms within this area. This is because, although the Equality Act 2010 was welcomed as a vehicle for the radical reform of equal pay, women are still treated less favourable than men. Accordingly, the problems that arose from the Equal Pay Act 1970 are still in existence and so further reform is needed if inequality is to be eradicated.

Case Law

Abdulla and others v Birmingham City Council [2013] 1 All ER 649

Allen v GMB [2008] EWCA Civ 810

Bates van Winkelhof v Clyde & Co LLP and another [2013] 1 All ER 844

Blackburn v West Midlands Police [2008] All ER (D) 50 (Nov)

Defrenne v Sabena (No 2) Case C-t3/75 [1976] ECR 455

Eaton Ltd v Nuttall [1977] ICR 272

Enderby v Frenchay Health Authority Case Case C-127/92 [1993] ECR I – 5535

Redcar & Cleveland BC v Bainbridge; Surtees v Middlesbrough BC [2008] All ER (D) 386 (Jul)

Ideas for Methodology Approach

In undertaking the research for this study, both a quantitative and qualitative approach will be undertaken so that a comprehensive analysis can be made. Both primary and secondary research will therefore be adopted by looking at various academic opinions, relevant legal rules, theories and principles. This will be done by accessing text books, journal articles, online legal databases and governmental reports. These can be accessed by undertaking a library search as well online databases such as Lexis Nexis and Westlaw.

Reference to Relevant Legal Theory and Social Policy Implications

The rights of women and men to receive equal pay has been subject to continuous debate for some time and the fact that women are still being discriminated against in the workplace suggests that the law cannot “effect genuine equality” (Smart, 1989, p. 3). This has serious social policy implications since it is made clear under s. 11 of the 2010 Act that discrimination on the grounds of a person’s sex is a protected characteristic and is therefore prohibited. Article 14 of the European Convention of Human Rights 1951, as incorporated by the Human Rights Act 1998, also protects women from being discriminated against within the workplace. Nevertheless, the fact that many organisations fail to treat men and women the same when it comes to equal pay suggests that the law is unable to protect women from discriminatory treatment within the workplace. As put by Rhode (1990, p. 617); “gender equality cannot be obtained under existing ideological institutional structures.” This causes legal implications in respect of equal pay and fails to allow equality for all to be attained (Wacks, 2012, p. 305).

Relevant Books, Journals and Reports

Baker, N. The Equality Act 2010. Company Secretary’s Review, Tolley’s Practical Business Fortnightly for Companies. 34 CSR 13, 102, Issue 13, (2010).

Bamforth, N. Malik, M. and Cinneide, O. Discrimination Law: Theory and Context, Text and Materials, Sweet & Maxwell Ltd, 1st Edition, (2008).

Connolly, M. Discrimination Law: Victimisation, Industrial Law Journal, ILJ 2002 31 (156) (2), Issue 2, (01 June, 2002).

European Industrial Relations Review. Report on Gender Pay Gap, 388 European Industrial Relations Review 28, (2006).

Equality and Human Rights Commission,.Equal Pay’ Creating a Fairer Britain, (2010), [available] from accessed 06 May, 2013.

Pigott, C. Employment: A Step Change for Equality, New Law Journal, 160 NLJ 749, Issue 7419, (28 May, 2010).

Pigott, C. Employment: Justifying Unequal Pay, New Law Journal, 159 NLJ 55, Issue 7352, (16 January, 2009).

Wilson, D. Playing Fair, Pay & Benefits, 38. Issue 7, (2010). Rowbottom, D. Re-Inventing the Collective Approach to Equal Pay, 155 New Law Journal 1701. Issue 7200, (2005).

Smart, C. (1989) Feminism and the Power of the Law, London, Routledge.

Smith, I. and Baker, A. Smith & Wood’s Employment Law. OUP Oxford. 10th Edition, (2010).

TUC. ‘The Union Makes Us Strong: TUC History Online’ [available] from < http://www.unionhistory.info/> accessed 05 May, 2013.

Wacks, R., (2012) Understanding Jurisprudence: An Introduction to Legal Theory, OUP Oxford, 3rd Edition.

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Employment Law and Employee Relations Assignment

Introduction

Employment relations between employers and employees are managed by several different sources. There are a variety of statutory provisions which govern the acceptability of certain behaviours by either party. Key legislative provisions that will be referred to throughout this case study include the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA) and the Equality Act (2010) EqA, amongst others. Each of the three situations here will be looked at individuals although it is noted that each of the three people in question are employees and there is no need to consider the tests of whether or not the individuals are self-employed or employed for the purposes of statutory protection (although this was not as clear with Sally, see below for analysis). Each employee has also been issued with a contract which is presumed to be compliant with the minimum statutory requirements. Each scenario will be looked at in turn.

Jim

The discussions associated with Jim and his recent civil partnership indicate that there is a prima facie argument being presented by Jim that he is being discriminated against by virtue of his sexual orientation. Jim has argued that he has been given a less favourable shift pattern and that this is due to his sexual orientation and his statement that he is likely to be seeking to take time off to raise a child in the near future. He has also indicated that he has been subject to abuse from a colleague by virtue of his sexual orientation. Jim is now off work ill and has suggested that he may wish to resign.

The danger from the Council point of view is that Jim resigns and states that he was constructively unfairly dismissed by virtue of his treatment due to sexual orientation. Although he has only been employed for a period of 18 months and this would typically mean that he had not have the appropriate qualifying period for unfair dismissal. However in accordance with section 19 of EqA there is no qualifying period and this therefore presents a danger to the Council. In order to potentially argue this, Jim would have to show that he had suffered from discrimination, harassment or victimisation in the work place as a direct result of his sexual orientation. In accordance with the EqA 2010 direct discrimination, indirect discrimination, harassment and victimisation are all outlawed.

Jim is seemingly arguing that he is being directly discriminated against as he is being given worse shifts than his counterparts who are heterosexual. In order to prove this there would need to be a comparator so that he could show that he has been treated comparatively worse than his counterpart, the comparator having circumstances that are not materially different to Jim (Shamoon, 2003). Therefore in this case it would be necessary to look at the treatment of someone who is in all ways similar to Jim with the exception of sexual orientation. The facts as indicated here are not sufficiently clear to show whether or not on balance Jim has been treated any differently than other colleagues with the revised shift patterns. There is also an additional concern faced by Malcolm in that in the case of Martin (2006). In this case it was held that the investigation of the grievance process was in itself discriminatory as the manager had failed to give the complainant the necessary time and attention, instead dismissing his grievance as petty. Malcolm’s response to Jim’s verbal statement is therefore a concern and although a formal grievance has not been raised the matter needs to be treated with greater concern in order to investigate the complaint fully.

In relation to the investigation of victimisation and harassment, the full process needs to be followed in order to comply with the requirement of the EqA to protect Jim. Section 26 of the EqA deals with the conduct that has the effect of being discriminatory by virtue of victimisation and harassment. Again the full facts have not been ascertained as yet and although Jim feels the emails are coming from a colleague this would need to be investigated fully.

The crucial aspect of this scenario however is to deal with the grievance in an appropriate manner. Malcolm’s previous brushing aside of Jim could in itself create allegations of discrimination and this needs to be rectified as a matter of urgency.

A failure to do so could result in Jim bringing a claim for constructive, unfair dismissal with the possibly of the tribunal awarding compensation for injury to feelings. This is aimed at being compensatory and not punitive but nonetheless presents a real danger to the Council (Corus, 2005).

Frank

This scenario deals with an employee that is known for several misdemeanours over the two years of his employment, most notably going out during the week and weekend and attending work in a manner that is seen to be unacceptable. His latest error as a result of this activity has resulted in a potential substantial loss to the Council. There is no indication that his action with the transcription error happened when he was doing anything outside of his authority within work. It is also noted that he is paid a minimum wage or ?5.13 at 19 years of age which does not indicate that he is an apprentice. That said being 19 and recognised to have substantial weaknesses in his performance which do not seem to have been picked up previously places the Council in a weaker position. Despite this, it is evident that his error has caused a substantial loss and as such it is reasonable for the Council to look towards a disciplinary.

The principles of fairness when conducting a disciplinary are contained in the ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Produces (2012) as well as the non-statutory guide that is also created by ACAS. More formally, S98 of ERA states that in order for an individual to be dismissed the employer is required to have acted reasonably and following a suitable disciplinary process would be a key component of this. In the event that the process is not followed and Frank then claims unfair dismissal the failure to follow the process could result in an uplift of any award by 25% (Section 207 of Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992).

Firstly it is necessary for the employer to consider whether formal action is necessary. It is not clear whether previous misdemeanours or poor performance has been dealt with formally or informally and this should be looked at as a matter of priority. However for the purposes of this advice it is suggested that these have not been dealt with formally in any way. Where a discussion is to be recorded formally on the record of an employee, as is likely to be the case her section 11 of the Employment Relations Act 1999 will become relevant and the statutory right to be accompanied needs to be taken into account. It was confirmed in the case of Sarkar (2010) that where the disciplinary could result in dismissal it is not acceptable to use an informal process.

The potential loss here is substantial and therefore it is possible that the Council could be looking at gross misconduct. Frank has the qualifying period of 2 years service and could therefore potentially claim unfair dismissal making it vital that the processes are followed correctly. The employer needs to act promptly as if it fails to indicate the severity of the situation to the employee there is a danger that it would be seen to have affirmed the contract and accepted the employees repudiatory breach (Cook, 2009).

A full investigation is necessary which will then potentially lead to the disciplinary procedure. The position of the employer should however be reserved for the duration of the investigation. During the investigatory meeting and the disciplinary meeting (if there is one subsequent) the employee has the right to be accompanied. The level of investigation necessary is dependent on the severity of the accusation (A, 2003). Where an employee is at a serious risk of long term impact for example being dismissed and receiving a professional detriment a much more thorough investigation is required.

Based on this and the underlying need to act reasonably Frank should be suspended in order for the investigation to take place. He should be informed of his rights and obligations during the period and also how long he is likely to be suspended for. As the conduct is sufficiently severe that it could result in dismissal this is a crucial step and the investigations should be very thorough. There are concerns that the Council has been aware of performance issues and has not yet dealt with the matter. Furthermore it would seem unreasonable that a junior individual was able to make such a costly error and this will have to be born in mind when determining the severity of the disciplinary process to be followed.

Sally

Sally’s contractual status is questioned initially as she is currently working various hours with a weekend on call every month. Sally has been located at the Council office for 3 years with a set desk and specific hours. This level of control is considered to be sufficient to comply with the definition of employee as per section 230 of the ERA 1996. This is a matter of fact and law and it is suggested that as she was required to personally preform the contract and the Council had a high level of control she would be deemed to be an employee (Carmichael, 2000). Based on this it would be the case that Sally is entitled to the statutory minimum holiday which is 20 days (excluding 8 bank holiday days).

Sally has requested a change to her current working hours which is dealt with a flexible working request and secondly she is likely to be interviewed alongside others for the full time vacancies which have now arisen, should she wish to apply and would not want to be discriminated against by virtue of her caring role for her terminally ill mother. Since June 2014, employees with at least 6 months’ continuous service have been able to apply for flexible working for any reason. The employer is then under a duty to deal with the request in a reasonable manner and be fair in the way that they treat the application (Duncan, 2012). Crucially, in accordance with section 13 of the EqA it is possible for an employer to be directly discriminating against an individual who is treated less favourably due to the disability of an associated person (Coleman 2008).

This situation is potentially difficult for the Council to manage and there is at least some argument that Sally is not in fact an employee. On balance however this is not a valid argument given the prescriptiveness of the hours of work and the physical base in the council as well as the personal nature of the services provided. The Council would therefore be required to provide paid holiday and to provide Sally with her contract of employment. Furthermore any requests for flexible working would need to be dealt with fairly and when looking to fill full time roles, Sharon would have to ensure that she did not discriminate against Sally as this could result in disability discrimination despite the fact that the disability is not suffered by her directly.

Conclusions

In summary, Jim should be offered a full and diligence grievance procedure to prevent him resigning and later claiming constructive unfair dismissal by virtue of sexual orientation discrimination. Frank should be dealt with formally through the use of the disciplinary procedure with a full investigation and if necessary a disciplinary that conforms with statutory requirements. Sally is, on balance, an employee and needs to be managed with due care to the disability discrimination rules and the need to be fair and reasonable when considering any flexible working requests.

References

ACAS (2012) Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures Available at: http://www.acas.org.uk/media/pdf/k/b/Acas_Code_of_Practice_1_on_disciplinary_and_grievance_procedures-accessible-version-Jul-2012.pdf

A v B [2003] IRLR 405

Carmichael v National Power plc [2000] IRLR 43,

Coleman v Attridge Law and another [2008] ICR 1128

Cook v MSHK Limited and another [2009] EWCA Civ 624,

Corus Hotels plc v Woodward and another UKEAT/0536/05,

Duncan, N (2012) Employment Law in Practice, City Law School (London, England, Oxford University Press) p.216

Employment Relations Act 1999

Employment Rights Act 1996

Equality Act (2010)

Martin v Parkam Foods Ltd ET/1800241/06

Sarkar v West London Mental Health NHS Trust [2010] IRLR 508

Shamoon v Chief Constable of the Royal Ulster Constabulary [2003] ICR 337 (HL)

Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992

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Employment Law

Introduction

This report will outline key arguments surrounding contemporary debates on UK employment law, which will provide a critical analysis from those that argue there is too much legislation and those that suggest there is not enough. It is beyond the scope of this report to generalise on employment law as a whole; it will therefore focus on the right to request flexible working, such as under the Employment Act 2002 and The Work and Families Act 2006 that has been subject to various reforms, amendments and regulations. This legislation has formed a significant debate as to whether such interventions ensure that individuals achieve a work-life balance, promote efficient working practice or create an unnecessary burden on UK businesses (Chartered Institute of Personal Development (CIPD), 2005, British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), 2010). This analysis will also look at the introduction of new employment legislation for flexible working, and discuss the impact on working practices today, with a glance toward the shape of new legislation in the future (Chartered Management Institute (CMI),2008).

Findings

Background and Context

The last three decades have seen a trend toward increasing employment legislation. At the same time the United Kingdom (UK) still has lower levels of employment protection and more labour market flexibility than other European states (Keter, 2010). The flexible market in the UK was inherited through the general laissez-faire attitude, where industrial labour and relation laws have been less state regulated than other European countries (Biagi, 2000). Keter (2010) suggests that today’s flexible market is also the result of more recent trends, which from 1979 saw the introduction of more labour regulations in terms of statutes enacted, but with the aim of setting labour free of interference from state control and what was seen as unnecessary social partners, such as trade unions (ibid).
The introduction of a New Labour administration however saw a shift toward more family friendly employment legislation. A European directive from 1997 (European Council Directives 97/81/EC and 98/81/EC) provided that part-time workers be entitled to the same rights as comparable to full-time employees. The directives required European member states to implement laws, regulations and provisions to eliminate discrimination against part-time workers. The aim was to facilitate the development of part-time and other working time arrangements, that were flexible and met the needs of both employers and employees (Danzinger & Waters Boots, 2008).

In order to promote citizens full participation in the labour market, the enactment of The Employment Relations Act 1999, while continuing to ensure that labour relations were free of state control, provided a floor of rights, such as increased rights for fixed and part time workers, (Biagi, 2000). Along this trajectory, the Employment Act 2002 introduced legislation providing employees with young or disabled children the right to request flexible working arrangements by their employers, that was subsequently extended in The Work and Families Act 2006 to allow the same rights for carers of adults (Davies, 2011). Lewis and Campbell (2007) suggest that New Labour’s concern with promoting a ‘work-life’ balance underpinned it’s ideological approach to welfare, that saw active citizenship for all achieved principally through labour market participation (Levitas,2005). For all to participate, legislation has provided for the extension of childcare services and maternity leave and the introduction of parental and paternity leave. Further, rather than reducing working hours, the Labour government promoted the right to request flexible working hours as a way for families to manage their working patterns with their caring responsibility timetables (Busby and James, 2011).

Hill et al (2001) describe flexible working to include activities such as; part-time, job sharing and homeworking or any variation outside of working the traditional nine until five working day. For example, working from home, where such practices are facilitated due to advances in mobile technologies (Civicus, 2008). Lewis & Cooper (2005) argue that although in principle flexible working can take many forms, in reality, the main flexibility that UK employers offer is a reduction of working hours.

From an employer’s perspective, employment legislation can also be seen as promoting the creation of work patterns and arrangements in order to maximise employment productivity, customer satisfaction and staff efficiency (Pettinger, 1998). This demand, Pettinger suggests, has come about as a result of the expansion of global markets, competition and choice, pressures on resources and increasing customer demands, together with changing patterns of consumption (ibid). Therefore, Pettinger (1998) suggests that against this backdrop, flexibility can be seen as a corporate attitude, whereby a fully flexible labour market is seen as generating a more effective workforce.

Faulkener (2001) argues that while it is recognised that it is the above drivers that have influenced the development of flexible working practices, there is also another important agenda. Here, Jones and Jones (2011) identify that family friendly legislation is more representative of the ‘business case’ for flexible working legislation, which revolves around the identification of recruitment pools, particularly women, and the older population, who have yet to be fully exploited (Faulkener, 2001, Jones & Jones,2011).

Arguments Against more Employment Legislation

According to a British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) (2010) report on employment regulation, a survey of British businesses see an emerging consensus that the proliferation of legislation providing flexible working conditions has become increasingly problematic. The report argues that the shift from the regulation of collective bargaining to individual employment contracts, later evolving into the volume and complexity of statutory legislation today, has led to difficulties with understanding and compliance (ibid). The report specifically attacks the piecemeal legislative approach to flexible working shown by the latest introduction of laws and regulations (see Appendix 1)
According to the BCC (2010), such an approach has been criticised by businesses. The problem for companies is that constant changes in the law mean that employers must incur the cost of familiarising themselves as each new law is enacted, where there is a greater risk of mistakes. As a result, businesses need to bring their knowledge up to date since the previous change in the law, such as through employment law books and guides or paying for legal advice. Consequently, the report argues, employment legislation can act like a tax, by raising costs (ibid). The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) (2006) argue further that even if there is a belief that the increase of employment law can improve the flexibility of the labour market, there are still questions as to whether such legislation is fit for purpose. Against a backdrop of increasing employment legislation, a National Audit Office (2009) research paper also casts doubt over whether governments are able to understand business enough to design effective legislation. The BCC (2010), representing one hundred thousand businesses, suggest that due to the volume and complexity of employment legislation, in particular small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), now need professional legal advice to settle disputes. In reality, the BCC argue, it is less expensive to settle disputes with the employee and prevent reputational damage than it is to defend a claim. The BCC therefore recommends streamlining and reducing the amount of legislation, for example, in a similar way that the anti-discrimination laws became consolidated by the Equality Act 2010 (ibid, 2010).
Despite such criticisms, not all the findings in the business sector are negative. According to a Chartered Institute of Personal Development (CIPD) Survey Report (2005), who surveyed Human Resources professionals from over six hundred companies, the majority saw employment law as making a positive contribution to their businesses. This research suggested that the main barrier to effective implementation of employment law is the perception that there is too much employment legislation (ibid). In response, the Annual Employment Law Review by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) (2012) aims to tackle perceptions that there are ‘too many’ employment laws, through lobbying for reform, while ensuring that reforms are not at the expense of compromising fairness for individuals. The report argues that although businesses complain about the amount of employment legislation, in reality the UK has one of the most lightly-regulated labour markets among developed countries. Only the United States and Canada have lighter overall employment regulation (OECD Indicators of Employment Protection, 2008: cit in: BIS, 2012).

Arguments in favour of more Employment Legislation

The UK’s ‘light touch’ employment regulations may be reflected in their flexible working legislation. The right to request flexible working does not enforce employers to comply with individual requests, only to offer the procedures for them to do so. It is therefore argued that it is individuals (particularly with dependents) and the social organisations who support them, who favour increasing employment legislation, in order to provide fairness at work that ensures a work life balance (Burnett et al, 2012). In a 2012 report by Working Families and One Plus One, Happy Homes and Productive Workplaces, from a sample of over two thousand respondents, nearly eighty percent of respondents felt that flexible working was the most beneficial working arrangement (Burnett et al, 2012). However, the report argued that in order to support flexible working, further legislation was needed in order to promote arrangements that are mutually beneficial and embedded as a culture of flexibility, rather than an approach that manages requests as an exception to the norm (ibid). Along with relationship and family support organisations, a growing number of business and HR associations support further employment legislation and reform to push forward the benefits of flexible working (CIPD, 2013). Drawing on the findings of the 2011 Workplace Employment Relations Study (WERS) the CIPD suggest that employment legislation needs to increase, due in part to a lack of effective mechanisms to tackle labour relations. The report points to recent socio-economic and political changes in the UK where an increase in employment law is becoming ever more essential. For example, the facilitation of employment legislation during the 1980’s and 1990’s discouraged union membership and reduced collective bargaining powers. This is reflected in the WERS study, in 2012, which shows very low levels of employee engagement in collective bargaining, only six percent in private businesses, with fourteen percent of employee trade union membership in the same sector (Wanrooy et al, 2011). The near absence of collective bargaining, although removing employer constraints on freedom of action, raises concerns over employee voice, where employment legislation may be seen as an attempt to close this gap (CIPD, 2012).

Danzinger and Waters Boots (2008), argue that in reality flexible working legislation does not go far enough. Unions and parent advocacy groups argue that many workers who would benefit from flexible arrangements do not ask for them out of fear of being refused, or because of a fear that asking may jeopardise their careers. Research suggests that employees will only ask for flexible work if they believe their requests will be approved. It is also argued that flexible working legislation may reinforce gender inequalities by linking flexible work and care responsibilities, reinforcing a ‘mother career track’ that pairs women with demotions of pay and position. Further, unfair dismissal claims, involving refusal of flexible working, tend to favour women, who can rely on anti-discrimination legislation, such as in Adedeji v The City of London Corporation (2007) (see Appendix 2), in order to strengthen their claims (ibid).

Future Changes to Flexible Working Legislation

New flexible working employment legislation to come into effect in 2014 appears to address some of the above criticisms. The government plans to extend the statutory right to request flexible working arrangements to all employees (with over twenty-six weeks service) whether they are a carer or not. This removes the present requirement that the employee must have caring responsibilities. In addition, the procedure for considering flexible working requests, which is currently very prescriptive, will be relaxed and employers will instead be required to consider requests in a ‘reasonable’ manner and within a ‘reasonable’ time frame (ACAS, 2014).

Currently, it is possible for an employee to claim compensation due to the employer’s failure to comply with the procedures laid down in the Flexible Working (Procedural Requirements) Regulations 2002. In Bryan v Corporate Advertising Ltd ET/2105111/10, although the tribunal rejected Mrs Bryan’s claim that she was constructively dismissed and subjected to indirect sex discrimination, it was however held that the company had breached the procedures laid down by the 2002 Regulations. This procedural breach may no longer by relied upon under the 2014 legislation. However, successful claims may still be used under anti-discrimination legislation. In Commotion Ltd v Rutty [2006] IRLR 171 (EAT), it was upheld that the employee had been subject to constructive unfair dismissal and indirect sex discrimination, due to the employer’s failure to have any lawful reason to reject flexible working conditions. However, in Winfindale v Debenhams Retail plc (ET/2404134/10, 20 Aug 2010), it was held that there was no indirect sex discrimination where an employer showed that they took seriously a request to return from maternity leave on a part-time basis to a manager’s role. According to a Equality and Human Rights Commission report (2009), proposed changes in flexible working legislation will continue to fail to encourage workers in management positions to request flexible arrangements (EHRC, 2009). The report suggests that under current legislation, employee’s in management positions are less likely to make a request for flexible working, and when they do, they are less likely to succeed (ibid).

In the government’s Consultation on Modern Workplaces Report (2012), it is argued that current legislation that prioritises certain groups reinforces the idea that flexible working is only for those in caring roles, whereas the aim of the new legislation is to promote a culture where flexible working is a legitimate ambition for all employees (HM Government, 2009). Although the legislation proposes to ‘allow’ but not ‘require’ employers to prioritise competing requests, employers will continue to have to show that all competing requests cannot always be accommodated, in their entirety, on business grounds (ibid).

Drawing on the CIPD report (2005), a large majority of employers find compliance with the current legislation relatively straightforward. Of those who have had problems, the main barrier to compliance is that managers find it difficult to manage employees on different flexible working arrangements. Given that the new legislation attempts to widen the right to request flexible working to all employees, employers may face an increased challenge to accommodate competing requests. However, according to the same report, since the introduction of the current legislation, less than one-tenth of employers have faced grievance or disciplinary proceedings, or an employment tribunal claim. Further, research shows that it is large multi-national companies that benefit most from flexible working arrangements. Among those benefits are improvements in staff retention, improved morale and a reduction in costs (CIPD, 2005). These reported benefits need to be balanced against arguments that oppose more legislation promoting flexible working (ibid).

More significantly, the statutory provision to enable greater flexibility in the workplace looks set to increase in the future. In a recent report, Management Futures – The World in 2018 (2008), the findings predict that organisations will become more virtual, the premium for talent will increase, with new aspirations and ambitions of a multi-cultural, widely dispersed workforce (Chartered Management Institute (CMI),2008).

Conclusion

This report has attempted to provide an insight into the contextual background surrounding employment laws in the UK today. The focus on flexible working legislation may be seen as a salient debate, given the competing claims from employers, employees and the organisations that support them (Burnett et al, 2012). At the same time, against a backdrop of socio-political and economic changes there has been an increasing legislative response to address both the rights of individual workers and a drive to improve competition, efficiency and development in the market (Pettinger, 1998). Given the predictions of further changes in the labour market, statutory provision looks set to increase in response. The debate for or against increasing legislation surrounding flexible working therefore needs to be balanced with the benefit to both businesses and the rights of individuals (CIPD, 2005).

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Free Essays

Cross-National Transfer of Employment Practices in Multinationals

cross-national transfer of employment practices in multinationals Abstract This paper argues for the systematic incorporation of power and interests into analysis of the cross-border transfer of practices within multinational companies (MNCs). Using a broadly Lukesian perspective on power it is argued that the transfer of practices involves different kinds of power capabilities through which MNC actors influence their institutional environment both at the ‘macro-level’ of host institutions and the ‘micro-level’ of the MNC itself.

The incorporation of an explicit account of the way power interacts with institutions at different levels, it is suggested, underpins a more convincing account of transfer than is provided by the dominant neoinstitutionalist perspective in international business, and leads to a heuristic model capable of generating proposed patterns of transfer outcomes that may be tested empirically in future research. Keywords multinationals; comparative & cross-cultural HRM; conflict; international HRM; strategic and international management; organisational theory.

Introduction Much has been written about the cross-national transfer of management practices in multinational companies (MNCs). A recent conceptual development is the ‘neoinstitutionalist’ contribution of Kostova and colleagues (Kostova, 1999; Kostova and Roth, 2002; Kostova et al. , 2008). In the international business literature, this approach shows signs of establishing a new intellectual hegemony. 1 Given this salience, critical engagement is essential. The neoinstitutionalist approach to practice transfer in MNCs has provided fundamental insights.

It argues that MNCs – or to be more precise, their subsidiaries – operate under conditions of ‘institutional duality’, facing both the institutional terrain of the international firm itself and that of the host environment in which they operate. These institutional spheres exert rival isomorphic pressures which come to the fore when practices are transferred from the parent to host operations. Drawing on Scott’s (2008) institutional pillars, Kostova uses the ‘country institutional profile’ tool to characterize parent- and host-country institutions.

This provides the basis for assessing ‘institutional distance’ (ID), the divergence in institutional arrangements between the parent country and host. In general, the greater the ID, the more problematic is transfer; and the harder is the ‘internalization’ of transferred practices, that is, their full assimilation to host employees’ cognitive mindsets and normative frameworks (Kostova, 1999). However, neoinstitutionalist positions on transfer in MNCs suffer from a neglect of ‘old institutionalist’ questions about power, coalitions, interests and competing value systems (e. . Stinchcombe, 1997), despite increasing attention to such questions in broader neoinstitutionalist theory (e. g. Oliver, 1991; Greenwood and Hinings, 1996; Lawrence, 2008; Lounsbury, 2003; Tempel and Walgenbach, 2007). The key concepts of ‘institutional duality’ and ‘institutional distance’ overlook the ability of actors in MNCs to shape institutions to their needs and thus influence the transfer process. There is little sense of what is ‘at stake’ for actors in the confrontation of cognitive, normative and regulative frameworks that arise when practices are transferred.

This paper discusses how the analysis of power can be incorporated into an understanding of cross-institutional practice transfer. It builds on recent work concerning MNCs as political actors (e. g. Belanger and Edwards, 2006; Dorrenbacher and Gammelgaard, 2011; Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2011; Edwards and Belanger, 2009; Ferner and Edwards, 1995; Ferner and Tempel, 2006; Levy, 2008; Levy and Egan, 2003). It argues that power and interests of actors shape transfer through processes that draw on institutional resources both at the ‘macro’ level of the host business system and the ‘micro’ level of the MNC.

These processes in turn shape the transformations and adaptations undergone by transferred practices. Power, it is suggested, has to be understood in its institutional context, both in that it is deployed by powerful MNC actors to shape, sustain and activate macro- and micro-level institutions – a process that neoinstitutionalists refer to as ‘institutional work’ (Lawrence and Suddaby, 2006); and in that institutional context provides actors with power capabilities with which to facilitate, block or modify transfer.

The cross-national transfer of practices in MNCs is complex, with an array of possible outcomes. Transfer has several dimensions: the degree of adaptation or hybridization of practices; ‘internalization’; functionality; and directionality. The first of these refers to the fact that transfer is not an either/or issue; there may be degrees of transfer. The transferred practice may be modified in the course of implementation, or it may be ‘hybridized’, that is, combined with host practices (e. g. Becker-Ritterspach, 2009).

Internalization denotes that, even where a practice is transferred in its original form, it may be assimilated to a greater or lesser extent to the working assumptions, cognitive understandings and normative frameworks of subsidiary employees and managers. Functionality refers to the degree to which transferred practices perform the function intended for them by powerful HQ actors, or work in ways that these actors would consider to be unintended or dysfunctional. Finally, directionality indicates that transfer does not occur solely from HQ to subsidiary, but also between subsidiaries themselves, or from subsidiaries to HQ.

Thus various outcomes are possible, and one of the principal aims of this paper is to provide a conceptual framework for understanding how power relations in MNCs influence the outcomes of practice transfer between different institutional ‘domains’. The paper illustrates the argument with empirical examples drawn from human resource and employment practices (HR&EP) in MNCs. The rationale is twofold. First, the cross-national dissemination of such practices is increasingly seen in a knowledge-based global economy as key for international competitive advantage (e. . Lado and Wilson, 1994). Second, however, HR&EP are particularly subject to host institutional influence (e. g. Rosenzweig and Nohria, 1994). Moreover, relations between employers and workforces are characterized by a ‘structured antagonism’ (Edwards, 1986) providing the basis for the ongoing exercise of power and resistance in relation to HR&EP; this structured antagonism is carried into the international sphere, on to the ‘contested terrain’ of the MNC (Belanger and Edwards, 2009). The paper first discusses a conceptualization of power in relation to MNCs.

Second, it examines power capabilities and interests of different groups of actors within the MNC, in particular at HQ and subsidiary level. Finally, it marshals the arguments on power, interests and institutions to explore different transfer outcomes. Power and MNCs MNCs are powerful actors, driving economic activity in many sectors and one of the motive forces of ‘globalization’. They are also complex organizations, marked by the dispersion of power among groups, functions and operating units (e. g.

Belanger and Edwards, 2009; Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2011; Ferner and Tempel, 2006). In particular, the respective power of HQ and subsidiaries makes for the negotiation of relationships within the MNC (Ferner and Edwards, 1995). MNC actors manoeuvre among ‘institutional contradictions’ that leave considerable scope for praxis (Geppert and Dorrenbacher, 2011). Transfer can be viewed as a specific instance of HQ–subsidiary relations, in which the power capabilities of actors at each level influence outcomes. How are such capabilities to be conceptualized?

This paper builds on a ‘Lukesian’ perspective (Lukes, 1975; 2005) that identifies three dimensions of power. Each may be related to the behaviour of MNC actors in the realm of practice transfer. The first concerns the nature of decisions that are made, and the deployment of resources to affect them. The second relates to conflicts around ‘non-decisions’, reflecting the ability of powerful actors to shape the agenda, exclude or include issues, and determine the processes and rules by which decisions are arrived at.

The third concerns the way in which powerful actors exercise domination over others ‘by influencing, shaping or determining [their] very wants’ (Lukes, 1975: 27). As Lukes admits (2005: ch3), the notion of power as domination over other actors who may consent to domination requires the imputation of ‘real interests’ to actors (i. e. interests that are masked by the third dimension of power). Given the difficulties of the undertaking, he argues (p148) that ‘what count as “real interests” [is] a function of one’s explanatory purpose, framework and methods’.

Without wishing to get enmeshed in this debate, we would note that the paper is premised on the notion that interests are constructed by MNC actors in ways that are variable and issue-specific, and the process gives rise to bundles of interests that are complex and not necessarily internally coherent (cf. Lukes, 2005: ch3). There may be a hierarchy of interests, with economic security or survival, for example, being a primary and persisting interest for most actors. Beyond that, interests may be more changeable and context-dependent.

Such interests may be collective, emerging, for example, around a particular model of teamworking in a subsidiary that allocates particular roles to different groups of employees, supervisors and managers; or individual, deriving notably from personal and biographical considerations to do with career paths and aspirations within the MNC, rather than from organizational or group affiliations (see e. g. Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2009a). Hardy (1996) has applied a Lukesian model to a business context, and her terminology is adopted here.

She labels the first dimension ‘the power of resources’, which concerns power derived from the control of scarce resources, such as hiring and firing, rewards and sanctions, and expertise, in order to influence behaviour in the face of opposition. The second, ‘the power of processes’, resides in ‘organizational decision making processes which incorporate a variety of procedures and political routines that can be invoked by dominant groups to influence outcomes by preventing subordinates from participating fully in decision making’ (p7); equally, new groups may be brought, or force their way, into decision-making processes.

The third dimension is labelled ‘the power of meaning’; Hardy explores the way in which organizational groups legitimize their own demands and ‘delegitimize’ those of others through the management of meaning and the deployment of symbolic actions. As a result, H actors may be impeded from exercising agency. As Levy argues (2008; also Levy and Egan, 2003), the control of meaning has important linkages with the Gramscian concept of ‘hegemony’ (Gramsci, 1971), emphasizing that the control of meaning, or the ‘discursive realm’, relates to power relations in the real economic and technological realms.

In other words, in the case of MNCs, the power of meaning is built upon the resource power that derives from the primary economic activity of the firm and its constituent parts. This third dimension of power also provides a crucial link with neoinstitutionalist analysis, by illuminating in particular how the cognitive and normative ‘pillars’ (Scott, 2008) of institutional arrangements embody power relations and serve the interests of powerful actors, and how such pillars may be susceptible to contestation rather than being seen as external givens.

While all three dimensions of power are important for an understanding of cross-institutional transfer, the power of meaning is especially crucial. When institutionalized practices are transferred cross-nationally, this hidden dimension is rendered ‘visible’ (Ferner et al. , 2005) by the collision of two sets of institutional rationalities. Transfer thus creates an important condition for the exercise of agency: that actors become conscious of taken-for-granted institutional processes (e. . Clemens and Cook, 1999; Seo and Creed, 2002). In short, transfer leads to potential conflicts of institutional rationality that are resolved through the deployment of power capabilities. For example, individual performance appraisal and reward is a norm taken for granted and generally regarded as legitimate in ‘liberal market economies’. Even if disliked, it can only be legitimately challenged on grounds of its failure to achieve its performance-enhancing functions.

But cross-institutional transfer allows the shared norms to be laid bare and challenged on grounds of alternative normative frameworks, emphasizing (for example) social equity, solidarity and fairness (e. g. Liberman and Torbiorn, 2000). MNC actors in situations of transfer: Power capabilities and organizational interests To understand transfer outcomes in the context of power relations, two questions must be addressed. First, what power capabilities do actors in MNCs possess?

As an initial approximation, we explore the power capabilities of actors at HQ compared with those of the subsidiary. This reflects the thrust of arguments (e. g. Geppert and Dorrenbacher, 2011; Kristensen and Zeitlin, 2005; Morgan and Kristensen, 2006) that the relationship between the HQ and subsidiary constitute a primary axis of power relations within MNCs. Second, what interests are constructed or present in relation to transferred practices? The answer to this question requires a more nuanced analysis of actors at HQ and subsidiary level.

It determines whether, given respective power capabilities, the subsidiary acts as part of a monolithic MNC bloc vis-a-vis host institutions, seeking ways of overcoming institutional constraints; or opposes HQ’s efforts to transfer. Also possible is some complex configuration of interests where some groups in the subsidiary support transfer, while others oppose it (and the same may be true of HQ actors). In other words, interests determine how power capabilities are deployed in relation to transfer.

We first explore the power capabilities of MNCs as unitary entities with common organizational interests (Morgan, 2011) vis-a-vis the macro-institutional settings in which they operate. We then relax the assumption of unity and analyse separately the capabilities of HQ and subsidiary actors. Finally we examine the array of interests that are likely to be constructed around HR&EP practice transfer. The power of MNCs to shape macro-institutional settings The Kostovian approach to transfer neglects the power of MNCs to shape macro-institutional settings on two key counts.

The first concerns the broader systemic context within which institutional duality is played out. Smith and Meiksins (1995) argue that the underlying global dynamics of capitalist development create ‘system effects’ that may be distinguished from institutional variations, or ‘societal effects’. The global economic system, and the associated concepts of ‘globalization’, the world market, competition, and so on, are themselves the highly institutionalized outcome of the active agency (e. g. Campbell, 2004: ch. 5) of powerful actors, including states, supranational bodies and MNCs (e. g. Djelic and Quack, 2003; Levy and Egan, 2003).

As Morgan (2011; also Sklair, 2001) argues, an emerging global managerial elite has assumed an important role in international standard-setting and transnational institution building. MNCs have played an important role in building this context. Sell (2000), for example, shows the role of US multinationals in shaping the rules of international commerce on TRIPS (Trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights) and GATS (General Agreement on Trade in Services) (see also Djelic and Quack, 2003). The interrelationship between the global system and national institutional spaces has implications for transfer.

In particular, the world economic system is hierarchically structured by the power of national actors (Smith and Meiksins, 1995). ‘Dominance effects’ allude to the influence of practices developed in leading economies, sectors or firms. They influence all three dimensions of power. MNCs from dominant business systems have greater resource power by virtue of their economic success. They have power over processes that facilitates transfer. Such power can be at a systemic level through their ability to shape the decision-making rules governing international economic activity.

It can also be more immediate, for example through the concentrated presence of MNCs from a dominant economy in a host country, as in the case of the dense networks of US subsidiaries in the UK or Ireland. This presence creates a stratum of organizations familiar with parent-country practices, and a pool of employees and managers with appropriate cognitive and normative expertise. Dominance also shapes systems of meaning as the dominant power becomes ‘hegemonic’. On the one hand, it creates a presumption by actors from dominant countries and firms that their practices have superior efficacy, providing a motive for transfer.

On the other, this view may be shared by actors in the host, including policy-makers, subsidiary managers and workforces, and hence increase receptiveness to transfer. Thus transfer is smoothed because practices are accorded legitimacy by a wide range of MNC actors and are regarded as global ‘best practices’ (e. g. Pudelko and Harzing, 2007). One may therefore expect that where the transferred practice derives from a parent country that is dominant vis-a-vis the host, the inhibiting effect of ID on transfer will be reduced. Dominance effects evolve.

One illustration of this is that the dominant position of US carmakers in the period immediately after the Second World War had been lost by the 1970s and 1980s, with Japanese firms assuming dominant status. Indeed, the Japanese economy as a whole achieved a dominant position in the 1980s, albeit briefly; with Japan’s ‘Lost Decade’ and major corporate bankruptcies, the US regained a position of dominance, although the conditions that underpinned this renewed dominance, such as easy access to cheap capital, also proved transient (Schwartz, 2009), illustrating the dynamic nature of dominance effects.

Dominance, moreover, is felt at sectoral level as well as at the level of business systems as a whole. As the above discussion implies, American MNCs should not be seen as dominant across all sectors. The point that national institutional configurations provide conducive conditions for firms to flourish in some sectors but not in others is central to the ‘varieties of capitalism’ literature (Hall and Soskice, 2001) and also has a long history in economics through the theory of comparative advantage.

The success of US MNCs in sectors like IT and pharmaceuticals, together with the relative decline of American firms in sectors like consumer durables and automotives, confirms this. In short, dominance effects, even of the hegemonic economic power, are likely to be particularly strong in the sectors in which it has a competitive advantage, and weaker or absent in others. Secondly, Kostova and colleagues neglect that MNCs as powerful organizations commonly act as ‘rule-makers’ as well as ‘rule-takers’ (Streeck and Thelen, 2005) vis-a-vis host institutional contexts. Rule-makers’ are actors involved in ‘setting and modifying in conflict and competition, the rules with which [rule-takers] are expected to comply’ (p13). MNCs routinely engage in what Oliver (1991) calls ‘manipulation’ of institutional settings, exerting direct pressures on the sphere of policy-making (e. g. DeVos, 1981, on attempts by US MNCs in Germany to influence reform of codetermination legislation). Sometimes such pressure and rule-making is ‘passive’: in other words, host actors adapt institutional rules to what they see as the preferences of MNCs, without active intervention by the latter.

An example is the move by the Irish authorities in the 1980s away from the previous policy of encouraging incoming MNCs to adopt post-entry closed shop union agreements and to bargain collectively; the change reflected the desire of policy-makers to promote rules they considered attractive to a new wave of largely US direct investors in sectors such as pharmaceuticals, electronics and IT where such provisions were seen as hampering investment (Gunnigle et al. , 2006). Moreover, MNCs may shape institutions in more bottom-up fashion through their distinctive practice (e. g. Djelic and Quack, 2003).

Thus the scope for macro-institutional manoeuvre may exist even in highly-regulated institutional settings such as Germany. MNCs have been able to find space (e. g. Singe and Croucher, 2005; Tempel et al. , 2006) by exploiting weaknesses in formal institutions such as works councils that are quite heterogeneous in their operations (Kotthoff, 1994); and as Streeck and Thelen (2005: 14) argue, there is always ‘a gap between the ideal pattern of a rule and the real pattern of life under it’; thus the rules of codetermination in Germany are characterized by deep ambiguities reflecting the conditions under which they had been drawn up.

MNCs’ power to shape processes and structures through which decisions are made is seen in their ability to engage in what Streeck and Thelen (2005) call institutional ‘layering’ and ‘conversion’, whereby existing structures are bypassed, or subtly changed in function. Singe and Croucher (2005) in their synthesis of research on US firms in Germany suggest these firms adopted a dichotomous approach of formal compliance combined with ‘content avoidance’ towards codetermination institutions, deploying power resources to ‘colonize’ works ouncils and exert ‘high levels of pressure on works councillors to divorce themselves from unions’ (p134). US subsidiaries have moved between bargaining jurisdictions to leverage distinctions in how these operate; in one such firm, the German subsidiary’s deft institutional manoeuvring allowed it to be the first subsidiary in Europe to implement the MNC’s global variable pay model (Tempel et al. , 2006). Even where regulative systems potentially constrain action, regulations need to be invoked and enforced. In Germany or Spain, works-council-style representation has to be triggered by the workforce.

There is thus a terrain of action for management to deploy power to avoid macro-institutional coercive pressures. Managers can use power over resources to raise the costs for the workforce of invoking statutory rights; thus the Spanish subsidiary of a US MNC threatened to offer only minimum statutory redundancy pay if the workforce activated its right to union representation during the redundancy process (Colling et al. , 2006). Therefore, actors are involved in a process of deploying power capabilities more or less creatively on a particular institutional terrain.

MNCs are able to engage in ‘institutional arbitrage’ (Morgan et al. , 2003), manoeuvring between institutional variations within a given host setting, assembling and reassembling institutional elements in a process of ‘bricolage’ to create new variants. In sectors most exposed to global competition, such as finance and business services (Morgan, 2009), or in periods of institutional instability, MNCs may have greater freedom to create innovative institutional arrangements within the dominant host framework, leading to what Thelen (2009) calls the ‘segmentation’ of business systems.

The ability of powerful ‘institutional entrepreneurs’, including MNCs, to shape institutional settings is a key factor in a current strand of comparative institutionalism that questions the monolithic character of national-institutional configurations and emphasizes internal heterogeneity (e. g. Almond, 2011; Crouch et al. , 2009; Lane and Wood, 2009; Saka, 2002). For Crouch (2005; Crouch et al. , 2009) intra-model variety is the norm rather than an anomaly, hence firms may be less bound by national constraints than much theory suggests.

In practice, institutional elements are more ‘loose-coupled’, and the national model less determinant. Heterogeneity has substantial implications for the Kostovian concepts of institutional distance and ‘country’ institutional profile. While multiplicity in institutional settings has been discussed by neoinstitutionalists (e. g. Clemens and Cook, 1999; Delmestri, 2009; Oliver, 1991) and is acknowledged by Kostova et al. (2008: 997), the implications for transfer have not been thoroughly assimilated (cf. Phillips et al. , 2009).

Chief among them is that MNCs’ rule-making capacity within institutional configurations may facilitate the transfer of practices – even to institutionally ‘distant’ hosts. The overall ‘country institutional profile’ may not be the appropriate level of analysis, and more fine-grained examination of local host arrangements may be needed. An alternative instrument, based on constructing the institutional profile of the subnational variant, would seem to offer a conceptual way forward, although practical problems may be foreseen of access to adequate subnational data on institutional arrangements.

Power capabilities of MNC actors Turning now to classify the power capabilities2 of MNC actors in situations of transfer, these capabilities may be derived from the micro-institutional domain of the MNC itself, or from macro-institutional arrangements in the host (and beyond). Crucially, MNCs may use power to shape macro-level institutions, affecting the processes whereby they are established, maintained over time, revised in function or scope, or replaced by other arrangements (e. g. Knight, 1992; Lawrence, 2008; Lawrence and Suddaby, 2006). Agency is not confined to HQ policy-makers.

Actors in the subsidiary have their own sources of power. Where power capabilities of different kinds are disseminated across organizational levels, groups and individuals within a MNC, pressures to adopt transferred practices are susceptible to deflection, avoidance, negotiation or challenge by subordinate actors (cf. Oliver, 1991). In order to predict transfer outcomes, it is therefore necessary to assess the balance of capabilities between the centre and the subsidiary (Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2009b). However, while there has been much discussion of the decentred or ‘networked’ nature of contemporary MNCs (e. . Andersson and Holm, 2010) an authoritative central HQ remains the norm. As Egelhoff (2010) argues, network structures provide inadequate ‘vertical specialization’, which is required to perform functions such as providing accountability to shareholders and imposing ‘tight-coupled’ coordination on units where careful synchronization of operations is required. Thus, the overall power of HQ positions it as a ‘field dominant’ (e. g. Levy, 2008) in relation to the organizational field constituted by the MNC. The power capabilities of headquarters actors.

HQ actors have specific capabilities relating to each of the dimensions of power. The first aspect of HQ micro-institutional power is control of the allocation among subsidiaries of key organizational resources, such as finance, investment, and knowledge and expertise, through budgeting and management control processes. Decisions over resource allocation have critical impacts on the economic security and survival of subsidiaries. HQ also controls career opportunities and rewards of key subsidiary actors; recalcitrance may jeopardize remuneration or career advancement, particularly where aspirations are international (e. . Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2009a). However, as discussed below, power resources are unlikely to be monopolized by HQ. Moreover, the ‘big guns’ at HQ’s disposal, such as the threat of closure or investment allocation, may be disproportionate weapons for resolving ‘downstream’ conflicts over the transfer of HR practices; and the threat of closure may be unavailable if an MNC’s investment is ‘market-seeking’ or ‘resource-seeking’, rather than ‘efficiency-seeking’. If a subsidiary is performing well economically, it is less likely to be penalized for not adopting transferred HR practices.

Conversely, poorly-performing subsidiaries are more vulnerable to pressure from HQ to conform (e. g. Tempel et al. , 2006). Thus there is considerable scope for HQ–subsidiary negotiation (cf. Ferner and Edwards, 1995). Turning, second, to power of processes, within the MNC there is a transnational authority structure that legitimates the exercise of power by hierarchically senior actors (units, groups, individuals, etc. ). Formal hierarchical authority shapes the way decisions are made and resources allocated within the firm (cf.

Hardy, 1996). HQ’s role as apex of the authority structure gives it the power to determine mechanisms for transferring practices to subsidiaries abroad. In particular, it can specify which actors at which level are able to intervene in decisions, for example on the introduction of a new global HR policy. Decision-making rules frame how practices are codified into policy and transferred to subsidiaries. Generally, HQ can define formal policies for subsidiaries with a prima facie expectation that subsidiaries comply.

It can impose enforcement and monitoring mechanisms and benchmark practice across subsidiaries, facilitating transfer. Finally, HQ has power over meaning. It can influence cognitive and normative aspects of the micro-institutional frame of action by shaping corporate cultures, codes of practice and standard operating procedures, which then become institutionalized. This ‘third face’ of power helps shape the mindsets of those in subsidiaries whose job it is to implement transferred policy.

Research suggests that formal policies need shared understandings in order to function effectively (Ferner, 2000). HQ actors control the creation of ‘legitimatory rhetorics’ (Suddaby and Greenwood, 2005) concerning, for instance, ‘competitive advantage’, profitability, or site closures (Erkama and Vaara, 2010). This is important where there is ‘causal ambiguity’ about the impact of a transferred practice in the subsidiary (Szulanski, 1996), which may be the case particularly for ‘downstream’ activities such as HR (Boxall and Purcell, 2011).

HQ actors can also shape meaning systems in subsidiaries by, for example, recruiting key host individuals whose mindsets are less typical of host norms and more in tune with organizational norms (Evans and Lorange, 1989); this allows them to bypass barriers to ‘internalization’ and helps create alternative micro-institutional settings within the host institutional context. The power capabilities of subsidiary actors Subsidiary actors have the capacity to challenge transfer and protect host institutional arrangements.

There has been much work in recent years conceptualizing subsidiaries as active strategizers within the wider MNC (e. g. Belanger et al. , 1999; Bouquet and Birkinshaw, 2008; Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2009b; Dorrenbacher and Gammelgaard, 2011; Kristensen and Zeitlin, 2005; Morgan and Kristensen, 2006), rather than passive transmission belts for HQ policies and practices. The ability to strategize depends on power capabilities stemming from both the micro-level of the MNC and the macro-level of the host institutional environment.

Considering first the micro-political power of subsidiary actors, subsidiaries may achieve power over resources from the competent performance of their productive activities (e. g. Andersson and Forsgren, 1996). For example, they may generate a substantial proportion of the MNC’s profit,3 offer access to key markets, create competitively significant knowledge or expertise, or perform functions that are critical to the success of the firm’s value chain (Dorrenbacher and Gammelgaard, 2011). Possession of resources allows subsidiaries to negotiate to some degree its relationship with HQ.

Power over processes is primarily the province of HQ and the hierarchical authority structure, but not exclusively so. Subsidiaries may use their bargaining power deriving from control of resources to achieve a modification of decision-making processes, with an impact on transfers. For example, in a US engineering firm, HR managers from subsidiaries generating a large proportion of global revenue won a revision of the policy-making process that accorded them a greater role in the definition of global HR policies (Edwards, T. et al. , 2007).

In terms of transfer, the exercise of process power is likely to result in policies that are more sensitive to host institutions, and hence more easily transferable. HQ is also likely to dominate power over meaning, yet subsidiaries again may have some influence at least to contest dominant systems of meaning within the organization. The transfer of practices and their associated meaning systems across institutional spaces makes visible taken-for-granted normative and cognitive frameworks and hence renders them susceptible to purposive action.

One example is the transfer of workforce diversity policies to the UK subsidiaries of US MNCs. Transfer exposed underlying discourses concerning the ‘business case’ and ‘equal employment opportunities’, through the collision of very different diversity rationalities in the US and the UK (Ferner et al. , 2005). Another instance is an attempt by an American business services firm to implement a global performance-related pay scheme for professional consultant staff in the German subsidiary.

These employees strongly opposed the new system which clashed with normative frameworks of fairness and was seen as leading to culturally unacceptable pay differentials (Almond et al. , 2006: 138-9). MNC’s micro-institutions are beset with ambiguities, complexities and inconsistencies, particularly when applied to real choices in a complex business world. These give actors room for idiosyncratic interpretation of norms and rules. Even if subsidiaries do not have the power to shape micro-institutional frameworks of meaning, they can selectively respond to ifferent parts of a complex configuration. In short, rival micro-institutional norms provide alternative rhetorics legitimating – or de-legitimating – particular courses of action (Suddaby and Greenwood, 2005). Within the HR function, whose activities are largely ‘downstream’, one source of ambiguity is that they may be only partially ‘nested’ within ‘upstream’ strategic objectives related to competition, profitability and growth. In other words, they may have ‘relative autonomy’. HR&EP norms may be at odds with upstream norms concerning economic performance, and can be deflected on that basis.

Where transferred HR practices are seen as disrupting existing relationships or practices regarded as functional for subsidiary performance, subsidiary actors may deploy what Suddaby and Greenwood (2005) term ‘ontological rhetorics’ asserting the existential incompatibility of economic goals and transferred HR practices. Even within the HR domain, there may be contradictions within highly complex normative frameworks; for example, between principles of pay determination and approaches to union recognition.

Thus UK subsidiary managers in one US MNC resisted a global pay freeze on the grounds that it conflicted with a competing corporate norm of favouring non-union employee relations (Almond and Ferner, 2006). In short, subsidiary actors can exploit rival appeals to legitimacy within the MNC, and are likely to do so when they oppose transfer. Turning to macro-institutional resources, subsidiary actors derive power capabilities from their status as skilled negotiators of the host institutional context, both of the overarching national-institutional framework, and the subnational niches and variants in which they are located.

Where the subsidiary operates essentially as the willing local agent of the wider MNC, these powers may be used to promote transfer. However, where conflicts of interest exist between subsidiary and HQ, the same capacities may be used to block or amend transferred practices. First, subsidiaries derive power resources from the ‘institutional complementarities’ (Hall and Soskice, 2001) of the host business system that generate certain competitive advantages.

Given the increasing importance of intra-model variants, subsidiaries’ local embeddedness is often crucial for the generation of resources such as scarce knowledge and expertise of value to the economic activity of the MNC, and that the MNC cannot otherwise access (Andersson and Forsgren, 1996; Dorrenbacher, and Gammelgaard, 2010; Sorge and Rothe, 2011). Almond (2011) points to the significance of locally embedded ‘flexible high-skills ecosystems’ that drive innovation and provide actors with power resources for shaping practice transfer.

Second, the regulatory framework of the host gives subsidiary actors some purchase over the ‘power of process’ by exerting coercive isomorphic pressures, for example in employment relations and the workings of the labour market. Thus German codetermination legislation gives employees rights to representation on company supervisory boards, and to set up works councils with statutory rights over a range of work-related issues. Changes to payment systems resulting from transferred pay and performance practices are subject to codetermination.

Even where the MNC deploys resources to mitigate this loss of process control (see above), it nonetheless increases the costs for MNCs of shaping decisions, and necessitates some degree of negotiation with local actors and/or the application of power resources. Thus the power of process provides subsidiary actors with a capability to resist practice transfer. Third, subsidiary actors are able to exploit host institutional settings to challenge dominant actors’ power of meaning in the MNC.

In particular, significant macro-institutional capabilities derive from subsidiary actors’ competence as skilled interpreters of the host institutional frame. In other words, they can shape the normative and cognitive understandings of what is possible, desirable and contextually rational. Even the most highly regulated and juridified systems leave spaces for interpretation based on expert institutional knowledge. More subtle and tacit cognitive and normative elements of institutional frameworks are even more subject to insider exegesis.

While subsidiary actors may use such institutional expertise to further transfer, in situations of interest conflict with HQ, they may equally draw on such capabilities to construct a rhetoric legitimating opposition to transfer. Naturally, subsidiary actors’ interpretations of the viability of transfer are liable to challenge and counter-interpretation, notably by expatriate managers, and sceptical HQ actors may demand that local managers’ claims be thoroughly tested. This may especially be the case where dominance effects are present, notably in US MNCs which may have a strong presumption of the efficacy of HQ practices (e. . Almond et al. , 2006; Tempel et al. , 2006). Again, therefore, the host institutional context provides a ‘contested terrain’ (cf. Edwards and Belanger, 2009; also Geppert and Dorrenbacher, 2011), in which interest groups at different levels within the MNC struggle to further their agendas. A final point concerning the power capabilities of subsidiary actors is that their ‘issue-scope’ of power (Lukes, 2005: 74-5) – the range of issues over which an actor can determine outcomes – is likely to be limited because of the overall power of HQ.

As a result subsidiaries are likely to have to prioritize the issues over which they expend capabilities that are scarce relative to those of HQ actors. Moreover, their power is likely (again using Lukes’ terminology) to have a lower ‘contextual range’, to be largely restricted to the specific institutional setting in which they operate; whereas that of HQ is likely to be more ‘context-transcending’, deployable under a wider range of circumstances, especially where dominance effects come into play.

A possible exception to this is where the subsidiary is located in a host that is more ‘dominant’ in the global economy than is the MNC’s country of origin. This may provide greater context-transcending capacity to the subsidiary, leading for example to additional possible transfer outcomes such as ‘reverse diffusion’ (Edwards and Ferner, 2004) in which practices are transferred from subsidiary to HQ. These arguments are summarized in Table 1. [Table 1 about here] MNC actors and interests in the context of HR&EP transfer

We are now in a position to examine HQ and subsidiary interests in relation to transfer. Together with the power capacities of HQ and subsidiary explored above, the constellation of interests will determine the ‘stance’ of subsidiary actors towards transferred practices. Who are the relevant MNC actors in situations of institutional duality and transfer? A first approximation is to divide actors into those associated with the headquarters perspective and those in the subsidiary.

In reality, finer-grained distinctions may become necessary to include for example actors at regional or business-unit headquarters with interests and power capabilities distinguishable both from those of corporate headquarters and national subsidiaries. Moreover, HQ is not a homogeneous block but comprises different groupings (e. g. by management function and level) with potentially different interests in relation to transfer. At subsidiary level, a core distinction is between managers and workforce (Edwards and Belanger, 2009).

There may be both common and divergent interests. Managers and workforce may both have an interest in the site’s survival, for example. In contrast, particularly where the impact of a transferred practice on the site’s performance is ambiguous or contested, interests may diverge. Depending on the practice, further disaggregation may be appropriate; for example, subsidiary operations managers may see the transfer of practices such as teamworking as useful for efficiency while HR managers may oppose transfer on the grounds that they disrupt existing accommodation with employees.

An important distinction is between managers whose career ambit lies within the host country and those whose careers trajectories and aspirations are international in scope (Dorrenbacher and Geppert, 2009a; Morgan and Kristensen, 2006). The former may engage in ‘subversive strategizing’ (Kristensen and Zeitlin, 2005), acting counter to HQ norms and prescriptions in order to strengthen the effectiveness of the subsidiary; while the latter may have less stake in the site’s survival, and see it as in their career interest to overcome local obstacles to transfer.

Nor is the subsidiary workforce necessarily homogeneous. There may be differences of interest between high-skilled workers with core competences and lower-skilled workers with more generic competences, and transferred practices may differentially impact on such interests. Whether subsidiary actors deploy capabilities to resist or promote transfer will depend on how the practices affect existing interests. Resistance or contestation is likely to emerge under conditions of ‘criticality’, that is where the issue is seen as critical to the interests of actors in the subsidiary.

For example, resistance may be expected where a transferred practice embodies institutional norms or requirements that disrupt accommodations seen as vital to the effective conduct of the economic function of the subsidiary, and hence to the economic security, rewards and career interests of groups and individual actors in the subsidiary. Where a transferred practice disrupts workforce interests but not those of managers (or vice versa), there is likely to be an ‘internalization’ of the clash of rationalities within the host.

In the area of HR&EP, it is more likely that interests in the subsidiary will be differentiated, with say employees and their representatives resisting transfer, while managers promote it. This may be manifested in management–workforce conflict, or as Tempel et al. (2006) suggest, subsidiary managers may function as a ‘Trojan horse’ for imported practices such as global performance management systems, working to neutralize institutional obstacles. Transferred practices may selectively disrupt interests of particular management groups, or particular workforce groups, or both.

In such cases coalitions of support for and opposition to transfer may be complex and cut across the management–workforce divide. However, where transfer disrupts a wide range of subsidiary interests, a subsidiary-wide oppositional coalition may emerge. Power, institutions and transfer outcomes These arguments are now synthesized into a model of transfer outcomes, in which constellations of institutional distance, macro- and micro-level power capabilities, and actors’ interests determine the fate of transferred practices.

We argue, first, that there is a need to revise the Kostovian idea (e. g. Kostova, 1999) that MNCs operate between fairly fixed institutional entities, as implied by the notion of ‘institutional distance’. The impact of ID upon transfer is modified by the power of MNCs in two ways. In the first place, dominance effects, where they exist, smooth transfer by providing MNCs with abundant power over resources, power of process over the rules of the game, and power to manage meaning by reducing normative opposition to dominant-country practices in the host.

In the second place, the power of MNCs as active rule-makers, engaging in ‘institutional work’ to construct institutional variants or niches within the host setting, mitigates the constraining impact of institutional distance. In order to incorporate these considerations, we therefore propose that Kostova’s notion of institutional distance, which we refer to as ‘raw’ ID, be replaced by the concept of modified ID, (mID). Here, the predictions of our framework are significantly different from those of Kostova’s.

Second, transfer outcomes depend on the specific configuration of power capabilities and interests of actors at different levels of the MNC. Where interests of subsidiary and HQ actors are broadly concordant, the power capabilities of the subsidiary are likely to be deployed in a manner supportive of transfer, for example by removing or circumventing host institutional obstacles to transfer. However, where there are strong interests within the subsidiary in conflict with those of HQ, the outcome is likely to be an oppositional stance.

This does not necessarily entail overt resistance (cf. Oliver, 1991). Power capabilities may be deployed to resist, modify, neutralize, or ‘quarantine’ the transferred practice through ritual observance that does not affect real practice. Which of these oppositional outcomes occurs is likely to depend on the homogeneity of interests within the subsidiary, and the power capabilities of the subsidiary (or at least of oppositional actors) relative to those of HQ.

An outcome of ceremonial compliance in which nonconformity is masked by a ‘facade of acquiescence’ (Oliver, 1991: 154) is likely where opposition is high due to a collision of normative/cognitive frameworks (e. g. concerning what will promote unit profitability in the subsidiary), but where subsidiary actors’ control of resources and/or processes is relatively low, precluding overt resistance. Alternatively, opposition may lead to adaptation or ‘hybridization’ (e. g. Becker-Ritterspach, 2009; Szulanski and Jensen, 2006) in which the practice acquires elements characteristic of the host setting.

In some cases, this may make a practice more effective within the host, or allow it to be internalized by subsidiary employees. Survey evidence suggests that it is common for MNCs to disseminate practices by means of broad framework policies, with local adaptation being expected in HR&EP areas such as performance management, variable pay, and employee involvement (Edwards, P. et al. , 2007). This may be termed ‘functional hybridization’. In other cases hybridization may divert a practice from its normal function and hence subvert HQ’s intention.

For example, a supposedly standardized employee performance appraisal system in a US MNC operated with major variations in practice: thus in the German subsidiary the works council was able to reject individual assessment, minimize quantification, and reduce the scheme to occasional informal, unrecorded evaluations (Liberman and Torbiorn, 2000). Such ‘resistive hybridization’ is likely where transfer disrupts internal accommodations and/or is seen as dysfunctional for subsidiary performance, and where subsidiary actors have sufficient power capabilities, such as interpretive control of local meaning frames.

Third, the three ‘dimensions’ of power are likely to affect transfer outcomes in different ways, other things being equal. Where a subsidiary has significant power of resources, this is likely to facilitate a bargaining process in which the terms of entry of a transferred practice are negotiated between subsidiary and HQ. Where a subsidiary has significant power of process, it may use it to influence how global policies or practices are designed within the MNC, for example by contributing to central policy-making bodies.

This provides it with the opportunity to ensure that the transferred practice is from the start compatible with the cognitive/normative (or indeed regulatory) frames of the host. Finally, a subsidiary may be skilled in the management of meaning, whether in highlighting – or concealing – normative/cognitive discrepancies provoked by the transfer of a practice, or by mobilizing appropriate legitimatory discourses within the micro-institutional sphere of the MNC. This power may affect transfer outcomes in different ways.

Where the subsidiary’s stance is oppositional, it may evoke host macro-institutional impediments, drawing on its skilled interpretation of ‘institutions-in-practice’. Equally, where its other power capabilities are relatively weak, it may use its skills in managing meaning to construct the ‘ceremonial’ aspects of the practice without impinging on the subsidiary’s core activity. Where the subsidiary’s stance is supportive of transfer, the power of meaning may be brought to bear to secure the ‘internalization’ (Kostova, 1999) of transferred practices.

Returning to the outcome parameters outlined in the introduction, we can synthesize the above arguments (see table 2) in terms of typical scenarios, based on differentiation of functionality, internalization, adaptation and directionality. The table indicates that the conditions most conducive for successful transfer in which functional practices are internalized are where: HQ actively wants to transfer practices, ID is low, dominance effects are high, institutional space is high, HQ’s power capabilities are relatively strong, HQ and subsidiary interests are concordant and the interests of subsidiary actors are homogeneous (model 1).

To take a stylized example, a US business services firm – i. e. an MNC from the hegemonic business system, in a sector in which that business system is internationally dominant – transfers a performance appraisal system to its professional employees in its non-unionized Irish subsidiary as part of the global dissemination of standardized HR policies. Many of the employees have worked for American firms before – US MNCs predominate among foreign employers in Ireland – and have studied or worked in the US.

Their cognitive/normative frames are attuned to American performance-management systems, especially since there is a strong values-based corporate culture, and there are unlikely to be discordant interests with regards to the policy, so the practice is likely to be easily ‘internalized’. There are few macro-institutional constraints to the introduction of such policies and few variant constraints stemming e. g. from the presence of trade unions. This can be contrasted with five other scenarios.

As ID increases and capabilities, particularly resources, controlled by the subsidiary grow, the prospect of transfer taking the form of functional hybridization increases (model 2). To illustrate, a US electronics MNC attempts to transfer a performance-related pay system to the more constrained and institutionally distant context of Germany. 4 There is a perceived disjunction between the policy and cognitive/normative frames of employees, i. e. the cross-institutional transfer reveals the cognitive/normative underpinnings of the system.

The subsidiary is large, successful and powerful, giving it power over resources with which to negotiate with HQ a modification of the practice – for example, by reducing the amount of pay at risk, to make it more acceptable within the host context (e. g. Tempel et al. , 2006). Where dominance effects weaken, institutional space is more constrained, the subsidiary possesses significant power of resources and process relative to HQ, and has divergent interests from HQ, then the likelihood of resistive hybridization and low internalization rises (model 3).

For example, Lindholm et al. (1999) show how performance appraisal systems in Nordic MNCs in China were subverted because the systems provoked extensive clashes with cognitive/normative frames, e. g. with regards to the priority given to performance rather than seniority, and issues around loss of face and around managerial authority in setting targets. If dominance effects are absent, ID is high, and subsidiary interests clash with HQ’s, transfer may fail altogether (model 4).

To illustrate, a British MNC seeks to internationalize a policy of outsourcing support functions to reduce labour costs. It pressurizes foreign subsidiaries where the ratio of outsourced workers to internal employees is significantly lower than in UK domestic operations. This is the case in the German subsidiary, one of the largest in the company and with important production facilities for key products.

Subsidiary managers are sceptical as to the efficiency of outsourcing and the HR manager uses his detailed knowledge of German employment law to circumvent the need to outsource functions (e. g. Tempel, 2002). Where institutional space is moderate, the subsidiary is not particularly powerful (in resource or process terms) in relation to HQ, and has quite different interests to actors at HQ, the prospects for ceremonial adoption are at their highest (model 5). To take a stylized example, a British MNC attempts to internationalize its comprehensive diversity management practices.

In its medium-sized production facilities in Germany, there is considerable scepticism among managers and primarily male employees as to the business case for diversity management. Lacking power of resources or process to openly block HQ practices, managers go through the motions of introducing diversity management measures, for example by organizing social events under the label of diversity management, but do not implement real changes in recruitment processes to encourage more female applicants or introduce diversity awareness training for employees.

Finally, where interests are concordant and where the subsidiary’s power capabilities are considerable – especially when its institutional embeddedness allows it to develop scarce resources of value to the wider MNC – conditions exist for ‘reverse transfer’ (model 6). That is to say, practices operating in the subsidiary are transferred to headquarters (Edwards and Ferner, 2004). These conditions are heightened in situations of ‘reverse dominance’, that is where the subsidiary’s host system is more dominant than the MNC’s parent system.

For example, a German chemical company developed a global system of bonus pay for executives that was modelled closely on schemes already developed in the US subsidiary of the company (Ferner and Varul, 2000). These models are not, of course, exhaustive: other outcomes are possible; and the same transfer outcome may be obtained through different combinations of variables. But they illustrate the heuristic value of the approach. It should be noted that a certain degree of interaction of explanatory variables is likely.

For example, MNCs from dominant parent countries are likely to be able to influence subnational variety because of their greater capacity for rule-making rather than mere rule-taking behaviour. [Table 2 about here] Conclusion This paper has argued for a revision of the Kostovian approach to practice transfer in MNCs in two key respects: systematically incorporating actors’ power capabilities, and taking account of how power ‘problematizes’ ID by rendering it more susceptible to the purposive action of MNC actors.

We have argued for an analysis of power that incorporates both macro-institutional and micro-institutional capabilities of MNC actors in which these are able to a greater or lesser extent to manipulate and construct elements of the institutional settings in which they operate. The implications of the argument are methodological as well as conceptual. First, there is a need to develop credible measures of the variables in the model. The concept of mID implies the need to assess dominance effects, for example, and these will vary according to the pairs of parent and host business systems in play; dominance may also vary e. . by sector. Much work needs to be done on measuring notions such as institutional space, and to map the dimensions that characterize institutional variants. This has to be accomplished at a disaggregated level: notions of ‘country institutional profile’ may be too crude where MNCs’ power allows them to construct niche institutional ‘micro-climates’. One of the most difficult tasks is to operationalize actors’ power capabilities and to empirically assess different levels of capabilities in relation to resource, process and meaning.

Moreover, empirical tools capable of identifying and distinguishing interests are needed, a task complicated by the fact that while some underlying interests may be long-term and durable – for example, around organizational survival – others may well be issue-specific, constructed anew around each instance of transfer. These points suggest a critical role for in-depth case studies. They allow deeper exploration both of the process of transfer and of how transferred practices are implemented in the routine life of the subsidiary.

They are more suited than surveys to developing nuanced operationalizations and unpicking the complexities of power, how different kinds of power capabilities are deployed by different actors in the transfer process, and how configurations of interests are constructed around different transfer cases. They are more appropriate for exploring in depth the way transferred practices operate in reality. Finally, there is the question of the generalizability of these arguments to other areas of management activity.

Inasmuch as transfer provokes challenges to existing modes of action and to institutional frameworks, much of the same processes of power are likely to be observed in other areas. The cross-national transfer of technical know-how, for example, exposes underlying cognitive assumptions about how the production of knowledge and development of products should be organized (e. g. Lam, 1997; Szulanski and Jensen, 2006). It is also likely to create conflicts of interest over control of knowledge as a resource, or concerns about the impact of transferred knowledge on the structuring of activities and actors’ roles in the recipient unit.

Beyond that, however, HR&EP may have distinctive characteristics, relating partly to the structured antagonisms between capital and labour (Edwards, 1986). More immediately, as a ‘downstream’ business activity, HR&EP is particularly prone to the normative principles that may be at odds with the prescriptions of upstream strategy, increasing the space for actors to exploit micro-institutional ambiguities between, for instance, directives on growth, profitability or efficiency on the one hand, and principles of employee management on the other. Funding statement

This research was supported by funding from the Economic & Social Research Council, grant numbers R000-23-8350 and RES-000-230305. Notes [? ] According to Scopus, the number of citations for three of Kostova’s articles concerning transfer (as at 15th September 2011) are as follows: Kostova, 1999: 321; Kostova and Zaheer, 1999: 329; Kostova and Roth, 2002: 281. 2 The term ‘capabilities’ is preferred to ‘resources’ since power over resources constitutes only one dimension of power (one that is the focus of resource-based views of power that predominate in the business literature). Perceptions of profitability in an MNC can be shaped

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Understand Employment Responsibilities

201 Understand employment responsibilities and rights in health, social care or children’s and young people’s settings Task A – Short Answer Questions Ai: Imagine you are a newly appointed supervisor/manager within your service. You need to update your staff handbook to reflect current employment law. Identify three different sources of information you could use to enable you to do this. Once you have identified a reliable source of information: Aii a) List three aspects of employment covered by law.

Work Conditions (safety, discrimination, accommodation, etc. ) Wages Hours b) List three main features of current employment legislation. Minimum wage Training Holiday entitlements Aiii Briefly outline why employment law exists. To protect the employee and the employer Nobody is discriminated racism is not in the work place No abuse, providing a safe work environment employee fairness people don’t work below minimum wage nobody is taken advantage of nobody is tricked into unfavourable contracts. Task B Your work role

For this task you will need the following: • A copy of your contract of employment or employment agreement. If you don’t have a written contract of employment eg if you are employed as a personal assistant, discuss your terms and conditions with your employer and make notes to help you to complete the task; Evidence 1 • A recent payslip or pay statement; Evidence 2 • Access to your workplace policies and procedures or notes from a discussion with your employer if you are employed as a personal assistant

Bi Describe the terms and conditions of your employment as set out in your contract of employment or employment agreement. Bii Describe the information which needs to be shown on your pay slip/statement. Salary before and after deductions Name national insurance number national insurance contribution tax contribution PAYE/employee number Biii Identify two changes to personal information which you must report to your employer. Change of bank details Change of address Biv Describe the procedure to follow if you wanted to raise a grievance at work.

You may describe this in writing or produce a flow chart or diagram. Bv Explain the agreed ways of working with your employer in relation to the following areas: 1. Data protection 2. Grievance 3. Conflict management 4. Anti-discriminatory practice 5. Health & safety 6. Confidentiality 7. Whistle blowing Bvi Explain how your role contributes to the overall delivery of the service provided. Bvii Explain how you could influence the quality of the service provided by; a) Following best practice within your work role; Doing everything required I. e. raining,Be kind and caring to the residents and providing them with respect and dignity. b) Not carrying out the requirements of your role. By not following the role requirements you will be not doing your job well and following the right procedures and by that you can cause accidents and your not giving your fall attention by that people will be neglected and not get the fall care they need. Bviii Describe how your own work must be influenced by National factors such as Codes of Practice, National Occupational Standards, Legislation and Government Initiatives.

Bix a) Identify two different representative bodies which influence your area of work. b) Describe the role of the two representative bodies you have identified. Task C Career Pathway Create a career pathway plan for yourself, indicating what opportunities are open to you as you progress in your chosen career. Indicate what you will need to learn or any qualifications you might need to gain in order to achieve your goals. Identify sources of information to help you achieve your goals. Task D Presentation or report

Prepare a presentation or report on an issue or area of public concern related to the care profession. Your presentation or report should include: • A description of the issue or area of public concern raised • An outline of the different points of view regarding the issue or area of public concern raised • A description of how the issue or area of public concern has affected service provision and methods of working • A description of how public opinion is affected by issues and areas of concern in either the health, social care or children’s and young people’s sectors

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Cipd Employment Law Essay

Supporting Good Practice in Managing Employment Relations 3MER Introduction: The aim/objectives of this assignment are to explore employee relations in detail, including the internal and external factor impacting on employment relationship, psychological contract, and differences between fair and unfair dismissals, redundancy. 1. Understand the impact of employment law at the start of the employment relationship : 1.

Internal and external factor that impact on the employment relationship: The absolute melodious bond between employers and employees is crucial for the smooth running of an organisation, where there is a give and take relationship and there are various factor affecting the relationship Internally and Externally i. e. Organisational culture , historical context, performance, pay and reward, economic factor, technology factor, unemployment etc. Internal Factor: Organisational culture is defined by many writers as being ” the way we do things round here ” It is manifested in the rituals of an organisational, in its people, dress, habits, working times and style, attitudes , office layout , almost every intangible aspect of its being. It is also perpetuated by stories, office gossip, heroes and heroines, decor, social life and the language that various parts of the organisation regularly use at work. (CIPD 2011) * Psychological contract the term was first used in the early 1960s but became more popular following the economic downturn in the early 1990s.

It has been defined as ‘the perceptions of the two parties, employee and employer, of what their mutual obligations are towards each other’. (CIPD 2012). In which employers except commitment to goals and value, hard working, flexibility, honestly, be courteous to client and staff. In return employee except a pleasant and safe working environment, job security, pays commensurate with performance feedback, skill development aid to employability and fair treatment. External Factor: Technological factor: Due to the ever growing demand of technology there are advantage and disadvantage. There are development in energy sources, mobile technology and medical discoveries etc. These help employees to develop the skills and training. And the same may also create a gap in the market or barrier for the entry in the given market, which may de-motive staff. Economical factor: Slow economic growth/ decline may result in employees just fortunate of having a job.

Due to the euro crisis, lowest interest rate, exchange rates and inflation rate, wage rates and unemployment. 2. The different types of employment status: There are three main categories of employment status such as Employee: Has a contract of service, have set working hours, have options of paternal leave, have rights of unfair dismissal. Workers: Does the work personally, either may have set working hours; contract may be verbal or written, they usually work for fixed time, doesn’t have rights of unfair dismissal.

Business/ Genuinely Self- Employed: They contract for service and employers are the customers, they have a set of working hours, is contracted for each model of work – either verbal or written, contracted by service not time and doesn’t hold any rights for unfair dismissal/ redundancy. 1. 3 Identify and analyse the reasons why it is important to determine an individual’s employment status: Below are the 3 major employment status and reasons for the importance of identifying them: Permanent: An employee has a permanent contract, has access to all the perks and benefits in the firm.

Under the Employment Rights Act 1996 permanent employees are entitled to written terms and conditions after 8 weeks of employment and once they have acquired continuous employment for a certain period of time they acquire certain rights (e. g. 1 year for right to claim unfair dismissal; 2 years for redundancy payments). They also have the employment rights such as Statutory Sick Pay. An employee receives a wage/salary rather than seeking remuneration in the form of profits whether the wage is subject to deductions under the PAYE scheme whether an employee is obliged to perform the duties of his or her job.

The Company provides the tools, equipment, premises or any other materials that are required to do the work. In economic down turn employers may reduce their or put in a cap into their employees bonus or pay rise. Contractors/ Self – Employed: Whereby a person will work for themselves rather than an employer. It is important to establish this type of worker as they will be entitled to the core legal rights, they will be entitled to receive the National Minimum Wage and be protected against unlawful deduction from wages.

They don’t receive any holiday pay or sick pay when they are not available for work. Economic down turn may not affect to such an individual. Agency workers or ‘temps’: They have the opportunity to sign on several employment agencies and can work on a variety of assignments through out the year for different organisation. It is important to establish this type of worker as they will be entitled to the core legal rights. They are paid on invoice and may be VAT registered and be protected against unlawful deduction from wages. . Understand the main individual rights that the employee has during the employment relationship: 2. 1 Explain the importance of work life balance within the employment relationship and how it can be influenced by legislation: The Working Time Regulations (1998) implement the European Working Time Directive into GB law. The purpose of the legislation was to have adequate breaks. The importance of work life balance in an employment relationship is vital for two way relationship.

To keep an individual motivated to avoid sluggish, to make them feel happier and valued. An individual is more refreshed after a regular break and can be more effective into this work and put in new ideas which leads to enhance the performance. A tired worker is more likely to make mistake- but due to WTR there may be reduction of mistakes. There is also a good employer branding around the globe encouraging more people to apply for jobs. A positive culture is build up with an individual willing to work and better productivity.

According to the WTR Act an employee can work an average up to 48 hours a week (opt out), a right to have break for 20 minutes every 6 hours in work, a right to have a day off each week, Entitled for 28 days annual leave every year, an average of 8 hours of work in a night shift. 2. 2 Summarise the legal support that may be given to employees as a family member: In our present time and looking at the current situation there are both employee and employers are in need to maintain a good working life balance.

Employers have to keep employee motivated, help them in case of emergency i. e. (allowing them to work flexible time) and help them understand maternity, paternity, adoption pay. Maternity Leave and Pay: A employee who is a new mother of her biological child is entitled to have 39 weeks of SMP (Statutory Maternity Pay), the first 6 weeks is 90 percent of their average gross weekly earning with no upper limit and the next 33 weeks at lower of either the standard rate of ? 135. 45, or 90 percent of their average gross weekly earning.

All pregnant employees are entitled for 52 weeks statutory maternity leave (26 weeks ordinary leave and 26 weeks additional leave). ‘Compulsory’ maternity leave is of two weeks immediately after giving birth during which the employee is not permitted to work. Paternity Leave: The Employment Act 2002 which includes Paternity Leave. An employee should qualify for such a leave and pay if they have been in the company for 26weeks or more. From 3 April 2011 additional entitlement to ordinary paternity leaves which is minimum of 2 weeks and additional of 26 weeks. 20 weeks after the child is born). Additional Paternity Leave is for a maximum of 26 weeks. If the employee’s partner has returned to work, the leave can be taken between 20 weeks and one year after your child is born. Adoption Leave and Pay: An employee who has worked continuously for the same employer for 26 weeks or more qualify for paid adoption leave. There are two types of adoption leave: 26 weeks ordinary adoption leave and 26 additional adoption leave, giving a total of 52 weeks. SAP (Statutory Adoption Leave) is payable for 39 weeks.

The rate of SAP is same as the lower rate of SMP. Dependant Leave: An employee whose child is under 5 or who has a disable child age 18 or under they holds the right to take parental leave. An employee who has a continuous service least for a year qualifies for paternal leave. An employee have the right to have unpaid time off work to deal with emergencies involving a ‘dependant’ – this could be employee’s husband, wife, partner, child, parent, or anyone living in your household as a member of the family. 2. 3 Explain the reasons for treating employees fairly in relation to pay:

The purpose of the Equal Pay Act 1970 is to eliminate discrimination between men and women in terms of pay. This law gives a woman the right to be paid the same as a man like work, work of equal value and work rated as equivalent by analytical job evaluation study. Enhancing Employer Brand: Giving them equal pay boosts employees confident, keep employees motivated and to keep them in the business longer then ever before. At Bloomberg these benefits are based on the annual salary, and salaries are benchmarked to job levels which are assigned to the role.

This ensures salaries are fair for the job being performed, regardless of gender, race, or age, to ensure there is no discrimination among employees. Increased Productivity: Due to the Act there is an ever increasing productivity to be seen, At JIG a case occurred where employees knew there is equality in gender and pay in place. Employees were treated fair, the morale increased, they are well known for their excellent customer/ client service and employees started to settle down within their jobs for long period of time. 2. 4 Summarise the main points of discrimination legislation:

Anti – Discrimination legislation is now incorporated within the Equality Act 2010. The purpose of this legislation is to build up nine separate pieces of anti – discrimination legislation into a single Act, creates a new single equality duty on public bodies, and allows for wider equality objectives to be included in tenders for public sector contracts. The lists of 9 protected characteristics are: Age, Disability, Gender reassignment, marriage and civil partner, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.

Direct discrimination: This occurs when someone is treated less favourably than another on account of having a disability, or on the grounds of age, sex, race, religion or sexual orientation. When deciding whether direct discrimination has taken place a comparator issued. At Bloomberg all employees are treated equally but not discriminating between an older and younger candidate going for the same job. Indirect discrimination: This is when a disability or sex is disadvantaged by a provision, criterion or practice which is broadly applied.

These could be policies at work, college rules and qualifications. At JIG there were changes made on working shift patterns to dress and display the new lines in the company which were out of business hours. All employers were required to work till 10 twice a week. Women are going to be immoderately affected by this, as women are more likely than men to have caring responsibilities. One particular woman cannot work the shifts and she claims indirect discrimination, as the shift changes particularly disadvantage women who may wish to collect children from school and right out her normal duties.

Victimisation: This occurs when an employee is treated less favourably because they have made or supported a complaint related to the Act, or they are suspected of doing so. At Bloomberg security there was occasion where an employee has given evidence in connection to a discrimination claim, and 4 months later they felt that they have been victimised by their supervisor due to these event that had happened. Harassment: The Harassment Act was introduced in 1997 to protect individuals from harassment situations in and out of the workplace.

Harassment is where an employer or an employee violates another person’s dignity or creates an uncomfortable or offensive environment for them. Such a situation has not yet arisen at Bloomberg. 2. 5 Explain the good practice that underpins organisational policies and can contribute to the psychological contract: Psychological contract has been defined as ‘the perceptions of the two parties’ employee and employer, of what their mutual obligations are towards each other’. (CIPD 2005) An individual’s expectation that some organised ystem will act with predictability or goodwill’ (Maguire and Phillips 2008). The psychological contract is more positive if there is evidence of the following: A high-quality workplace – this is made up of six factors linked to stress and well-being, namely: a manageable workload, some personal control over the job, support from supervisors and colleagues, positive relationships at work, a reasonably clear role, a sense of control or involvement in changes. At Bloomberg in our department every staff and line- manager at the start of every shift there is a briefing to be held every morning.

There is a psychological contract between the staff and the line – manger in order to attend the briefing every staff member in the morning is excepted to come 15 minutes early prior to the starting time, and vice- verse there are allowed to leave 15 minutes earlier prior to their finish time. In that way trust is not affected, the psychological contract is maintained resulting in an increased loyalty, more efficiency and longer working period. 3. Understand the issues to address at the termination of the employment relationship 1. Explain the differences between fair and unfair dismissals:

Dismissal is when employer ends the employment they don’t always have to give notice. If dismissed, the employer must show they’ve: a valid reason that they can justify and act reasonably in the circumstances. Fair Dismissal: Dismissal is normally fair if an employer can show that it is for one of the following reasons: A reason related to an employee’s conduct A reason related to an employee’s capability or qualifications for the job Because of a redundancy Because a statutory duty or restriction prohibited the employment being continued Some other substantial reason of a kind which justifies the dismissal.

And that they acted reasonably in treating that reason as sufficient for dismissal. Unfair Dismissal: Unfair dismissal is when employer does not have a fair reason or it’s not lawful for dismissing an employee. It is when the employer has not followed the correct and lawful company’s process when dismissing the employee. Summary dismissal: Employee can be dismissed for ‘gross misconduct’ without employer going through the normal disciplinary procedures. This can happen if, for example, violent towards a colleague, customer or property.

Constructive dismissal: Is when an employee is forced to leave their job against their will because of their employer’s conduct. Example: let other employees harass or bullying. Automatically unfair reasons for dismissal (where one year or two years continuity of employment is not required) Dismissals will be automatically unfair if related to: A reason connected with pregnancy, taking maternity leave and pay, paternity leave and pay, additional paternity leave and pay (from April 2011) adoption leave and pay, childbirth and parental leave – Section 99 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (ERA).

Seeking to exercise the right to request flexible working. Taking leave for family emergencies or to care for dependants – Section 57A of the ERA. Taking time off for jury service. Potentially fair reasons for dismissal: To be fair, a dismissal must be for one of these reasons: Capability or qualifications Conduct Illegality or contravention of a statutory duty Some other substantial reason Redundancy The process to follow and reduce the likelihood of unfair dismissal: Understanding the purpose and scope of problem. , Principle: Action taken to nature of the problem

The Procedure: Oral, first, final written warning and dismissal Gross Misconduct and giving them a chance for Appeal. 2. Explain the importance of exit interviews: The exit interview at Bloomberg provides an opportunity to allow the employer and employee to express and acquiring their reasons for leaving. Exit interviews can sometimes prove difficult to collect information, as some employees prefer, or are not willing to disclose their reasons for leaving or any problems they have had occurred in during their employment.

The importance of an exit interview to Employers is that, if conducted well it delivers an excellent opportunity for Bloomberg to gain insight into employees’ perceptions of the organisation overall, underlying workplace issues and managerial leadership. The importance of an exit interview for the Employee is to voice their views on their working experience during their time at Bloomberg. This also gives them a chance to suggest improvements to their role and to draw a line under their employment relationship. 3. Summarise the key stages to be followed when managing redundancies:

Redundancy: A redundancy occurs where a dismissal is wholly or mainly because employees have ceased to carry the employers business or intend to cease to carry out the employers business. Either for the purpose for which the employers is employed or in the place where the employee was employed. (Kate Russell 2011) Key stages followed in managing redundancy: The first stage of redundancy involves planning from HR and line – manager arbitrates to discuss the organisation or department structure. The second stage is lawfully identifying the employees which are due to put into risk, by a fair, objective and non discriminatory selection criteria.

The third stage involves the moment of truth, information the employees and consultation meetings. The final meeting with the employee will be formal and includes the right to be accompanied. There may be several meetings prior to the final meeting in reference with what help or alternatives could be provided. The fourth stage is if the redundancy occurs it will be in written and with full explanation of redundancy payments of what they are likely to receive. Redundancy pay depends on age, current pay (or statutory limit) and length of service. Pay is calculated as follows: 0. week’s pay for each full year of service for those under 22 years of age 1 week’s pay for each full year of service for 22-41 year olds 1. 5 week’s pay for each full year of service for those over 41 The fifth stage is where Employee holds the right to appeal against the decision which has made by the employer. The final stage occurs when there aren’t any alternative jobs and appeal against the decision, the redundancy payment is realised. After the redundancy is communicated, Employees can often feels depressed. Trainings sessions and advice on seeking new employment are been given.

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Winnipeg General Strike

The Winnipeg General Strike was a landmark in North America. The strike officially began on May 15th, 1919 at 11:00 AM and continued until late June, 1919, and approximately 35, 000 workers, basically the entire workforce of Winnipeg, walked off their jobs, risking their entire lives (Naylor, 2009). This strike has been one of the most studied historic moments in Canadian history. The General Strike had been brewing for many years prior to 1919, a large series of circumstances contributed to the strike, from international to local (Beszterda, 1975).

The strike began in the beginning of May, 1919, after months of labor negotiations the workforce finally had enough and the strike began. The metalworkers were next to participate the strike, the employers of the main factories in the town refused to negotiate their contract. There was a committee that was composed of 1,000 manufactures, bankers, and politicians; they called themselves the Citizens Committee.

The Winnipeg General Strike was caused by many reasons. One reason was the immediate reasons for the building of trades and metal workers going on strike for better wages and to improve the conditions that they worked in daily. The workers were payed a low wage and worked in horrible conditions that would automatically be condemned today. The money that they worked extremely hard for made it difficult to leave comfortably, as many people do today.

The sweep of the strike involved non-unionzed workers as well, which arose from problems with World War 1. They sacrificed years of high expectations suring the war and its aftermath were greeted with high unemployment instead, an industrial turndown, and inflation. The tight labour market had led to an increase in unions, the success of the Russion Revolution in 1917 had led not only to an increase in ideas, but it also provoked a fear on the part of those in authority. (Munroe, 2010)

The One Big Union was a major part of the strike. They did not organize or lead the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike, although its history was closely intertwined with that of

the strike. Their radical ideas were getting warm response from many trade unionists. Once the delegates from western Canada unions arrived in Calgary for the meeting in the spring, they were no longer interested in fixing the Trades and Labor Congress. By moving to create the One Big Union, the Candians in the west had created many enimies for themselves, the business world, government officials, and all the craft unions all felt threated by the One Big Union.

Spring of 1919, the newly formed Winnipeg Building Trades Council opened their doors for negotiations with their employer, the Winnipeg Builders Exchange. The workers were looking for increase in pay that would allow them to regain what they had lost to the war inflation. Builders stated that without the increase in construction, they could not afford to pay the higher wages that were demanded. Once this negoation was over, the employers agreed to a “take-it-or-leave-it” approach, stating that if they did not like the wages, then they did not do it and it was over.

In results of fearing that the strike would spread to other cities, Senator Robertson was ordered to mediate the dispute and make a final ruling. Once both sides have been heard, he decided that the strikers and the City Council to accept the employee’s proposal. Once they learned of their success, they knew for sure that they would be using striking again in the future (Wikipedia, 2010).

After the strike, the metal workers finally received the pay increase they were fighting for and went back to work satisfied with the outcome from the Winnipeg Strike. Some of the workers were not so lucky, they were thrown into jail for the reckless behavior they exhibited during the strike. Seven of the strike leaders were thrown into jail for conspiracy to overthrow the government, they were imprisoned for two years. They won 11 seats on the provincial election in Manitoba, four of them were the strike leaders. After 20 years, collective bargaining was finally looked at again in Canada. Due to the fact that nobody was working and the majority of the workforce were participating in the General Strike, Winnipeg’s economy went into decline. (Munroe, 2010).

The effects from these outcomes are still in effect today. We are still receiving higher wages yearly. Minimum wage standards keep increasing at a constant in all provinces per year. This strike may have caused the working conditions today to be as good as what they are. If people hadn’t fought years ago for this then employers today would still be trying to do whatever they can, there would be no standards for employment and the basis for strikes would not be there.

Works Cited

http://www.cupe1975.ca/bursary/burs4.html

http://canadaonline.about.com/od/canadianhistory/a/winnipegstrike.htm

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Course Project: Leadership and Organizational Behavior

My course project is based on organization of Creative Images, Inc. Creative Images is a California based company in computer graphic design studio who’s affiliated with Hollywood movie production companies. Creative Images work very closely with their clients and well known clients are Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Company, and many other animation movie makers. Numbers of intelligent computer graphic designers are working hard to meet the status quo on current animated production movies and projects for the customers in night and weekends.

The company is all about providing highest quality of work to world giant animated movie production companies and its well getting recognized by their customers. But only problem is that employees’ at Creative Images are not satisfied with their current benefits of their job since many people are subject to provide the project status and meeting deadlines which it requires for them to work nights and weekends without getting over-time paid.

I am a Human Resource analysis just recently got hired by Creative Images to provide the best quality assurance to employees so that all employees are satisfy with their jobs and benefits so that it increases employee’s morale. I will be reviewing current job duties and functionalities so that their compensation and benefits are competitive with current market as well as provide them with incentives and rewards so that it increases employee’s morale and reduce number of high turnovers.

Problem Statement The problem that Creative Images faces employee’s compensation and benefits package which it makes the company is not competitive and enjoyable work place. According to Human Resource’s firm wide hiring analysis, they have been showing increases of job turnovers in the past 2-3 years. During their exit interview, number of employee reported complains of their stressful working hours and have not been compensated for their amount of work that they provided in after working hours.

After working excessive hours, their team or department did not recognized their showmanship for delivering high quality work and company did not award them or no creases in bonuses either. Since Creative Images are known for proving highest quality of work to their customers, in seldom, several other design studios who’s competition to Creative Images are trying to offer a job to elite and talented individuals from Creative Images to get the best people of for them.

It’s causing the huge headache to the firm since many of them who left company are key employees who bring revenue to the company. To avoid any high turnovers, we need to provide very competitive salaries, incentives as well as reward programs to keep the Creative Images employees and bring higher standards and morale.

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April ABC, Inc

In the beginning of April ABC, Inc. hired Carl Robins as their new campus recruiter. Carl was new to his position, but that did not stop him from striving to be a great recruiter right from the start. Carl successfully hired 15 new trainees to work for Monica Carrols the Operations Supervisor. Monica checked in with Carl to advise him of all the steps that are necessary to complete before the trainees could start working for the company.

Carl felt confident about the situation and assured Monica that everything would be arranged in plenty of time. The goal is to have the trainees working by July; the problem is that Carl has neglected to make the proper arrangements to ensure all tasks will be accomplished. This analysis will try to come up with a good solution for Carl Robins to resolve the problems he has created. Carl has been in his recruiter position for six months; these 15 trainees are his first recruitment efforts for ABC, Inc.

The trainees were recruited in early April; it was Carl’s hopes that he would have the hires working by July. The second week in May, Monica contacted Carl about the training schedule, letting him know it takes a lot of time to get the training schedule, policy booklets, manuals, drug test, physicals and many other areas scheduled. Carl would have to coordinate these tasks for the new employees before the new hire orientation; the orientation was dated for June 15.

After Memorial Day, Carl looked over the new trainee files; the orientation was to take place in two weeks. As soon as Carl was done looking over the paperwork, he realized some of the trainees had not finished their applications, they did not have transcripts on file, and not one new hire had scheduled the mandatory drug screening. Many things Carl needed to be concerned about, he has been an employee for only six months, therefore if he does not fulfill this task, he might be in risk of loosing his job because this may not get another chance.

He decided to look through the orientation manuals, but he had missing pages and he only had three copies; they would be no help in trying to prepare the materials for the orientation. Carl knew he confirmed Monica that everything would be done by the time for the new orientation course. Now he will have to figure out how he will execute the perfect plan to make things right again and have enough time to complete the tasks.

Carl went to check the training room that he will use for the orientation training but he ound out that his co-worker Joe already reserved the room for giving computer training for the whole month of June. Carl did not know the training room was reserved and he will have to find a solution for finding a place to have the orientation; this was a major oversight from Carl’s part. Alternative solutions are needed in order to get Carl out of trouble and back on track and try not to loose his job. To start he can make a list of the pending tasks and give them an order of importance.

He needs to have an estimate of time that will take each task and see how viable tasks are and if he needs an extra plan to make them happened. Carl can call a meeting with all the new hires and give them a list of requirements they will need to be considerate for a permanent position. Since the new hires will want the opportunity they will make the impossible to make it happen. The drug testing is mandatory and should be the top priority on his list; the second priority on the list, should be the manuals.

Carl needs to complete the manuals; gather all the information and make sets of all the copies. If Carl can continue to be motivated to do a good job and make a great first impression, he can accomplish all tasks at hand. Once Carl has created his plan of action, he can make notes as to how he plans on figuring everything out. By contacting the new trainees that do not have a completed application and transcripts turned in he has not only informed the trainees of what is need from them in order to be completely hired, but he is also giving contact and that shows seriousness to the situation.

If the new hires show up to orientation and do not have the drug screening complete they should be sent directly to the clinic to get the screening done. The reason the drug screening needs to be done prior to the orientation is the company does not want to hire anyone who is on drugs, so this task needs to be complete before they are even considered for the new hire orientation course.

When the individuals show up for the course if they have not yet completed their part of the new orientation process they should be asked to leave; they can either complete their given tasks and contact Carl when they have done so or they can decided to not work for ABC, Inc.. The problem with allowing them to stay and complete the tasks at a later time is that they are getting a message that this is how they can conduct themselves while on the job. The manuals and incompatible reservations for the training room are Carl’s misdoings, so he needs to take responsibility for these matters.

In order to have the orientation manuals be useful, Carl should consider completing the three that he has since they are only missing some pages and then make a power point slide show to use as the main course material. By turning the material into a power point slide he is giving the trainees a chance to take notes and he can create the presentation at home during off work hours. Carl should take one of the manuals and combine whatever information is missing into it.

The situation with using the training rooms can only be fixed by Carl taking to his co-worker Joe. The new hire orientation only takes one day and since Joe has the room booked all month, he may not mind giving up one day, so his co-worker can utilize the space. If Joe says that Carl using the room is not possible, Carl needs to find another space to hold the orientation. The best thing to do would be to find another room that has access to a computer hook up and can display a power point presentation.

There are only 15 new hires and they do not need computers for the course, so just about any space should do the job. Another solution could be for Carl to have the room for half a day on two different days; by doing this you give Joe his space everyday and he make be able to re-work his course schedule easier by not being asked to leave his room for a whole day. It is clear to see that Carl was slacking in all areas need to complete his first recruitment job for ABC, Inc. Carl did not plan ahead, he did not organize, and he did not prioritize any of the tasks.

This being Carl’s first job for the company he should have taken it more seriously and he should have listened to the advice given to him by Monica Carrols, she is in a management position, has been with the company longer and knew what steps needed to be taken to succeed. Carl should learn from this mishap and always give himself plenty of time to complete a job the right way, he should listen to those who have valuable advice, and he should communicate with co-workers more effectively. If Carl can get his act together, he has real promise to being a great recruiter and asset for ABC, Inc.

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Women in the Workplace

From running for president, making up over half of the workforce, managing some of the world’s most successful companies, and earning almost 60% of university degrees in America and Europe, women’s presence in the workforce is more prominent today than ever. This “economic empowerment of women” is changing the workplace, as we know it. Only 20 years ago, women were viewed as only capable of unskilled jobs and were assumed to place marriage and children before having a career.

In today’s society, women have more opportunities to have power over their lives and chose their career path. In today’s global economy, every country should be utilizing the talents of their women in their workforce. For many countries, this progress has not been the same as America. For example, in Italy and Japan men employment rates are more than 20 percentage points higher and women’s employment rate is still below 50%. On average, women still earn significantly less than men and are a minority in top management. Remarkable Social Change without Conflict

The Economist found three surprising results from the increase of women in the workforce: the lack of privilege felt from women about their new opportunities, unmet expectations of women’s role in the workforce and the lack of resistance from society, especially men. The lack of celebration from women is believed to be because of the economic necessity of women to work. Today, most households are two-income and women have little choice as to whether they want to work or not. Their contribution is the only way for many households to maintain their standard of living after having children.

Also, many young women take this opportunity to work for granted, because they have grown up in a welcoming environment where women were always part of the workforce. Although women are encouraged to enter the work force, only 2% are managers and less than 13% are board members. Men dominate top management. America and Britain’s average full-time, female workers earn only about 80% as much as their male counterpart. Finally, most Americans are comfortable with women in the workforce with 9 out of 10 men are even comfortable with women earning more than they do.

The minimal resistance to this social trend, especially by men, has allowed it to adapt rapidly and with little conflict. Contributing Factors to this Social Change A major explanation for increased women in the workforce is the large amount of women who are university graduates and professional workers. Growth of higher education has increased women’s value in the job market and has caused a shift in the woman role model as professional women, not just homemakers. According to The Economist, in 1963, 62% of college-educated women were in the workforce whereas 46% of those who had a high school diploma.

Today, 80% of American women with a college education are in the workforce in contrast to 67% with a high school diploma and 47% without one. Women are also educated in more “marketable subjects” such as business and management. In 1966, 40% of women obtained a degree in education and 2% in business and management. Where as today, 12% obtain degrees in education and 50% obtain degrees in business and management. Engineering and computer science are one of the few areas women are lagging in. Politics have had a major effect on this revolution. Feminists have made domestic slavery unacceptable.

Feminists have also strongly criticize discrimination toward women in the work place. We’ve even seen equal-rights acts passed in order to assure an equal playing ground in the work force for men and women of all ethnicities. Economic and technological forces have also played a role in the empowerment of women in the workforce. There has been a growing demand for women in the workforce. When strength was required to work, men had the advantage. The growth in the service sector and decline in the manufacturing sector has made brainpower more of a demand in the work force.

This puts men and women on a more equal playing ground. Lastly, women have been more than willing and able to meet the demands of being in the workforce. Many factors play a role in this. For example, traditional cleaning is done easier and quicker than before. The contraceptive pill has allowed women to get married late, increased their ability to invest in their careers, and allowed them to finish schooling instead of taking breaks due to childbirth. Major Challenges Faced with a Woman Workforce Two major challenges have occurred with the increase of women in the workforce.

First, women continue to be under-represented in top management, with only 2% in America and 5% in Britain, and are paid considerably less than men. Secondly, it is very demanding for women to manage both their career and their family. In America, 74% of parents believe they don’t spend enough time with their children because they are constantly juggling their work and home life. In two-parent working households, childcare consumes a large proportion of the budget, but having one parent stay at home could result in much lower income for family expenses.

Therefore, having only one income is not an option. Poor households are affected the most because of the large amount of poor mothers in the workforce and the unwillingness to spend public funds on childcare for these mothers. Career Woman vs. Motherhood As women become more and more prevalent in the workforce, they find themselves choosing between being successful in their careers and being a stay-at-home mother. Many women are in challenging careers in their 20s, leave in their 30s to have children and find it hard to return after their leave of absence.

Of all the women who left work to have children, 93% of women wanted to return to work, but only 74% returned to work, only 40% returning full-time. Also, many women find the role of motherhood damaging to their professional career. Those women in corporate America who don’t have children earn as much as men, where as mothers earn less and single mothers even less. The Economist explains that the “cost of motherhood” is great for women in professional careers because wages increase abruptly and schedules are very demanding.

Many times executives are expected to work in numerous departments and travel often. Therefore, the gap ii pay and positions between men and women may be because women are measured exactly the same as men, not because of discrimination or unfair treatment. This trend is producing high cost on individuals and society because many professional women are eliminating motherhood altogether or are forced into the fertility industry when they do decide to have children. Solutions for these Challenges For the most part, people believe that this trend will handle itself.

Others argue that government intervention such as women quotas, state-funded daycares, extended paid maternity leave, “parent’s salary,” earlier preschool education, or the elimination of part-time jobs is necessary to fix these problems. The Economist discusses how these different alternatives have been used in other countries with success, but there is not enough evidence to show these measures have created the success. In fact, America has had many of the same results as these countries without taking such drastic measures.

There are less dramatic steps that the American government can take to improve and ease women into the workforce. These include alterations such as longer school days and shorter summer holidays or closing midday. The struggle with fixing problems from “the social consequences of women’s economic empowerment” will continue for decades to come. The Future of Women in the Workforce This trend of women in the workforce is likely to continue to grow and is apparent throughout all aspects of business. The Economist predicts that by 2011, there will be 2. 6 million more female than male university students.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that women already compose more than 2/3 of employment in 10 of the 15 job categories today. Many women are also opening their own business, doubling that of men in the last 10 years. Women will also benefit from the “war for talent” because of the ageing workforce and need for skill-dependent workers. Many firms are dividing hours differently such as judging hours annually instead of weekly, allowing them to come in early or late, allowing Fridays off as long as hours are made up, and even allowing husbands and wives to share jobs.

The corporate world is even making adjustments to encourage women into the workforce and help with the juggle of raising children and working such as rethinking promotional practices and sustain communication with mothers who are away from work due to their children, allowing them to work from home, or offering flexible scheduling. With the advancement of technology – Internet, e-mail, and conferencing – redesigning the workplace is much more possible.

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Reward Impacts on Job Satisfaction

Reward means giving or receiving something for a desirable effort or behavior. In this essay, impacts of external rewards will be discussed, such as privileges, money and other incentive. Using reward policy could be beneficial to organizations as well as employees. As a matter of fact there are a lot of evidence that have been provided by researchers, which show the direct relation between reward, performance and job satisfaction. In contrast, punishment is found necessary to apply in order to balance the strategy.

This essay will compare the use of reward and punishment as well as ageing how incentive is to apply reward strategy within the organization. The essay is divided into two parts: first it will show the impact of reward on the employee’s job satisfaction as well as performance. Secondly, how reward will fortify the sense of competition and productivity among the employees. Ultimately, the essay concludes that the reward has positive effect on the employee’s performance within an organization.

Every organization’s success is so dependent on its staff performance and therefore, keeping those employees motivated should be in the organization priority’s list. Much research has been conducted to explore the relationship between reward and performance. kilman(1989) found positive relation is so perceivable between reward and performance, however it was more specific in management . ” More specifically, the reward system should be aligned to motivate employee performance that is consistent with the firm’s strategy”, (Galbraith, 1973 Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 4 No. 2, 2001, p. 114).

Lazear (2000) shows significant positive effects of incentive pay on productivity (in the range of a 44-percent gain) in his unique dataset of a firm. These finding are all practical, reliable and applicable for organizations, hence employee’s level of performance can be increased by applying contingent reward in the organization’s strategy. Performance by employees is crucial to organization, so as employee job satisfaction, which is one of the incentive that helps to increase the employees to performance as well as encouraging them to focus more on their job.

Like performance, employee’s job satisfaction can be increased by applying rewards. (Ritz,scott and cherrington, 1971). The reward can not increase the performance all the time but it always will increase the job satisfaction, therefore, based on the researches we could assume that the reward will fortify the employee’s satisfaction and since it benefits the organization by making its employee more committed and focus on their job, ultimately the organization’s yield will increase.

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Work Life Balance

This essay will be looking at three main areas, first part of the essay will be about the concept of work life balance, and what are the main ideas of work life balance, in the second part, it will be mainly focusing on the reasons and the rising of work life balance, and the point of view of both employers and employees, and last, will be discussing on how organization and company could improve and help their employees to balance between their work and life The concept and theory of work/life balance

Work/ life balance, is one of the major problem through out history, one of the main reason is because many companies specially office, are giving so much work to employees that could not possibly finish during a day, in order to complete the given work, the employees most likely have to start the work very early and stay in the office very late or even bring the work home to finish it. Although they can finish the given task, but it won’t benefit the employees due to the stress and pressure they giant from the extra works, for example.

A business company have a marketing project that have to be done within days or weeks, which will take a team of 10 members of employees, but if the company have lag of employees to finish the project, those who are working on it will have to work extra on it with extra energy and extra time, another example, a travel company most likely will need some employees to travel around, and those employees will be kept away from their families and friends for days, weeks, or even a month.

Second reason is that, have a good balance between work and life is one of the key element to motivate and influence employees, a good or a poor work life balance, will highly effect the employees attitude and motivation towards their works, which also will highly affect the quality of their works. For example, if employees build up too much stress from their works, it will most likely affect their emotion and behavior and become abominable, and affect the quality and productivity of the employees as well as the company.

“Work life balance is about people having a measure of control from When, Where and how they work. It is achieved when an individual’s right to a fulfilled life inside and outside paid work is accepted and respected as the norm, to the mutual benefit of the individual, business and society. ”

Every employees have there very own unique way of life, there for, work life balance is not a fix solution for every employees, it is nearly impossible to set up an equal balance between working hours and their own life, since it will change from time to time, the right work life balance for you today, maybe different for tomorrow, base on the jobs you are working now, it will be totally different when the person is working as a part time job, full time job, a student, single or married. the core of an effective work life balance definition are two key everyday concepts that are relevant to each us, they are daily achievement and enjoyment, ideas almost deceptive in their simplicity. ” (Jim Bird Publisher. Worklifebalance. com 2003). How important for an employees to have a good or poor work life balance Nowadays, many employers understand the important of work life balance for their employees, since the world’s economy situation is changing.

For the past century, many workers are work in factory physically, but nowadays, many factory workers had been replaced by machine, with new technology growing everyday, there for more and more people have to improve their knowledge and get a higher education to be able to work in an office. , but since there are more and more people who work in an office, company will have to focus on the creativities, knowledge and reactivity’s on their employees. And employees will giant a lot more stress from it.

Since new technology are growing every day, and the economy are changing dynamically, employers are commonly ask the employees to work over time or bring their work back home to be finish before the next day. And this it what the employees have in mind, if they want an promotion in their career, they must do what their manager was told to, and try to impress them with something new by working longer hours or finish their work as quick as possible, and most employees will gain stress and pressure from their employers.

People whom working for IT technology need to be very intelligent and require a very high education. For example, a banker have to understand how the system works as well as IT skills, and they need an ability to deal with customer request with a good respond and good solution. For some employees who are working in an international investment company, they may have to work 24 hours a day to be able to see how the economic is running, and deal with the customer’s world widely.

Therefore those employees may find it difficult to balance their work and life, and got less time for social activities, friends and family. A poor work life balance not only affects the employee’s social life. It also cause the business or company to have a negative impact. For example, if an employee are all stressed out due to the work they have got. It may affect their emotion, behavior health or even mental health. Which will highly affect the company’s productivities and qualities. “Having kids has been a fantastic thing for me. It means that I am a little more balanced.

In my twenties I worked massively, hardly took vacation at all. Now, I, with the help of my life, I am always making sure I have got a good balance of how I spend my time. ” ( Bill Gate’s Business Quotation) , this states that the requirement will change base on the employees life, and also work life balance will highly affect the employees productivities. According to a research from Kenexa institute (2007) if an employees have a poor work life balance, they tended to have a greater chance of leaving the company or organization and have a very poor respect to their employers.

Therefore a good work life balance will increase the employees productivities, creativities as well as qualities of works, they also achieved a higher job satisfaction and willing to recommend their company, and employers to their friends and family. ( http://library. cqpress. com/cqreseacher/cqresrre1995080400 access on 11/10/2010). A lot of companies are tended to develop a good work life balance to their employees by setting up a good environment for them to work in. y doing so, it can highly affect employees absenteeism and competitiveness, it also increase their morale, motivation commitment. Nowadays, work life balance became one of the responsibilities of a company or business, employers are willing to building a good relationship between them and their employees. In UK, under the federal law, if a company have a number of more then 50 employees, the company must let their employees take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave a year for any reason, for example, a new born baby, a sick leave, or taking care of sick family member.

What organization and company do to improve work life balance of their employees There are a lot of ways that can improve work life balance, many company’s offices have changed their working time in to five day week scheme, in this scheme, employees will only have to work five days a week and have Saturday and Sunday off. With this scheme, employees can have more time to spent with their friends and family. And much more relax, which they believed it can improves employees productivities. Currently the maximum working hours in Europe is 48 hours per week.

But many of the European country have chosen less hours for their employees, for example, in France and Germany, companies seeks to introduce 35 hours per week and Sweden and Finland are even 5 hours fewer. (http://www. worklifebalance. org) access on 11/10/2010. Most organizations are now providing a much more relax, warm, commodious, working place for employees. Moreover, they provide more facilities in an office for employees, for example a gym room, cafe, arcade machine. Where employees can spent time during a short break.

According to some readings, employees in an office, most likely can increase their productivities by taking a short break and have some fun, for example, a little internet gaming, small exercise, hot food or drinks or a sweet snacks, it can help employees to relax there brain and help them to release some of the negative feelings due to a long period of work, although some of the facilities require a small amount of payment, but it is an beneficial idea for employees to increase their work efficiency. (http://www. microsoft. om/presspass/press/2006/apr06/04-13Pause2PlayPR. mspx) access on 11/10/2010. other then these, companies will organize events or functions where employees can have fun and make them feel more like a part of the company, those events and functions are also opened for those employees friends and family, it could be a party, a charity event, a out door event such as sports day or camping, it is a great opportunity for employees to get to know each other, learn more about the organization, and reduce stress and pressure at the same time.

Even though organization and companies are doing so much for their employees, they also want the employees to understand that they have to make a balance between their work and life, to do so, companies are hiring people outside the company to train and teach employees the concept of work life balance, on how to use their time more effectively and a balance manner.

Some companies are even introducing a new idea to fit in with different needs people, like part timing working, flexi time, or job sharing, for example, 40 hours per week for 5 days in to 10 hours per day for 4 days, by this, employees can choose when or how long they want to work, and make it suitable for their own goods. Company also provide maternity leave for employees when they need it, for example, if a family of an employees had an new born baby or pregnant, they will need more time to take care of the baby or get use to the new born baby’s existence.

It is quite stressful for a parent to look after the baby and working hard at the same time. Even though they manage to take care the baby and go to work regularly, they won’t be able to fully concentrate on their work, at that time, company can provide a maternity or paternity leave for those father and mother, which they are still under partial pay until they are fully be able to come back to work. To summarize, management team have to consider and understand work and personal life balance, and to be able to balance them to satisfy their employers, the best way to do so, is to build up a good relationship between employees and emplyers.

My Own Experience In my own experience, I’ve work in Hong Kong Polo Restaurant for 2 summers as a waiter for a summer holiday job, at the beginning, it was a 9 hours shift, and 7 days a week, but since the customers coming non-stop. I found it quite stressful to work there, and since I am a type 1 diabetes. I’ve spoke to my manager about my condition and she understand it quite well. Ever since then, I only have to work 6 hours a day, and 7 days a week. But since they have lag of stuff. Some time I have to work over time and an extra day.

The manager also would like to ask her employees if we would like to get any food home for dinner as a take away. As a employee, I respect her very much, as in she is willing to manage my working time with my condition, and are willing to put out extra affect to listen and build up a friendship between employers and employees. Conclusion All in all, work life balance is a topic that most management are concerning about. Although there will never be a perfect balance between work and life, but the closer balance it get, it will help organization and company to achieve the goal and keeping a happy work team.

At the same time, management should not only consider how much to pay their employees and how long should they work for because of the law, they should really get involved and help the employees to balance their work life, the management should understand the employees needs and try to adjust the right work life balance for them. The best way to build up a balance is not just considering a balance between employees needs and their work, it is also the best if the employees have a good relationship with the employer, and to create a better environment for the work force

Reference

http://www.woopidoo.com/business_quotes/work-quotes.htm

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A-B-Zee

This report evaluates the recent recruitment and selection arrangements for the sales assistants. It focuses on the opportunities and constraints that both the labour markets placed upon the recruitment and selection of sales assistants at A-B-Zee. It also examines the individual and organisational benefits that could be gained by providing non-standard working arrangements for sales assistants at A-B-Zee. The report finally proposes a strategy recommending how A-B-Zee’s next campaign might ensure a greater response from members of the ethnic minority community.

Organisation’s response to the opportunities and constraints placed upon it by both local labour markets in the recruitment and selection process The general constraint in the recruitment process was that A-B-Zee was new to the each labour market and thus had no reputation to call upon in its search for quality employees. Also the rate of pay being offered still follows that of the parent company. In London, the full-page display advertisement on the newspaper was a good opportunity to get across to potential applicants because the advertisement were imaginative and attracted attention.

However, the recruitment team were faced with the constraint of the accessibility to these advertisements to enough potential employees who fully met A-B-Zee’s criteria and sustenance of the candidate’s interest in the vacancy. Also, they were faced with time constraint, as the length of the ensuing recruitment process may not meet the store opening date. The Recruitment team responded, first, by trying to speed up the recruitment process. They introduced the ‘phone-in and walk-in’ facility to the advertisement.

The phone-in enabled A-B-Zee to arrange immediate interviews for those evaluated as suitable from the evidence of the telephone interview. They also responded by simplifying the application form to make its completion more convenient. The ‘walk-in’ initiative involved one to one meeting with interested candidates. They were able to successfully use the ‘walk-in’ to increase the number of applicants and also to influence those that are suitable to join the company. In instances where parents wanted to cancel due to not having arrangement for someone to look after the children, A-B-Zee invited them to bring along the children.

This seemed to be a good opportunity to attract potential employees with parental experience. The organisation also responded by making application forms and letters of offer readily available, thus increasing the speed of the company’s response. This particularly met the company’s needs with regards to speed. One other constraint which the recruitment team discovered was that the attraction of applicants was limited by the readership of the newspaper. The company responded by producing leaflets. These were distributed to houses fairly close to the store and to those of the ethnic minority around the store.

This was carried out in order to meet the objective of having a balanced work force in terms of gender, age and ethnic minority. Apart from being easily accessible, the recruitment team also responded by making themselves more available. They worked through the evenings and weekends, thereby making them more available to applicants. At the northern store, the closure of several manufacturing companies was an opportunity to have a large pool of potential candidates. A-B-Zee took the initiative to solicit with the local Job Centre. The result was that there were too many applications to be processed.

The major constraint was time. As a result of the huge number of applications, there was constraint in the task of short-listing for interview which was as a resulted of the enormous volume of applications received. Majority of the applicants were of good quality Also, given the size of the task and the time available it was very likely that the quality of the short-listing decisions would be affected. The lay-out of the application form did not help the short-listing process at all. The most relevant information was not grouped together.

This was a major constraint as well because more resources, effort and time had to be devoted to responding to all the applicants. The recruitment team was also faced with the constraint of having to respond quickly and courteously to all applicants (unsuccessful as well as short-listed applicants). This was in a bid to initiate and maintain goodwill among its potential customers. Also, the bid to recruit a balanced workforce across gender, age and ethnic group could not be achieved because, of the numerous applications received, very few were from the ethnic minority.

In general, the recruitment process at the northern store proved to be very resource-intensive Individual and Organisational Benefits that could be gained by providing non-standard working arrangements for sales assistants. The organization: Benefits that A-B-Zee could gain if it provides non-standard working arrangements to the sales assistants include: Reduced absenteeism as the workers will have time to attend to family and personal commitments. This will guarantee a high staff attendance and increase productivity and efficiency in the stores (Wood & Payne 1998).

Apart from that, non-standard working arrangements provide a wide pool of potential employees from which the HR department can choose from. Another major benefit tot he organisation is that it could also reduce the fixed costs associated with standard contracts and a constant working force which seem to ask for more payments as they stay at the company. Hiring part-time staff is a safer choice in this time of economic uncertainty and could also be a method for the company to screen and evaluate new-hires and perhaps offer them full-time positions in the future and when needed. The sales assisatants

Benefits of non-standard working arrangements to the sales assistants include a work-life balance resulting in increased motivation and job satisfaction (Nadler, 1984). It also gives the employee the opportunity to enter into other endeavours, such as studying or taking up another part-time job that is not in conflict with the current one. Apart from this, it puts the employee in a position to accept or decline job offers that would require them to work longer ZZZhours. Mothers are exposed to the job market where they can obtain work experience, gain skills and sample the employment situation.

Also, reacquiring work skills and confidence may be an interesting opportunity for mothers who have withdrawn from employment for a long period of time. (Mangum n. d. ; Howe 1986) Strategy, recommending how A-B-Zee’s next campaign might ensure a greater response from members of the ethnic minority community Initial survey of the labour market In order to attract more members of the ethnic minority in future recruitment campaigns, I believe that an initial survey of the labour market in question should be carried out before commencement of the recruitment process.

This would give an insight into the location, size and needs of the ethnic minority in such labour market. Location of new stores The location of new stores may be considered based on the findings above, thus bringing the stores in close proximity to the ethnic minority. Advertisement and Application forms Creating awareness in the target area would increase the chances of getting applicants. As A-B-Zee is new to the labour market, placing advertisement on the radio and television and providing information to the public on what

A-B-Zee is all about, what they do and when their superstores would be open, would definitely increase its awareness to the target community. Thus when job advertisements are placed, people have an idea of what company they are going to be potentially working for. The job advertisement should be able to reflect the company’s policy of recruiting a balanced workforce across gender, age and ethnic minority.

This could be achieved by including the ethnic minority in the promotional materials i. . putting images of both ethnic and non-ethnic minority on the advertisement. This would catch the eye of any member of the ethnic minority that sees the advertisement and would encourage them to apply for the job. It should also emphasize on the part-time work schedule being offered by the company. Presenting a work schedule that encourages flexibility my appeal to women of the ethnic minority who believe that they might not have time to take care of their children (Moosa, 2009).

Also by offering skills training in the advertisement, members of the ethnic minority may be encouraged to apply in a bid to be trained on their communication and interpersonal skills. The application forms should be simple, well laid out and should also include statements of assurance that A-B-Zee recruits a balanced workforce across gender, age and ethnic group. The selection and hiring process To attract more members of the ethnic minority, A-B-Zee needs to convince their target that the ethnic minority is well represented in the company.

This I believe can be achieved by increasing the involvement of the minority in the interview process. Other recommendations that can help with the recruitment process include, 1. Carrying out a salary survey and review; It is possible that the pay rates based on the parent company’s standards may not be appealing to the target market of future campaigns. By carrying out a salary survey, A-B-Zee can calculate the competitive position of the company in terms of recruitment and can then review the salary being offered. 2. Considering using recruitment agencies in part or all of the recruitment process. This would definitely reduce the work-load on the Human Resources team. 3. Since the target market is people with parenting experience, A-B-Zee may offer child-care program to its prospective employees. Child care programs have proven to produce reductions in turn-over, less absenteeism, recruiting advantage and positive impact on productivity and at the same time serve the company’s public relation interest (Howe, 1986).

In conclusion, resourcing for manpower for a new superstore is a very challenging task that requires proper planning and hard work, putting into consideration that the company is new to the labour market. In order to acquire a balanced workforce across gender, age and ethnic minority, cultural norms and barrier between the age groups as well as between the majority and minority have to be overcome. Raising awareness could also help to bring about more participation by the minorities in future recruitment campaigns.

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Strategic Process for Recruiting Employees

Employee planning, recruiting, selecting, staffing and hiring is often a very difficult, timely and expensive task for any organization wishing to survive in today’s economy. In order for any organization to be successful they must attract and hire the most talented employees that fit the culture of the organization. It is the employees that make up an organization, so to be successful they must have a strict strategic process in place to recruit the right people for their organization.

There are many strategies that organizations use to recruit employees which include, the pipeline approach, competitiveness, employment branding, sourcing, diversity and technology to name a few. (ere. net, 2008, 4) At Patton –Fuller Community Hospital many of these strategies are used effectively by their Human Resource department. The pipeline approach is a strategy that seems to be one of the most important recruiting strategies because the approach builds a steady stream of applicants, and allows for resumes and applications to come in, and get sorted into areas of expertise that may be needed down the road.

It is very important for organizations to plan for a need that may develop as time goes on. It is also extremely important to note that in every industry there lies a competitor. Organizations must take note of what the competitor is doing at all times when it comes to recruitment strategies. This strategy is one that could be adopted by Patton-Fuller Community Hospital in the case of losing an employee; it is always a good idea to have back-ups that may be available or recruited from the competition.

Employment branding is extremely important in the recruiting process for any organization, especially in the medical field. The employees are attracted to a hospital’s external image as being a leader in the health care profession. Potential employees need to believe in where they work, and hospitals and other organizations can achieve this by painting this external image of what the organization is all about, attracting many talented applicants. Sourcing is a critical ecruitment strategy for Patton-Fuller Community Hospital.

“If you don’t utilize sources that attract a high percentage of top performers, it is unlikely you will make a quality hire. ” (ere. net, 2008, 8) Patton-Fuller relies upon their top-performing employees’ referrals, and recruiters that can screen potential applicants to ensure that they don’t end up with a weak hire. Diversity is becoming extremely important in all industries, but especially in the hospital setting.

By hiring diverse people, the needs of the diverse patients that come into the hospital can be treated by a diverse group of individuals with different talents for different positions. Diversity for Patton-Fuller will allow for this hospital to succeed, so it is very important that they take this into consideration for every hire. Technology is the key for many hospitals wishing to survive in today’s economy. With new technologies on the rise Patton-Fuller can continue to advertise their needs on the web, which will save the company time and money by increasing the hiring speed and improve screening.

In the medical field it is extremely important to have the most talented, dedicated team of professionals on staff to care for the needs of patients. The employees must be trusted not only by the patients, but also the staff. In order to ensure that the top notch employees are chosen, Patten-Fuller Community Hospital will have to continue to use the recruiting strategies that they currently use and try others as the future of technology is constantly changing.

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The Importance of Work in Society

In order to maintain structure within society there are many intuitions that employed to achieve this goal. Work is an example of responsibly, discipline, and cultural awareness, qualities you will need for your future work life. First, how working teaches you responsibility, while working you have a set schedule that you have to maintain in order to be paid, so missing work means you have a lower paycheck and young teenagers love money and don’t want to miss any paychecks. You are in charge of making all customers leave satisfied with a smile, if you don’t make that happen the company can have bad reviews, which can cause you to be fired.

The more you the work the more you will have. Working also teaches you how to value things you have. The reason for this is that you work for the things you have saying you’re not going to work for something and let it go to waste or throw it away. Employers instruct their workers how to respect all costumers and how consumers are the reason, they are in business today, so tasks done to costumer’s satisfaction, with that being said employers drill into your head how to treat other people and how to run a successful business and that with hard work anything is possible.

When you first but something with your own money you care about what, and how your money is being spent, also trains you that if what you’re is not of something of value than you really don’t need to have it. We as a community needs to teach our younger children the value of responsibility and discipline which is qualities that you need to have in your everyday life. Schools are biased on teaching you what they want you to know and not what you feel about it. So do not be ignorant to what the schools edify about values of life, learn it own your own.

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Collective Bargaining

Collective bargaining is method that some employers use to negotiate with employees. Collective bargaining does not exist in every organization. However, each organization that contributes to collective bargaining must ensure they are complying with different laws. This essay will explain the right to work laws with an analysis of the provisions of the Taft-Hartley Act, an explanation of the National Labor Board, and evaluate Human Resources, products, and services in collective bargaining.

The Taft Hartley Act is another shield that protects a union in the organization. The Labor –Management Relations Act (Taft Hartley Act) of 1947, places the federal government in a watchdog position to ensure that union-management relations are fair by both parties (Byars & Rue, 2004). With the Taft Hartley Act, management and unions can share a balance of power. The major provisions of the act include the addition of the so-called free speech clause and prohibition of secondary boycotts. This clause allows management to speak freely about unions without retaliation.

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is a five-member created by the National Labor Relations Act and appointed by the president of the United States with the advice and consent of the Senate and with the authority to administer the Wagner Act (Byars & Rue, 2004). The importance of the NLRB is to prevent unfair labor practices. This board has the power to safeguard employees’ rights. The right to work law allows every American to work in an organization without belonging to a union. Only 22 states are in accordance with the right to work laws.

The right to work laws focuses on individual freedom and does not bind an employee to the union. The negative aspect of this law is that Unions argue that employees not belonging to the union receive a free ride (Byars & Rue, 2004). Many companies and union members are facing controversy over the right to work laws. Human resources play a vital role in collective bargaining and the union. Human resources use collective bargaining to handle ongoing issues between management and employees. The members of the human resources department receive adequate training on how to handle negotiations and disputes.

Human resources are the backbone of collective bargaining. This department must be able to maintain a working relationship between the manager and the employee. The key characteristic of collective bargaining industries to make guarantee the company has a department capable of handling negotiations. In addition, negotiations must be fair and pleasing to both parties. Negotiation is a two-party transaction whereby both parties intend to resolve a conflict (Cascio, 2003). AT&T, Kroger, and Ford are three companies that conduct integrative bargaining where each party benefits.

AT&T is the largest private employer of union workers in the United States (AT&T Inc. , 2010). AT&T and its union have a long tradition of mutual respect in collective bargaining agreements. Leadership from both management and the unions have a commitment to reach agreements fair to employees and provide the company the flexibility it needs in today’s highly competitive telecommunications environment (AT&T National Negotiations, 2011). The contract negations between management and the unions center on wages and benefits. The company offers competitive pay, retirement, health insurance, and a host of other benefits.

In return, the employees offer labor and productivity. AT&T’s union, Communications Workers of America (CWA) conducts several negotiations during the same time. Both parties agree upon rules to facilitate compromises between conflicting interests over the terms and conditions of employment. The key characteristics for bargaining are to ensure employees are receiving fair treatment and communication is clear. The Kroger Company is on the verge of a new union growth initiative that will directly affect both employees and the management team.

The company is building new union membership to provide excellent daily representation, protect union market share, and negotiate union contracts with strong wages, benefits, working conditions, and job protections (Kroger Connection, 2010). The message Kroger union is attempting to display is that a strong membership causes fewer problems. Representation and protection of employees is an important aspect of collective bargaining for Kroger. A key element for Kroger’s collective bargaining is to determine if the state is a right-to-work state. Establishing this factor allows members to decide hich direction to proceed in terms of bargaining.

Ford and United Auto Workers (UAW) are leaders in developing a broad range of approaches to worker environment and labor –management cooperation. Negotiations are at a national and local level. Both parties address the issues concerning product quality, employee involvement, health and safety, and employee assistance (About the NPC, 2011). Employee development and training is one of the prominent sections the union and management discuss during negotiations. In November 2007, employees made a pledge to accept and finalize Ford’s new collective bargaining agreement.

The agreement shows proof that by working together with UAW partners, it is possible to find solutions that collectively benefit employees, retirees, and the company (UAW, 2007). The key characteristic for Ford’s collective bargaining is to assemble a committee for the resolutions of disputes. The committee should take measures to increase productivity in the industry under collective bargaining agreements. Toyota is a company that does not participate in collective bargaining. The differences between a union company and Toyota are the benefits. The companies with unions incur higher costs.

Toyota can increase wages offer bonuses, and more benefits by not conforming to a union. In a competitive environment, Toyota can pay top wages to fight off UAW organizing efforts. Toyota shows that a non-union company can compete by paying higher wages. Toyota continues to discover techniques to operate efficiently, reduce labor, and motivate employees. Wal-Mart is world’s leading grocery and has been a target of unions. Although many unions are attempting to impose collective bargaining on Wal-Mart, this company is steadfast on remaining a union free zone.

Wal-Mart has the right not to partake in collective bargaining. For example, in 2000, 10 employees from a Wal-Mart meat department in Jacksonville, Texas, decided to make United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) their union. Wal-Mart refused negotiations and replaced the meat cutters with experienced employees (Wal-Mart Watch, 2011). Understanding the impact of every decision that takes place is a key element in remaining free from collective bargaining. Employers make decisions that will affect everyone in the organization.

Human resources use distributive bargaining or integrative bargaining to negotiate with the union. Employees who reside in a right to work state have the opportunity to take advantage of the right to work laws, even if the employees encounter opposition. Every member of a collective bargaining organization must familiarize him or herself with the National Labor Relations Board and the Taft-Hartley Act. Moreover, Human resources should take the necessary steps to conquer collective bargaining. Companies that oppose collective bargaining must refrain from bashing unions.

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Labor Productivity

Labor productivity is a key element in the explanation of how the economy works. It is especially important with regard to wages. What follows is some material about labor productivity and investment spending that is a reorganization of what is presented in your textbook. Its focus is on the connection between labor productivity and wages. Labor productivity is the value of the product or service you can produce in an hour, day, week or other unit of time. The value you can produce depends on the amount of work-product you can produce and the price at which that product can be sold.

When the product is sold, the owner keeps part of that value as profit, and part of it goes to pay for other production expenses. The worker then gets the residual as the wage. (The Marxists like to talk about this as exploitation and expropriation of the surplus. ) If you want a sustained increase in your real wage, you have to have an increase in labor productivity. However, you may not get a raise just because your labor productivity rises. Labor productivity may rise, thereby raising the value of your day’s work, but the owner can keep the increase as higher profit.

This raises two questions: How can you get to keep a part of increased labor productivity in a higher wage, and what contributes to systematic increases in labor productivity? First, your boss will want to keep you as a worker, assuming you are a good one. When the business cycle is at a point where actual GDP is near full employment and expanding, other firms will want to hire workers away from the company you work for. You get a raise to keep you where you are. The other way is to have a union that negotiates with the owner for a share of increased labor productivity.

To answer the second question, consider the following. Systematic increases in labor productivity come from investment spending. Investment spending, in the broadest sense, refers to spending that creates more capital for workers to use. The most obvious capital is new plant and equipment and new technology. If workers have better machines (a rise in the capital to labor ratio), they can produce more value per hour. The common sense of this can be seen with a simple example: How much land can you till and plant if your capital is just a stone? How much if you have a shovel?

How much if you have a shovel and a hoe? How much if you have a tractor and a plow? How about a great big tractor with four wheel drive, 8 or more wheels and huge implements to go with the tractor? The same thinking applies to service work as well. Human capital is less tangible than machines but very real. Human capital refers to skills, knowledge, analytical ability, and especially the ability to teach yourself new stuff. It is the corner stone of the modern economy. If you don’t have much human capital, the workplace will not pay you too much for your time.

Human capital comes through job training, formal and informal education, and self-education. The value of a four-year college degree comes mostly from the analytical abilities you develop and the ability to teach yourself new stuff, and you can only develop these skills by practicing, which is what studying is all about. Innovation and new technology come out of the application of human capital to the problem of ever-present scarcity. The problem with acquiring human capital is that the process is expensive, and there are real financial and risk constraints faced by individuals.

If individuals were left to pay the entire cost of training and education, there would be less of it than the economy needs because of these constraints. So in modern society, through government, assumes a large chunk of the risk through the subsidization of job training and education. TriCounty is a classic example. The taxpayers pay most of the expense of the services provided, and the taxpayers receive the benefits spread out over time because companies have a more productive labor force to draw from, a labor force with the human capital needed to pursue higher-valued work.

This is the case throughout the industrialized world. Infrastructure is the third category of capital. Infrastructure can be public or private. Communications companies are private infrastructure. Roads, bridges, and most airports are public infrastructure. Public infrastructure exists when private companies lack an incentive to provide the needed capital. The lack of incentive comes from the lack of ability to exclude non-payers from utilizing the products or service. National defense and public fire stations are examples.

When the infrastructure is private, consumers pay for the costs of producing the services in the price they pay for the services. When the infrastructure is public, consumers pay for the services with taxes and sometimes fees. If you want a sustained increase in wages, you have to have an increase in labor productivity, so you need additional capital, so you need additional investment spending, and if you want more investment spending, you need more savings. If you want more human capital and public infrastructure, you need more tax revenue. There is no way around it.

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Different Types of Workers’ Compensation Plans

The four types of Workers’ Compensation plans are: Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program, Federal Employees’ Compensation Program, Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Program, and the Black Lung Benefits Program. Each of these programs helps serve the employees of these specific groups when they are injured during a workplace accident. Each of these programs provide medical care, cash benefits for lost wages, rehabilitation, and other benefits to those who are injured as a result of an on the job injury.

The Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program went into effect on July 31, 2001. It provides benefits to those who have developed cancer or other serious illness due to exposure to radioactive materials while working. The Federal Employees’ Compensation Program provides benefits to employees that are employed by the federal government. The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Program provides benefits for those employed in the maritime field.

The Black Lung Benefits Program provides benefits to those that work in coal mines under the Black Lung Benefits Act. There are also two types of State Workers’ Compensation Plans. Each state has its own Workers’ Compensation plans. Coverage varies from state to state. All the states however, provide two types of Workers’ Compensation benefits. One of the benefits covers the employees’ medical expenses that resulted from an on the job injury.

The other benefit compensates the employee for the wages he or she lost during the time he or she was unable to work. They will pay these wages until they are able to return to work. It is necessary to have federal and state compensation plans to make sure the employees are covered. It is against the law to have employees without offering Workers’ Compensation. It is best to have both because each state has different regulations. An employer needs to make sure they are covered 100%.

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Selecting Employee

Learn how to select and hire the best employees for your open positions. Selection and evaluation techniques are explored that help you pick among qualified candidates. Employee selection processes are critical to hiring a superior staff. Learn to improve your employee selection methods. 10 Tips for Hiring the Right Employee Top Ten Tips for Selecting and Hiring the Right Employee Hiring the right employee is a challenging process. Hiring the wrong employee is expensive, costly to your work environment, and time consuming.

Hiring the right employee, on the other hand, pays you back in employee productivity, a successful employment relationship, and a positive impact on your total work environment. Hiring the right employee enhances your work culture and pays you back a thousand times over in high employee morale, positive forward thinking planning, and accomplishing challenging goals. This is not a comprehensive guide to hiring an employee. But, these are key steps to hiring the right employee.

1. Define the Job Before Hiring an Employee Hiring the right employee starts with a job analysis. The job analysis enables you to collect information about the duties, responsibilities, necessary skills, outcomes, and work environment of a particular job. The information from the job analysis is fundamental to developing the job description for the new employee. The job description assists you to plan your recruiting strategy for hiring the right employee. Job HiringEasy Search & Posting: AyosDito Free Job Posting, No Sign Ups! www. AyosDito. ph Interview Strategy GuideGet a Free interview strategy for HR professionals. hr. mcleanco. om/interview-guide Employment ScreeningInternational Background Checks No hidden fees or minimum orders

2. Plan Your Employee Recruiting Strategy With the job description in hand, set up a recruiting planning meeting that involves the key employees who are hiring the new employee. The hiring manager is crucial to the planning. At this meeting, your recruiting strategy is planned and the execution begins. Teams that have worked together frequently in hiring an employee can often complete this step via email.

3. Use a Checklist for Hiring an Employee This checklist for hiring an employee will help you systematize your process for hiring an employee. Whether it’s your first employee or one of many employees you are hiring, this checklist for hiring an employee helps you keep track of your recruiting efforts. The checklist for hiring an employee keeps your recruiting efforts on track and communicates progress to interested employees and the hiring manager.

4. Recruit the Right Candidates When Hiring an Employee You can develop relationships with potential candidates long before you need them when hiring an employee. These ideas will also help you in recruiting a large pool of candidates when you have a current position available. The more qualified candidates you can develop when hiring an employee, the more likely you are to locate a qualified potential employee. Read on to discover the best ways to develop your talent pool when hiring an employee.

5. Review Credentials and Applications Carefully The work of reviewing resumes, cover letters, job applications, and job application letters starts with a well-written job description. Your bulletted list of the most desired characteristics of the most qualified candidate was developed as part of the recruiting planning process. Screen all applicants against this list of qualifications, skills, experience, and characteristics. You’ll be spending your time with your most qualified candidates when hiring an employee. And, that is a good use of your time.

6. Prescreen Your Candidates The most important reason to prescreen candidates when hiring an employee is to save the interviewing and selection committee time. While a candidate may look good on paper, a prescreening interview will tell you if their qualifications are truly a fit with your job. Additionally, in a prescreening interview, you can determine whether their salary expectations are congruent with your job. A skilled telephone interviewer will also obtain evidence about whether the candidate may fit within your culture – or not.

7. Ask the Right Job Interview Questions The job interview is a powerful factor in hiring an employee. The job interview is a key tool employers utilize in hiring. The job interview questions asked are critical in magnifying the power of the job interview to help you in hiring the right employee. Interview questions that help you separate desirable candidates from average candidates are fundamental when hiring an employee. Job interview questions matter to employers. Here are sample job interview questions.

8. Check Backgrounds and References When Hiring an Employee Effective background checks are one of the most important steps when hiring an employee. You need to verify that all the presented, sterling credentials, skills, and experience are actually possessed by your candidate. The background checks must include work references, especially former supervisors, educational credentials, employment references and actual jobs held, and criminal history. Other background checks when hiring an employee, such as credit history, must be specifically related to the job for which you are hiring an employee.

9. Extend a Job Offer The job offer letter is provided to the candidate you have selected for the position. Most frequently, the candidate and the organization have verbally negotiated the conditions of hire and the job offer letter confirms the verbal agreements about salary and benefits. The more senior the position, however, the more likely the job offer will turn into a protracted negotiation about salary, benefits, employment termination, bonus potential, severance pay, stock options, and more.

10. Use Effective Employment Letters These sample employment letters will assist you to reject job candidates, make job offers, welcome employees, and more when hiring an employee. Use these sample employment letters to develop the employment letters you use in your organization when hiring an employee. New Employee Orientation: Employee Onboarding New employee orientation is the process you use for welcoming a new employee nto your organization.

New employee orientation, often spearheaded by a meeting with the Human Resources department, generally contains information about safety, the work environment, the new job description, benefits and eligibility, company culture, company history, the organization chart and anything else relevant to working in the new company. New employee orientation often includes an introduction to each department in the company and training on-the-job. New employee orientation frequently includes spending time doing the jobs in each department to understand the flow of the product or service through the organization.

Tips for a Better New Employee Orientation When we orient new hourly (non-exempt) employees, we provide a standard HR couple of hours on policies, procedures, company history, goals, culture, punching in and work rules. We give a company tour and hourly employees then train and cross-train on the job. Managerial and salaried (exempt) employees participate in an orientation that is custom-designed for them. It includes the above information that is received by all employees. Additionally, their orientation may last one to two weeks and it enables them to meet the whole organization, their direct reports and more.

They should leave this orientation with a clear picture of the organization, its challenges, its goals and their opportunity to assist with progress. It is challenging to make sure salaried employees have the chance to do the orientation while also beginning their new job. Neither can be put on hold. My current new director spent the morning helping to write an RFP for a potential customer rather than attending his scheduled meetings. This is okay, but I don’t want his orientation to get off track. It provides fundamental information he needs to succeed in this organization.

From an HR perspective, this may not be ideal for making sure he gets the organization overview, but it is ideal for helping him integrate quickly into the working business of the company – and that’s the point. Right? The best orientation I have ever known was instituted at Edgewood Tool and Manufacturing. Every manager who hired a new employee was required to write a 120 day orientation for the new employee. It involved one action a day. Actions included meeting the Director of Quality, calling on a customer and having lunch with the CEO.

You can bet that new employee was thoroughly welcomed and integrated into the organization after 120 different orientation events. Orientation and Training of New Employees New employee orientation effectively integrates the new employee into your organization and assists with retention, motivation, job satisfaction, and quickly enabling each individual to become contributing members of the work team. New Employee Welcome Letter-A welcome letter to a new employee who has accepted your job offer confirms the employe’s decision to accept the position.

The welcome letter helps the new employee feel wanted and welcomed. Depending on the goal of your new employee welcome letter, these sample welcome letters will give you a template. See sample welcome letters for new employees. Onboarding-Onboarding is the process of acquiring, accommodating, assimilating and accelerating new team members, whether they come from outside or inside the organization. Effective onboarding of new team members is one of the most important contributions any hiring manager or HR professional can make to long-term success.

Onboarding done right drives new employee productivity, accelerates results, and significantly improves talent retention. Yet few organizations manage the pieces of onboarding well. Purposes of Orientation Employers have to realize that orientation isn’t just a nice gesture put on by the organization. It serves as an important element of the recruitment and retention process. Some key purposes are: * To Reduce Startup Costs: Proper orientation can help the employee get “up to speed” much more quickly, thereby reducing the costs associated with learning the job.

To Reduce Anxiety: Any employee, when put into a new, strange situation, will experience anxiety that can impede his or her ability to learn to do the job. Proper orientation helps to reduce anxiety that results from entering into an unknown situation, and helps provide guidelines for behavior and conduct, so the employee doesn’t have to experience the stress of guessing. * To Reduce Employee Turnover: Employee turnover increases as employees feel they are not valued, or are put in positions where they can’t possibly do their jobs.

Orientation shows that the organization values the employee, and helps provide the tools necessary for succeeding in the job. * To Save Time for the Supervisor: Simply put, the better the initial orientation, the less likely supervisors and co-workers will have to spend time teaching the employee. * To Develop Realistic Job Expectations, Positive Attitudes and Job Satisfaction: It is important that employees learn as soon as possible what is expected of them, and what to expect from others, in addition to learning about the values and attitudes of the organization.

While people can learn from experience, they will make many mistakes that are unnecessary and potentially damaging. The main reasons orientation programs fail: The program was not planned; the employee was unaware of the job requirements; the employee does not feel welcome. Employee orientation is important – orientation provides a lot of benefits, and you can use feedback to make your orientations even better. Use Training and Development to Motivate Staff Building Your Employee Training and Development Program Want to keep your staff motivated about learning new concepts?

The quality and variety of the employee training you provide is key for motivation. Reasons for employee training range from new-hire training about your operation, to introducing a new concept to a workgroup to bringing in a new computer system. Whatever your reason for conducting an employee training session, you need to develop the employee training within the framework of a comprehensive, ongoing, and consistent employee training program. This quality employee training program is essential to keep your staff motivated about learning new concepts and your department profitable.

Essential Components of Employee Training Programs A complete employee training program includes a formal new hire training program with an overview of the job expectations and performance skills needed to perform the job functions. A new hire training program provides a fundamental understanding of the position and how the position fits within the organizational structure. The more background knowledge the new associate has about how one workgroup interrelates with ancillary departments, the more the new associate will understand his or her impact on the organization.

Another aspect of a comprehensive employee training program is continuing education. The most effective employee training programs make continuing education an ongoing responsibility of one person in the department. This is an important function that will keep all staff members current about policies, procedures and the technology used in the department. New Hire Training A solid new hire training program begins with the creation of an employee training manual, in either notebook format or online.

This manual acts as a building block of practical and technical skills needed to prepare the new individual for his or her position. In order for the department to understand current policies and procedures, a manager must ensure the department manuals or online employee training are kept current. This includes any system enhancements and / or change in policy or procedure. In addition, keep the user in mind when designing training manuals or online training; keep the employee training material interesting for the learner.

Use language that is not “corporate” and include images and multi-media. Much of this employee training and reference material belongs online these days in a company Intranet. But, if your organization is not ready to embrace the online world, keep the manuals up-to-date and interesting. When possible, in computer training, incorporate visual images of the computer screen (multi-media screen capture) to illustrate functions, examples, and how tos. On the Job Training Another form of new hire training includes having the new associate train directly next to an existing associate.

Some call this On the Job Training (OJT) or side-by-side training. This type of employee training allows the new associate to see first hand the different facets of the position. Also, OJT allows the new hire the opportunity to develop a working relationship with an existing associate. This type of employee training reinforces concepts learned in the initial training and should be used to reinforce and apply those same learned concepts. Continuing Education in Employee Training A continuing education program for a department is just as important as the new hire training.

When training a new associate, I have found that they will only retain approximately 40 percent of the information learned in the initial training session. Therefore, a continuous effort must be placed on reminding the staff about various procedures and concepts. This continuing education can be formal or informal. (The author’s preference is always with a more informal approach. ) The formal, or traditional approach, to employee training often includes a member of management sending a memo to each associate.

The informal, and often more appealing approach to a visual learner, is to send a one-page information sheet to staff. This information sheet, called a training alert, should be informative and presented in a non-threatening manner. Therefore, if the policy or procedure changes, the informal approach would better prepare the department to receive this presentation. New Employee Training – Is It Worth The Investment Getting off on the right foot Many companies provide some sort of introductory training or orientation for most of their new employees.

It may take the form of an older employee assigned to show the new employee “the ropes. ” Or it may be left to the HR department or the individual’s new supervisor to show them where the coffee pot is and how to apply for time off. Many organizations, especially in government and academia, have created new employee training that is designed, exclusively or primarily, to provide mandated safety familiarization. Yet some companies in highly competitive industries recognize the value in New Employee Orientation (NEO) that goes much farther.

They require several weeks or even months of training to familiarize every new employee with the company, its products, its culture and policies, even its competition. There is a measurable cost to that training, but is it worth it? Let’s look at some of the issues. Some Background Facts The technology in the workplace is changing very rapidly and companies that can’t keep up will drop out of competition. A survey by the Ontario (Canada) Skills Development Office found 63% of the respondents planned to “introduce new technology into the workplace that would require staff training.

A third of the respondents included “improving employee job performance” and “keeping the best employees” as desired outcomes. The American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) reports that less than $1500 per employee was spent for training in 1996. The largest part of that (49 percent) was spent for technical and professional training. Only two percent was spent for New Employee Orientation and three percent on quality, competition and business practices training.

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Employee Privacy Paper

The business world is rapidly changing with the introduction to new technologies and communication methods. Business corporations, both large and small, are adapting to the new norms of society and have started to apply the internet and email usage to everyday business activities. Within every business office one can find computers, internet, and other technologies that create a quicker, immediate means to communication and allow employees to perform their many tasks and duties associated with their jobs. In recent developments, businesses have begun implementing privacy policies on both employee internet and email usage at the office.

Many believe that the invasion of privacy by employers is illegal, but to the contrary, many trials and court cases prove otherwise. To begin with, businesses and corporations that have offered their employees internet and email usage within the office provide a necessary and more convenient way to perform their job duties. These amenities are a privilege to employees and must be respectfully and responsibly operated. According to a recent court case, Fraser v. Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. , 352 F. 3d 107 (3rd Cir. 2003), the privacy rights of employees using company internet servers for email are negated.

As ruled in the court, employers have the right to monitor all emails and internet usage by employees to a reasonable extent. If an employee sends, receives, or stores an email within the employers system, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 (Friedman & Reed, 2007)a. Companies may have guaranteed the privacy rights of employees emails, but guarantees are not considered law. In the Smyth v. Pillsbury Company case, a supervisor emailed an inappropriate email to their subordinate via to a home email account.

After the subordinate opened the email at home, he or she continued to send the email throughout the office using the company’s internet server. After the Pillsbury company came across the inappropriate email the subordinate was immediately fired (De Pree & Jude, 2006). Regardless to the company’s guarantee the court ruled in favor of the PIllsbury Company, stating “once the plaintiff (the subordinate) communicated the alleged unprofessional comments to a second person over the e-mail system that was apparently utilized by the entire company, any reasonable expectation of privacy was lost.

Another example of the rules of internet and email privacy at the office can be explained through Dow Chemical v. Local No. 564, Operating Engineers, 246 F. Supp. 2d 602 (SD Texas, 2002). Some 254 employees working at Dow Chemicals were sending, receiving, storing, or involved with the creation of many inappropriate emails circulating throughout the office. The company had some sort of software application that took a “snap shot” of all the emails and internet activity in a given work day.

After examining the many different emails, the company disciplined and terminated many of the employees involved. The court decided that the Dow Chemical company was following all laws and regulations associated with the review of company emails. Even though the advancement in email technology has increased the number of emails sent daily, companies have been increasing their privacy software to coexist. Although some of these court cases and examples may seem extreme, employers need these privacy policies to eliminate any possible negative media or lawsuits that are caused by the inappropriate emails.

With todays technology, emails can be sent at incredible speeds across the internet to end up in a completely different country from its origin. It is important that employers have the legal right to overlook all emails being sent through their internet server to protect themselves from future prosecution. Implementing a software program that monitors emails in an employers internet server is inexpensive and most businesses have considered it an essential software program.

Employers have the right to protect themselves and eliminate the misuse of internet and email through privacy policies because a simple inappropriate comment in an email could turn into a discrimination lawsuit with the employer at fault. Consider the employer avoids any lawsuits from discriminative or inappropriate internet usage, business must know how their employees are working. Thousands of dollars could be lost if employees take time out of their work day to tend personal email or non work related web searches.

With the laws and regulations in favor of the employers and businesses, employees must recognize that their employee emails and internet usage are being monitored. Employees must assume that every activity, email, or website conducted on their office computer is being overlooked by their employer. According to Dee Pree & Jude, more than 75% of business internet connections are being monitored for inappropriate usage. Any activity that does not pertain to work or has sexually inappropriate content will be logged by the computer software and viewable to the employer.

Employees must expect that their computer privacy is non existent. These privacy policies could also benefit the employees, if employees time on the internet is utilized to complete job duties. While the employer monitors internet and email activity, noticing each employees use of the internet. Employers may recognize the efficiency and effectiveness of the time spent at work and reward the appropriate employees. Currently at my profession there are not many instances when employees sit down and use the internet or the company email to send information.

Moreover, there are some policies implemented in the company that prevents the employees from acting inappropriate during interviews, live games, and even in their personal social media profiles. Our organization stresses the importance of representing the organization with respect and with appropriate behavior. Our policies include using appropriate language during all interviews, never acting with poor sportsmanship or selfishness while playing a game, and making sure that you are represented well in all social media profiles.

Our organization believes that we are walking representation for what values and beliefs the organization stands for, and enforces all their employees to follow accordingly. Privacy is given to each employee, but once the employee is in the “spotlight” of the public, policies are enforced to ensure inappropriate behavior never occurs. In conclusion, due to the advancements in technology in the business market, businesses can now conduct business more efficiently and effectively, but with a cost to their employees.

Employers are starting to implement privacy policies to both their internet usage as well as their company email allowing them to monitor over their employees. There have been numerous lawsuits and court cases against employers invading the privacy of their employees, but only to find the rulings in favor of the employers. Employees must expect these conditions at their workplaces and review the privacy policies that are being enforced. While on the employers internet, work related activities should only be conducted, and making sure emails are appropriate for the workplace will prevent employees from being prosecuted from their employer.

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Free Essays

The University of Dissension

Why even consider the possibility of unionization? When lower-level employees start to feel the weight of the rising economy demands, the lack of wages, hours, and job satisfaction – other options become more desirable. Unionization sounds like a great idea to the minimum wage employees who feel dissatisfied with perhaps taking on the responsibilities of employees who have left the company for better opportunities. However there are many reasons why a company should avoid joining a union.

Unions present a great idea, but here are a few examples of why not to unionize: Unions cannot guarantee the economic needs of wage and hour increases, job satisfaction, better supervisory performances and communication (Bateman & Snell, 2009, pg 386). Avoid Unionization What steps would you take as a school administrator to resolve this issue and avoid unionization of the operator’s staff? Employees form unions because they are dissatisfied with the conditions in which they are working under and the direction under which the company that employs them is taking.

Companies can take certain steps to avoid unionization but they must follow certain rules and regulations regarding labor laws. Certain steps can be taken that will detour the employees from unionization and it starts with listening to your employees and their requests. It may be as simple as better communications or perhaps better working conditions. This step could be resolved easily by holding meetings on a regular basis. Actually listen to what the employee’s are saying and take notes. If necessary meet with the disgruntled employee’s one on one.

Once you have identified the problems try and find a way to resolve these problems. At the next meeting identify the changes the company is able to make and address the changes that cannot be made and the reason why those changes cannot be made. Employers who meet with their employees and keep them up to date will gain much more respect. Employee committees established will strengthen communication and also give the employees a sense of empowerment. This makes the employees feel like they are a valuable of the decisions that are being made.

This will make them less likely to want to unionize. An open door policy is always an excellent way to make the employee feel as though at any given time there is a member of the management team able and willing to listen to whatever problem they may be facing at this time You must train your managers on effective communication skills and how they can successfully deal with employee issues. Your managers are the ones who work on a daily basis with these employees. Management staff must also be informed on how to deal with union formation.

Seminars where literature may be distributed that pertain to the newest laws affecting unionization should be held frequently. Company policies should be enforced fairly. As a leader you should be giving the employees the proper respect that they have earned and deserve. If this is not practiced than you can expect the employees to revolt and start the process of unionization. Always ensure that you stay up to date with the wages and benefits within the industry in which your company practices. If an employee feels they are earning the same pay that any other company would pay them they are much less likely to unionize.

Effective ways to prevent unionization would be to continue the motion of communication. One idea is to conduct yearly employee relations audits, by doing this you are gathering small groups of employees and possibility hiring an outside communicator to relay the organizations intentions as well as hearing the voice of the disgruntled. Many of the employees who want to be part of a union are not fully educated on the meanings and possible freedoms that will lose or gained by becoming unionized.

In all reality less than Less than 1 out of 10 employees in the United States are unionized (May 2010). With that fact it proves to be that most workers are not educated with the outcomes. Secondly, another factor to prevention is having a well oiled and trained management team. By having a management team who is knowledgeable; the team can recognize the possible infraction of union discussion. Approximately 80% of the time, the receiving of a National Labor Relations Board petition is the first time employers find out they had union activity( May 2010).

Finally, a good method of prevention is during the new hire orientation process; provide information on the pros and cons of unionization of an organization. Unions often target new hires to sign union authorization cards and petitions because they are more susceptible to being pressured into signing (May 2010). Education, communication and a professional team can lessen a reality of having your organization unionized. The number of United States workers that have been unionized has been on a decline for the entire postwar period.

In 1948, almost one-in-three workers (31. 8 percent) were in a union; by 2008, the fraction had almost on-in-eight workers (12. 4 percent). The drop-off in union membership has been particularly stark in the private sector, where, by 2008, only about one-in-thirteen workers (7. 6 percent) was unionized, whereas more than one-in-three workers in the public sector was unionized” (Schmitt and Zipperer 2009). Imminent Unionization If unionization appears imminent, what positions and actions would you take to work through the process (2-3 examples – 215 words each)… ake sure these examples are in the most collaborative and least disruptive manner.

If Unionization appears to be imminent, actions to be taken in order for the process to be smooth and not cause much conflict between employees and management. Action is to communicate in a well professional manner with all Associates. According to the article “The University of Dissension”, there supervisors have informally encouraged workers to give up the idea of unionizing”. By doing so all they are doing is conflict to rise and not work something through with all employees.

First step to these will be a meeting to advice every one of what has happened with the company, changes they will be seeing, and decisions they can make whether to stay or leave. It will be shocking but at the same time it has been discuss with them in a well professional matter rather than informally advised to employees. As this action will be taken, some might agree to stay and work for the company while others will take actions needed to stop it or let other individuals know what the company has done to them.

And it will be lead to a strike. As management it will be highly important to communicate and cover with employees all information needed for them to know before making a decision to stay and work or leave. As if a strike will be performed they will have much false information against them. When business continues during a struck, the company “claims the right to prevent people who do not support a strike from exercising their voluntary exchange rights with strike targets” (CW. 26 ) meaning that these information will be excluded to employees and those who plan to not stay with the company.

As the case study indicates, most of the operating staff is unhappy with the increased workload with no pay increase, decreased health benefits with increased cost, and the failure of the administration to respond to their complaints. Although the University president listened to their complaints, he failed to give any feedback on the issues, and simply thanked the staff for their dedication to the school (Bateman).

The only communication from the administrative staff at the university has been the informal warnings to the operating staff that their jobs could be lost to contractors. This type of disregard for the operating staff’s complaints has them seeking help from a union. If the University has any hope of avoiding unionization of the operating staff, the lines of communication must open. Two important steps in avoid the unionization of staff involve having an effective way of resolving complaints and disputes, and communicating with workers (Worsham, J. 1998).

The disgruntled employees have interpreted the lack of a response to complaints as a lack of concern. The informal warnings of job loss from the administrative staff have only increased the distrust of management by the operating staff. The university should open the lines of communication by setting up a committee from both sides to work towards resolving the complaints. Employees may accept some cuts in benefits or increased workloads if they can see that the concessions are equally distributed among all the university staff.

If unionization is clearly imminent, the University could recognize the union without an election. This would allow the University to recognize the plight of the operating staffers and enter into negotiation of a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) in good faith. Due to the negative situation that the operating staffers of the University have been put through, this option would allow the University to recognize the situation, and appear to be willing to resolve the situation in a fair and positive manner for all involved.

Due to the larger workload demands, increasing healthcare costs, diminishing healthcare coverage, increased administrator and faculty benefits and wages, and increased enrollment at the University, it would be in the University’s best interest to recognize the lopsided treatment and engage the union in a CBA. This would allow the University to employ a fair and represented system to argue for the employees, while the University held its stance that, “times are tough, outside funding is down, and we must all share in the burden of maintaining our school.

While this may very well be true, it is difficult to expect those who appear to be carrying the largest burden to understand the situation without fair negotiation and representation. In the team’s opinion, the situation has escalated out of hand to the point at which the school must acknowledge the union and use the union to help the employees understand that certain factors are based on the current economic times. If indeed, the University is just in their claims, the union will recognize after the CBA negotiations.

The union will look into the University’s funding and compensation plans to determine if the workers are being fairly compensated. In addition, the workers will also be protected against employer discrimination, harassment, or termination due to the employee’s affiliation with the union. This is due to the National Labor Relations Act of 1935, which protects employees from retaliation due to their affiliation with a union, attempts to form a union, or an employer’s refusal to collectively bargain with a union that represents their employees.