Archive for September, 2014

Clapton Commercial Construction Employment Law Compliance Plan

September 29, 2014

Clapton Commercial Construction Employment Law Compliance Plan

Name:
Course:
Instructor:
Date of Submission:

Clapton Commercial Construction
State Of Arizona
Employment Law Compliance Plan
Objectives
1. To uphold the commitment to honesty and responsible conduct for all construction employees and decrease unlawful and unethical behavior at work.
2. To allow employees to report potential problems to allow for appropriate inquiry and prompt corrective action.
Purpose of the compliance program
To provide a uniform platform for all Clapton commercial construction activities for all workers through equal treatment during work and at pay.
Law Compliance Program Elements
1. The doctrine of employment At-will
Employment is contractual in nature and is discharge at the consent of the employer or employee unless otherwise varied through a written contract (Loose, 2005, p. 237).
Any wrongful termination attracts an employee or employer’sclaim, whichmust be brought within one year after cause of action.
2. Law on Wage and hours
a) Minimum wage
All employers must pay a minimum wage of $7.90 to their workers. Clapton commercial construction must comply otherwise the federal punishment applies. The company should pay at least twice per month (Loose, 2005, p. 256).
b) Overtime
The company must comply with a federal pay rate of one-half the regular for all hours worked overtime. Remarkably, Arizona State has no stipulated overtime laws relating to private firms (Loose, 2005, p. 259).
c) Meals and breaks
It is the discretion of the Human Resource manager to decide whether to give the construction workers meals and breaks but in accordance with federal laws. The state of Arizona lacks laws requiring an employer to provide meal and breaks for employees. The meal and breaks should not be less than 20 minutes (Loose, 2005, p. 261).
3. Discrimination In Employment
Every member of the staff is under protection any form of discrimination of regardless of their race, color, national origin, gender, and religion with reference to any term, set conditions or privilege stipulated in employment. This law applies for employers with 15 or more workers (Loose, 2005, p. 242).
Enforcement of the laws and noncompliance consequences
It is the duty of the Arizona federal state enforcement agencies to ensure that Clapton commercial construction applies them when hiring workers following the intention to expand workers with 20%, when construction begins and during the renewal of contracts for its workers. Fair Labor Standards Act, National Labor Relations Act, and Title VII policies are mandated to enforce the employment laws (Loose, 2005, p. 275).
In the event of violation of the elements cited above, Clapton commercial constructions risks intangible and tangible punishments. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission suggests at least six-figure fine because it has more than 15 workers. Willful child labor and unfair employment practices attract at least a cap of $300000 and a possible jail time (Loose, 2005, p. 288).

References
Loose, D. A. (2005).Arizona laws 101. Tucson, Ariz.: Fenestra Books.

DIVERSITY THEORY AS EMPLOYED BY DIY

September 29, 2014

DIVERSITY THEORY AS EMPLOYED BY DIY

Name

Course
Professor
University
City, State
Date

Diversity Theory as Employed by DIY
Company’s Overview
Richard Block and David Quayle established B&Q in 1969. B&Q is a name derived from the two initials of their surnames, Block and Quayle. The company was the first national DIY (Do it yourself) store in UK, having been in business in a span of more than thirty five years. The aims and vision of founder were to bring value, broaden product range, and serve the customers with long operational hours. Their first store was in Southampton named, Block and Quayle (later was shortened and became, B&Q). In the broadening of its operations, B&Q managed to purchase the Scottish DIY chain Dodge City, therefore, developed as part of the Kingfisher Group. Having established itself internationally, today in Ireland and UK alone, the company boasts of over 36,000 employees serving in 320 UK stores. The stores are operated in two categories: the larger B&Q Warehouses, which cater for keen DIY trade and people, and smaller B&Q Supercenters, which are convenient for daily shoppers.
Despite harsh economic conditions that affected house market, the organization has managed to achieve its annual profits of 20% increase between the year 2011, and 2012. This can be attributed to the fact that the company sees a strong emphasis on its people as a mean to achieve a projected result. In 1980’s, B&Q management saw the need to review their workforce by integration of the older workers and, the younger staffs so that they do not suffer from a labor shortage. They employed diversity as a way of conducting business and satisfying customer and staff needs. The management formulated policies that would see the fulfillment of diversity in all levels of operation of this organization.

Diversity Theory
The theory of diversity incorporates respect and reception. It means being appreciative to the fact that each discrete individual is exceptional, and recognizing our distinction. These can be in relation to individual race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, socio-economic status, physical abilities, political beliefs, religious beliefs or other ideologies. It is the assessment of these variances in an innocuous, nurturing and positive environment. This encompasses understanding one another and moving far beyond simple forbearance to celebrating and embracing the rich proportions of diversity that exist in everyone. This enables individuals to perform at their best level to fulfill organizational goals regardless of age, gender, race, abilities or disabilities, culture, religious affiliation, or political and any other ideology that makes the individual unique from the rest.
For a full potential to be realized in and organization, the organization should realize the three dimensions that govern workers ability to achieve. These dimensions are self-concept or rather individual core self, secondary dimensions and tertiary dimensions of diversity.
The core dimension include the unseen attributes , but are unchangeable in that; that is what defines them and they have no any other way to look at it. They form the foundation on which individuals make instantaneous conclusions about different parties, often through the stereotyping process. They include race, age, sexual orientation, gender, caste or class, ethnicity, etcetera.
Secondary dimension is the facets of a person’s identity that are paramount in the definition of that persons self. Though important to self, they are not fundamental in proportions to primary dimensions. This diversity includes recreational habits, education background, personal habits, income, marital status, parental status, appearance, geographical location, work experience, among many other factors. Tertiary dimensions define an individual’s learning style, professional orientation, and personality.
Organizations need to employ these theories to reach their maximum potential. It requires employing the three dimension of diversity because they contribute to the development of an individual’s unique life, perspectives, experiences, and skill sets. An operative business organization can learn to appreciate, recognize, understand, utilize, and respect, these manifold aspects of an individual in the quest of its undertaking and objectives.
The Contribution of Diversity to Organizational Change of B&Q
If an organization would integrate diversity and organizational change, then success would be inevitable to such a firm. B&Q recognizes the need of mitigating projected shortage of the young workforce and impeded competition that was to be realized. It reviewed their employment practices. This was critical to this firm because such shortages would have had a negative impact on the overall expansion strategy of the company. This was the organizational cultural shift. Organizational culture shift was necessary because of the complexity of the matter that was surrounding the future of the company. Therefore, it was relevant to B&Q to review the organization workforce. The organization discovered it had dominant young workers between the ages of 16 to 26 years. After evaluation on the feedback from customers, the firm was able to recourse on employing age diverse workforce.
Major organizational change will always have a cultural change. These changes make an organization to be redesigned. In that process, it will require a company to come up with a new strategy to market itself. B&Q was now becoming an international company. In 1996, for example, it opened a store in Taiwan, and in 1998, it merged with France’s leading DIY retailer thus becoming the leading and largest DIY retailer in Europe. Nevertheless, it opened another store in Shanghai in 1999. In 2001, the company discovered it had more than 1000 of its workers as bilingual.
Therefore, it forced the organization to redesign. Usually, when a business organization is restructured, particulars of its subsystems may realize that they have to handle a new arrangement of “business” with the new, unaccustomed “partners.” This was the case of B&Q. Naturally, the business would assumes that their conventional styles of conducting business, priorities, their traditional practices, their conventional methods and value, will be effortlessly acceptable, and perfectly functional.
This was not the case for B&Q. Instead, the company’s realization of its workforce diversity and the market encouraged the use of other languages other than English, so that the staff can understand and respond to customers need. The staff were to wear language badges so that whoever that would need assistance will automatically identify the correct staff to deal with according to the language preference. The company came up with cultural diversity information pack for use in stores, together with calendars that showed religious and cultural festivals so that the staffs would understand customers’ needs and assist the management to come up with work schedules.
Many organizations have failed in marketing. They are surprised when this supposition turned out to be unacceptable for manufacturing. However, one important aspect B&Q placed into perspective was that it uses its diversity policies to all its advertisements to build a brand in the eye of the public. This is so important because the customer can relate with the company and therefore become loyal to it.
Team Effectiveness
Team effectiveness has even clearer diversity connections. For a group of workers to develop and be effective, its associates must find prolific ways to mutually elicit and manage each workers difference. B&Q created an avenue where its diversity managers reported directly to the company chief executive and the board was now to take active interest in the diversity strategy. In any group progression model, there is continuously some form of a “storming” phase early in a group’s process of development.
The workforce must circumnavigate this taxing phase efficaciously to be able to advance towards a more productive phases of progression. Successful navigation cannot transpire if differences are buried or conformity is involuntary pressed upon diverse members of the workforce. Therefore, B&Q’s introduction to answering directly to the company’s chief executives was a major milestone to the fulfillment to ensure that issues that affect the staff is taken care of effectively while diversifying.
The Tool used for Effective Diversity
To come up with ways of employing workforce, it was important for them carry up a study so that they can ascertain the advantage and disadvantages of employing older workforce. This the carried in conjunction with Warwick university, who carried aided in carrying out the study to bench mark Macclesfield store performance against the selection of four similar store. Macclesfield was the store that had older workforce. By the findings, the company was able to reach a resolution of integral workforce of age-diverse workforce. Almost 25% of the workforce is now above 50 years of age. Another tool they used was the inclusion of national policy of disability. The twin goal was to remove the barriers that would make shopping and working for the staff at B&Q to be difficult.
Conclusion
From the analysis, it was evident that the company’s success is tied with the diversity of culture, age, and disability. These are the primary dimension. The organization kept in mind the issue of conflict resolution during the process of diversifying by making sure the management is answerable directly to the company’s chief executive officers. The organization used the success of diversification and is building a brand on it. This was brilliant because the company would ensure there are loyal customers who can identify with the brand.
Using the correct tools the company can come up with correct way of diversifying, which is why B&Q used the Warwick University to come up with finding about the old workforce and therefore settled for age-diverse workforce.
Recommendations
It is recommended for the company to include secondary dimension and tertiary to the diversification. This is because, some of the workforces would prefer to be identified with accomplishment and achievement, such as educational background, status, location, and therefore will increase their market base.
Another aspect that the company should see is the fact that when diversifying, they should also take care of the customers who are rigid. For example, there are customers who do not will to be served with disabled persons, not because of evil intent but compassion. Therefore, they would avoid being served by them. The company should see to it that such cases are mitigated and the staffs are stationed at the rightful place to serve the right people. That also applies to the old age.

References
Juran, J. M., & Godfrey, A. B. 2009. Quality handbook (8th ed.). New York: McGraw Hill.

Information Technology and Business Management

September 29, 2014

Information Technology and Business Management

Name

Institution

Introduction
In the contemporary world, there is growing need for CIOs to develop effective ways of measuring and monitoring communication performance. This is because information and communication technology has taken a central role in business environment. As well, various IT metrics such as calculating IT spending as a proportion of revenue focus on reducing the cost rather than focusing on the business value of investing on technology. The traditional metrics as well fails to put more emphasis building business innovation or improve business processes. When Mitra et al. (2011), interviewed CIOs from 23 organizations, he came up with a framework that would help business leaders to improve the value of IT application to overall business organizations.
When Mitra et al observed that CIOs have difficulties measuring and reporting the value that IT brings to organizations; he had carefully analyzed the traditional IT metrics and seen their weaknesses. He observes that the IT adds more value to the overall business than what traditional metrics depict. It becomes a challenge for business leaders to measure and effectively communicate other values that IT brings. On top of reducing the cost of doing business, IT enables business innovativeness and improves other business processes, either directly or indirectly. The next challenge arises when the business leaders attempt to draw a relationship between the business value of IT and overall financial performance especially for the highly profitable business entities. The author then proceeds to exonerate on the importance of having metrics in place citing that it is impossible to measure what does not exist. Metrics play an important role in motivating the employees and changing behaviors to improve business performance. This is probably the reason why over the years, organizations have come up with various metrics, methodologies and frameworks to measure performance. However, it is unfortunate that some of these frameworks are highly complex and rigid, calling for the need to develop simpler and more flexible ones.
One of the most fundamental issues that Mitra et al (2011) addresses is the multi-dimensional approach that can be used to measure IT performance. These approaches include but are not limited to network performance, extend of usage, business processes efficiency, consumer satisfaction and project’s strategic values. The dimensions that the author proposes are comprehensive in that they vary in their meaningfulness, specificity and influence. However, the challenge arises when aligning these dimensions in a manner that facilitates effective decision making. The dimensions are further complicated by the fact that different stakeholders have different purposes as far as planning, communication and reporting of performance is concerned. Though IT organization’s performance and value are used interchangeably, IT metrics can not always be used to measure value. Other IT related aspects that can have little impact on value on-budget and on-time deliveries of projects. However, the author notes that these aspects can provide measurable values only if they improve the business service delivery in significant ways. To elaborate this, he argues that an in-time project can create more value than a project that exceeds its deadline but only when cancellation and other resultant features have significantly severe impact to the business.
In fact, the main idea that has been discussed in this article is that there are distinct issues within IT and performance that can be quantified and others that are difficult to communicate. For these, most of the metrics of the IT in business can be measured in performance as opposed to value. Nonetheless, most business leaders find themselves reporting IT specific issues since the traditional metrics are easily benchmarked and reported. From the analysis of definitions that the author gathered from the CIOs and after incorporating the traditional metrics, he came to conclude that the IT value is quantified by performance metrics only on dimensions that the stakeholders find important. To shed more light to his analysis, Mitra et al (2011) noted that his definition is relevant in the following circumstances;-
1- The respective metric must be having some significant to the stakeholders
2- The metric must not communicate value
3- The perception of value change must go hand in hand with changes of stakeholder’s requirements
4- In the case where the measure is important, the stakeholders should not see any value in improving it
5- Business executives are only interested in value that accrues from performance changes as opposed to performance from the prevailing IT operations
Mitra’s analogy of value, IT, performance and metric is comprehensive because argues about the link and the relationship of the elements from all the dimensions. According to him, some values of IT operations are only perceived, but the overall business performance can be measured. As well, he proceeds to emphasize that the stakeholder’s perception is important to consider while determining which IT metrics to incorporate during performance analysis. Generally, an IT related metric is not relevant to the performance analysis if the CIOs can not convince the stakeholders that it would add value to the overall business operations. The author’s analysis adds a valuable ingredient by shedding more light to the IT business operations, value and performance. It makes it clear that value is in the eyes of the stakeholders and for an IT metric to be effectively communicated, it should be done so in a language that is relevant to the stakeholders. For these reasons, the IT leaders must seek enhanced understanding of the performance measures that matter to the stakeholders. In addition, they should come up with initiatives that will boost those measures.
However, during the analysis of how IT contribution is measure in the businesses, the author failed to acknowledge the roles of the machine used in IT. There is the real value of the machine itself in addition to the value of maintenance and the energy used by the user. The authors analysis emphasized on the benefits that accrues from the user. For IT to create value to the business there should be a balance between the price of the machine and the performance implications it brings to the business. In real life business practice, any metric used to measure value and performance must run the business, grow the business and transform the business. While attempting to improve performance, businesses should not solely be concerned with maximizing revenue or profits. Instead, the most important areas of concern are cost reduction, risk reduction and improved price to performance ratio. In other words, in order to show value, businesses should strive to demonstrate efficiency and focus to the stakeholders priorities. In this case, the most important stakeholder to the business is the customer. It is undisputable fact that for most successful businesses, investing in IT is instrumental to achieving good performance.

References
Mitra et al., “Measuring IT Performance and Communicating Value”,MIS Quarterly Executive, 2011

Interviewing Piece – Marketing Person Highlighting Credentials

September 25, 2014

Interviewing Piece – Marketing Person Highlighting Credentials

Name

University

Course

Tutor

Date

My name is Yao Li from South West China. I am aged 24 and have a personality of strong work ethic. It is within my discrete abilities to communicate and cope well in an intercultural matrix. When I was 12 years old, I learned to speak English and since then I have strong communication proficiencies in English language. The competence in the language is despite the backdrop that I came to the United States in 2013 which also serves as the first year in the US. I am bilingual in that sense and this provides me with a salient enabling environment for executing my duties and creating healthy communication relations with not only my employer and other employees but also with the people I interact with. I recognize that the United States is a largely multicultural society and that cultural competence is a key requirement here. In that end, I am equipped with good intercultural communication and skills thereof. The ability to get along well with people from different socio-cultural and even economic background is an incentive that I have in adequacy. This is because of the fact that I can speak English with fluency and that I am flexible enough to accommodate multiplicity and dynamics of cultural diversity.

Professionally, I am a trained and qualified science journalist with sharp inclinations to commitment, time keeping and meeting deadlines. In that professional dimension, I am aware that science journalism requires deeper level of cultural awareness as well as cultural competence (Stocklmayer, Gore & Bryant, 2001). This is because the profession entails reporting maters of science to the public and therefore needs good understanding of the culture within which the information is being reported in order for it (information) to make maximum impact and understanding. The nature of the profession requires handling rather esoteric or difficult scientific concepts to scientific professional as well as the general public. Thus, it demands handling and articulation of concepts so that information is passed easily and unequivocally to the people who may not have prior knowledge or understanding of scientific concepts. These are abilities that I possess in abundance especially in explaining complex terms and process of scientific nature to the people.

I have grounded background in both science and writing on one hand and communication on the other for marketing purposes. I possess good knowledge in analysis as I have good analytical skills. These are compounded by strong communication and organizational expertise. The background in scientific and technical writing elevates me to the apex of strong abilities to understand how to write for a variety of media. In addition, of the stationary work, my marketing abilities are well supported by the pertinent skills and experience in the field. I recognize that marketing is dynamic and it is the extra advantage and commitment that produces overall effectiveness. In this regard, I attach special importance to effectiveness and this call for employing (marketing) strategies that enable or facilitate achievement of the overall benefits. I have the ability to work in tight schedules and meet deadlines with reasonable time frame.

It is my work philosophy that capacity building and enhancement should override the material gain. That is, personal gain in terms of materiality should not preclude or even compromise quality, professional code of conduct and effectiveness of work. I believe that the enthusiasm, determination, inter-personal skills and excellent oral/written skills that I possess are pivotal in my ability to perform and deliver high level of performance in this position.

Reference

Stocklmayer, S., Gore, M. M., & Bryant, C. (2001). Science communication in theory and practice. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

PRINCIPLES OF MANAGEMENT APPLIED RESEARCH (DEFENSE INFORMATION SYSTEMS AGENCY)

September 25, 2014

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page

INTRODUCTION…………………………………………………………………………………………….. 5

BODY………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 7

Diversity Management……………………………………………………………………………… 7

Ethical, Social, and Legal Responsibilities………………………………………………….. 7

International Business………………………………………………………………………………. 8

General and Strategic Planning………………………………………………………………….. 8

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Organizing Work and Synergism………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 9

Organization Structure and Chart………………………………………………………………. 10

Work Team Utilization……………………………………………………………………………… 11

Staffing………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 12

Employee Training and Development…………………………………………………………. 13

Motivating Employees……………………………………………………………………………… 14

Leadership and Management…………………………………………………………………….. 14

Managing Conflict and Stress……………………………………………………………………. 15

Managing Change……………………………………………………………………………………. 15

Controlling……………………………………………………………………………………………… 16

Appraising and Rewarding……………………………………………………………………….. 17

Operations Management and Plans…………………………………………………………….. 17

Operations Control…………………………………………………………………………………… 18

CONCLUSION…………………………………………………………………………………………………. 18

REFERENCES………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 20

INTRODUCTION

The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) is among core combat support agencies (CSA) in the Department of Defense (DoD) agency, which is designated by the Secretary of Defense or the Congress to maintain military combat-related operations. Thus, it is an element within the Joint Information Environment (JIE) (JOH, 2011, p. 41). It undertakes a crucial support mission of information technology (IT) for different agencies, but majorly the Department of Defense (DOD). The agency also offers different services, including telecommunications, acquisition and computing services on cost refundable basis. Further, the agency controls and preserves joint warfighting, besides communication systems and command support. The DISA’s director – Lieutenant General RONNIE D. HAWKINS reported that the agency is in a crossroad after accomplishing a 13-year operation in Iraq. The director informs that “Our nation and our leadership have emphatically stated we must transition, as we conclude 13 years of war” (DISA, 2014, p. 1). Consequently, change is inevitable in the organization. As explained by the director, the President together with the Secretary of Defense produced the 2015 FY budgets, which adds more responsibilities to DISA, in spite of the scarce financial and human resources and the trend of the contemporary world. The budget articulated the DoD’s cyber mission of rebalancing the entire military within the next ten years and ensures that it operates within a sustainable track to safeguard the country’s interests and its worldwide sovereignty. The budget also includes the strategic direction of using the cyber and new Joint Information Environment investments to shape its war and defense operations. Consequently, the DISA is responsible for rebalancing activities. The DoD’s mission and strategic direction have irresistible impact on the overall operations in the DISA. The agency aims to execute the activities through its organizational vision, mission, core values, guiding principles, alongside other approaches as discussed in the paper. “Information superiority in defense of our Nation” is the DISA’s vision statement, while its mission statement states that “DISA, a Combat Support Agency, provides, operates, and assures command and control, information sharing capabilities, and a globally accessible enterprise information infrastructure in direct support to joint warfighters, national level leaders, and other mission and coalition partners across the full spectrum of operations” (DISA, 2014, p. 3). Additionally, the agency uses dedication, integrity, service and always as its core values, alongside other guiding principles, which govern its operations. According to DISA’s director – RONNIE D. HAWKINS, the agency emphasizes on the following four core strategic goals, which include: “(1) Evolve the Joint Information Environment, (2) Provide Joint Command and Control and Leadership Support, (3) Operate and Assure the DISA Information Enterprise as part of the DoD Information Networks (DoDIN), and (4) Optimize Department Investments” (DISA, 2014, p. 1).

Comprehending management principles and skills is very easy for most people. However, exploiting the principles and skills in real life situations is extremely challenging. This is due to numerous forces such as changes in the environment and scarcity of required resources. Nevertheless, managers and leaders may effectively apply different management principles and skills, alongside the available resources, to achieve the desired objectives. It is easy to understand this through analyzing the following aspects and activities in the DISA: diversity management; ethical, social and legal responsibilities; international business; general and strategic planning; organizing work and synergism; organization structure and chart; staffing; employee training and development; motivating employees; leadership and management; managing conflict and stress; managing change; controlling; appraising and rewarding; operations management and plans; and operations control.

BODY

Diversity Management

There are about 8,300 employees in DISA, though they are not working from a centralized point. While some are operating from its headquarters, others operate from ten directorate offices, while others from 20 line and field organizations across the globe (GAO, 2002, p. 6). Diversity is highly encouraged and managed in the agency. The agency has established a culture that considers diversity as a source of innovation (DISA, 2014, p. 3). The culture also supports effective collaboration and respect among the members. Every member in the organization has equal opportunity of achieving his/her individual goals, while considering the welfare of the other members, as well as that of the entire organization and society in entirety.

Ethical, Social, and Legal   Responsibilities

Ethical, social, and legal responsibilities have been a big dilemma in many organizations, especially in business entities, though each of them strives to avoid any issues related to aforesaid aspects. DISA has been focusing on how to avoid any ethical, social, and legal issues through different approaches. First, DISA operates under identified guiding principles, which depict its identity among the customers (individuals, groups or/and organizations), as well as core values that define how agency’s operations are executed in relations to the customers.

Encouraging trust through transparency is another approach encouraged by the agency to avoid aforesaid issues. The agency’s members (employees) consider themselves responsible in their actions. Additionally, the agency executes its operations while reflecting the U.S. values, principles and specifications documented in the U.S. constitution (JOH, 2011, p. 91).

International Business

While DISA is intensively involved in international activities, the impacts related to changing trends in the global environment exert remarkable influence on its operations and strategy. DISA greatly manages greater fractions of global IT resources in the DoD’s agency. It also offers, runs and maintains variety of services related to information, computing, and networking requirements (GAO, 2002, p. 5). The agency plans to boost customer relations management through remaining innovative, in order to be more supple and receptive to ever changing trends that may hinder achievement of its global mission.

Organizations engaging in international businesses require effective managements that encourage flexibility needed to adopt and adapt any potential changes. Such managements should be able to demonstrate entrepreneurship and effective decision making. They should be also innovative to create insights whenever other organizational members face dilemma. DISA has been attempting to achieve this through synergism with other agencies, its employees and the public in general. Most importantly, its international business activities, including outsourcing, acquisitions and strategic alliances, are integrated in its guiding principles, strategic goals, and core objectives.

General and Strategic Planning

Strategy is very crucial in a sense that it offers the overall direction of any organization. It is usually long-term oriented, which enormous impacts on both individual components in an organization, and the organizational in general. It should be designed to build on and exploit the available capabilities and resources. It should also aim at creating effective congruence between an organization, its mission and the outside environment. Unlike other categories of planning such as tactical and operational, strategic planning focuses on a wide geographic coverage and stakeholder base. As a result, its development and implementation usually takes many years. Effective strategic planning helps organizations not only to cope up with different changes, but also to gain competitive advantages.

Though DISA undertakes own general and strategic planning, the process (planning) usually aims at achieving the broad National Security Strategy (NSS) and National Defense Strategy (NDS) upon approval by the president and the Secretary of Defense. The Agency’s management is responsible for general and strategic planning, though they process must reflect the broad national security and defense goal (JOH, 2011, p. 132). Further, the planning process is designed to reflect different current and potential changes, besides scarcity of resources. This holds the management accountable for effective and efficient use of the available resources to achieve the anticipated outcomes.

Organizing Work and Synergism

The agency always encourages collaboration in all its aspects. It believes that it is through collaboration that would help it to accomplish its mission. This is achieved by the concept of “WE”, rather “I”. The agency’s members encourage transparency and trust among themselves (DISA, 2014, p. 3). Through this kind of trust among the members, accountability is taken generally. For instance, the DISA’s 2014-2019 strategic plan points out that “we hold ourselves accountable.” This may seem to be contrary in other organizations whereby every employee is accountable for his or her acts. Further, service delivery is executed in synergisms.

Organization Structure and Chart

Organizational structure is a core element in management that may influence success of any organization. In brief, organizational structure can be described as the coordination between personal and team/group activities in an organization. It defines reporting associations, outlines different channels of communication, and linkages between different individual activities in an organization. Organizational structure can fall into four broad categories, which encompass: hierarchical levels, centralization, departmentalization and formalization. However, the categories for two distinct structure patterns, namely: mechanistic patterns and organic structures. Mechanistic majorly uses centralized and formalized principles, while organic encourage flexibility and decentralization, while considering reduced formalization levels. Jupiterimages Corporation, (2010, p. 186) reports that organic structures are more friendly to innovativeness, entrepreneurship and increased job satisfaction compared to mechanistic structures. DISA’s organizational structure tends to reflect the mechanistic structure (see figure below). Though mechanistic structures yield encouraging results, especially during stable periods, they seem to be outdated in the modern uncertain environment. This implies that the Agency should redesign its structure in order to facilitate innovativeness, higher levels of job satisfaction, and entrepreneurship skills.

Joint Spectrum Center
Joint Staff Support Center
Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization
Defense Technical Information Center
Defense Information System Service Center
Joint Interoperability Test Command
DISA Field Offices:

DISA Central Command

DISA Continental U.S.

DISA European Command

DISA Fort Gordon

DISA U.S. Joint Forces Command

DISA Pacific Command

DISA Southern Command

DISA Space Command

DISA Strategic Command

DISA Transportation Command

DISA Directorates:

Acquisition, logistics, and facilities

Application engineering

Computing services

Customer Advocacy

Interoperability

Manpower, personnel, and security

Network services

Operations

Strategic plans, programming, and policy

Technical integration services

The figure below shows DISA’s structure (GAO, 2002, p. 7)

Work Team Utilization

Weak team utilization is highly encouraged in all its aspects, irrespective of widely dispersed employees across the globe, with a great respect between the workers (DISA, 2008, p. 3). This is absolutely achieved through innovative employees and exploitation of accessible superior technology. For instance, the report by Adobe Systems Incorporated, (2010, p. 1) explained that the agency “In June 2007, DISA awarded Defense Connect Online (DCO), a two-part Adobe Connect solution for collaboration and engagement across DoD global operations.” The report further explained that the two systems consist of Adobe Connect implementation for classified and unclassified network. Through the aid of the systems, which were officially launched in April 2008, effective collaboration between military leaders, supporting personnel, and deployed troops irrespective of their geographical position. The solution helps the agency to overcome challenges associated with previous collaborative approaches such as use of satellite, T-1, and computers, among others. It is informed that since its launch in 2008, the DCO has captured over 25,000 and 90,000 classified and unclassified users, respectively. These users are randomly dispersed in about forty countries across the world. It is further pointed out that the number of users grows at the rate of about 1,200 weekly.

Additionally, Adobe Systems Incorporated, (2010, p. 1) reported that “In addition to deploying Adobe Connect for web conferencing, DCO implemented chat with presence and awareness technology to provide DoD staff with an XMPP-based, always-on IM client to engage immediately with authorized personnel around the globe.” This facilitates active involvement and collaboration, while facilitating effective communication.

Staffing

Staffing activities, which are more linked to human resource management practices and policies, majorly involves selecting the appropriate candidates and incorporating them in the correct positions in an organization to achieve the desired outcomes. This demands managers and leaders to ensure effective financial planning to avoid any error-related issues. Staffing also entails offering clear job descriptions, encouraging learning of the organizational culture and other related activities (Rue, & Byars, 2008).

Unlike in small organizations, multinational organizations such as DISA need to consider wider aspects in their staffing activities. For instance, it is crucial to determine the ability of international workers to comply with different cultural differences across the globe.

As reported above, DISA has effectively recognized and addressed the IT human resource needs. This has been achieved through different approaches, including hiring, retention and training, with help of superior technology (GAO, 2002, p. 9). For instance, internet recruitment has been used to mitigate the related costs and create effectiveness.

Employee Training and Development

Like other organizational strategies and operations, employee training and development program are majorly based on the wide national security and defense strategies. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS) guides education, training and development policies in DISA (JOH, 2011, p. 95). The Joint Staff training and development programs are offered frequently to ensure employee flexibility in different areas. For instance, employees are trained to ensure that they can hold technology support tools, and to exploit their capabilities in order to boost expertise and quality their operations. The employees are also equipped with wide knowledge related to their tasks, though everyone is trained how to obtain information and make it available through different technology-based systems. Training programs are also offered to help organizational members to overcome psychological issues such as stress (JOH, 2011, p. 19, 65-70).

Motivating Employees

Though there are other crucial factors that define success of any organization, employees play a remarkable role. This implies that low motivated workforce may lead to declined performance or failure to some extent. DISA has remained focused on motivating its workforce. This has been triggered by its belief that the workforce is crucial for achievement of desired goals. The agency has been encouraging motivation through motivators. According to Saylor.org, (n.d., p. 536), motivators are “factors that are intrinsic to the job, such as achievement, recognition, interesting work, increased responsibilities, advancement, and growth opportunities.” It is the agency’s belief that “individual growth, learning, and proficiency are critical” for its future, including other stakeholders (DISA, 2014, p. 3). As discussed above under the ‘Staffing’ section, DISA has met the needs of its IT human resources, especially through training.

Leadership and Management

The ever changing global environment requires organizations to focus on future leadership and management expertise. Managers and leaders need to adopt strategies that aim at building future leaders and managers through training and development (Rue, & Byars, 2008). The case of DISA validates this, whereby growth and development has been adopted as crucial components to boost future success of the agency. DISA, (2008, p. 3) apparently points out that “leadership is an integral part of all DISA activities.” It is further reported that the agency’s leadership is well-recognized across the world for its successful creation, management and exploitation of cross-industry e-business exchange technology. The agency’s leadership creates an entrepreneurial atmosphere, whereby the employees enjoy the empowerment of recognizing and developing any potential opportunities that constitute their wellbeing, as well as the general wellbeing of the organization and the society.

Managing Conflict and Stress

Conflicts are common in many organizations. They usually occur when one party sees that its preferences and interests are overlooked or negatively influenced by the other parties in an organization. Conflicts may be functional or dysfunctional. Unlike functional conflict, which tends to serve the interests of an organization, the dysfunctional conflicts threaten the interests. Conflicts and stress are associated to different factors such as poor communication, competing for scarce resources, and competition in groups, among others (Rue, & Byars, 2008). Conflicts and stress in an organization should be managed to achieve agreement, improved relationships and learning. For instance, the management process should help employees to gain more knowledge and skills on how to solve any related issues in the future. Conflict can be solved through different styles, which may include: integrating, obliging, compromising, dominating and avoiding.

Managing Change

Due to ever evolving trends in the environment, organizational change is an inevitable element. In other words, organizations should remain flexible enough to adopt and effectively implement changes in order to achieve their desired goals. Like other organizations, the DISA is a victim of new trends in the environment. Insecurity related to human and information has been drastically changing with technological advancements. DISA has been focusing on how remain receptive and flexible to changes in the global environment. As discussed above, the agency had completed its 13-year operation in Iraq, but the U.S. government and leaders added more responsibilities to the agency. The added responsibilities are designed to match the new trends in the environment, and boost security and defense of the country. The agency’s leadership and management have been playing a great role in managing change in the agency, whereby they have succeeded to deal with many changes. This has been achieved through effective communication and trust that exists among the agency’s members. It is informed that lack of sufficient and clear communication may spur resistance to change regardless of the efforts and resources devoted in the change process. Effective communication prepares organizational members prior to the desired change.

Controlling

See Rue & Byars, Management: Skills and Application Chapter 17

Controlling is a crucial managerial function, which entails monitoring organizational performance and making relevant corrections to ensure achievement of objected results. Through controlling, managers ensure that the correct activities take place in the appropriate times. Further, controlling helps organizations to remain within the limits of the relevant rules and policies in an organization such as quality specifications (Rue, & Byars, 2008).

DISA has remained focused to strengthen its management controls. A report by GAO, (GAO, 2002, p. 10) informed that DISA has adopted different control areas. Though the agency had achieved effective control of its IT human capital, it seems to have failed to control other crucial aspects such as effectiveness in its operations. Controlling in the agency aims at achieving not only the agency’s goals, but also those of the wide nation.

Appraising and Rewarding

Appraising and rewarding are crucial management practices in the organization, which may lead to declined organizational commitment and motivation if poorly executed. Appraising and rewarding tends to influence organizational behavior. Rewarding and rewarding may involve either extrinsic or intrinsic approaches or both (Rue, & Byars, 2008). Extrinsic approach seems to rely more on monetary benefits, contrary to intrinsic factors which may encompass aspects such as ensuring encouraging working environment and offering growth opportunities.

Though extrinsic factors are used in DISA, intrinsic factors seem to be more prevalent. For instance, the agency offers training and development programs that facilitate the agency’s members to exploit their potentials. The growth opportunities provided by the agency play a crucial role in boosting morale and motivation among the organizational members. Additionally, the agency facilitates encouraging working environment, whereby trust, communication and collaboration are widely encouraged.

Operations Management and Plans

Apart from the above discussed components in managerial and leadership realm, operation management and plans are other crucial element to forget. Operation management and plans help organizations to track and monitor their operations (Rue, & Byars, 2008). The operation management plans act as the guidelines which are widely followed by project managers to achieve diverse activities such as quality. As explained in the section above section, the GAO report found lack of effectiveness and efficiency in its operations. Consequently, the report recommended the agency to base its operations on well-informed decisions.

Operations Control

Further, operational controls are crucial in any organization in a sense that they assist in controlling and managing organizational activities, outputs, processes, and its impacts on the general society and environment. Operational controls are guided by well-defined procedures, which in turn offer directives to ensure that activities and operations in an organization are executed in the most appropriate manner (Rue, & Byars, 2008).

GAO, (2002, p. 9) reported that in 1999 the agency lacked definite procedures for gathering and reporting performance data. As a result, the entire process was portioned. This resulted to numerous complaints from customers such as delayed services. Nevertheless, the agency has shifted its attention on ensuring appropriate controls in order to achieve effectiveness and efficiency, especially in the contemporary world characterized by scarcity of human and monetary resources.

CONCLUSION

Comprehending management principles and skills is very easy for most people, though exploiting the principles and skills in real life situations is extremely challenging, due to numerous forces such as changes in the environment and scarcity of required resources. As discussed in the paper DISA has been encouraging diversity in its operations. It has also operating within the limits of ethical, social and legal responsibilities through different approaches. Additionally, the agency has been undertaking its strategic planning while reflecting the existing and potential changes in the global environment. Though it has achieve numerous successes, the agency may need to focus on various changes in order to avoid issues identified in the paper, especially lack of efficiency and effectiveness in its operations and activities. This may need redesigning the organizational structure to facilitate effective communication, though the technology has been playing a crucial role as far as communication is concerned.

REFERENCES

Adobe Systems Incorporated. (2010). U.S. Department of Defense, Defense Information

Systems Agency. Retrieved Sept. 18, 2014 from https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CB8QFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.adobe.com%2Fshowcase%2Fcasestudies%2Fdisa%2Fcasestudy.pdf&ei=1u4aVJyfD8HdOo3fgZAJ&usg=AFQjCNGyq2oKnFakJyXDA02JueBkXZTOLQ&sig2=GrahJ_Co1ZBYutdrfBXgUA&bvm=bv.75097201,d.ZWU

DISA. (2014). “DEFENSE INFORMATION SYSTEMS AGENCY Strategic Plan: 2014 – 2019 VERSION 2.” Joint Information Environment. Retrieved Sept. 18, 2014 from http://www.disa.mil/News/PressResources/2012/~/media/Files/DISA/About/Strategic-Plan.pdf

DISA. (2008). “DISA Strategic Plan.” DISA. Retrieved Sept. 18, 2014 from https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CB0QFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.disa.org%2FDISA%2520STRATEGIC%2520PLAN%25202009.pdf&ei=Lu8aVLfrJ8PWPKiYgPgC&usg=AFQjCNHnAqoRVjLPNREL8nsZy7luiWoWkg&sig2=-xU8FykiGVH12AfOECuuaA&bvm=bv.75097201,d.ZWU

Joint Officer Handbook (JOH). (2011). “Staffing and Action Guide.” Joint Staff, J-7 JETD. 2nd Ed. Retrieved Sept. 17, 2014 from http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/dod/joh_aug2011.pdf

Jupiterimages Corporation. (2010). CHAPTER 7: Organizational Structure and Change from PRINCIPLES OF MANAGEMENT V1.1. p. 181-202. Retrieved Sept. 18, 2014 from https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCcQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.saylor.org%2Fsite%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2011%2F06%2FBUS208-5.4.pdf&ei=6-waVLr9M_T57AaSuIH4Bw&usg=AFQjCNFmfyTxeP0RGFl2ChF4X5wK47UJ2A&sig2=aap2feoYXiciX41iMv8RGQ&bvm=bv.75097201,d.ZGU

U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board. (2011). “TELEWORK: Weighing the Information, Determining an Appropriate Approach”. A Report to the President and the Congress of the United States by the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board. Retrieved Sept. 17, 2014 from http://www.doi.gov/telework/upload/mspb-2011-report.pdf

Saylor.org, (n.d.). Principles of Management. Retrieved Sept. 18, 2014 from http://www.saylor.org/books

Rue, L. W., & Byars, L. L. (2008). Management: Skills and application. Boston: McGraw-Hill Irwin.
Research Paper Checklist

( ) Yes, I used the template under the “Document Sharing” tab in the online class

( ) Yes, I included a cover page, per the template

( ) Yes, I included a table of contents with correct page numbers, per the template

( ) Yes, my paper is at least 10 pages, NOT counting the cover, table of contents, and reference pages

( ) Yes, I used 12 pitch font, double spaced, but did not double-double space between paragraphs

( ) Yes, I clearly labeled all the topics and subtopics (put the topic and subtopic name at the beginning of the paragraph as outlined in the template)

( ) Yes, I included a reference page with at least six (6) references of which three (3) are different personal references from members of the organization researched; for examples, quotes from current employees

( ) Yes, for every reference listed on the reference page, I have a matching citation in the introduction, body, or conclusion of my paper

( ) Yes, for every citation in the introduction, body, or conclusion of my paper, I have a matching reference listed on the reference page

( ) Yes, my pages are numbered

( ) Yes, I did not use any contractions (i.e. don’t)

( ) Yes, I documented my references in APA format and as outlined in the template on the reference page and as citations in the introduction, body and conclusion of the paper

( ) Yes, I included all the topics (introduction, body, conclusion and reference)

( ) Yes, I included all the subtopics and they are addressed in the following order: (a) diversity management,(b) ethical, social, and legal responsibilities, (c) international business, (d) general and strategic planning, (e) organizing work and synergism, (f) organization structure and chart (g) work teams utilization, (h) staffing, (i) employee training and development, (j) motivating employees, (k) leadership and management, (l) managing conflict and stress, (m) managing change, (n) controlling, (o) appraising and rewarding, (p) operations management and plans, and (q) operations control.

( ) Yes, I discussed in my conclusion, an overall posture of my researched organization in terms of adhering the principles of management

( ) Yes, I read the syllabus and rubric as relates to grading criteria for the research paper

( ) Yes, I drop-boxed the research paper not later than Sunday Week 7

Appealing the Conviction of Cecile Fergusons

September 25, 2014

Based on the legal context surrounding Cecile Ferguson’s case, the appellate court will reverse the decision convicting her of second-degree murder due to substantially inadequate evidence. In this case, the court did not suffice the legal threshold to prove the application of second-degree murder, and consequently convict Cecile Ferguson. According to the McKinney’s Penal Law § 125.25 and § 125.25, a person if guilty of second murder crime if under various material time of the claimed defender’s recklessness, the murder amounts to second class degree in a class A-I felony, or in the event of alleged defender’s recklessness leading to a commission of murder, the prevailing circumstances evinced to a deprived indifferences to human life, and it is proved that the defendant recklessly engaged in the conduct which created a grave risk of death to another person, and thereby causing untimely death to the deceased. There are the two governing rules that determine a conviction of one to second-degree murder. Indeed, either of the rules must be proved beyond reasonable doubt, and the situation of the case must fully meet the condition of second-degree murder as alleged by the plaintiffs.

These two governing rules are embodied in some specific rules that determine cases fronted under second-degree murder. Therefore, a conviction to an offender must take cognizance of the specific cases applicable to the general principles. The specific cases on defendant’s Miranda rights are resolvable of the court of appeal against instigating an arbitrary conviction of the defendant without considering his or her rights in the case.

The proof for depraved indifference is one fundament of second-degree murder. Considering the case between the Peoples of the State of New York, Respondent vs. Angelo Esposito, (Appellant), the appeal court help the defendant of a second-degree murder owing to the prevailing legal contexts under this case. According to the court, the defendant violated the legal provision which was devoid of considering sanctity of life, and thus this case meeting the provisions under depraved indifference. The county court convicted the appellant of various counts of murder; conviction of murder in the second degree, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the second degree, attempted assaults in the second degree, tampering with physical evidence, two counts of harassment, and based on the country court, the appellant should have been confirmed guilty of second degree murder and this amount to substantial proof of depraved indifference to human life. According to the verdict by the court (People v Contes, 60 NY2d 620), the appellant was found guilty of second-degree murder and all counts of charges. The reasons provide by the county court were undisputable and proved existence of reckless beyond reasonable doubt, and the appellant’s case evinced a depraved indifference to human life. Therefore, the county’s counts of charges were sufficiently instigated and viable charged the defendant of second-degree murder due to the unfolding evocations of the case. In addition, the courts verdict confirms degree of conviction according to the New York penal law, § 125.25.

The second case involving “the People of the State of the New York and Derrick Williams, the appellant, found substantial evidence to convict the appellant of all charges leveled against him by the court. The court of appeal upheld lower court’s and indeed found that the appellant was guilty of second-degree murder, and subsequently his conducts evinced a depraved indifference since it disregarded human life. The defendant after sideswiping one car, led police to high-speed chases over several blocks, while sideswiping other cars before causing a tragic accident and hitting a decedent and dragging him for a 35 feet. Despite, this reckless move, the driver drove recklessly hitting another bus before fleeing on foot. During this horrific incidence, the defendant ran several red lights and stopped signs and failed to honk at his horn. The court of appeal acknowledged the rulings of the lower courts and reprimanded the defendant of a second-degree murder, since he was he fraudulently conducted himself thus violating section § 125.25 that governs such cases.

Based on the fundamental guidelines under the New York Penal laws § 125.25, Cecile Ferguson should not have been held liable against second-degree murder. In the context of Ferguson’s case, her actions did not evince indifference to human life. The following accounts hold valid for her and this disregard any formal complaint to convict her of second-degree murder. In the preceding cases, one is liable against second-degree murder if his or her case merits two conditions. However, neither the conduction was served in the incidence leading to Ferguson’s charges nor besides she is fully entitled to her Miranda rights. Evidence that could be staged against the defendant does not merit the legal threshold that convicts a person of the second-degree murder. It is imperative to note that Ferguson drove at an exceeding mileage though this did not amount to any carelessness. Indeed, any suit brought on the account of carelessness will not succeed since the defendant did everything within his rights to protect the life of the deceased. In addition, the extra mileage of drive is not any reason to go by when proving facts about second murder charges.

Instances of negligence can be tolerated in this case but would not give substantial evidence against the defendant. For instance, the accident was caused by the poor state of the road, which Cecile was not in control. In addition, this accident resulted as a collateral damage to the unintentional situation, and the defendant was cushioned from second murder crime due to the prevalence of his Miranda rights. The resultant case here would only amount to the accident since no charges of evinced indifference to human life could be sustained. In response to this condition, neither Ferguson’s nor her friends had intended to cause this accident or murder, and at the material time of the occurrence of this incidence, no justification to recklessness by the defendant could be proved. In addition, Ferguson surrendered to the police and thus justifying that her alleged crime did not amount to felony of the aforementioned category.

Regarding this case, there is enough evidence to acquit Ferguson off charges of second degree murder, as the prevailing counts of the case clearly indicates her innocence of the aforementioned charges. From the presiding contextual cases, it is worth noting that the two victims were held liable for a second degree murder since their conducts evinced a depraved indifference to human life. This situation is untrue to the case involving Ferguson, who has been controversy, linked to the death of a Nissan driver, and consequently charged of second degree murder. Convicting Ferguson of second degree murder is a thus a violation of New York Penal laws § 125.25, since it does not merit legal standings attributed to such charges.

References

McKinney’s Penal Law § 125.25 § 125.25 Murder in the second degree

Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, New York. The PEOPLE of the State of New York, Respondent, v. Derrick WILLIAMS, Defendant–Appellant. June 25, 1992.

Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, New York. The PEOPLE, etc., respondent,v.Jon Paul LAZARTES, appellant. Nov. 7, 2005.

The People of the State of New York, Respondent, v. Angelo Esposito, Appellant. Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, New York (June 5, 1995)

The effectiveness of corporate media

September 24, 2014

The effectiveness of corporate media

Name

Institution

Course

Tutor

Date

Introduction

Corporate media is a term that is used to refer to a system of mass media production, distribution ownership and funding which is dominated by corporations as well as their chief executive officers (CEOs). This term is in some instances used pejoratively to indicate a media system that does not bear the public’s interest at heart. Several media critics, including Ben Bagdikian and Herman, S. Edward made a suggestion that if the corporate media was allowed to dominate the mainstream media, adverse effects would be inevitable (Ann and Gower, 2009). They further argue that corporates are engaging in acquiring the main media houses to ensure they have a larger stake in them. This gives them an assurance that they can effectively filter out any information that doesn’t suit their corporate agenda.Corporate media encompasses innumerable matters.

Corporate media has been established to have a pivotal role in determining the impact that is made by the various social movements in the larger society (Shone and parry, 2004). Corporate media is a social movement of its self that social goals that it aims to achieve. Social movement determines the outcome of the public opinion, the elite and the authorities. Corporate media provides coverage and advocacy for issues that are not adequately catered for in the mainstream media (Andrew and Caren, 2010). It effectively tackles matter of economic importance better than the mainframe media does. Researchers suggest that corporate media presence is good because it improves customer engagement, stimulates revenue creation and it also builds loyalty. This finding can be solidly supported by a number of supporting points. The effectiveness of the corporate media will be elucidated below. The main point discussed include, the benefits and the effect of corporate media advertising and promotion on the consumer behavior, the media richness theory, the consolidation of media attention and the control of the socio-political environment.

Powerful corporations in the world are gaining a powerful influence upon mainstream media in many countries. Several multinational corporations have been establishing to even own and control major media outlets. The population of media outlets has been on the verge of increase in the recent past owing to the increased ease of entry due to the growth of democracy in the world. This vertical integration of corporate and mainstream media has amplified the available avenues for cross-selling as well as cross marketing products which translates into increased profits within the same period. Since the time immemorial and since the onset of mass media, corporates have naturally sought the services of such establishments to popularize their products to their target markets. Mass media advertising has its richness as it allows space for the sharing of innovative ideas to the prospective consumers, which has a direct impact on the sales made and hence the returns reaped (Aruguete, 2011). Media advertising has grown over the years due to the advancement of the advertising methods as well as techniques. Contemporary adverts have been developed to entice, shape as well as create consumerism and needs which have been non-existence in the past years. This has been facilitated by the invention of new technologies and advertising techniques.

Advertising has become an integral part of the business day to day life as they seek a competitive edge against their competitors in the market. Larger companies have the ability to channel huge sums of expenditure of advertising which is an important bit in the marketing of products and gaining a competitive advantage for a given product that is in the market. Advertisers also bear direct and indirect influences over the advertising media companies as well as the content in the advertisements with an aim of nurturing moods as well as the cultures which multiply the likelihood of consumers subscribing to the products being advertised. Therefore, multinational corporations having a stake in the media is an imperative factor that determines the overall sale as well as the product placement in the market.

The effect of corporate media advertising and promotion on the consumer behavior

Every business, regardless of its size needs to advertise as well as promote its products so as to arouse the interest of prospective consumers in the market. Advertising has a great impact on the way consumers perceive the market. Advertising promotes increased awareness of the available products from a given company or generally that are available in the product market (Bauman, 2011). New products in the market can only be made known to the masses through the various types of media ranging from print to visual media. A great percent of human beings use the media as a source of information. The thirst for information has increased in the recent past. The result was the invention of new technologies that have brought a revolution in the media scenes. Corporate control of the media facilitates this function of arousing the interest of the consumers in the market by creating awareness of the existence of a given product, as well as new entries that find their way into the market (Baagi, 2011). The mass media channels enable the corporations to target a large audience at a single time. This is effective as the message gets to millions of people unlike other methods of product promotion. This translates in augmented volumes of sale of a particular product that adapts a proper advertising model.

Advertising has been found out to offer the consumer base a chance to evaluate and analyses the various features of the products being advertised (Augustine, 1996). Large corporations have an upper hand in the market as their products are carefully crafted to meet the needs of their consumers. Research has established that consumers have a tendency of analyzing the products in the market before making a rightful choice on the kind of products or services to subscribe to. Consumers have a rational response to advertising when they look at the features and properties of the products and services. Advertising reduces the amount of effort that is required in analyzing the features and properties of the products as well as the services that are existent in the market. The response that is given by the prospective consumers is based on a logical listing that dwells on all the functional aspects of the given products. The response that is given is in most cases intellectually inclined and is rather not based on the emotions. Large corporations with their resources have the ability to craft and tailor their products to meet the specifications in the market. Large corporations have maintained a culture of studying the market needs before coming up with the product (Barbara, 2008). This gives them a comprehensive idea on the kind of products they are supposed to present to the market. Advertising comes in handy when it comes to presenting the desirable features to the different audience. Having viewed the products being presented in the various media avenues, consumers are able to make rational judgments and decisions on which products to subscribe to.

Corporate Media advertising is important as it facilitates the targeted audience to evaluate the benefits that accrue to them with the usage of a given line of product (Berger, Sorensen and Rasmussen, 2010). Weighing the benefits by the consumers emotionally attaches them to advertising. The consumers, through advertising are able to clear about the various uses of a given product, the advantages as well as weighing the prices of related products. Using corporate media advertising, companies can make known, the innumerable ways through which the given product can amplify the satisfaction of their target consumers. Product tailoring using data from the actual consumers gives companies an upper hand in the market as their products are able to meet the consumer needs. The identification of ways in which a product makes the consumer’s life better is irrational. The response that is elicited therefore can result into impulse buying by the consumers. Advertising is therefore essential in creating an emotional attachment between the products and the consumers. The prolonged existence of the product in the advertising scene and in the market ignites a sense of belonging to the consumers. This amplifies consumer loyalty. Consumer loyalty translates into increased sales volumes and hence more profits are gained by the companies.

Repeated advertising of a given product has been known to affect the consumer behavior. Constant repetition of a given advert in the media creates a lasting impression in the consumers. Constant advertising has been noted to ignite buyers’ interest in a particular product. The result of such is that the consumers are always prompt in remembering a certain product as they go out shopping. A constant reminder manipulates the consumer’s thinking and their decision making processes (Andrew and Caren, 2010). The creation of a lasting impression in the mind of a consumer can only be achieved through the constant presentation and the quality of the product. Corporations with their innumerable resources are able to make products that are of high quality with moderate prices. The only factor that remains is creating a lasting image in the mind of the consumer about the existence of that particular product. Corporate media advertising is also effective in the promotion of loyalty or alienation. Researchers have positively established that the consumer behavior is torn in between alienation and loyalty. These two, alienation and loyalty are determined by how well a given advertised product lives up to its advertised benefits (Bauman, 2011). The behavior of corporations, in this case, the corporate social responsibility, has also been established to have a great impact on the alienation as well as customer loyalty responses. Corporations are able to create appealing products that are the true copy of the advertised products. This hence promotes customer loyalty which increases and maintains the sales as well as the profits gained.

The media richness Theory

Media influence on consumer behavior is profound; this is evident going with the innumerable amounts of resources that are spent on advertising alone by corporates each year. Having a hand in the media itself offers corporates a great advantage in the marketing of their products and increases their sales volumes and revenues. The media richness theory is a framework that describes a given medium of communication by its capability to reproduce the information that is channeled to the audience through it. This theory was developed by two theorists Daft Richard and Lengel Robert. The theory states that all communication media vary in their ability to enable users to communicate and change their understanding (Bauman, 2011). The theory is basically applied in the ranking as well as evaluation of the richness of the various existing communication channels including mass media, phone. Corporate media has been established to outdo other media due to a number of reasons. Corporate media gives a wide coverage and hence the impact of the message sent through this channel is widespread. Corporate media has a high essence of complexity in its nature. The media richness theory states that the more ambiguous and uncertain a task is, the richer the format of media that suits it (Ann and Gower, 2009). Corporate media using its propagandist tools is effectively able to cater for the innumerable uncertainties as well as ambiguities that are involved in the product advertisement circles.

The media richness theory was primarily developed to enable media uses to effectively evaluate as well as describe the available communication mediums within firms. The theory is vital in enabling corporates cope with the communication challenges that face companies in their day to day activities. Corporate media is a form of communication channel that is meant to suit the needs of the company. Marketing is the ultimate activity of any corporation and even other businesses. It is therefore essential to establish proper channels that suit the marketing needs of corporations for effective marketing. The corporate media has effectively achieved its chief mission through the use of complex techniques. Multinationals have succeeded in dominating the media scenes by channeling innumerable resources to acquire or manipulate mass media (Baagi, 2011). This engagement has been a great advantage to the corporates as they are able to create a larger mark in the product market without using many channels.

Consolidation of media attention

Organizations have been faced with innumerable challenges in consolidating and strengthening the attention they are accorded by the media. Media attention is scarce and highly coveted in the modern world. Media visibility is highly advantageous to any organization that clinches it (Bauman, 2011). Media attention also has its paths or rather conduits which it flows through. This includes the communication channels such as telephone, internet, mass media and movement generated channels. Corporates have succeeded in arousing the media attention through their channeling of efforts to acquire a stake in the media. Corporates have worked around the clock to amplify their palisade in the media. Corporate media has succeeded in consolidating the required attention to the multinationals in the trading scenes. Media like any other institutions, has been established to receive its shaping from various sources which include, economic, social, political and cultural forces that influences the content that is presented to the audience (Aruguete, 20110. Having gained control over the various media, corporates have had a better opportunity in manipulating what appears in the media. This has facilitated more product advertising, and hence more avenues of creating awareness to the prospective consumers have been formulated. This means that corporates have achieved more in consolidation the media attention. This has translated on more sales and hence an increase in the sales volumes.

News as consumption and the control of the social-political environment

The marriage between fierce corporatization and consolidation of world media empires has spawned a hybrid form of journalism that inhabits space somewhere between news, entertainment and partisan propaganda (Berger, Sorensen and Rasmussen, 2010). Corporate media control has enabled multinationals to give public perceptions a sparkling new shape and hence set the political agenda. The political agenda has been established to have a deep rooted impact on the way business in the world is done. Corporates have succeeded in manipulating the political scenes to suit their interests. An uncertain political environment provides a difficult working condition and hence the sales and the revenues are adversely affected. Having a predictable socio-political environment is of great advantage to the economic scenes. The manipulation of the socio-political scenes, come at a cost whereby the corporates control the media (Augustine, 1996). With the media under their control, the socio-political environment is favorably controllable. The control ensures a favorable trading environment and hence the returns through sales are guaranteed.

Conclusion

Researchers suggest that corporate media presence is good because it improves customer engagement, stimulates revenue creation and it also builds loyalty. This finding is true owing to the various advantages that accrue to the corporates due to the important stake they hold in the media. The presence of corporate media has facilitated in the achievement of the innumerable advantages that are as a result of media advertising. This includes creation of awareness, evaluation of the features and benefits and the creation of customer loyalty. Corporate media ownership has facilitated easier consolidation of the media attention (Andrew and Caren, 20100. This means that corporates have an easier time in establishing themselves in the market through the media. Corporate media’s presence has also enabled the partial control of the socio-political scenes which have a stake in the economic situations. Therefore, the corporate media’s presence has changed the consumer engagement and has amplified the sales volumes as well as the profits attained.

References

Ann, K., & Gower, K. (2009). How do the news media frame crises? A content analysis of crisis news Coverage. Public Relations Review, 35 (2009):107–112.

Andrews, T., & Caren, N. (2010). Making the News: Movement organizations, Media Attention and the Public Agenda. American Sociological Review, 75(6): 841–866.

Aruguete, N. (2011). The Relationship between media and news sources: A content analysis of Argenyine telephone service privatization in August to October 1990.

Augustine, P (1996). Mediating the media: a journalist-centric media relations model:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Barbara, L. (2008). Successful special events: planning, hosting and evaluating. Gaithesburg, AA Maryland: Aspen Publishers Inc.

Bauman, D. (2011). Evaluating Ethical Approaches to crisis leadership: insights from Unintentional Harm Research. Journal of Business Ethics, 98: 281-295.

Berger, J., Sorensen, A., & Rasmussen, S. (2010). Positive Effects of Negative Publicity: When negative Reviews Increase Sales. Marketing Science, 29(5): 815-827.

Biagi, S. (2011). Media Impact: An introduction to Mass Media. New York: Cengage Learning

Bracken, C. C. (2009). Immersed in media: telepresence in everyday life. Taylor and Francis New York.

Shone, A., and Parry, B. (2004). Successful event management: a practical handbook. New York: Cengage learning.

Organisations, Markets and Economy- General Motors

September 24, 2014

Organisations, Markets and Economy- General Motors

Student’s Name

University Affiliation

Introduction

General Motors Company (GM) is a multinational corporation, which is headquartered in Detroit, USA (Holstein 2010). The company involves itself in designing, manufacturing, marketing, and distributing vehicles as well as vehicle parts in many parts of the world. In addition, the company have diversified to offering various financial services. Currently, the company usually produces vehicles in 37 countries, in various parts of the world. It does so under its ten brands namely Buick, Chevrolet, Holden, Cadillac, Wuling, Opel, GMC, UzDaewoo, Baojun, and Jie Fang. Again, the company is divided into five main business segments. These are GM North America, GM South Korea, GM international Operations, Opel Group, and GG financial. The company has topped in global vehicle sales consecutively for 77 years, from 1931 to 2007. Taking this into consideration, the company is among the largest automakers in the world (Yang 2005). Outside the United States, the company operates through wholly owned subsidiaries in all countries except China, where it operates through 10 joint ventures.

Objectives and Purpose of the Company

Just like any other business organization, GM has its objectives as well as purpose. One of the primary objectives of the company is to increase the US market share to 33 percent. To achieve this, GM is spending a lot of money in advertising as well as incentives for the purpose of marketing its products (Holstein 2010).The other key objective of the company is to increase satisfaction of the consumers, taking into account points of market share. When it comes to the purpose of the company, GM focuses on producing products that meet the requirement of the customers.

The vision and mission of the company takes into consideration of the designing, manufacturing, and selling the best vehicles in the world. Taking this into consideration, this vision of the company usually unites all the stakeholders as team in order to realize this vision. In order to realize its vision, the company takes into account great pride in its work for the purpose of delivering exceptional vehicles (Holstein 2010).  In addition, the company usually makes a strong commitment to its customers, employees, as well as other stakeholders who are crucial to the company. With regard to this, the company has five core principles which guide its day to day activities. These principles are considering safety and quality first, creating lifelong customers, innovation, delivering long term investment value and making a positive difference.

Most Important PEST Factors

PEST analysis takes into consideration the description of a framework of external factors that affect the business (Miller, Frederic, Vandome, Agnes & Mcbrewster 2011). It entails analysis of political, economical, social as well as technological aspects. With regard to this, the main two important external factors that affect GM are economical and technological. When it comes to economical factors, it is true that the world was going through recession in 2008. Considering this, everybody including the customers and raw material suppliers was minimizing expenses, making the condition more devastating to the company. With regard to the automobile industry, GM is a major consumer of various raw materials including rubber, textile, plastic and computer chips (Davis 2009).  The consequence of the recession is that it becomes hard for consumers to keep up with their purchasing habits. This again implies that the customers have to turn away from the company to more affordable products. Again, inconsistency in exchange rates is also a challenge to the company as customers are force to look for alternatives. Economic factors are important to the company as they assist in making decisions in order to maintain its sales in case of economical crises (Davis 2009).

When it comes to technological factors, it is true that technology is crucial in the performance of any business organization. With regard to this, company should always focus on advancing in technology in order to meet the dynamic requirements of the customers. For GM, it has embraced new technology, which has seen the company move to significant heights (Davis 2009). On this, the company has employed technology of the internet in its systems. This implies that customers can now be able to place their orders online. In addition the company has used technology in reaching out to its customers through more effective and reliable distribution channels. Continuous embracement of technology will enable the company gets competitive advantage over other firms in the industry. This in turn will increase the sales as well as profitability of the company.

Impact of Porter Five Forces on the Automobile Sector

Porter five forces is a framework used in analyzing the level of competition, as well as business strategy within a given industry (Porter 2004). These forces include threat of new entrants, bargaining power of buyers, bargaining power of suppliers, threat of substitutes, and rivalry among competing firms. These forces are demonstrated in the diagram below.

When it comes to threat of new entrants, the automobile industry usually has no space for new entrants. This is because it usually needs a lot of capital in order to venture into the industry. Therefore, threat of new entrants for GM is significantly low. However, even a small entry into the industry would have the effect on the company with regards to the market share.

The bargaining power of suppliers in the industry is moderate. Having the largest share in the US market, GM has a lot of power over the suppliers. However, the company has always looked at the supplier as equal. The suppliers usually sell raw materials to various car manufactures as most of them do not rely on a single automaker (Yang 2005). Taking this into account, the bargaining power of GM is usually not as low as many people tend to think because they have some significant degree of diversification.

The bargaining power of customers with regards to automobile industry is high (Yang 2005).  There are over twenty companies in the automobile industry. Therefore, dealers usually give high discounts to customers for the purpose of attracting them. This indicates that the bargaining power of customers is usually high. The buyers have many options and therefore they can move to other car manufacturers (Applegate & Johnsen 2007).

When it comes to threat of substitute products, it is true that it is significantly high in the automobile industry. Over the past two years, the market share of GM is dropping continually.  This is because other car manufactures are producing substitutes and selling them at cheaper prices. The impact of this on the automobile industry is production of cheaper yet high quality products due to increased competition (Yang 2005).

Lastly, when it comes to rivalry among competing firms in automobile industry, it is significantly high. With regard to GM, its main competitors include Toyota, Ford, Nissan, and Chrysler. These firms are eating up the market share at the expense of GM on global aspect.  The impact of this rivalry is that automobiles firms are focusing on producing better vehicles and selling them at cheaper prices.

Conclusion

In conclusion, it is true that GM is one of the largest automaker companies in the world. The company aims at producing the best vehicles in the world.  The most important PEST factors that affect the company are economical as well as technological factors. When it comes to porter five forces, it is a fact that they have significant impacts on the automobile industry, and specifically to GM.

References

.Applegate, E., & Johnsen, A. (2007). Cases in advertising and marketing management: real situations for tomorrow’s managers. Lanham, Rowman & Littlefield.

Davis, MW (2009). General Motors : a photographic history. Charleston, S.C., Arcadia Pub.

Holstein, WJ. (2010). Why GM matters inside the race to transform an American icon. New York, Walker. http://www.contentreserve.com/TitleInfo.asp?ID={F8151C6D-FF32-4EFE-A922-D14B85ACDCDF}&Format=410

Miller, Frederic P., Vandome, Agnes F., & Mcbrewster, John. (2011). Pest Analysis. Gardners Books.

Porter, ME. (2004). Competitive strategy: techniques for analyzing industries and competitors. New York, NY [u.a.], Free Press.

Yang, X. (2005). Globalization of the automobile industry: the United States, Japan, and the People’s Republic of China. Westport, Conn, Praeger.

Rhetorical Analysis of a Visual Text

September 22, 2014

Consumers desire products that provide some good scope of meaningful experiences. It’s one thing to have a quality product and a very different and important thing in any business for the producer or the manufacturer to market the same product and win the trust of customers and satisfactorily serve them, achieving a constant health experience with the customer. In recent years, with the increase of the variety of product and consumer awareness, marketing activities have increased dramatically, too, and the role of advertisements becomes more important. Today the aim of advertisements which are used as an influence and persuasion tool in mass communication is to create the desired changes in behaviors of target market and by this way to sell the product (Amy, 2008).

For this purpose, advertisers try to use various persuasion techniques and one of them is create a rhetorical language by using the effectiveness of visualization. Before, rhetoric was considered ‘the exclusive province of verbal language where presentation of an argument was manipulated so as to be most impacting.” However, today every kind of figurative element that is realized by visual text is also accepted as a kind rhetoric and it is called as a “visual rhetoric”. “Visual rhetoric can be described as a form of communication that uses images for creating meaning or constructing an argument. Hence, an analysis of visual rhetoric considers how images work alone and collaborate with other elements to create an argument designed for moving a specific audience (Amy, 2008).

The aim of advertisement is to present the most persuasive selling message to the right prospect and so, the usage of visual rhetorical figures by advertisers for enhances the persuasive expression of advertisement is not a random situation. One of the visual rhetorical figures is using the artwork images in advertisements. Art and advertising exchange forms of expression one with the other and advertisers transfer of cultural, social and aesthetic value from the appropriated art work to the advertised product. By this way, they mask their selling purpose and they added an additional value to their product which comes from work of art. This study essay aims at exploring the meta-language of advertisement exposed through the case of visual rhetoric and it shows the analysis of two print advertisements which use the images of artworks as a visual rhetorical tool (Amy, 2008).

Mostly, usage of artwork images in visual rhetoric is put into practice. Especially the well known artwork image, such as Mona Lisa, has been used to sell almost anything, from hair-dye to alcoholic beverages. For example, Shop and Miles credit card uses the artwork images, Mona Lisa, for advertise its campaign and collaboration with Turkish Airlines (Amy, 2008). When using a artwork of images in advertising, a formal relationship between the work of art and the product can only in eight percent of the cases, in around forty two percent a semantic relationship is evident, consequently leading to the assumption that a connection or a link must be established between the content of the work of art rather than its form.

For instance, in many advertisements, there is both visual and verbal text (Amy, 2008). The portrait of Mona Lisa and plane of Turkish Airlines represent the figures and written text is used as a supporter of the semantic composition of visual items. The advertisement visuality is supported by verbal text and it creates a reference for the product which is on advertisement. Texts like, “Shop and smiles, .the original started the free flight trend, attracted considerable interest from the frequency flying people, recently, the campaign and points were attempted to be imitated (Amy, 2008).

In the last 4 years, it is inimitable with its specialty which makes you win while you are flying.” This strategy and the headline “the original” represents the uniqueness of Mona Lisa and “in art, it is the aura of ‘one original’ that makes people interested in the product or service. In this process, advertisers transfer the originality of Mona Lisa to the advertised product. In the continuous part of the text, the phrase of “attempted to be imitated” and the word of “inimitable” create a parallel relationship between the work of art and product (Amy, 2008).

The message of advertisement is clear: although there are many reproduction of Mona Lisa, there is one original and still its unique. There are many reproduction of this product, but it is also unique, too. Therefore, in this advertisement both visual power and semantic structure of Mona Lisa is supported by verbal text and all of these figures create a rhetorical expression. This strategy of using such texts end therefore attracting the customers and by the end of it earn the product b a good scope of market value for customers find it worth taking. Failing to do marketing, is like lighting a lamp and putting nit under the table, but with this kind of strategies one is sure that the candle burns and lights high above every marketing worry (Amy, 2008).

Advertisement plays the greatest role in selling an ideology to the target populace. The   language used in a visual text will therefore determine the acceptance of a product or service. Visual rhetoric and artwork are closely affiliated to the acceptance of a project by the prospective target group. Not forgetting that art and humanity share great similarities. Nearly everyone uses some bit of advertising either consciously or unconsciously. Conversations are perfect examples of promotions that require complements from the visual rhetoric and informal advertisement in the form of gestures to bring a specific point home. Awareness is the greatest goal of applying visual rhetoric (Amy, 2008).

Mona Lisa’s artwork design has seen it become a common tool of promoting awareness almost across all sectors. The reason why Mona Lisa is such a big deal in the advertising sector is because the artwork can effectively associate with different parties in different sectors. It is a strategy that creates a strong bond between the different parties across the vast field of human interactions. Advertisement is all about information dissemination. Surprisingly the most profitable adverts are not presented in wording; artwork plays the greatest role in determining the affection that consumers should develop towards the best products and efficient service delivery. Mona Lisa’s success serves as a lesson that advertising and artwork have a rich affection that must be developed cultivated both formally and informally (Amy, 2008).

Virtual texts have great leverage to the consumer populace. The eyes form the center of attraction; what an individual sees formulates the first impression back in their mind hence stimulating the person to either develop positive or negative approach towards a specific stimuli. Virtual texts are intended to aid an individual develop the positive   affiliation that an individual develops towards a specific project. Prudent entrepreneurs have for instance applied the Mona Lisa virtual design because of the compatibility of the Mona Lisa strategy. Effective communication is quite important in any sector.

Virtual texts are universal way of communication that targets everyone with visual ability. Informational texts in majority of the adverts we see in the modern day play a miniature role in comparison to the role played by the artwork fixated in these visual adverts. Awareness appears more easy and enjoyable when virtual texts are incorporated. It is therefore important to understand that virtual texts are not mere promotion designs formulated by the marketers to attract the interest of prospective clientele. Virtual texts are the building blocks that make advertisement and communication (Amy, 2008).

Reference

Amy, R. (2008). Inventing Enchantment: Rhetorical and Visual Analyses of Contemporary Picture Books, ProQuest

Analysis of Human resource function for Blue Valley Inc

September 19, 2014

Analysis of Human resource function for Blue Valley Inc

Name:

University:

Date:

Disclaimer

This paper was prepared solely for academic purpose. The researcher shall not be held liable for any shortcomings as a result of implementing the recommendations of this paper.

Table of Contents

Disclaimer. 2

Executive summary. 3

Introduction. 4

Background to the company. 4

Human resource function of Blue Valley Inc. 4

Aims and objectives of the study. 5

Problem statement 6

Significance of the study. 6

Research questions. 6

Literature. 6

Human resource functions. 7

Job enlargement as a strategy. 7

Job Enrichment as a strategy. 7

Use of flexible work Schedules. 8

Sharing of responsibilities in the Human Resource function. 8

High performance theory. 8

Methodology. 8

Research design. 9

Variables used in the study. 9

Study population. 9

Sample/Sampling procedure. 9

Instrumentation/ Statistical tools. 9

Reliability of the instruments. 10

Validity of the questionnaire. 10

Data collection. 10

Data analysis and presentation. 10

Ethical issues in the research. 11

Limitations of the research methodology. 11

Conclusion. 11

Challenges faced by Blue Valley’s HR department 11

Recommendations. 12

Strategic partnership as a solution to Blue Valley’s problem.. 12

References. 13

Executive summary

Human resource is one of an organization’s most valuable resources. It refers to the “people” part of an organization.  This according to Bratton & Gold (2009) is the only “live” part of an organization. For Blue Valley Inc, there are several functions that are assigned to the HRM department. These include recruitment of employees, determination of specific jobs to be performed by employees, remuneration of employees, employee motivation, staff development and staff evaluation among others.

The purpose of this paper is to report on the implementation of HRM strategies in the organization. The paper will start by evaluating the current implementation and make recommendations for further implementation. The paper will also report on the benefits of implementation of HRM strategies to an organization. The paper will rely on both primary and secondary data. Primary data will be derived from respondents whereas secondary data will come from literature materials.

Introduction

In the recent past, managers have been adjusting to new rules in the business world. Companies have flexible so as to absorb shocks related to dynamisms of the business environment. In order to stay ahead of rivals, companies must apply tactics like Strategic HRM to link the human resource function with a company’s overall strategy; Bratton & Gold (2009). In the past, strategies were applied for the purposes of positioning. However, nowadays the business environment has become more dynamic and strategies are supposed to keep the business moving on.  A strategy is therefore a “game plan” that is applied by a business to ensure survival in a rather vibrant market.

As a company tries to interact with its environment, it comes through several strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The company has therefore to design a good strategy to counter the effects of weaknesses and face the threats. It should also be in a position to take advantage of any strength and grab any opportunity within the shortest time. The environmental conditions experienced by firms are usually based on customer demands, accessibility of customers and a company’s products and services. A company should come up with strategies to ensure that customer needs are analyzed and satisfied. Availability of customers is another major issue that leads to formation of strategies. A firm may develop a strategy that will help it to reach a desired market share. A company’s products and services are also a major determinant of the company’s strategies. A firm is supposed to put up strategies to ensure that its products are the best in the market. When we look at all these forces that lead to formulation of strategies we can evidently see that strategies are essential tools that are meant to give a company a competitive advantage; Analoui (2007).

Background to the company

Blue Valley incorporation is a private global security firm. The firm has 2300 employees. The firm has 12 locations where it operates. It has branches in South East, North East, Middle East and Europe. The firm has registered a growing trend over the last few years. According to the interview, the firm has many entrepreneurial functions that take place within. Innovation is part of the firm. Every manager in the firm has a role to play in ensuring that the firm achieves its goals. The firm has been struggling to establish itself by offering quality oriented services as well as an employee oriented approach. The firm values its customers and always struggles to satisfy them.

Human resource function of Blue Valley Inc

In Blue Valley Inc; the human resource management is one of the major management functions.  The HRM department in Blue Valley has many goals. To begin with, it is the part of the organization that is responsible for building the workforce. The function performs many employee enhancement programs. These include employee training. This program has been designed to train employees on how to improve their performance through enhancing teamwork and co-operation. The program is usually executed by external as well as internal facilitators. Some of them are members of top level management in the company and others are outsourced from other companies. Lecture methods, group discussion and brainstorming are the main instructional methods in the program. Resources used in the training include journals with case studies from other companies, books and videos. The department requires finances to carry out these programs. These are used to pay the facilitators and to buy materials. The curriculum for the entire process is usually directed towards training employees to form groups and to make use of them. The recent career planning move of being in charge of your own career refers to a situation where employees are left with the responsibility of manning their own careers. In order for the move to work, employees need to be given proper training on all the required areas of the career. The move is likely to be taken positively by most employees as it offers them freedom to manage their career aspirations.

The other duty performed by HRM department of Blue Valley Inc is employee recruitment and retention. Employee recruitment refers to the process of advertising positions, screening applications, conducting interviews and selecting the most qualified employees to fill the positions. Employee retention on the other hand refers to the processes that are carried out after the employees have been recruited. These include job rotation. This refers to transfer of employees from one job to another. It is used by companies that intend to train their employees to take on different roles. There are several benefits that cone with job rotation. To begin with, the company can develop its employees in such a manner that they can shift seasonal jobs. This reduces redundancy and increases employee morale. The other benefit of this is the fact that it reduces time wastage as employees are fully occupied. On the side of employees, job rotation breaks the monotony of having to engage in one activity all through.

The other function related to employee retention is promotion of employees. This according to Bratton & Gold (2009) is a form of motivation that is given to employees who are found to be performing well. Those employees who portray negative performance are reprimanded. When an employee has been fast tracked, it is good that such a person is informed. This ensures that the person observes his or her actions that could lead to loss of job. Theory of carrot and stick states that an employee should be rewarded when he or she performs well. In the same way, an employee should be rebuked if he or she fails to perform. This ensures that employees are aware of their weaknesses as well as strengths

Aims and objectives of the study

A company that does not align its management functions to the overall strategy cannot achieve its goals; Analoui (2007). Long term goals of a firm include profit growth, increased investor confidence, increased customer loyalty, employee morale and harmonious relationship between all stakeholders; Reddy, Appannaiah & Sathyaprasad (2010). In this paper the researcher will evaluate the extent of alignment of the Human Resource function of Blue Valley Inc to the company’s overall mission and vision. The researcher will critically highlight on the weaknesses of the HR department. The main aim of this research is to provide information to the managers. This information will help the management to correct any mistakes in the HR department. The researcher will also suggest possible solutions that can be applied by the organization.

The specific objectives of the study will be:

  • To examine the HR department of Blue Valley Inc
  • To evaluate the effectiveness of HR department of Blue Valley Inc based on requirements of best practice.
  • To gather responses from managers and workers about their perception on the effectiveness of HR department
  • To draw conclusions about the specific case
  • To make recommendations for improvement

Problem statement

In many organizations, the human resource function is not given the relevance it deserves. As a result, many issues related to worker morale, employee conflicts and resistance are experienced; Kearns (2008). This research will aim at evaluating the level of implementation of HRM strategies in Blue Valley Inc. The researcher will give comments on the current state and provide recommendations for the future.

Significance of the study

An organization cannot exist without the human resource department; Kearns (2008). It is thus important for any business to ensure that proper HRM strategies are put in place. This enhances worker morale which in turn increases efficiency and effectiveness of a firm. This research will act as a mirror for Blue Valley Inc to focus on its HRM function. The insights derived from the research will help the company to adjust its HR department accordingly.

Research questions

The research questions for the study will be:

Q1.     Are the employees of Blue Valley Inc adequately motivated?

Q2.     Is there any significant relationship between employee motivation and company performance?

Q3.     Are there any areas that the HRM department of Blue Valley Inc needs to adjust in order to enhance effectiveness and efficiency?

Literature

Ergonomics is a scientific discipline that is concerned with understanding how human beings and other elements of the system interact with their work. It applies theoretical principles, data and methods to maximize the contributions of all elements of the systems; Analoui (2007). Ergonomics can be categorized into physical ergonomics which deals with physical characteristics of human beings, cognitive ergonomics which looks at the relationship between the intellectual capacity of human beings and their performance at work and the organizational ergonomics which looks at the overall optimization of community resources. These includes: the structures, policies and processes. Ergonomics being the study of the relationship between human beings and work is very useful in human resource management. It helps in planning, designing and evaluating tasks and jobs in order to make them compatible with needs, abilities and limitations of people. There are several strategies that can be applied in HRM.

Human resource functions

There are several HR functions performed by HRM. These include organization design, staffing, performance management, training and organization development and reward systems. There is an order in which these functions should be performed. For instance, you cannot reward an employee before staffing him or her. The first HR function to be performed is organization design; Kearns (2008). Hr department should try to understand its position in the entire firm. The second function staffing. After the function is fully established, it should look for employees and assign them to duties. Performance management and training and development can come together. Finally, the department has to design reward systems for the employees.

Job enlargement as a strategy

Kearns (2008) defines job enlargement as the process of rotating employees around various jobs. It also includes assigning some extra duties to be done during normal routine. Due to increase in the level of competition among firms, every organization is trying all it can to incur minimal costs. Having an employee to each position in a firm could mean more employees and therefore more money will be spent on employee related issues like salaries, insurance and employee development. To avoid these, the firms have started training few employees to work on various assignments. This ensures that a company minimizes the costs that are incurred to maintain the employees. This leads to reduction in the direct labor cost which implies a lower manufacturing cost per unit. This increases the competitive advantage of the firm. Enlargements also break the monotony of the employee and thus enhance effectiveness. There are several methods of job effectiveness: the first technique looks at a job enlargement as the horizontal expansion of the contents of a certain job. This means that a person’s scope of work will be increased beyond where it previously was. For example, a person who was previously instilling/fixing gear boxes in a motor vehicle assembling industry could be developed to a position where he/she can assemble the whole vehicle.

Job Enrichment as a strategy

Job enrichment on the other hand includes involving workers to managerial functions of higher ranks. This increases motivation of workers in the workplace. It also increases the propensity of the workers to achieve their goals. Due to the increase in the work of employees it is necessary to transform the employee so that they can be able to work at every level. This transformation of the employee to work at a higher level is what is referred to as job enrichment. It is the vertical expansion of a job. The worker at this level may plan his/her own working schedule and may be given powers to make decision. This approach increases the confidence of the worker and makes him or her more effective. The worker then gets more motivated to perform the job. It capitalizes on job satisfaction as a way of enhancing performance. For example, the secretary may be given approval to sign letters on behalf of the CEO without the letters having to be approved by the CEO; Kearns (2008).

Use of flexible work Schedules

Flexible work schedules are good for the performance of a firm but sometimes they are not easy to implement. Some factors like resistance held by managers in delegation of duties can sometimes limit the implementation of these flexible work schedules. This is caused by the managers holding that by delegating some duties, they may be reducing their powers. Another limitation is where some workers due to individual differences do not desire enriched or enlarged jobs. These are the kind of people who enjoy being in their “own world”. Technological limitation is the other main factor that hinders the implementation of flexible working schedules; Mondy, Noe & Gowan (2011). According to Analoui (2007) modification of jobs could sometimes lead to extra costs as far as expansion of technology is concerned. That means that expansion increases cost of operation.

Sharing of responsibilities in the Human Resource function

There are several personalities in the HR functions with different duties; Reddy, Appannaiah & Sathyaprasad (2010). According to the responses given, there is a human resource professional that is responsible for performing duties related to employee selection, planning of information systems and training of employees. There is also a line manager who is responsible for employee assistance and counseling. A line manager is usually focused on employee performance of duty. In the HR function, there are some duties which can be performed by outsourced consultants. These include duties related to remuneration, termination, transfer, promotion and training. This is done to prevent conflicts that may arise within an organization. Finally, there are some HR functions that are shared. These include job related functions like job design and succession issues.

High performance theory

The theory of high performance suggests that the emotional and intellectual connection employees have towards their work is placed at the heart of their performance. This is profound among knowledge workers in different companies Analoui (2007).  The level and extent of engagement varies with regard to human resource management. Many companies are downsizing or performing cost reduction measures to overcome modern day economic turbulence. Therefore, it is vital to understand and enhance employee relations for the effective running of organizations at reduced cost.  Managers and leadership that engage employees have become pivotal with regard to creating a favorable working atmosphere. This is crucial in balancing the cost of running an organization and addressing the issues of employees; Kearns (2008).

Methodology

This section presents the research methods that will be used by the researcher. The researcher in this study will seek to assess the human resource management strategies applied by Blue Valley Inc. The study will be in the form of a survey. A survey is a research that is limited to a specific sample; Gaur & Gaur (2009).

Research design

The research shall adopt a quantitative survey design. According to Singh (2011), this research design makes use of measurable quantities to answer the research questions. The data for the research will be collected using descriptive techniques. Descriptive research determines and reports the current situation; Gaur & Gaur (2009). This research shall seek to unveil some human behavioral characteristics. For this reason the researcher will use this method for data collection. After collection, data on patient satisfaction will be coded using Press Ganey scores. This will enable the researcher to perform a quantitative analysis of the data.

Variables used in the study

In this study, there are independent and dependent variables. According to Gaur & Gaur (2009), independent variables are those variables that are manipulated by a researcher. They are those variables that the researcher changes to observe the resultant changes in the dependent variables. The dependent variable is therefore the observed variable. In this case there are many dependent variables. These include employee motivation, output per worker and company overall performance.

Manipulation of variables will be done by holding implementation of HR strategies as a control variable. This will therefore be the independent variable. A set of questions will be posed to the employees and management before and after application of the HRM strategies.

Study population

The target population of the study shall comprise of Blue Valley employees. However, the results will be generalized to other organizations. According to Singh (2011), population refers to a set of objects that conform to a given criteria. According to Gaur & Gaur (2009), it refers to the objects for which the researcher wishes to generalize the results of the research. Target population is a set of items from which an unbiased sample is selected.

Sample/Sampling procedure

A sample is a portion of the entire population Gaur & Gaur (2009). It is a portion of a larger population that is representative of the entire population. Sampling is the process of selecting a number of items from the population. The selection is done such that the items selected will form a representative sample. According to Singh (2011), a representative sample size should be selected with the population in mind. He added that for a large population size, a sample of 2 percent is a good representation. This research shall adopt simple random sampling (SRS). This is a technique where the researcher randomized the process of sample selection to remove any biasness; Yang (2010).

Using SRS, a sample of 30 participants will be selected from the employees of Blue Valley Inc. The sample will comprise of junior employees as well as management level employees.

Instrumentation/ Statistical tools

The research will employ questionnaires and interviews as methods of data collection. According to Gaur & Gaur (2009), questionnaires are sets of questions that are used to obtain important information about a population. The questions in a questionnaire are organized in a certain manner to avoid boring the respondents and to reduce any subjectivity. Interviews on the other hand involve oral questions directed to the respondents. For this research a pre-established questionnaire will be used to enhance uniformity of questions as well as validity of responses. The research shall also apply observation methods. In this case, the researcher will observe the level of implementation of HRM strategies.

Reliability of the instruments

Gaur & Gaur (2009) defined reliability as the degree to which the values obtained by an instrument are free from measurement errors. These errors are referred to as random errors. The questionnaire will be pilot tested before the study to ensure that it was fit for purpose. The results of the pilot test will be used to make some adjustments on the questionnaire. The researcher intends to reach a reliability coefficient of 0.8.

Validity of the questionnaire

Gaur & Gaur (2009) defined validity as the extent to which an instrument measures what it has been assigned to measure. Singh (2011) noted that validity is the degree to which the sample of test items represents the contents that the test is supposed to measure. The questionnaire will be subjected to construct and content validity tests during piloting.

Data collection

To researcher will collect data for the study by manipulating the independent variable and observing the results. To begin with, the researcher will present the questionnaire with a list of questions to the respondents (employees and managers of Blue Valley Inc) before implementation of HR strategies. The researcher will then allow 30 days for implementation of the strategies. This time duration will be allowed so that the employees can get used to the system. The researcher shall then take the same questionnaires to the respondents. This time round the researcher will be intending to capture the impact of implementation.

Data analysis and presentation

A combination of both primary and secondary data will be used in the study. Primary data will be collected through administering of questionnaires to the target sample, interviews and observation. Secondary data will be obtained from textbooks, journals, magazines and the Internet. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 21 was used to analyze the data. Before analysis, the data will be coded to ease the process of data analysis. SPSS has been preferred for its speed, accuracy and availability; Singh (2011). Descriptive statistics including percentages will be used in order to summarize data. They will be mostly used in the research due to their simplicity. Considering the education levels of the population, they are the most efficient methods of analyzing the data. Gaur & Gaur (2009) defined descriptive statistics as statistical procedures used for describing and analyzing data that enable the researcher to organize data in an effective and meaningful way. Inferential statistics including chi-square test and cross tabulation will be used to test for independence. Yang (2010) defined chi-square test as test that attempts to describe independence between variables. However, the chi-square will not be emphasized in the report due to its complexity. Tables and graphs will be used for data presentation.

Ethical issues in the research

Several ethical issues will be observed in the research. According to Singh (2011), a researcher should observe ethics at all times. In this study, the researcher shall rely greatly on the respondents. Apart from secondary data from textbooks and previous research, all the other data will be provided by the respondents. The researcher shall therefore hold the respondents with due care. This ensures that all the information held within the respondents is submitted to the researchers.

The questions will be framed in a manner that is not likely to offend the respondents. The researcher will be very careful when collecting data from patients. Questions will be well framed to ensure that all information is extracted. Finally, the researcher shall assure all the respondents that the information collected will be treated with utmost confidentiality

Limitations of the research methodology

This research methodology will have several limitations. To begin with, data collection will be done in phases. The first phase will be conducted before implementation of HR strategies. The second phase will be done after implementation. The assumption of this research therefore is that there will be no employee turnover during the period. The other limitation of the methodology is the sample size. The researcher will have to do with a small sample as it will be very expensive to increase the sample.

Conclusion

Challenges faced by Blue Valley’s HR department

The HRM department of Blue Valley Inc has several challenges. These prevent it from achieving its desired results. To begin with, the department faces stiff competition for highly qualified employees. The goal of this department is to recruit the top layer of employee in the job market. However, all firms hunt for these qualified employees in the same manner. Competing with other firms becomes requires finances. The company has to give better pay to its employees compared to others.

The other challenge faced by the HRM department of Blue Valley Inc is the changing market conditions. For every business, market is an integral part. The size of a market determines the amount to be produced. This in turn determines the amount of supplies to be acquired. The size of the market also determines the number of employees to be hired. According to managers responses, sometime when market demand drops, the department is required to lay off some employees. This becomes a major challenge as the goal of the department is usually to retain the employees until they attain the required levels of experience. These market uncertainties cause a drag in the process of employee recruitment and retention.

Another challenge faced by the HRM department is changing technology. As the head of the training department, HR manager has to ensure that employees are given refresher courses on any advancement in technology. To achieve the highest level of efficiency, a company has to employ the most recent technology.  This way, the firm has to keep recruiting its employees every now and then to ensure that they are up to date with the most current technology.

Recommendations

According to this research, there are several duties that HRM department at Blue Valley, Inc should assume. To begin with, the department should maintain professional practice among the employees. Professional practice according to Jeffs (2008) refers to a practice that is guided by common rules and regulation. He pointed out that in a profession; people are trained in a uniform manner to handle similar situations. A profession has several salient features Kearns (2008). These include uniform curriculum. To train professionals, learning materials and content have to be prepared in a common place. This helps in unification of practice. If professionals are trained independently, there are going to be diverse practices in the same profession. Another feature is a common set of guiding principles. Professional practice is guided by common rules Gilmore & Williams (2009). Failure to adhere to these rules leads to excommunication of a member.

Professional development is the process through which professionals are created Mabey,   Skinner & Clark (2008). This process according to (Mondy, Noe & Gowan, 2011) takes place in educational institutions and the working environment. Professional training in colleges and universities is referred to as out-of-job training.  In a case where professionals are developed while working (on-the-job training) they are given an opportunity to test their skills on a real working environment; Mello (2010). This gives them competence as well as confidence to carry their professional duties. Before developing a professional, one is required to fully understand the concept of professional practice. Professional planning is also required to ensure that the process runs smoothly; Sadler (2008).

HRM department in Blue Valley should maintain Operational effectiveness. This ensures that the firm achieves its goals using minimum resources. Every strategy should ensure proper utilization of business resources. Whenever a firm attains its goals in this manner, the cost of production is reduced and the firm enjoys competitive advantage through offering low prices. For this reason therefore, the main objective of any strategy is to ensure attainment of competitive power; Sadler (2008). This occurs when the firm commands a larger market than its competitors. Such differences as operational efficiencies cause variations in profitability between a firm and its competitors. This arises when a firm is able to bring down the production cost to a level that is relatively lower than the competitors’. This in turn leads to low prices which further take the firm to realization of high profits for the company.

Strategic partnership as a solution to Blue Valley’s problem

Strategic partnership refers to coming together of several departments to ensure that an organization achieves its strategic mission; Sadler (2008). The strategic mission of every firm is to maximize on efficiency and effectiveness. This goal carries all other goals. When a firm s able to produce quality products at a relatively low cost, it implies that the firm can sell the finished products at relatively lower prices. This will in turn promote the firms competitive advantage. Strategic partnerships can be formed by departments within one firm or by a number of firms.

There are several strategic functions that should be performed by HRM function in Blue Valley, Inc. To begin with, the department has agitated for competitive compensation programs. These are programs of compensation where employees are compensated tactfully to enhance their productivity as well as to promote healthy competition among them. The other strategic human resource function for Blue Valley Inc is recruitment and retention of employees. As explained earlier, the motive of this strategic function is to hire the most qualified employees. The other strategic goal of strategic HRM is to promote positive employee relations. This includes creation of conducive environment for co-existence of employees. The department is responsible for harmonious co-existence between the employees. Change management should also be exercised by Blue Valley’s HR department. Whenever a change occurs in one business function, all the other functions have to adjust themselves to fit into the new form of business; Sadler (2008). Changes in businesses refer to cultural change, management change, organizational change or even product change. For example when a business changes the products that it produces, the technology requited to produce the new items may be different from the former technology. This means that the human resource function may require some restructuring to be able to produce the new products. Finally, the human resource function must me aligned to the global market strategies. This means that employees should be developed to produce goods and services that will compete favorably in the world market.

In conclusion, the Human Resource function is one of the major functions. It adds value to almost all other functions; Analoui (2007). To begin with, HR function deals with the “people” part of an organization. This is the most sensitive part of an organization. It represents the section that has feelings. The HR function is directly connected to performance. The other functions that are directly linked to the HR function are flow of information and flow of work. Basically, we can conclude that the Human Resource function is directly linked to all other functions in an organization.

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