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UHRM3009 Understanding Human Resource Management

tag 0 Download 6 Pages / 1,324 Words tag 02-07-2021


With more than 120 years of heritage, Marks & Spencer is one of the best-known British retailers.

Marks and Spencer went through structural changes. This is because the power culture used by the company was not matching with its new objectives. Due to the several management levels involved in the decision-making process, the structure was not the swiftest way to react to competitors. On the other hand, it hampers the innovation as only selected people can take part of the decisions.

As a result, the company has had to make adjustments. Now employees throughout the business have more responsibility. This enables them to make quick decisions when required. At the same time, these employees have more accountability than before. This means that they must be prepared to explain and justify the decisions that they take. Many employees have bigger jobs. There are higher expectations that staff can contribute more to the organisation. Marks & Spencer needs to keep its staff well-trained and able to respond to the business needs.

Marks and Spencer is committed to direct employee engagement and participation through democratically elected Business Involvement Groups and Works Councils.

At the end of every 6 months a performance review or appraisal takes place. Employees discuss their progress with their line managers. Employees are given ratings for the skills and competencies they have shown over the past year. These are compared with expected skills profiles for these areas. This feedback helps employees identify how they are performing in relation to the expected technical skills and business competencies and reveals any gaps.

All staff have a personal development plan in which they set objectives based on the feedback from their performance review. This helps them to construct a realistic and focused career path. They use training and development to improve the technical skills and business competencies they need in order to undertake particular management roles.

  1. What is the organisational structure of Marks and Spencer (e.g. flat or tall) and why has it adopted this structure?
  2. Using Charles Handy model, Explain the corporate culture at M&S.
  3. Which ONE of the three management styles does M&S have and how does it influence itsmanagement activities? 
    • Autocratic
    • Laissez Faire
    • Democratic
  1. Explain these two HRM functions and relate to M & S.
  • Performance Management
  • Training and Development
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