Case Study – Flyhigh plc Flyhigh plc is a small low cost ‘budget’ airline, operating from their headquarters in the UK and serving several European and Asian destinations. They operate from a selection of second tier airports in and around London and the Midlands including Gatwick, Luton and East Midlands. These are selected because of their lower charges and easy availability of take-off and landing slots. Due to fierce competition in the airline industry from airlines such as Ryanair, Easyjet and Flybe, there has been a shortage within the industry of pilots and other aircrew leading to difficulties in staffing. This has impacted on Fhyhigh particularly badly and restricted the growth plans of the company. In some cases this has led to flights being cancelled at short notice due to illness which seems to have become a growing problem for Flyhigh, damaging their reputation and causing frustration amongst staff. This has necessitated the use of agency staff on occasion. The Managing Director of Flyhigh is Muhammad Saleem who also owns 51% of the shares. He is a well known businessman and entrepreneur with various business interests, having made his sizeable fortune in financial investment. He started the company back in 2007 having identified a need for a well run, budget airline to serve the needs of business people, but has since expanded the operation to include holiday travel to a small selection of popular tourist destinations predominantly on the Asian subcontinent. He has bold expansion plans and has a reputation as a shrewd individual, taking swift action where he believes there to be any underperformance or laziness. Managing people is not his strength unfortunately, and consequently he has had a high turnover of staff, especially in his senior management team. Robert Walker, their newly appointed Head of HR, has been recruited from arch rival Ryanair to help address the problems. He is faced with a formidable task, especially since he is aware that Flyhigh has a poor reputation for managing its people, and has already experienced first hand low morale and problems with workforce planning. He knows he has a short time to identify the key issues and to come up with some solutions before he becomes the next one to be fired. He has particular concerns about their recruitment & selection processes, as there have been two recent tribunal cases where substantial damages were paid out due to discrimination and other irregularities. He also hopes to build in some contingency into the staffing model, so that staff can be re-deployed into different roles when shortages occur. The airline has a flat structure with most key decisions being made by Muhammad himself. The aircrew are viewed as somewhat elite by the other employees, a view reinforced by internal communication driven from the top. It is semi-unionised with many aircrew being members of UNITE whereas pilots are largely represented by BALPA. Both these organisations have had industrial disputes with Flyhigh in the past although recently relations have been improving. There is no formalised wage structure and any rises have been made on an ‘ad-hoc’ basis either because there was a perceived need to reward loyalty or to prevent someone from leaving. There have been accusations of favouritism by some disgruntled employees towards Muhammad’s inner circle, mainly family members who hold several top positions in the company as well owning as the majority of the remaining company shares. Support staff tend to get blamed if things go wrong and there is a ‘them and us’ culture. Muhammad hopes to sell his shares on the open market in the next few years as another of his business ventures is in need of an injection of capital, and he sees a need to make his shares attractive to potential investors. Task 1 a. Adopting the role of the newly appointed Head of HR, prepare an informal memo of 1000 words for internal staff only that presents the need for change on THREE key HR issues of your choosing. Balance your discussions with content designed to overcome any resistance to change and to keep employees on your side. 45 marks b. Following some research, design a one page job advertisement for a new junior cabin crew member that is compliant with current legislation. Include any other elements that you see fit in order to present the job accurately and in an attractive manner without misrepresenting the vacancy. - 20 marks Task 2 Adopting the role of the Managing Director Muhammad Saleem, design a 10 minute PowerPoint presentation intended for your shareholders to convince them of your plans to change the management of HR in Flyhigh. You will centre on improved organisational efficiency achieved through leading HR management, and the benefits that the changes will bring to the company and its profitability. You will need to convince them that their share investment and future dividends are safe, whilst preparing them for some possible difficult decisions along the way. Many shareholders will be highly knowledgeable so you will need to include key phrases, and you should assume they have a reasonable understanding of HR principles. - 35 marks N.B. It is suggested that no more than 6 slides be used. The content is more important than the presentation itself, although it should be clear and legible.