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Unit 23 Managing Human Resources Assignment Copy 5 - McDonald’s
Diploma in Business
Unit Number and Title
Unit 23 Managing Human Resources Assignment - McDonald’s
McDonald’s is considered to be one of the most famous food chains in the entire world. In this assignment, a detailed description of how McDonald’s HRM practices is based on Guest’s model of the same. The HRM practices of McDonald’s along with the responsibility of the line managers are described in the next part. This is followed by the advantages of flexible work practices and what types of flexibilities are employed by McDonald’s in its functioning. The third part deals with recent cases of discrimination and how the management is trying to prohibit such practices in the company and also in its franchisees. Lastly, the welfare schemes that are adopted by the company officials for the betterment of the employees are discussed at length.
Human Resource Management (HRM) refers to a strategically developed relationship between the employer and his employee. This management system increases the productivity of employees by motivating them. Among several models that have been laid down by theorists and scholars, David Guest’s HRM model is the most prominent one. Guest’s HRM model involves the various ways in which the management of a company can work for the purpose of increasing the output of employees. The model comprises of various perspectives:
- An efficient HR strategy.
- HRM practices and outcomes.
- Outcomes with respect to finance, behaviour and performance.
Guest further suggests that proper HRM strategies include improvement of the workplace which will eventually increase the overall production of any organisation (Guest, Paauwe and Wright, 2012).
- Employees can only increase their productivity if they are committed towards their company. This can be achieved by acknowledging their hard work and by providing them with adequate means of training. Companies like McDonald’s provide training facilities to their workers so that they can improve their performances and give their best efforts for the growth of the company.
- The management of McDonald’s explains the long term goals of the company to its employees. Before starting work, the higher authorities let the employees know about their expectations so that the workers can act accordingly.
- The company tries to remain flexible when it comes to its employees. The pay structure is revised time and again. Proper incentives are also given based on the performances of the employees. Appraisals and recognition of the work of the employees make them feel valued in the firm.
John Storey focuses on achieving ideal HRM practices in his HRM model. Certain characteristics form a part of his model:
- Key levers
- Implementation of strategies
- Functions of line managers.
He mentions that the primary concern of any organisation should be its employees form the most important part of the organisation (Storey, 2015). He has categorised HRM in two parts:
- Hard HRM: This includes people participation to elevate the productivity of firms. Companies like McDonald’s often follow hard HRM and evaluates the value of the employees by calculating the total production of the company including the franchisees. The workers are means of obtaining the goals of the company.
- Soft HRM: In this case, the employees are given maximum attention in the company. McDonald’s provides opportunities to employees to give their suggestions and ideas.
The characteristics of the IR and personnel practices are as follows:
- All the work is done on the basis of the contract.
- The management looks after the procedures.
- Continuous supervision of work.
- Manages the employees.
- The process of making a decision is extremely slow.
HRM practices of McDonald’s:
- Flexibility in the workplace is provided.
- Welfare schemes are adopted for the development of outlets and franchisees (Hannon, 2010).
- All the stakeholders, customers, employees and shareholders are considered to be rqual before the management of the company.
- Any kind of decision is taken very swiftly due to a developed communication system.
IR practices and HRM practices at Unilever:
- Unilever is one such company which moves beyond written contracts.
- However, a continuous supervision of the work of the employees takes place at Unilever which is not a part of Storey’s model of HRM.
In any organisation like that of McDonald’s, line managers as well as employees play a crucial role in the production of the firm. The functions of the line managers and the employees are different from each other. Supervising the work of the employees is the basic function of the line managers. They also look into the fact whether the employees are meeting the rules and policies of the firm (Parkinson, 2015). It is the duty of the line managers to assign work to the employees and to solve their problems. Both the employees and the line managers need to work together for the betterment of the firm. The employees are the ones who work the entire day for the company in return of payment and other incentives. They have the best knowledge of the wants and desires of the customers. In order to develop the company, the line managers require the help of the employees for strategic planning.
This can be done by the following ways:
- The line managers should make the employees aware of the future goals of the company so that they can work towards achieving that particular aim. This will prevent possible misunderstandings that are likely to place among employees as will be clear about their targets. Such a step also makes the employees feel valued in a particular firm.
- The approach of the line managers of McDonald’s towards the employees should be such that the employees become active participants in rendering suggestions. All kinds of decisions should be taken by keeping in mind the opinions that are put forward by the workers of the company.
- For the proper functioning of a firm, all the employees and line managers must coordinate with each other (Armstrong and Taylor, 2014). The organisational structure of the firm should be such that any kind of information is passed swiftly from one person to the other, from one organisational level to the other.
With the increase in competition, organisations have changed the way of working in order to enhance the productivity of the workers. Companies have started to develop a flexible working structure so that the employees can work according to their convenience. This has been primarily done with respect to the working hours. McDonald’s is one such company that has acknowledged the personal needs of its employees. The management of this biggest food chain has noticed that by doing so employees are more dedicated towards their work and workplaces. Therefore, flexible work timings help the employees and their employers to complete all sorts of work without compromising on the personal needs. Academician Charles Handy came up with the concept of Shamrock organization where he recognized the prime importance of the various kinds of people involved in it. This particular model of flexibility comprises of three different parts:
- Core Workers: The primary section consists of the main employees of a firm like McDonald’s. These people are experienced and are often given the duty to mentor the newcomers in the factories and stores (Hamel and Prahalad, 2013). Several training opportunities are also provided to them so that they can update themselves with the passage of time. The core workers in McDonald’s are recognised on the basis of their performances.
- Contractual Fringe:Unlike permanent employees, the contractual workers are mainly found in the several franchises of the company. They are aware of McDonald’s was of functioning. Trainings are also provided to these people for improving their work in the franchise outlets. This group experiences higher flexibility as compared to the core workers because they have the privilege of changing the locations of their jobs and the management can also ask them to do the same.
- Flexible Workers: Students who are recent pass outs or having holidays often attend several programs organised by McDonald’s to gain knowledge of the functioning of restaurant chains. They have the benefit of choosing work timings according to their needs.
After going through the feedbacks of the employees, McDonald’s have added the provision of flexible working hours in its organisational structure. To make things easier, employers ask the candidates about the amount of time that they can dedicate to the workings of the company. Employees are classified into full time or contractual workers as per their replies. McDonald’s also provides flexible work timings for students who are eager to earn. The flexibility structures that are followed by McDonald’s are as follows:
- Part time working model- This kind of model is mainly applicable for students who wish to work part time for McDonald’s. Students are allowed to choose their work timings based on their vacations and convenience. In spite of being part time employees, the students are given incentives and rewards on the basis of their performances just like the core workers. It has been noticed that these students give their best efforts due to convenient work timings.
- Job sharing model- McDonald’s provides challenging works to its employees so that they are able to cope up in any given situation. They are moved within departments so that they gain a fair knowledge about the workings of all the departments (Christensen and Schneider, 2015). This kind of model is beneficial in case of a crisis where the employees can take care of the various departments.
- Participation- As mentioned earlier, the employees of McDonald’s are given the opportunity to give suggestions and recommend changes that may be beneficial for the company.
- Location- McDonald’s allows its employees to choose suitable work locations as per their convenience. Employees can choose outlets which are near their residential areas in order to save time. This in a way proves beneficial for the company.
The foremost priority of the employers is to enhance the productivity of the firm. On the other hand, the employees look forward to a good workplace and proper amount of salary. Flexible working practices have proved to be beneficial for both these sections in various ways:
- Employees are the ones who get benefitted from flexible working practices as they start dedicating more time for their work.
- They also get an opportunity for surplus earning by dedicating more time to the production of the firm.
- The employees at McDonald’s give in their maximum efforts because of the convenience provided by the management.
- However, team work becomes a problem in such cases. As employees are transferred from one place to another, team working is not developed as compared to other organisations.
- The firm gets capable employees because of flexible working practices. Students also prove to be beneficial for the growth of the firm as they are always ready to give their maximum efforts.
- Certain confusions can arise due to these practices making it difficult for the management to resolve them. Protests took place when McDonald’s came up with its zero working hours’ facility (Ruddick, 2016).
- During the time of high sales, flexible working hours can be harmful for the company due to the absence of ample number of staff members. Customers may not be provided with superior quality service which can demean the reputation of McDonald’s.
With the growing rate of globalization, certain changes have been noticed in the labour market. The labour market has been undergoing a change due to development in education and other technological practices. The management decides certain strategies keeping in mind the labour force of a particular organisation. The main aim is to enhance the production level of the company. Similarly, McDonald’s has developed flexible work practices without compromising on the profit making motive of the company.
Training and other educational facilities are provided by the Government and organisations so that the employees have an adequate knowledge of the work and the working practices of the respective firms (Muffels, 2014). McDonald’s provides students with apprenticeship programs of 12 months so that they gain a fair idea about the work in a food chain before making a career in this particular field. Students are also provided with part time work hours so that they can earn along with gaining education.
Technological practices also have an impact on the labour market. As more and more people have access to internet, they are able to gain sufficient amount of knowledge on their respective fields. The UK government also provides vocational trainings so that the workers can improve their work. Even several traineeship programs have proved to be beneficial for the newcomers who are willing to make a career in different industries. The Government also provides loans to young people for advanced learning programs. These people start repaying the loans after acquiring a minimum of 21,000 pounds. The management of McDonald’s takes notice of these changes and makes its decisions accordingly.
The management of every organisation is expected to provide the employees of the firm with equal number of opportunities as well as facilities. All sorts of discrimination with respect to race, gender, age, religion, marital status, sex, disability, pregnancy, sexual orientation, etc. have been prohibited in any workplace by the Equality Act 2010. Employees tend to remain in companies which do not encourage any kind of discriminations. However, cases of discrimination are still prevalent in several companies.
Recently, the world was shocked with the news of discrimination that took place at McDonald’s in its Virginia branch. Employees accused both the franchisor and the franchisee of discrimination on the basis of gender as well as race. 12 employees faced issues on the basis of discrimination who were mainly Hispanic as Afro-American. The supervisor engaged himself in racial slurs and cracked racial jokes. The employees also faced a lot of harassment due to racial differences. They were forced to move to the Virginia federal court for seeking justice. The court found the franchisee guilty and was penalised. A case of such differences on the basis of gender and race in a reputed company like McDonald’s has been able to draw the attention of millions of people all over the world. It is the reputation of a company that is always at stake during such cases.
The Government of UK has provided the facility to employees to address issues relating to such differences. Even discrimination regarding selection, promotion and transfer is also included. The Government acts as a mediator and tries to solve the problems between the employees and their employers. McDonald’s has also put down strict work practices in order to prevent such cases of discrimination in the future (Shaw, 2016).
As mentioned earlier, the Equality Act 2010 does not allows any kind of discrimination. The employees are also safeguarded against any possible indirect discrimination. This in a way means that all employees must be given equal rights and opportunities. The Act prohibits any sort of discrimination even in the processes of recruitment, transfer and training. The employees are free to move to the courts or even ask the trade unions to act as the mediator between them and their employees. These rules are also applicable for McDonald’s who cannot discriminate between employees. Such cases defame an organisation and also discourage other employees from putting in their maximum efforts. An organisation like McDonald’s is always afraid of losing its goodwill as other competitors can take advantage of such situations. The implications of such legislation can be both positive and negative.
- Employees should be rewarded on the basis of their performances.
- An organisation will be able to retain employees if the workplace is bereft of any kind of discrimination.
- Employees will be willing to give their best efforts which will be beneficial for companies like McDonald’s.
- The reputation of the company also remains intact due to the absence of such practices in the company.
- If an employee decides to move to the court because of problems of discrimination, then the company can suffer from severe penalties if found guilty (Payne, 2014).
- There will be a negative impact on the reputation of brands like McDonald’s.
- Other competitors can take advantage of such critical situations.
- It may lose able workers and other employees may restrict themselves from putting in their best efforts.
- The overall productivity of the firm will decrease.
It is the duty of the management to see to it that all the employees in a firm get equal opportunities which is important for the organisation to develop its production (Aswathappa, 2013). The strategies in order to maintain equality differs from company to company and it holds true for McDonald’s as well. The supervisors who are present in the outlets inform the employees about the targets and the goals so that they can work accordingly. All the employees are asked to give suggestions and innovative ideas for the betterment of the company. The selection process in McDonald’s does not involve any kind of discrimination practices. People come to know about job vacancies from the advertisements that are given in the newspapers and other forms of media. The management also prohibits the practice of discrimination with respect to promotion, incentives and other rewards.
McDonald’s has also put down work practices relating to the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of race, colour, gender, sex, etc. The people who join the company, both employees and line managers, are made to sign contracts prior joining. If anyone violates any of the rules, then he or she will be penalised rewards are given to employees on the basis of their performances without any kind of discrimination. When employees from different cultures work at a particular place like McDonald’s, then the customers experience great services from them.
The similarities include the function of the highest authority to lay down norms for the proper conduct of managers and employees that prohibit all forms of discrimination. This establishes a good work atmosphere in McDonald’s where the employees are dedicated towards their work.
Companies engage in performance management methods for the purpose of increasing their productivity. This process includes the measurement of the actual performance of an employee to the desired performance of that particular employee. Measures are adopted to fill in the gaps and to increase productivity of each of the employees. Similarly, in McDonald’s franchisees use several tools for supervising the work for the employees. The methods are as follows:
- 360 Degree Feedback: This process includes the collection of feedbacks of all the employees regarding work timings, deadlines, targets, punctuality and so on. These parameters are examined and are rated after the calculation of their mean values (Wilton, 2010).
- Observation method: Line managers are present in every outlet to supervise the productivity of each employee. Thus, the measurement of the workers is done on the basis of the response of the line managers.
If we compare these two methods, we will notice that in the observation method the evaluation of the worker may not be accurate because of his differences with the supervisor. On the other hand, in 360 degree feedback method all the employees have the opportunity to rate which reduces the chances of discrimination.
McDonald’s also follows a few other methods to enhance its output:
- The company follows a flat organisational structure which facilitates easy connection between the employees and their supervisors.
- The employees are asked for their opinions and suggestions for the betterment of the company. This kind of participation makes the employees feel valued.
- The targets of the companies are made clear to the employees in order to maintain a transparent relationship.
The foremost aim of an organisation is to maximise its profit shares. In order to do so, a firm encourages its employees by implementing certain strategies for the overall development of the employees. Maslow’s theory deals with the emergence of recurrent needs and how organisations recognize these needs and implements policies to fulfil them. The proper execution of the policies depends on both the employees and the employers.
Several welfare techniques are employed at the outlets of McDonald’s for the benefits of the employees. They are provided with safety measures and health facilities to safeguard them from probable risks (Hughes and Ferrett, 2015). Purified drinking water is also provided to them. The Mc Resource helps the families of the employees by providing them with monetary help. In order to obtain this facility, the employees are asked to register themselves by paying small amounts periodically. However, a loophole remains as these facilities are only applicable for the core workers and the contractual ones are only provided with rewards and incentives.
Since the management of McDonald’s provides the employees with such welfare schemes, a relationship of trust prevails between the employees and the managers. They safeguard the interests of the employees and also lend all sorts of assistance to their family members. All these policies help the employees to give their best efforts in order to increase the productivity of the firm.
The Health and Safety Act 1974 ensures a safe workplace for all the employees in the UK. It aims at providing a safe workplace by reducing risks, hazards and accidents (legislation.gov.uk, 2016). All companies are expected to make an estimation of all the possible risks to which the employees are exposed. McDonald’s also works along the lines of the law by introducing fire extinguishers, fire alarms, closed circuit cameras to protect the employees from any kinds of harm. It also keeps a track of the employees who underwent injuries because of the prevalent RIDDOR, Reporting Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations. The company also provides safe food to the employees and the equipments are not outdated.
The implications of health and safety legislations are as follows:
- The employees feel safe and secure because of the measures that are taken to safeguard them.
- People who work at the outlets are able to deliver better performances because of the sense of security they experience.
- Such safety measures prove beneficial for the reputation of the firm.
- Employees are provided with ample training facilities so that they have the knowledge of the safety measures and their usage.
All types of industries are subject to changes over time. The companies strive to cope up with these changes and this is a major topical issue faced by any firm. The Human Resource Management Practices are responsible for the proper implementation and execution of these organisational changes. The HRM managers apply different strategies so that the employees adopt these changes. The factors that lead to these changes include technological advancements, socio-cultural factors, political issues, economic factors and increase in the rate of competition. In order to bring about these changes, certain methods can be used:
- The employees can be asked to participate in discussions so that they are able to give their feedbacks, views and suggestions for the development of the company.
- Adequate training can be provided to the workers so that they can keep themselves updated with changing circumstances. McDonalds gives training to its employees for the better understanding of the smart table system which is prevalent in certain outlets (Edgar, 2010). The workers are helped with the processes of taking orders.
However, if the management tries to impose these changes without the consent of the employees then it can lead to less productivity on the part of the employees. Therefore, positive changes can be brought about only with the cooperation of the employees.
This report is an extensive study of the functioning of an international company, McDonald’s. It can be concluded that in order to maintain the reputation of the company, the management needs to take care of the workers as well. McDonald’s is also not bereft from the practices of discrimination but it is applying several strategies to stop these practices. It is the responsibility of the HR department to implement suitable changes in the functioning of the company. Moreover, a company can only improve if the employees are taken care of by providing them with all sorts of assistances and safety measures.