The history of Assure Pharmaceutical Company dates back to 1957, when the company opened its first outlet at London. It gained immense popularity as it provides its customers with quality pharmaceutical as well as healthcare products and services. The company’s operating division is Assure Limited and the saga of this chain still continues to grow. Assure Pharmaceutical Company is successfully operating at more than twenty countries with over five hundred stores. In addition to this, the company has government certified papers and more than that, with its highly skilled employees, the Assure has managed to win the hearts of many people (Fullan 2014).
The report throws light on the inclusion of diversity, by taking into consideration a large sized organization Assure Pharmaceutical Company. The purpose is to design some strategies for creating and changing the conditions for work inclusion and employee participation. In addition to this, the report recommends some ways and strategies on how to implement the plans in order to introduce a better workplace, with higher productivity. Being the consultant of the company, it is important to construct some plans and strategies and implement them, so that it can help the organization to create some diversity policies in its culture.
Today, Assure Pharmaceutical Company is proudly servicing the pharmaceutical and health needs of millions of customers, which includes over 100 corporate clients, nursing homes, NGOs, reputed hospitals and others, by ensuring that they get high quality products as well as services. The company has not only managed to win the hearts of many target consumers and clients, but also it has provided its employees with a balanced professional and personal life. It has certified documents and its own patent proprietary medicines like cough syrups, ointments and others, which are mostly prescribed by doctors. However, recently the company is facing some issues regarding diversity inclusion in some of its stores, which is hampering its reputation (Sotarauta, Horlings and Liddle 2012). Being the consultation of the company, it is important to throw some light on the company’s policies and how few strategies can be implemented for the overall profitability.
Diversity and Inclusion
Workforce recruitment organizations always have to fight with issues related to diversity each day. Few organizations believe that diversity at the workplace is simply related to the required quotas for the employees’ gender or race. However, it is much more than this. Diversity and its inclusion in the organizations refers to the promotion of acceptance, teamwork and respect despite the differences in gender, age, race, political beliefs, sexual orientation, religion, native language or the communication styles among the employees. In addition to this, there are various benefits in having a diversified workforce within the organizational setting. Product and process innovation results from having diversified workforce from various backgrounds or demographics (Wilson 2014).
Assure Pharmaceutical Company highly accepts diversified workforce and promotes acceptance in its organizational policies. However, in some stores, employees are facing few issues related to their ethnicity. It is important for the human resource consultant of the company to take some steps and identify the issues of the employees. At times, when different minds work together for achieving the common organizational goals, the results could be monumental. Moreover, the companies, which practice diversity and its inclusion at the workplace, have the potential to outperform non-diverse companies by fifteen percent (Dawson-Shepherd, Kellner and Neumann 2013). Therefore, it is immensely crucial for the Assure Company to take these factors into consideration in order to give outstanding performance in the upcoming years.
Firstly, in some parts, employees of the Assure Company are not getting equal wages as per their working hours or qualifications. The women employees are receiving less salary and bonuses as compared with the men employees. In fact, it is seen that some of the women employees are more qualified and experienced than that of the men employees. In addition to this, the employees are not getting adequate leaves and have to serve overtime, without any payments. Incentives and bonuses are also not adequate for the women employees and they are not even getting maternity benefits. The human resource manager of that regional office is not taking any steps regarding such issues and the senior authorities are not even aware of these situations (Alvesson and Sveningsson 2015). Assure Company’s vision is to provide its employees with the best working environment but however, this is not getting fulfilled.
Moreover, in few branches of the company, the employees are not respecting each other due to their ethnicity. The human resource managers need to be aware of such facts and report to the senior authorities, depending on the severity of the issues. They should be aware of the several challenges which are associated with the diversity inclusion, so that it can be addressed and prevented at the early stage. Few employees hold some prejudices against the individuals who have different culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds as their own. In addition to this, the gender pay gap still exists within the organization (Olins 2017). Therefore, being the human resource consultant of the company, it is immensely crucial to take some necessary steps, in order to prevent these issues.
Designing strategies for changing the condition
In many organizations, employees have the mindset of “we have always done it in this manner”, which needs to be changed. It is important to take some strategies at this stage, in order to retain the organizational values and image. Firstly, conducting diversity trainings by adopting the Resource Based Theory will benefit the organization to a huge extent. The diversity trainings will assist the employees in understanding, respecting and accepting each other’s differences. Conflicts may arise at any point of time, where there is a lack of acceptance among the employees regarding cultural beliefs and diversity (Biech 2016). Therefore, proper training sessions must be conducted by hiring expert professionals and certified trainers, who will impart education on diversity acceptance and its importance.
Secondly, employees should keep their personal and ethnic beliefs independent of the work duties and responsibilities. Diversity in spiritual, political and cultural beliefs can pose a great challenge in the diversified workplace. Therefore, each and every individual must be instructed to keep their personal beliefs independent of the work responsibilities. However, they must be given adequate time to perform their religion practices or rituals, if any. In addition to this, few employees hold prejudices against the ones who have different cultural, religious and ethnic backgrounds as their own. To solve this, cultural sensitiveness trainings as well as diversity awareness programs must be held within the workplace in order to address these issues (Vega and Colón-Berlingeri 2016).
Thirdly, gender pay gap still exists within the organization and being the human resource consultant, it is immensely important to address this issue and take adequate steps. It is high time that employers prevent gender discrimination as well as maintain equality in terms of salary, promotions, hiring, selection and opportunities. Fourthly, disabled employees often face difficulties in navigating through their workplace due to unavailability of proper accommodations and wheelchair ramps (Syed and Ozbilgin 2015). Therefore, the Assure Company needs to ensure a comfortable and fair working environment to its disabled employees and help create a diversified workforce. Moreover, in several organizations, there are diversified age groups, that is, from teenagers to senior employees (Devarakonda and Powlay 2016). Assure Company also have to deal with such issues as some workers feel isolated from the group, due to the age gap and different social circles.
This issue can be resolved by creating an open communication culture so that it helps in bridging the communication gap within the organization. The communication and language barriers are present in every company having a diversified workforce. The human resource consultant should conduct language training sessions for the non native English speakers, in order to prevent any miscommunication (Deane 2013). In addition to this, Assure Company needs to hire bilingual or multilingual employees so that it helps in bridging the communication barriers. Increasing diversity within the workplace can benefit the Assure Company on the long run. The companies with more diversified workforce have the potential to perform forty percent above the national industrial medians.
Implementing diversity within the workplace
In order to implement diversity within the workplace, the human resource consultant of the Assure Company needs to reshuffle the existing strategies and replace them with some new ones. Firstly, it is important to establish a committee, which is one of the major steps in implementing the diversity strategies. This should include the feedbacks and opinions of the employees in each step of the entire process. This procedure includes the cross section of the employees, that is, the employees from various departments and at different levels. This is more likely to generate employee support and assist in diversity implementation. The first and foremost step is to form a committee of the employees, who will give their valuable opinions in reviewing the employee systems. This throws light on the Institutional Theory of Diversity Management (Muzio and Tomlinson 2012).
Secondly, creating an effective and efficient communication plan is immensely important as well as essential in raising awareness. It will help in communicating necessary information regarding the company’s diversity objectives and goals, by adopting the Consultant Approach. The human resource consultant of the Assure Company should identify as well as document the types, amount and timing of the information which will be shared all throughout the project. Thirdly, the consultant should review the human resource policies as well as procedures of the company and identify the barriers which exist (Metcalfe and Rees 2013). The review should essentially encompass the policies within the groups and ensure that these policies are fairly and consistently applied in all circumstances.
Fourthly, gathering employee feedback is an excellent source of information for finding out how the practices as well as policies are really applied within the organization. The human resource consultant of the company should conduct one on one interview, focus groups and anonymous employee surveys in order to understand their strengths and weaknesses, competencies and in-competencies (Winkle-Wagner and Locks 2013). In addition to this, all the information that is collected should be handled with utmost integrity and confidentiality and communicated to the senior authorities with utmost sincerity. If these factors are conducted properly, it will help in increasing employee support for this initiative (White et al. 2013).
Last but not the least; human resource practices and employment legislation benchmarks must be applied at the time of analyzing the data. Moreover, the outputs of the analysis should include the reports consisting of action plans for eliminating employment barriers, if any. In addition to this, the human resource consultant of the company should also identify the examples that exist within the organizational practices and policies which exemplify the positive contributions of implementing diversity (Bhopal and Rhamie 2014). Therefore, these factors must be kept in mind, so that Assure Company do not face any diversity issues within their work environment.
To conclude, Assure Pharmaceutical Company has an unwavering commitment to diversity and inclusion. The commitment however, starts from the top, with the Chief Executive Officer of the company and the board of directors as well. They expect the organizational leaders at all levels to assist in creating as well as sustain an environment, inclusive of diversity. Their aim is to be most inclusive as well as diversified organization in the world. They embrace diversity as a powerful source of creativity, competitive advantage and innovation. However, recently the company is facing some issues related to diversity at some of its branches, which needs to be taken care as soon as possible.
Diversity and inclusion must be the fundamentals to the core and cultural values at Assure Company. The human resource consultant of the organization should keep a track and check that nobody is discriminated because of their differences in terms of age, ethnicity, disability, expression, sexual orientation and religion. In addition to this, the company should also check that the business practices uphold the diversity principles, equality and inclusion. The employees must be encouraged and motivated on a regular basis in order to accept various backgrounds and diversified workforce within the workplace
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