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The Emergence of Corporate Universities

Discuss about the Impact Iof Corporate Universities.

Due to the globalization of the businesses, the corporate universities saw a massive rise in the 21st century. The main objective of the corporate university is to provide assistance to the parent organization in terms of employees and these organizations tries to focus on the skills and learning as well as knowledge of the individuals so that they are able to cope with the work culture of the parent organizations (Tuchman, 2009). There were only about 400 corporate universities in the whole world in the 1993 which has increased to 2000 in the year 2001.

This particular assignment will focus upon the impact of corporate universities on the stakeholders of the organization and what impact these universities have on the parent organization. It will also be distinguished that what are the differences that the corporate universities have in the education than that of the traditional universities.

Corporate university is a term which has been used since long time back and they are also known as the human resource engine for the organizations (Giroux, 2009). The corporate universities with the help of managing the talents, skills and knowledge of an individual provides human resource supply to the parent organization which helps the parent company to cope with the competitive environment in globally. There are many such companies which have corporate universities nowadays and they try to cope with the competitive business world with the help of their corporate universities which train talented individuals and develop their skills that are necessary for the organization.

Apple is one such organization which uses their own corporate university to nurture the talents and develop the skills of the individuals in order to cope with the market demand of the customers (Teece, 2012). Steve Jobs, a few days before he passed away, understood the importance of the corporate university and established it in order to make the Apple a more innovative company in the technology world. The corporate university which was established by Steve Jobs also holds the main culture of Apple, which is to “think different” on every aspects of the business (Guynn, 2011). The university that was established by Jobs, is believed to be the strategic empowerment of the organization and for that reason, the University of Apple not only provides courses to the individuals but also provides practical knowledge application in every aspects of the company. As Apple is a very less spender on the personal advertisement, they invest more and more in their corporate university so that the talents are developed in the way they want for the organization and are able to contribute towards the betterment of the organization and be innovative in every aspect. Located in Cupertino in California, the Apple University provides training to the candidates and individuals in a way that can help the company to attain their strategic objectives of the organization (Dormehl, 2012).

Corporate Universities and Human Resources


But it can be said that, Apple is not the only organization that have their university in the world. There are various other organizations that have their own university, for instance another smart phone brand Motorola also have their own university which nurtures the talents from all over the world so that they can be provided training and can be adapted by the business (Altbach, 2015). The training is provided with the objective that the employees are able to learn the way the organization works and able to contribute to the organization with their way of working. The Motorola Centre of Education started back in the year 1979 and they believe tin the fact that providing training to the talents is not a cost to the organization but rather an investment on the part of the organization. Motorola Centre of Education gained the status of a University in the year 1989 and the mission of Motorola University is to view the world as an improved place where money can be made (Marquardt, 2011). The main objective of the Motorola University is to offer education to the individuals and operate very different from the regular train9ing institutions. It is also an objective of Motorola to be an autonomous university with a separate board of theirs from that of the Government and it is also a fact that the university also tries to re-characterize the responsibilities of the employees.

The responsibility with which the university is formed is to help the organization link their strategy with the individuals of the university (Wang et al., 2010). The corporate university of Motorola also helps the parent organization to reduce the cost of recruitment from outside the organization. The curriculum and the courses that are taught to the candidates of the organization are also designed similar to what the employees needs to perform in the organization. The business related topics are taught to the individuals of the university and it also offers various kinds of training sessions like marketing and sales, engineering and manufacturing and thus Motorola Centre of Education helps the company to cope with the demand of the human resource without extra hiring cost.


Now apart from the corporate universities in the technological world, the fast food industry giants, McDonalds also have their own university which goes by the name of Hamburger University. There are various courses that are offer to the candidates of the McDonald’s Hamburger University and some of them include the consistency in the procedures of operations which should be maintained by the employees of McDonalds (Kincheloe, 2011). The operational procedures are also taught to the employees along with how to provide excellent services to the customers of the organization. Hamburger University students are also taught how to maintain cleanliness and hygiene along with maintenance of quality of the product. Training and development of leadership among the future McDonalds employees is the main objective of the Hamburger University. McDonalds’ university earlier chairman Fred Turner has made the foundation of the Hamburger University back in the year 1961 and in the first class; there were 15 students who graduated from the university. Each year, of about 7,500 students now graduate from the university and helps the organization to meet their objectives (Jauhari and Thomas, 2013). Hamburger University also helps to meet the human resource need of the organization by providing the organization human resource whenever they need.

Case Study: Apple University

Now while comparing the traditional university with the corporate university, it has been found that the corporate university education helps the organizations to nurture the talents and make them talented as they need but in the traditional approach, the overall education is provided to the individuals and not any industry or organization specific. There are various other differences as well as pros and cons of both forms of universities which are discussed below from the perspective of an employee:

Traditional University

Corporate University

In the traditional university it can be said that it helps to improve the performance of the individuals (Rolfe, 2013).

But, the corporate universities help to improve the individual performance as well as the performance of the organization to which it belongs.

The traditional universities do not train the individuals to be specific towards a certain job but helps individuals to train in a way that they can work in every organization in every industry.

Corporate university training is provided to the students so that the individuals are able to adapt according to the specific organization culture to which the corporate university belongs (Allen, 2013).

In the traditional universities, the teachers are the professors of various streams who provide educational knowledge to the students.

But in the corporate university the individuals are trained with the help of the managers, private or else public research centres and so on.

In the traditional universities the knowledge that id provided to the individuals are more theoretical (Ryan, 2007).

While, there are more practical illustrations to the students of the corporate university in order to make them cope with the practical business world.

Apart from the difference form that of the traditional universities; the corporate universities are in a way advantageous to the society which can be described with the points that are cited below:

The corporate universities that are the best in nature are always driven by the strategic alignment of their goals with that of the mission of the parent company (Washburn, 2011). With the help of the corporate university, the specific objectives of the business are achieved and thus it is one of the main advantages for the business that have their own corporate university.

Recruitment, engagement and retention:

With the help of the corporate universities, the organizations are able to recruit the best talents that can support the activity of their organization. The best talents are recruited by the organization as well as they are engaged in the organizational activities when their training is complete. The organization also tries to retain them due to the investment they incurred in training each employee is huge.

With the help of the training that is provided to the individuals of the corporate university, the consistency in the quality can be achieved by the organizations (Wheeler, 2012). The employees in the universities are taught that how they can be consistent in their work, more than anything else.

Apart from the advantages, there are also various disadvantages of the corporate universities:

Firstly, some organizations provide corporate training in their universities with only theoretical knowledge and for that reason, the practical knowledge of the individuals remains zero and due to that, the individuals are more casual in performing their task which can go very wrong and hamper the reputation of the organization.

Secondly, the corporate university also adds to the expenses of the organization and sometimes when the university students are not successful in playing their part in the organization, the company suffers a loss as a result (McAteer and Pino, 2011).


So, from the above analysis, it can be said that the corporate universities have various pros and cons. But definitely, the pros that the corporate university have weigh more than the cons of the university and for that reason; the corporate university can be suggested as a suited option for the human resource development option for an organization. In the recent years, the corporate universities has become one of the main sources of human resource in the organizations that have their own corporate universities and also the employees are trained well with the help of the corporate universities so they are capable of performing the operations of the organization. The employees who get theoretical training in the traditional universities face problems to cope with the operations of the organizations but the corporate universities helps to cope with the problems of the organization to the individuals trained in the corporate universities with the help of the practical knowledge they are infused with (Weinberg and Graham-Smith, 2012). The organization can also get continuous supply of employees from their corporate university which ensures that there will be no shortage of employees when the organizations need them. Also with the help of the corporate universities, the cost of the organization for the external recruitment is reduced. When the organization has to do external recruitment, the cost of the organization increases but while having a corporate university, the demand for the human resource can be met whenever the organization wants. The most important function of the corporate university is that it helps the human resource department of the company to align with the corporate mission of the company and thus helps in achieving the company objective (Clinton et al., 2009). So, it can be said that the corporate universities can be recommended as an option for the company which can help in the development of human resource and also can help to meet the objective of the company for the employees whenever the company will need.

Case Study: Hamburger University at McDonald's

Conclusion:

From the above discussion, it can be said that the businesses that have their own corporate universities are able to function better in the competitive environment of the industry and also performs better than their competitors. It is a fact that the corporate universities meet the demand for the company human resource and also diminishes the cost of the recruitment of the company and thus helps the company to achieve their objective by aligning the corporate goals with the human resource department (Gilbert, 2013).

References:

Tuchman, G., 2009. Wannabe U: Inside the corporate university. University of Chicago Press.

Giroux, H.A., 2009. Democracy’s nemesis: The rise of the corporate university. Cultural Studies↔ Critical Methodologies.

Teece, D.J., 2012. Dynamic capabilities: Routines versus entrepreneurial action. Journal of Management Studies, 49(8), pp.1395-1401.

Guynn, J., 2011. Steve Jobs virtual DNA to be fostered in Apple University. Los Angeles Times.

Dormehl, L., 2012. The Apple Revolution: Steve Jobs, the counter culture and how the crazy ones took over the world. Random House.

Altbach, P., 2015. The rise of the pseudouniversities. International Higher Education, (25).

Marquardt, M.J., 2011. Building the learning organization: Mastering the five elements for corporate learning. Hachette UK.

Wang, G.G., Li, J., Qiao, X. and Sun, J.Y., 2010. Understanding the Corporate University phenomenon: a human capital theory perspective. International Journal of Human Resources Development and Management, 10(2), pp.182-204.

Kincheloe, J.L., 2011. Mcdonald’s, Power, and Children. In Key works in critical pedagogy (pp. 155-170). SensePublishers.

Jauhari, V. and Thomas, R., 2013. Developing effective university-industry partnerships: an introduction. Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, 5(3), pp.238-243.

Rolfe, G., 2013. The university in dissent: Scholarship in the corporate university. Routledge.

Allen, M. ed., 2007. The next generation of corporate universities: Innovative approaches for developing people and expanding organizational capabilities. John Wiley & Sons.

Ryan, L., 2007. Developing a qualitative understanding of university-corporate education partnerships. Management Decision, 45(2), pp.153-160.

Washburn, J., 2011. Academic freedom and the corporate university. Academe, 97(1), p.8.

Wheeler, K., 2012. The corporate university workbook: Launching the 21st century learning organization. John Wiley & Sons.

McAteer, P. and Pino, M., 2011. The business case for creating a corporate university. VP Research Corporate University Xchange.

Weinberg, A.M. and Graham-Smith, G., 2012. Collegiality: can it survive the corporate university? 1. Social Dynamics, 38(1), pp.68-86.

Clinton, M.S., Merritt, K.L. and Murray, S.R., 2009. Using corporate universities to failitate knowledge transfer and achieve competitive advantage: An exploratory model based on media richness and type of knowledge to be transferred. International Journal of Knowledge Management (IJKM), 5(4), pp.43-59.

Gilbert, D.A., 2013. The generation of public intellectuals: Corporate universities, graduate employees and the academic labor movement. Labor Studies Journal, 38(1), pp.32-46.

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