Strategic Human Resource Management Or SHRM At Schindler Group
TOC o “1-3” h z u HYPERLINK l “_Toc376462714” 1.0 Introduction PAGEREF _Toc376462714 h 1
HYPERLINK l “_Toc376462715” 2.0 The Link between Schindler HRM and its Organizational Strategy PAGEREF _Toc376462715 h 1
HYPERLINK l “_Toc376462716” 3.0 How Schindler’s HRM can improve its Existing Operations PAGEREF _Toc376462716 h 2
HYPERLINK l “_Toc376462717” 4.0 Schindler Recruitment and Selection Process PAGEREF _Toc376462717 h 4
HYPERLINK l “_Toc376462718” Conclusion PAGEREF _Toc376462718 h 5
1.0 IntroductionSchindler Group is a Switzerland based company that specializes in the construction of elevators, escalators, and other related services. Since its incorporation in 1894, the company has experienced immense growth courtesy of its more than highly experienced and dedicated workforce that comprise of more than 43,000 employees who work tirelessly to ensure that new and existing products are in tandem with the rapidly changing urban mobility needs. The decision to choose Schindler was based on its ability to effectively deploy this large workforce in achieving above average strategic competiveness.
This report illustrates how Schindler’s human resource planning is linked with its organizational strategy. Other areas include a discussion on how the company’s HRM can improve its existing operations to achieve long term global competitiveness, an evaluation of recruitment and selection process of the company, and lastly an appraisal of the reward system prevailing in the company and make recommendations to improve the reward system.
2.0 The Link between Schindler HRM and its Organizational StrategySchindler Group vision is to become the world’s leading provider of urban mobility services. This vision is advised by the realization that more and more urban people rely on escalators and elevators every day to effectively undertake their day to day activities. Consequently, the company realizes that so as to fulfil these rapidly changing urban mobility needs it has to engage the right personnel. In addition, the company realizes that so as to effectively enhance its employees’ commitment, motivation, and productivity it must do more than hiring highly qualified individuals. It must link its human resource management strategies with its organizational strategies. As Armstrong and Baron (2002) posit, such an alignment leads to increased efficiency in performance.
Analytically, Schindler’s human resource management strategy is in actual sense linked to the overall organizational strategy pursued by the company. Whereas the company human resource policy is based on the need to offer the best employment opportunities that exceeds the norms in each country it operates in, to offer regular and meaningful training to its employees so as to enhance their performance and efficiency, and most importantly, to provide the best workplace environment for its employees (Schindler 2012). On the other hand its organizational strategy revolve around how the company can better utilize its human capital so as to constantly realize customer satisfaction, achieve growth in emerging markets, create value for its customers and stakeholders, improve its financial performance, and most importantly achieve product differentiation.
On the other hand, Schindler links its human resource management strategy and its organizational strategy through the disciplined pursuit of its core competencies. Schindler realizes that so as to effectively compete with its rivals in an industry that is characterized by price wars, it needs to maximize on its core competencies. The company’s major core competency is the high level of innovation exhibited by its large workforce. The company ensures that manufacturing depth is reduced by putting more emphasis on areas that it enjoys a strategic upper hand. This is made a reality by carrying out regular job appraisal and singling out the specific product families that the company can manufacture with minimal costs. In addition, the company utilizes its large team of qualified and motivated employees to venture into new products in a bid to stay ahead of its rivals. For example, the company has received numerous accolades courtesy of its new PORT technology that is intended to effectively manage mobility needs in large urban buildings.
Lastly, Schindler links its human resource management strategy with its organizational strategy by pursuing contemporary HRM practices. These practices can be precisely explained using following indicators. Availing adequate support to employees to effectively carryout their tasks, communicating important organizational information to the key stakeholders, and most importantly, availing a two-way interactive system that allows for vertical and horizontal communication. Analytically, these practices help the company to effectively deploy its resources, core capabilities and core competences so as to gain long term competitive advantage.
3.0 How Schindler’s HRM can improve its Existing OperationsSchindler HRM can improve its existing operations in a number of ways. According to Dave Ulrich, a renowned management scholar, these ways spans the major HRM functions of hiring, managing, developing, and motivating of employees. This is because HRM role in an organization is to align the human capital with the existing organizational strategy, reviewing and re-developing organizational processes, addressing employees concerns, and managing organizational transitions (Ulrich, 1996, p.25). Consequently, to improve its existing operations, Schindler HRM needs to embrace the functions of strategy development, administration, employee motivation, and change embracer. As figure 1 below shows, these roles should go hand in hand so as to achieve the maximum effect.
Figure 1: A Model HRM Strategy that Links HR Roles with Operational Roles
Role/Cell Outcome Metaphor Activity
Management of strategic human resources Executing strategy Strategic partner Aligning HR and business strategy: Organizational diagnosis.
Management of firm infrastructure Building an efficient infrastructure Administrative expert Reengineering organization process: Shared services
Management of employee contribution Increasing employee commitment and capability Employee champion Listening and responding to employees: providing resources to employees
Management of transformation and change Creating a renewed organization Change agent Managing transformation and change: Ensuring capacity for change.
Source: Ulrich (1996, p.25).
Though it has been provided above that Schindler aligns its HRM strategy and organizational strategy by carrying out regular and meaningful employee training, providing safe workplace environments, and providing the most competitive remuneration packages, it is wise to argue that the company needs to review its HRM strategy to make it more responsive to emerging labour issues. Specifically, the company needs to make its HRM strategy more responsive to employee needs in all the markets it operates in. This is because it is only by showing genuine interest towards the addressing of employee needs that the employees can develop genuine commitment to the company gaols and objectives (Schuler & Jackson, 2007). Overall, it is by doing so that the company will get to improve its existing operations to achieve long term global competiveness.
To effectively align the HRM and its business strategy, Schindler needs to adopt a Strategic HRM (SHRM) approach as advanced by Armstrong and Baron (2002). This approach comprises of a host of best HR practices whose main goal is to create a safe, happy and productive workplace. These best practices include open-door management style, performance based reward system, responsive performance feedback system, proper knowledge management system, management by objective, self-managed teams, high compensation packages, selective hiring, security of tenure, reduced status differentials (Armstrong & Baron, 2002, pp. 69-70).
To listen and respond to employees concerns the SHRM should comprise of on-the-job training. This approach is in tandem with Schuler and Jackson (2007) and Ulrich et al (2009) opinions that a good HRM strategy should enhance the constant empowerment of employees so that they can consistently produce as per the set goals and objectives. This is a very critical practice as the company’s performance is entirely determined by its workforce. For instance, it needs project managers to develop business ideas, engineers to make ideas happen, sales persons to commercialize its products, finance experts to manage its finances, human resource experts to manage its human capital, and technological experts to keep the company ideas relevant.
4.0 Schindler Recruitment and Selection ProcessSchindler recruitment and hiring process can be termed as progressive. It is progressive because it is incorporates a wide range of interesting careers to qualified candidates across the world. The company believes that its doors are open to students, graduates, and experienced candidates. It believes that apart form the technical part of urban mobility services such as elevators and escalators, it is very critical that people consider mobility as a mind thing. As such, persons with a positive mind towards the world of urban mobility, and most importantly, persons who are committed to improving the existing urban mobility products can be considered to be the right people for Schindler. In addition, Schindler also partners with schools and institutions of higher learning to scout and nurture talent
From a different perspective, Schindler recruitment and hiring process can be termed as rigorous. It is rigorous because candidates are required practically demonstrate their capabilities through a serious of oral and practical interview sessions. The reason why the company employs a rigorous hiring strategy is because most of these career opportunities are closely linked to the company’s customers and products. Due to the high level of quality guaranteed by the company, most of products have lengthy lifespans which spill into decades and hence there is need to engage the right personnel who can sustainably maintain this lengthy contact. Typically, Schindler prides itself as a
You have the talent. We have the career tracks. Senior management positions are within your reach. The Schindler Career Development Program (SCDP) is a long-term, on-the-job management training program that gives you the chance to rise to top positions – international perspectives and professional guidance included. To apply to this exciting program, please have a look under the Global Job Market for an available position in your region or country.
Though Schindler current HRM practices can be described as above average, the company needs to carry out radical improvements on its operations so as to achieve long term global competitiveness. While it is true that determining what constitutes a good HRM strategy is a controversial matter, this report has argued that any HRM strategy that enhances productivity, work-place safety, imparts positive organizational culture, encourages quick resolution of workplace conflicts, and most importantly, reduces employee turnover is considered as exemplary. In a nutshell, it has been argued that Schindler HRM strategy allows for constant empowerment of employees. Consequently, the company continues to experience phenomenal growth in a highly competitive urban mobility services industry.
Armstrong, M & Baron, A 2002, Strategic HRM: the key to improved business performance, The Cromwell Press: Towbridge.
Schindler Group (2012), Human resource policy. [Online] Available at: HYPERLINK “http://www.schindler.com/hrpolicy_2011.pdf/” http://www.schindler.com/hrpolicy_2011.pdf/ (accessed March 16, 2012).
Schuler, RS & Jackson, SE 2007, Strategic human resource management, 2nd ed, Blackwell Publishing: Malden.
Ulrich, D 1996, Human Resource Champions. The next agenda for adding value and delivering results, Harvard Business School Press: Boston.
Ulrich, D, Allen, J, Brockbank, W, Younger, J, & Nyman, M 2009, HR Transformation: Building Human Resources from the Outside In, McGraw-Hill: New York.