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Strategic Human Resource Management And Training

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Employers and employees of different organisations today face significant human resource management issues. With the development of both large and small-scale businesses, there is an increase in the growth of foresight as well as ability to solve the issues that accompany it. Some of these issues include training and recruitment of employees, career planning, and management, learning and development, rewarding human resources, as well as performance management among other issues. This paper presents a detailed analysis of employees’ selection and recruitment as a human resource management issue affecting the performance of different organisations. It focuses on the analysis of the issue with Coca-Cola Company as a case study and compares the HRM practices depicted in the organisation as compared with the industrial best training and recruitment practices. It then proposes recommendations for change as well as actions that can be taken to initiate the changes.

Selection and recruitment as an HRM issue

According to Gary and Ray (2010, p. 170), recruitment and selection forms the core part of the central activities that underlines human resource management such as development, acquisition, and reward of workers. The recruitment process thus aims at affecting the type and number of individuals who apply for the vacancies as well as the likelihood that the applicants will accept the positions they have applied for if they are offered. The process objective is to refurbish the organisation with the precise kind of people who meet the criterion provided. The process of recruitment is dependent on the vacancy characteristics, applicants’ qualification, job choice, human resource policies, recruitment sources, and recruiter traits and behaviors as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1 

Once the employees have been selected through the due process, it is then the responsibility of the company to make sure that the employees fit in the industry. They do so, through teaching the employees, specific knowledge, and skills that are necessary to the particular organisation so as to improve the performance in their current roles. It is then followed by basic learning and proper orientation to make the employee familiar with major operations in the industry. Selection in an industry is not only entangled to the knowledge and technical skills but knowledge in social skills and techniques as well. Recruitment and selection processes are vital in any organisation. The key to the success of a business is hence effective recruitment (Charan, 2011). For a company to thrive, it has to abide by the best practices of recruitment and training. Best practices of recruitment process enable an organisation to select the best candidate for a post while best practices of training facilitate quick adaptation followed by higher productivity with minimal flows.

Description of Coca-Cola Company

Company’s Profile. Coca-Cola Company is an organisation that thrives in the soft drinks industry. Despite the industry being so competitive, Coca-Cola owns and markets more than 500 non-alcoholic brands, predominantly beverages such as waters, juices and juice drinks, energy and sports drinks and enhanced waters. The reach of Coca-Cola products extends beyond America to all parts of the world including Eurasia, Africa and Pacific Asia, approximately more than 200 countries. The company is widely known for its principle product Coca-Cola even though other strong brands such as Fanta and Sprite are also widely known. The growth of this company in the soft industry is undisputable. The Company's segments include Latin America, Africa and Eurasia, Europe, Asia Pacific, North America, as well as bottling investments and corporate. It owns and markets of nonalcoholic sparkling beverage brands such as Diet Coke, Coca-Cola, Sprite and Fanta (Coca-Cola 2016).
Employees’ profile. The growth of this company to those heights can be attributed partly to the human resource. The company boost to have more than 50, 000 direct employees all over the world accompanied by a countless number of indirect employees all over the world. The employees in Coca-Cola Company, commonly referred as associates by the company entails specialists in all fields including but not limited to food and beverages production, marketing, logistic, accounting and business among others. Coca-Cola Company is considered to be one of the companies with the best employees regarding qualification and technical skills. Each and every employee brings out the uniqueness of ideas and talents that enable the company to thrive. Through the employees, the company philosophy and brand are well- represented. In their study, Kumari, JyotI, and Pandey (2010, p. 445) points out that 70 out of the 120 employers interviewed said that Coca-Cola spends about 20%-30% of its expenditure on selection and recruitment. 100% of the employees also accepted that coca-cola follows effective selection and recruitment procedures.

Recruitment  and selection practices of Coca-Cola Company

Coca-Cola Company engages in the process of recruitment and training as one of its role in human resource. The company selects suitable employers through a series of activities in order to identify the best candidates.

Recruitment practices

According to Charan (2011), the selection process enables an employer to select a suitable individual to occupy a particular vacancy. Developing recruitment strategies in Coca-Cola entails involvement of line managers and recruitment specialists. Through the line managers, the company is able to determine the number of workers needed for a particular line of production. Additionally, the right skills needed shall also be established. The plan developed by the recruitment specialist include determination of where job announcements need to occur, management of the materials handled in by the candidates in combination with key competencies and qualifications needed for that particular position. A clear recruitment strategy needs to respect the wishes of the line managers while also keeping ion consideration the vision of the company. Coca-Cola Company conducts its recruitment through two methodologies, either through internal methods or external methods.

Internal recruitment. Internal methods entail seeking to hire someone already in the company for a higher-responsibility position. Recruitment can be internally conducted by transfer or promotion of the existing personnel or even referrals by staff member, friends, and families (Margaret 2011, p. 5). In Coca-Cola, the process is done through referrals and promotion and promotion programs in the organisations. It is through referral, the company questions the current employees on the best person they know. Additionally, the process is achieved through creating forums to the employees and informing them of current job openings in the company. Lastly, through e-mailing of employees about the job situation in the organisation. Referrals have been successful in Coca-Cola as it accounts about 15% of employees in Coca-Cola Company. Forums to contribute to pushing towards garnering employees. The company has established a routine of organizing monthly and annually job fairs and forums that aim at getting the right candidates for some of the positions.
External methods. External methods entail external agencies and media platforms aimed at reaching the general public. In normal circumstances, Coca-Cola job advertisements include media advertisements, e-recruiting platforms, employment agencies, executive firms and college recruitment drives. In the recent days, social media platforms and websites portals have become increasingly common in the market and Coca-Cola has been on the forefront. A lot of job Coca-Cola Job advertisements are done through social media platforms such as Facebook, twitter, and LinkedIn.

Selection process. The process of selection does vary basing on the level of the job. For instance, the process of selection for the post of a CEO is different from the process of selection of other posts such as line managers. Margaret (2011) denotes that where internal recruitment is the chosen method of filling vacancies, job openings can be advertised by job posting, that is, a strategy of placing notices on manual and electronic bulletin boards, in company newsletters and through office memoranda. However, in most circumstances, the process of selection entails collecting resumes from applicants and storing the information in the database. The process proceeds through preliminary interviews to eliminate the unqualified applications. Later on, the company conducts employment interviews which seek to identify the best candidate from the available options. During the employment interview session, formal and deep conversations take place aimed at understanding the applicants’ knowledge.

Selection practices

The process of selection for different positions in Coca-Cola takes while considering factors such as orientation, induction and training, promotional levels, refresher qualifications as well as the job training. All these selection factors are conducted by Coca-Cola to facilitate employees’ competency while improving the performance. Since the demands keep on increasing, there is a need for training of the employees. Through its commitment to proper selection and recruitment of qualified employees, the company initiated Coca-Cola University (CCU), an institution which provides a range of courses from classroom learning to field training. CCU focuses on installing the employees with the right skills for the job. The major focus is on leadership, diversity, ethics and compliance, sustainability in addition to other core competencies. Induction selection is one of the prevalent methods of the recruitment process in Coca-Cola. As part of the human resource management policy, every employee getting into the industry must undergo a thorough selection procedure that enables him to showcase his qualification in the workplace. It is at this preliminary selection, where the employee is subjected understanding their ethical practices and policy skills towards the organization. 


The need for improvement of recruitment and selection

The current practices incorporated by Coca-Cola in human resources are considered helpful in gaining the objectives of a company. However, the practices being carried have some loopholes that need improvement. If these improvements are made, then the recruitment and training processes would be effective and appropriate. The need to improve is depicted by the challenges and flaws that are detected in the organisation which occurs as a result of recruitment problems. The major problems experienced include lack of innovation in the company, overstaffing, high training of workers and imbalanced staff. However, Margaret (2011) also points out that ensuring and maintaining equity and fairness in recruitment is often difficult despite the fact that there are laws protecting individuals and vulnerable groups from discriminatory practices.

Overstaffing is an issue that occurs when one department in an organisation becomes more saturated than the other. The reason for overstaffing is due to lack of proper communication during the recruitment process on the number of workers required in a given department. Coca-Cola Company has been involved in cases involving overstaffing. In January 2015, the company was forced to entrench some of its workers in Pakistan due to overstaffing. The problem of overstaffing in Coca-Cola is attributed to the complexity of the organisation. However, measures to improve the situation can be carried out. High recruitment and selection procedure is also required for the staff portrays the skills required in the competent process of selection. When a selection process is conducted in the right way, the best candidates take the job. He/she requires little time and training to adapt to the organisation. In the event of a right selection process, the need for high levels of training would be minimized. Lack of innovation denotes poor selection methods. The employees lack the creativity capacity to initiate new ideas to the organisation. The cause of this is attributed to poor recruitment strategies such as advertisement problems as well as poor interviewing processes.

Comparison of practice with industries best practices

The company needs to align itself with the best practices of recruitment and selection. According to Kumari, JyotI, and Pandey (2010, p. 441), Coca-Cola has a slogan and motivation of being a great place of work where employees can be inspired to nature a winning network of suppliers and customers to create a mutual and enduring value. Through the applications, the organisation has ensured selection of the best candidates that perform their jobs diligently. Some of the best practices in recruitment that these companies have adopted include e-recruitments, strategic planning, and recruitment as trainers. On the other hand, the best practices adopted by these organisations concerning selection involve e- learning programs and systems, learning management systems, evaluation of selection and evolvement of the HR office given the mandate of recruitment in the organisation.

E –Recruitment is one of the emerging trends in the process of recruitment where an organisation establishes a portal system for the application. The system is designed in a way that any detail needed about the applicant shall be obtained. The information filled by a candidate shall then be filled in the database, and then the appropriate action shall follow. Once the details have been submitted, the information can be used at the time or at a later time. The process is different from the current one used in Coca-Cola where candidates send resumes to the organisation. The process of gathering information is tedious and complicated and hence the process of considering the best candidate may be compromised Kumari, JyotI, and Pandey (2010, P. 446). Another process widely used is the recruitment of trainees. Many organisations are involved in programs of management trainees that seek to identify and nurture talents in the training program. The program has been successfully initiated in Apple, where interns form a good population. Through the program, an organisation can best pick the best candidates from the trainees. Recruitment from external sources should be embraced just like the recruitment from the inside.

As depicted previously, real- time selection and recruitment is needed in Coca-Cola to eliminate irrelevance and unqualified staff. Coca-Cola University (CCU) needs to implement courses that are in line with the recent technology. Selection and recruitment needs to be conducted regularly in case there is a need to replace a staff or fill a vacant position. Any delay can increase the load of work to other employees and would call for additional payment for workers who do the extra work. Companies such as Sony and Microsoft always emphasize on the just in time selection and recruitment hence proving its necessity. In addition to that, selection and training need to be incorporated with the current technological management systems to get employees that are technologically qualified for the current market system. Through the system, the organisation can determine the general needs of the organisation in terms of training gaps. Recruitment and selection play a pivotally important role in shaping an effective performance of an organization. If the organization is not able to acquire workers with relevant knowledge, skills, and aptitude, they are not able to make accurate predictions towards their expectations (Gary & Ray 2010, P. 171)

Recommendations for improvement and change

Upon comparison with the best practices of recruitment and selection, the Coca-Cola Company needs to implement the following strategic actions

implement e-recruitment strategy

Abolish referrals and promotions which inhibit innovations

Implement fully the management selection programs

Develop a strategic plan for human resource

Establish real-time training programs

Implement a learning management database system

Initiate a program for training of selected workers and establish an evaluation plan for the trainees.


Recruitment and selection practices must ensure garnering the right people for the job while also ensuring high productivity from them. Any organisation must ensure that its practices are well suited to achieve the stated objectives. As in the case of Coca-Cola, recruitment and selection take place as a normal routine just following the right procedures. However, much is not achieved through recruitment which includes advertisements and selection. There is a need for change in its practices to reach levels that are in standards with the companies that ensure the best practices of recruitment and selection. 


List of references

Charan, T, 2011, The process of recruitment and selection in Coca-Cola India. University of Chester, United Kingdom

Coca-Cola., 2016. Reuters. Coca-Cola Co (KO) United States. Retrieved from

Gary R, & Ray F,2010, Managing and Developing People: A free sample chapter from Leading, 3rd edition

Kumari, G, JyotI, B, & Pandey, K, M, 2010, Recruitment and Selection Process: A Case Study of Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverage Pvt.Ltd, International Journal of Innovation, Management and Technology, 1 (4), 441-446

Margaret A. R. (2011) Recruitment strategies managing/effecting the recruitment process, Retrieved from

Nirmala, S, 2015, Innovative Human Resource Practices-A Study in Indian Context. International Journal of Management Research and Social Science, 2(4), pp.100-104.


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