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Scenario Fork and Trowel Garden Centres Ltd. is a family–owned group that operates 22 individual garden centres, mainly based in out–of–town sites. Products from Fork and Trowel range from plants to furniture, and most Fork and Trowel stores include a pet department and a restaurant.
You are a regional manager at Fork and Trowel. Following the sudden departure of the previous manager, a new manager has been appointed at the Townsville garden centre, which employs 18 full–time and 22 part–time staff. You wish the new manager to address a number of challenges. These include:
Deterioration in staff morale, largely due to the unpopularity of the previous manager who left about a month ago.
Sales have been falling since a rival opened up a store on the other side of town. It is well known that the rival chain‘s products are more expensive but customer service is well regarded.
employees in the Townsville store collectively raised concerns over lack of training. You have allocated £10,000 for employee development for the store.
Based on these issues, you have compiled a draft set of performance objectives for your newly appointed manager. You have asked him to work closely with the Fork and Trowel HR team, and in particular the HR business partner who covers the Townsville store, to build an action plan. He is rather sceptical about the potential contribution of HRM to the effectiveness of the business.
Human Resources in Business
© NCC Education Limited 2016
Aim To support the manager, you will prepare a briefing document that
you will prepare a briefing document that suggests ways in which the store manager might work with the HR team to address some of the key areas.
Task 1 – 15 Marks In order to convince the sceptical new store manager, explain how HRM can potentially contribute to organisational effectiveness and competitive advantage using relevant information from the case.
Advise the new manager on how he or she might use the Bradford Index/Factor as part of a process for managing absence.
Task 3 – 17 Marks Outline the elements in a systematic approach to performance management and explain the role of performance appraisal in the process.
Task 4 – 17 Marks With lack of training identified as a contributory factor in the poor opinion survey results,
explain how the systematic training model might best be used to help Fork and Trowel to gain value from its investment in training and development.
Task 5 – 17 Marks Discuss the part a focus on employee well–being could make to reduce the level of labour turnover at the Townsville store.
Task 6 – 14 Marks Explore the extent to which the employee opinion survey mentioned in the scenario might be regarded as a form of employee participation.
Task 7 – 5 Marks Combine your findings into a single, written briefing document for the new manager that is properly structured and contains:
Main body of the briefing
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Simulations are experiments within a controlled environment, thereby reducing aspects of the real world in terms of structure and behavior. The behavior of complex systems is neither predictable nor completely understandable. The combination of human intuition and analytical modeling is utilized as a model for decision making in complex systems such as production and supply chain networks.
In order to train and support decision making, simulation models and serious games serve as ideal training environments, in which managers are confronted with challenging situations that require fast and important decisions. These games support the awareness of typical problems in production, logistics, or quality management, e.g., the Beer Distribution Game, Goldratt's game, KANBAN simulations. However, no games exist that address quality management in production networks.
The Quality Intelligence Game (Q -I Game) is a turn-based game in which players have to fulfill the customer demands by procuring and processing vendor parts in a given product. In contrast to the Beer Distribution Game, players also have to take quality aspects into account. Studies suggest that quality management influences profit in two different ways: First, good quality management increases company profits through higher product quality, resulting in higher customer satisfaction and larger sales volumes. Second, process optimization as a part of quality management leads to lower variable and fixed costs. Therefore, a trade-off between product quality and its costs is required.
The Q-I game model is designed around three pivotal decisions (see Figure 1 for a schematic representation). First, players have to invest in the inspection of incoming goods. Second, players need to control the investments in their company's internal production quality. Third, similar to the Beer Distribution Game, players needs to manage the procurement of vendor parts. The players have to find an optimal trade-off between these three dimensions in order to make the highest profit. The influences of these dimensions on the company's profit are explained in the following.
The first dimension contains the inspection planning and control of supplier parts, including complaint management between the manufacturer and his supplier.
Inspections at goods receipt can cause an ambivalent behaviour of quality and production managers. While the inspection itself is not a value -adding process and hence a driver of variable and fixed production costs, inspections give the managers the opportunity to protect their production systems from faulty parts and goods. Also, it facilitates the supplier evaluation and development since the quality of supply parts and goods is measured.
The production quality dimension is taking the production and final product quality of the manufactured goods into account. Investments in production quality will increase costs, but it will decrease the number of customer complaints.
To assure a continuous production, the player has to procure necessary parts from its supplier. Contrary to the Beer Distribution Game, the customer demand is kept constant within the Q-I game, in order to leave the focus on the decisions of quality management. Nevertheless the player has to consider scrapping parts due to low production quality or blocked parts due to poor supplier product quality in their orders.
The Q-I game gains complexity th
The smooth functioning of an organisation is a dependent variable based on several factors, that directly or indirectly impacts it. The same stands very true and is associated with impacting the effectiveness of an organisation directly when human resource management (HRM) as a function is considered. Management of employment relations has been considered to be a very crucial dimension of human resource management that needs to be wisely managed to avoid employee issues impacting organisational performance and effectiveness. Though the function has not been considered to directly contribute to sales but the unfolding of the report, that would consider the importance of human resource management in all aspects would help justify the fact that human resource management is the most important function of the organisation. The same also stands true with the growing complexities in the business environment promoting higher competition. Along with negligence in the human resource management aspect can upset the whole working environment and direct impact on organisational performance can be assessed.
The report would be constructed based on the identification of issues, as mentioned in the case. The approaches taken up by Fork and Trowel Garden Centres Ltd. would be dealt with in detail as part of the report with reference to the issues independently. The work would explicitly bring out the strategic importance of Human Resource Management, that would be brought out by means of application of various HRM theories.
Fork and Trowel Garden Centres Ltd. has been considered as a family-owned business with 22 garden centres functioning independently. The case pertains to the garden centre at Townville, which has been identified to hold several employees related issues that are impacting the organisational performance and effectiveness. The store has hired a new manager to address the challenges. The regional manager, who in the case is writing the report, needs to present and familiarise the store manager with the pertaining issues, which majorly have been identified as under.
The identified problems in the case have been found to be the cause of neglected aspects of human resource management and store manager’s inefficiency. As part of the new appointment, all such issues would be strived to be sorted. Employee opinion survey would also need to be emphasised upon as part of the role of the new store manager appointed.
rough the introduction of random events. First, the quality of the vendor parts can change drastically. Second, the internal production quality can change. Possible reasons are broken machines, better processes, failures in the measurement instruments, etc. Third, the customer demand may shift.