Unit 21 HRM Planning Assignment

Unit 21 HRM Planning Assignment

Unit 21 HRM Planning Assignment


It is a well-known fact that behind a product or service production there involves a human brain, efforts and man-hour. A company is in constant search of employees who are talented, skilled and qualified for evolving the technology used at work for bringing out the end product or service.

HRM planning assignment

According to (Armstrong, 2006) Human Resource Management is defined as a strategic and coherent approach to the management of an organisation’s most valued assets – the people working there who individually and collectively contribute to the achievement of its objectives. Storey (1998) believes that HRM can be regarded as a set of interrelated policies with an ideological and philosophical underpinning. He suggested four aspects that constitute the meaningful of HRM such as a particular constellation of beliefs and assumption; a strategic trust informing decision about people management; the central involvement of line manager and reliance upon a set of ‘levers’ to shape the employment relationship.(Armstrong, 2006)

Task 1

1.1 Differentiate between personnel management and human resource management giving examples in two suitable organisation

According to Peter Drucker, Human Resource Management is the process maintained in an organization that oversees activities related to people management covering both soft and hard aspects of human resource management. These include functions of recruitment, retention, termination or retirement, training, payment management, performance management and change management along with maintaining relationship between employee and management. Thus HRM is focused on resource management to achieve outcomes of an organisation planning.

Whereas, Personnel management is the process that is focused on acquiring, utilising and supporting satisfied manpower within an organisation so that organisational, individual and societal objectives are fulfilled. (Wilton, 2016)

In this segment difference between HRM and personnel management will be outlined with the help of two examples i.e. McDonald’s and Eat Balanced. McDonald’s is a global leader in fast food industry with stores, restaurants across the world whereas Eat Balanced is a small pizza making company in Scotland, UK which provides nutritionally balanced recipes. McDonald’s manages its operations globally by dedicated Human Resource management approach whereas Eat Balanced being a small team functions with Personnel Management approach. McDonalds is the largest chain of fast food which was founded in the USA. Through franchisee, corporation of itself and affiliation the organisation McDonalds operates all around the globe. As the organisation has been operating over 68 million customers each day it requires proper management of the human resources to provide efficient services. Eat Balanced operates through consultancy with a small team. In this regard they perform personnel management along with simple core values.
Difference between Personnel and Human Resource Management according to Storey’s (1992) 27 point of difference


PM/IR East Balanced

HRM McDonald’s


Personnel management aims to work on written agreement details. Example, at Eat Balanced employees can expect every single detail followed which is in written contract.(Savaneviciene and Stankeviciute, 2013)

Human Resource management works beyond defined contract. It works for people management. Example, McDonald’s work out of way beyond contract to support its employees and their development.


Personnel management stresses on importance of clear rules.

Human resource management works on can do approach and does not stress much on rules.

Guide to management Action

Focuses on procedures. Example, Eat Balanced emphasise more on maintaining a structured procedure.

Focuses on meting business needs. Example, McDonald’s focus on dealing with change management to meet business needs. (Savaneviciene and Stankeviciute, 2013)

Behaviour Referent

Focus on norms

Focus on business mission and vision

Managerial task vis-a-vis labour

Focus on monitoring employees. Example, Eat Balanced being start-up company focus on monitoring their employees to fulfil their business objectives.

Focus is on developing and nurturing employees. McDonald’s focus on developing their talent base to fulfil individual and business objectives.

Nature of relation

Focus on pluralist approach

Focus on Unitarist approach




Key relation

Focus on relation with labour and their management

Focus on management of customer


Unsystematic measures that is periodical and changes with time

Initiatives are integrated

Corporate Plan

Decisions of corporate plan are centralised. Example, at Eat Balanced core decisions are taken by founder management. (Savaneviciene and Stankeviciute, 2013)

Decisions are taken by participation of employees. Example, at McDonald’s employee is empowered to participate in decision making.

Speed of decision



Management role

Line managers follow transactional role

Line managers focus on transformational leadership to create change

Key managers

Personnel/IR specialist

General line managers/Business development executive


Allows indirect communication between founders and employees.

Allows direct communication between top management and employees




Management skills




Separate, marginal task

Selection is integrated


Linked to roles and responsibilities

Linked to performance


Based on negotiation

Based on Harmonization

Labour management

Focus on collective bargaining

Focus on individual contract

Employee relation

Regularised with training and rewards


Work delegation



Flow of communication



Job design

Divided on labour

Depends on teamwork

Conflict management



Training and development


Strong focus on continuous learning

Approach and focus

Based on personnel procedures

Based on cultural, structural and personnel procedures

1.2Assess how human resource management functions help your chosen organisation in achieving is purpose

The human resource management functions at McDonald’s help them in controlling various operational activities to achieve organisational objectives related to quality of services, customer management and management of various activities of marketing, accounting, procurement etc. The usefulness of HRM functions in achieving these is assessed as:

  • Recruitment and selection: McDonald’s maintains competent talented resources because it has strong recruitment and selection process where initially careful assessment is made to identify skill both internally and externally. After this a match is made based on specialised requirement of job position with available manpower inventory. This helps to align and select best fit to required role which are then developed further to suit the organisational needs. As this function is maintained with greater emphasis so McDonald’s is able to provide excellence of quality service to customers as well as maintain its operational functions smoothly.(Storey, 2014)
  • Payroll administration: McDonald’s maintain an effective administration procedure where depending on job design and structure, the benefits and compensation of employee are outlined. Also, other administrative functions like tax management, entitled leaves, bonus are maintained which helps to provide effective management of human resources and meeting their expectations to keep them satisfied.
  • Employee motivation: this function includes providing motivation to employees to keep them enthusiastic and committed to contribute to changing needs of market conditions and customer preferences. At McDonald’s careful measures are taken for employee motivation such as providing appraisal, achievement letters, personalised mementos, incentives, gift schemes which helps to maintain productiveness as well as satisfaction of employees. (Storey, 2014)
  • Reward Management: this function of HRM increases employee engagement and commitment to work role. McDonald’s appreciates and values their employee’s contribution by various performance related rewards such as incentives, bonus, higher responsibilities, promotions, salary hikes which maintains growth of employees as well as their involvement in work.
  • Employee termination: at McDonald’s proper termination and resignation process is maintained to avoid conflict and employee discrimination practices. In addition, feedbacks are collected and documented from employees who resign so that reasons for exit can be identified. This helps to maintain fair treatment of employees and norms or policies of exit from company.
  • Training and development: at McDonald’s consistent focus is made on developing resources through skill training to fit the changing industry needs and maintain competency levels. This makes employees job ready and cope with change management like change in technology, customer trends and so on.
  • Performance management: at McDonald’s performance of employees is reviewed against standardised parameters where their current level of outcomes is measured against perceived outcomes in terms of volume, quality and accuracy. This process includes planning, monitoring and analysing performance by using techniques such as 360-degree feedback, observation, peer reviews etc. Those who have high performance levels are appreciated with rewards while those who lack are given training and coaching for improvement. (Storey, 2014)
  • Employee relation: at McDonald’s there is no cross functional borders so that employees can freely participate in idea sharing and discussion. This helps to maintain strong relation between management and employees, participation and involvement in decision making and change management. Thus as employees are made to feel valued in McDonald’s they work willingly to support integrative culture and creative structure.

1.3. Evaluate the role and responsibilities of line managers in your chosen organisation and how it supports human resource management functions

Line managers are those who supervise employees or teams working under them who directly report them back. These line managers in turn report to top level management on the progress of work, performance and expected outcomes achieved by individual teams. Thus line managers have various responsibilities and they get involved into various human resource management functions. (Alfes, Truss, Soane, Rees and Gatenby, 2013) These are discussed below:

  • Delegation and task management: at McDonald’s the line managers are responsible to plan allocation of task, organise coordination and work process to maintain smooth delivery of objectives and roles. They are even responsible to check quality and identify loopholes in process so that they can be timely resolved to attain regular work management.
  • People Management: line managers in McDonald’s are also accountable to manage their teams and individuals so that they can understand their job role, process and deliver expected outcomes that are time bound and accurate. Also, in case of crisis or emergencies, line managers are responsible to supply additional manpower who can manage situations. Along with these line managers are responsible to build manpower management by conflict management and employee relationship.
  • Providing mentoring: as line managers have sound knowledge of roles and process needed to deliver fulfilled objectives so they provide technical expertise and assistance whenever required to support team activities. If an employee has special skill need then line managers are responsible to arrange for skill development program. (Alfes, Truss, Soane, Rees and Gatenby, 2013)
  • Resource Utilization: line managers of McDonald’s are responsible to utilise available manpower inventory and talent resource to achieve organisational objectives and maintain smooth delivery of functions.  They use each and every resource’s work potential to obtain best outcomes thus maintaining optimisation of talent management. 
  • Performance management: line managers measure operational efficiency of their team to monitor performance against defined standards of work quality and accuracy. They measure gap between achieved performance and expected levels to identify reasons of shortcoming in team. This is then fixed through skill enrichment or training which helps to support growth of employees and provide them better opportunities or rewards for better performances.

Thus line managers are important to maintain human resource functions to deliver better policies and practices effectively, to provide assistance for better human resource planning and to maintain controlled flow of work responsibilities.  If line managers are not favourable to HR practices, then it would be difficult to maintain smooth flow of activities and implementation of policies because line managers are responsible for actuation.  (Alfes, Truss, Soane, Rees and Gatenby, 2013)

1.4. Analyse how legal and regulatory framework impact on human resource management

Legal and regulatory frameworks are maintained within organization to facilitate employee empowerment by maintaining laws that govern relation between employees and employer and also safeguarding their interest, welfare and rights in workplace. (Bratton and Gold, 2012) Some of the legal frameworks and their impact are discussed below: 

  • Equal Pay ACT 1970: it states that at McDonald’s equality is maintained at work irrespective of gender which means that men and women would receive equal pay for equal amount of work or nature of work. They would also receive same value for job rank irrespective of gender.
  • Sex Discrimination ACT 1975: it states that McDonald’s maintain anti-discrimination policies and regulatory norms to protect employee’s interest irrespective of gender in practices such as job announcements, recruitment, growth opportunities and training.    (Bratton and Gold, 2012)
  • Race relation ACT 1976: it states that McDonald’s maintain policies that offer job opportunities, growth and development irrespective of the race or nationality of employees. Thus any discrimination practised on ground of race is illegal.
  • Disability Discrimination ACT 1995: it states that McDonald’s need to provide equality of opportunities in treating disabled employable mass at work. Thus they have to treat them as equal to any normal person and would have to provide access to safeguard their rights in transport, higher education, work promotion etc.
  • The National Minimum Wage ACT 1998: it states that McDonald’s have to adhere to the Minimum Wage that is maintained and changed every year subjective to maintain rise in living costs. Thus compensation and salaries are entitled for revision based on these amendments depending on role of work and skill required. 
  • Working time Directive ACT 1999: it states that every employee working in McDonald’s is entitled to work a maximum for 48 hours per week with a four week holiday. Also it maintains that employees can choose to work for longer time on their own willingness irrespective of any employer pressure and for that they are entitled to receive additional pays. 
  • Health and Safety ACT: it states that McDonald’s is liable to provide safe and hygienic working condition and environment for its employees. It also states that employees should not endanger their own life or co-worker’s life in situation of hazards or dangers.   (Bratton and Gold, 2012)
  • Work and families act 2006: this act has been helping the employees to balance their lives and families with the working lives. Through the help of this act the employees can have maternity leaves and payments. The act also defines new rights for taking leaves over parenting leaves, flexible working times etc.
  • Data protection act 1998: this act defines that the data of the employees should be protected by the organisation. Through the help of this act the employees also get secured access to their own data. This places security over keeping, gathering and storing the information of the employees.
  • Employment equality act: this act prevents any actions of discriminations in the employment processes by placing equality within the employment practices. This act ensures that any forms discrimination in terms of race, nationality, gender, age etc are not being performed while recruiting or selecting any employee or preferences are being made in the employment process.

Thus these laws and norms help employees in McDonald’s to contribute effectively to their work under safe and healthy working conditions and practices that allows flexibility, anti-discrimination and job security making them valuable for organisation and its objectives.

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Task 3

3.1. Asses the link between motivational theory and reward at Virgin Media or your chosen organisation.

Motivation is a term that is derived from the word motive which might be described as a human minds inner state that mobilizes and directs ones behaviour eventually making to act in a certain way. Motivation is basically internal and is mostly conveyed in the form of human behaviour and can be said as one’s readiness in exerting efforts towards attaining his/her goal. (Pearsall, Christian and Ellis, 2010)

According to Fred Luthans, ‘Motivation is a process that starts with a physiological or psychological deficiency or need that activates behaviour or a drive that is aimed at a goal or incentive’

Motivation theory is basically a concept describing the stimulation of certain human behaviours that are goal-oriented and are further assigned with devising the factors driving a person to work for achieving an outcome. An organization is interested in motivational theory because employees who are motivated are more productive eventually leading to more commercial use of resources.(Pearsall, Christian and Ellis, 2010)

Reward is something that is been given to employees of an organisation for acknowledging their contributions at work and further make contributions in the implementation of strategies by giving shape to an employee’s behaviour within the organisation. Furthermore, reward is a pay-off for performance and isprecisely concerned with motivation level and job satisfaction.

Employees being a human crave for been rewarded and encouraged for their contribution in driving an organisation towards success. The link between motivation and reward has been investigated by a number of researchers and amid all, the most famous is Maslow's hierarchy of needs developed by Abraham Maslow which has enabled the management of Virgin Media in having a clear understanding the types of rewards employees must be provided with for meeting the needs mentioned in the pyramid.  It has been observed that Virgin makes use of both positive and negative reinforcement for employee motivation. The managers consider that by using positive approaches of motivation acts as an encouragement for the employees in producing more and improved quality of work. At Virgin Media, the HR department selects the outstanding performing employee as ‘Employee of the Week’ and offers him/her with a smiley. This technique applied not just recognises the employees’ contributions but also undoubtedly encourages the co-workers to try and win the smiley. However, there are also times when the managers have to impose negative reinforcement motivation form stopping the employees from acquiring a bad behaviour at workplace. At this time, the manager issues a written-warning for getting them to perform in a certain way. At Virgin, employees are being rewarded with both tangible goods and recognition. Take for example, the sale department employees are usually offered a monthly bonus to the ones who excel in meeting the giving targets. (Pearsall, Christian and Ellis, 2010)

In Virgin, tangible rewards necessarily do not come as financial; it can also include hosting of free lunches and distribution of company’s stuffs. Rewarding an outstanding performance is a task full of challenges and yet is fundamental for supporting performance developments that is desired through key actions of the management. A reward is expected to get the employees aligned with the organisational strategies of Virgin Media by offering the employees with incentives which further acts in the interest of the company needed for achieving the desirable goals. Virgin’s managers firmly believe in the Maslow’s need-hierarchy theory. However, they also believe that a rewards impact differs from employee to employee. Certain employees acknowledge to extrinsic rewards while others respond to intrinsic rewards. At Virgin Media, financial, non-financial and performance dependent rewards are offered to the employees apart from better performance appraisals, training, pay hike, promotion and increased job security for establishing employee motivation at workplace. Rewards positively affect employees’ motivation, thereby influence the overall performance of Virgin. In addition, Virgin also uses social rewards, internal, external and individual equity which greatly effect on motivational levels of the employees. (Pearsall, Christian and Ellis, 2010)

3.2. Evaluate the process of job evaluation and other factors determining pay at Virgin Media

Job evaluation is the process in which jobs within an organization are rated and makes an endeavour in comparing therelated intrinsic valueof jobs of an organization. Job evaluation is a comparative process.(Yuan and Woodman, 2010)

International Labour Office states that “Job evaluation is an attempt to determine and compare the demands which the normal performance of a particular job makes on normal workers, without taking into account the individual abilities or performance of the workers concerned”.

British Institute of Management describes job evaluation as “the process of analysis and assessment of jobs to ascertain reliably their negative worth using the assessment as the basis for a balanced wage structure”.

The process of job evaluation has helped Virgin Media into establishing the proportionate value of the jobs within the company. A job evaluation comprises of two steps namely job description and job analysis where job description helps in determining the key aspects of a job likeroles and responsibilities, accountability, decision making, qualification needed whereas the process of job analysis identifies and determines in detail the duties and requirements of a certain job and the relative importance of these duties for a given job. Job evaluation is based on three key factors namely knowledge needed for effective performance, complication of the role of decision making and control needed within the position.   At Virgin Media, the pay structure is developed based on these factors. Salary surveys is another crucial tool that is been used in Virgin where employees’ salaries and the company’s allowance policies are compared and cross sectioned with that of other employers in the company. Once it is done, this is further being analysed and subsequent changes are determined in the employee’s payment structure. Finally, the jobs are be integrated on the basis of jobs analysis within the company in terms of responsibility, education needed and physical involvement. (Yuan and Woodman, 2010)

3.3. Assess the different context for how effective is the reward system at Virgin Media.

At Virgin Media, reward system has been major managerial concern. The management firmly believes that effective reward management is essential in order to maintain employees’ motivation and also time is helpful in depicting the balanced style of management adopted by Virgin when compared to its competitors in the market. It has been observed that Virgin’s reward system incorporates financial and non-financial peripherals. (Gittell Seidner and Wimbush, 2010)

Key aspects of Virgin Media’s reward system

  • Controlled and Managing Reward System: reward management control strategy practiced at Virgin is largely efficient. Control furnishes various opportunities in terms of planning and execution in a way that is organised and further reflects the company’s vitality and mission. Moreover, facilitates the reward systems continuity within the company and concurrently furnishes the opportunities of bringing developments in the system according to the ones implemented by rival companies. (Gittell Seidner and Wimbush, 2010)
  • Supervising and assessing Reward Theories: it needs line managers’ involvement as they indeed play a key role in the reward systems monitoring and assessment and providing the HR managers with feedbacks. Moreover, a line manager’s engagement further leaves an impact on performance appraisal and communication.
  • Devolution for line managers: all the employees including the line managers and senior management are involved in the reward system.

Effectiveness of reward system at Virgin Media

  • Attracting Talent: for attracting the best talents available, one can see that Virgin Media accentuates on various natures of giving employment such as apprenticeships, internships, fulltime jobs. In addition, the HR department also offer numerous benefits say for example, family health insurance, child educational schemes, building career entrepreneurship,allowing flexible working etc. for attracting the skilled employees. Virgin Media’s reward system allows the employees to continue their education while working or change their current job by applying to a vacant position. (Gittell Seidner and Wimbush, 2010)
  • Motivation: the factor of motivation been well identified by Virgin Media in the form of employees benefits. By joining the apprenticeship programs of Virgin Media, a student can follow both his/her professional and personal career. By satisfying the employees with securities like medical assurance and family plans motivate the employees further encouraging them in giving their 100% best performances.
  • Retention: the management has adopted this technique for retaining the skilled apprenticeships candidates who have an outstanding record during the period are offered with full time job according to their expertise. Retention has been helpful in reducing the cost of hiring and training as they are aware of the business operations. (Gittell Seidner and Wimbush, 2010)

3.4. Examine the methods Virgin Media use to monitor employee performance

Employees’ performance at Virgin Media is been evaluated at both individual and team level. Evaluation of team’s performance is an essential activity of HRM where an employee’s performance is being evaluated in terms of whether or not the performance coordinates with the goals of the organisation as a whole. Employees’ performance is measured with the help of performance appraisal program. Moreover, Virgin ensures that reward system is been measured and monitored continuously and that the employees are provided with feedback from the line managers which act asan important tool for improving the levels of performance.(De Jong and Elfring, 2010)

Employees’ performance

Methods of monitoring employee performances at Virgin Media

  • Performance Appraisal: this technique allows the management in measuring the employees’ performances through a rating system which is provided by the superiors across all the departments and on the basis of the ratings, the HR department calculates the points for measuring an employee’s performance. The plus point of this technique is that reviews of the seniors are been considered further giving a clearer picture about the employee in question whereas the minus point will be the employees popularity amongst the superiors influencing the ratings. (De Jong and Elfring, 2010)
  • Observation: the line managers closely observed the employees’ performances and convey their reviews to the management further allowing them in getting a clear picture. However, the only negative side of observation can be biased reviews which might be given as a result of negative relationships.
  • Management by objective (MBO): under this technique, Virgin’s management sets targets and on the basis of these targets evaluates employees’ performances. This tool further allows the employees in being aware of the predefined goal and accordingly giving their best performances in attaining the same. The plus point of MBO is its structure that is well designed and assists the management in keeping a track on employees’ progress and concurrently identifying the skill gaps. At Virgin Media the targets are set with the help of SMART goals. (De Jong and Elfring, 2010)

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In conclusion, HRM is extremely important for a successful running of a business and that the HRM practices should be incorporated with an organisation’s overall strategy for ensuring competent use of human resources which in return will provide better Return on Investment for every penny invested on them. For enhancing organisational performance, it is essential that HRM is involved in strategic plans and decision-making, rebuilding of organisation and work process. HRM is the most essential part in the business as the management of the human resources has become the vital aspect for the organisation to survive in the competitive market.Human resource management encapsulates the mission and vision of the organisation and run the business towards corporate achievements with maintaining the social responsibilities. The human resource management provides proper tools to assist the employees in realising the corporate mission on which their performances are dependent. The organisations have to follow proper legal framework in the HRM practices.


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