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Background of the Company

Discuss about the Human Resource Strategy of Woolworths.

The purpose of this study is to discuss the importance of human resource strategy in organizations. The paper mainly discusses the human resource strategy of one of the biggest retail company of Australia; Woolworths limited (Woolworths Supermarket 2016). The paper sheds light on the human resource practices by the company and in order to give a detail description the human resource management of the company, the paper critically analyzes the human resource practices of the company including selection, recruitment and retention of the employees (Kehoe and Wright 2013). Along with that, it also describes the development strategy for the workforce as well as their performance. While analyzing the human resource strategy of the company, some issues and challenges were found, which need immediate attention from the human resource management of the company. Possible suggestive measures were given so that the human resource management department of the organization can address the issues take adequate steps to eliminate them. The recommendations given by the report help the company not only in addressing the issue but also will help in further improvement of the human resource strategy of the company.

Woolworth is one of the leading organizations in the sphere of retail market in the industry. The company serves products that are of high quality but at a reasonable price. Founded in the year of 1924 the company presently secured its position as the second largest company in Australia (Bratton and Gold 2017). Headquartered in the Bella Vista of New South Sales, Woolworth had expanded in New Zealand also. The company is also the retailer of liquor in the company. The company opened its first retail store in the imperial Arcade of Sydney. Woolworth limited is the first retail store in Australia, where customers could get products of good quality at a very reasonable price. The company is presently marked as the largest chain of supermarket in the country (De Waal 2013). The largest company in the sphere of retail industry, Woolworths Limited was established by the Percy Christmas, Stanley Chatterton, George Creed, Ernest Williams and Cecil Scott Waine

Human resource strategy plays a crucial role in any organization. Business analysts consider human resource management strategy as an integral part of business strategy. The responsibility of human resource management includes recruitment of the employees, securing the benefits of the employees and the effective performance of the workforce (Kehoe and Wright 2013). Thus it can be said that human resource management demands most efficient personnel who will fulfill all these purpose leading the company towards further growth of the company. Human resource managers mainly assure the workforce of the company is productive as well as thriving. The department organizes the employees so that they can be effective for the company (Bamberger, Meshoulam and Biron 2014). Human resource management considers employees as human assets rather than cost to the company.

Role of Human Resource Management in Organizations

In a company, the human resource management develops strategies and suggests the management of the company regarding the strategy to manage the workforce of company in strategic manner (Bratton and Gold 2017). Beside selecting and recruiting the right candidate in the company, it also develops the strategy train the employees so that they can get the opportunity improve their efficiency (Bamberger, Meshoulam and Biron 2014). Thus it can be said that human resource manager is more than an employee rather they can be termed as the consultants. The human resource managers keep a look on the overall employee structure and address issues and challenges that the employee face during the course of working in the company (Hendry 2012). While highlighting the issues related to the workforce, they also give suggestive measures in order to eliminate the issues. The other managerial departments and the human resource management work together in order to set the skills and eligibility while creating post description of the recruiting employees.

More than over 90 years, Woolworths limited has been adopting different human resource strategies in order to improve the effectiveness of the employees. The company does not follow the long-term process of the human resource along with flexibility of changes in terms of directions (Mortimer and Ingersoll 2015). Rather it believes in the outsourcing of human resource management in the company (Mathis et al. 2016). The company follows a business process, where an external agency or supplier fulfils the need of a human resource manager by providing the service of the human resource management department (Mortimer and Ingersoll 2015). The service it outsources includes payroll administration and recruitment of the right candidate.

The practitioners and the line mangers operate three major levels together as well as separately. The three levels are Functional level, operational level and the strategic level (Bailey et al. 2015). The practitioners along with the line mangers set plan in order to meet the current need of workforce (Cascio 2018). The practitioners in the strategic level involve in the business planning and the human resource practices. Whereas the line managers are responsible to carry out the different activities in the level of function (Purce 2014). This assures that the company is recruiting they right candidates at the right time, at the right remuneration. Woolworths limited operates its functions of human resource in the level of functional and strategic. The reason behind this is that the practitioners are liable to be involved in the in the business planning and in the human resource planning (Nankervis et al.2013). At the same time, the line mangers in the company line managers are responsible to carry out the different activities in the level of function.

Human Resource Strategy in Woolworths Limited

The human resource of the company operates mainly the four areas that hold significant importance. The areas in which the company operates are the learning, corporate, development and the business operation (Derous and De 2016). The report critically focuses on the human resource strategy of the company in relation with its business operation.

In the corporate level, the human resource management of the company is responsible for the benefits of the employees in terms money and other aspects. Other than, the remuneration and benefits, the human resource management of the Woolworths limited maintains it relation with other retail stores in terms of business (Derous and De Fruy 2016). Along with these responsibilities, the human resource department in the company looks after the overall dev elopement of the management. In the business level, the human resource management communicates with the other management departments in view of increasing the efficiency and the effectiveness of the work force. In this way, the human resource management maintains a bond among the all departments of management (Hendry 2012). On the whole, the human resource management in the company acts as an integral part. The major responsibility of the human resource management of the company is to maintain the quality of the employees along with the strategic plans regarding the employee retention in the company.

In order to retain its position intact in the market, the human resource management has taken different measures. Previously, the company followed traditional process of employee management but it changes with time (Newton Becker and Bell 2014). Along with the advancement in the sphere of retail industry, the company also adopted different human resource strategies so that it can move for the further growth of its business. In terms of employee retention, the company has taken such measures that made it most desirable place to work for the employees. The company is one of the most renowned retail stores in the country. In order to retain its employees to work with it, the company mainly emphasizes on the 6 major practices. The practices are performed in view implementing them with the extensive use of technology. The practices are mentioned below in order to give a clear understanding of the company’s employee retention strategy (Shields et al. 2015).

  • The human resource management of the company tries to recruit right candidate at the first place.
  • In order to manage the employees Woolworths gives continuous effort in the assessing the line mangers and hence improves them further.
  • As a part of it human resource strategy, the company tries to motivate its employees as well empowers them so that they can make an effort for their own career growth, which in turn has a significant positive impact towards the growth of the company.
  • The human resource management of the company emphasizes the talent if its employees. It recruits best talent in the industry and drives the mobility of talent among the all employees. This increases the productivity by enhancing motivations of the employees.
  • The company prefers continuous analysis of the human resource management, so that it can improve the strategies while improving the strategy of retention within the company. They analyze and improve in different areas for the purpose retaining efficient as well as effective employees.

It is true that the company has really has taken some effective measures to increase the effectiveness and the efficiency among the employees. However, there are some issues which need immediate attention. The company has taken different coast cutting measures in order introduce more effectiveness in the company. However, this measure has failed to ensure transparent management (Bailey et al. 2015). As a result, many incidents occurred where employees claimed to have been paid less than their actual salary. In some cases, some incidents even provoked the employees in calling for a strike. These issues caused major outcry of employee in the company (Mortimer and Ingersoll 2015). As a result, the reputation of the company was grossly affected by these issues.

Issues and Challenges Faced by Woolworths Limited

After analyzing the human resource management of the company, some suggestive measures are given below as recommendation. These recommendations will help the company not only in addressing the issue but also will help in further improvement.

  • The strategies of employee engagement need to be enhanced so that the company can make its employees feel valued at work.
  • The company needs to modify the remuneration structure along with other benefits keeping the employee retention in mind (Shields et al. 2015).
  • As these kinds of protests and strikes by the employees grossly hampers the brand image of the company, a policy should be introduced within the company through which the employees will be able to communicate with the higher authority to resolve the issues by discussion before going for a strike (Newton Becker and Bell 2014).

Conclusion

To conclude, it will be very apt to state that the human resource strategy plays an integral role in any organization. Business analysts consider human resource management strategy as an integral part of business strategy. The responsibility of human resource management includes recruitment of the employees, securing the benefits of the employees and the effective performance of the workforce. The purpose of this study is to discuss the importance of human resource strategy in organizations. The paper mainly discusses the human resource strategy of one of the biggest retail company of Australia, Woolworths limited. The study shed light on the human resource practices by the company and in order to give a detail description the human resource management of the company, the paper critically analyzed the human resource practices of the company including selection, recruitment and retention of the employees. Along with that, it also described the development strategy for the workforce as well as their performance. While analyzing the human resource strategy of the company, some issues and challenges were found, which need immediate attention from the human resource management of the company. Possible suggestive measures were also given so that the human resource management department of the organization can address the issues take adequate steps to eliminate them. The recommendations given by the report help the company not only in addressing the issue but also will help in further improvement of the human resource strategy of the company.

References

Bailey, J., Price, R., Pyman, A. and Parker, J., 2015. Union power in retail: Contrasting cases in Australia and New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Employment Relations (Online), 40(1), p.1.

Bamberger, P.A., Meshoulam, I. and Biron, M., 2014. Human resource strategy: Formulation, implementation, and impact. Routledge.

Bratton, J. and Gold, J., 2017. Human resource management: theory and practice. Palgrave.

Cascio, W., 2018. Managing human resources. McGraw-Hill Education.

De Waal, A., 2013. Strategic Performance Management: A managerial and behavioral approach. Palgrave Macmillan.

Derous, E. and De Fruyt, F., 2016. Developments in Recruitment and Selection Research. International Journal of Selection and Assessment,24(1), pp.1-3.

Hendry, C., 2012. Human resource management. Routledge.

Kehoe, R.R. and Wright, P.M., 2013. The impact of high-performance human resource practices on employees’ attitudes and behaviors. Journal of management, 39(2), pp.366-391.

Manning, N., Watkins, J. and Degnarain, N., 2012. Does the public sector HRM system strengthen staff performance?.

Mathis, R.L., Jackson, J.H., Valentine, S.R. and Meglich, P., 2016. Human resource management. Nelson Education.

Mortimer, D. and Ingersoll, L., 2015. The impact of deregulation on employment relations in the Australian retail industry. Employment Relations Record, 15(2), p.43.

Nankervis, A.R., Baird, M., Coffey, J. and Shields, J., 2013. Human resource management: strategy and practice.

Newton, C., Becker, K. and Bell, S., 2014. Learning and development opportunities as a tool for the retention of volunteers: a motivational perspective. Human Resource Management Journal, 24(4), pp.514-530.

Purce, J., 2014. The impact of corporate strategy on human resource management. New Perspectives on Human Resource Management (Routledge Revivals), 67.

Shields, J., Brown, M., Kaine, S., Dolle-Samuel, C., North-Samardzic, A., McLean, P., Johns, R., Robinson, J., O'Leary, P. and Plimmer, G., 2015.Managing Employee Performance & Reward: Concepts, Practices, Strategies. Cambridge University Press.

Woolworths Supermarket - Buy Groceries Online 2016, Woolworths Online. Viewed 28 April 2018, https://www.woolworths.com.au/.

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