Management of HRM on the Example of Wal-Mart

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Introduction

The report is based on how the theory and research on Human Resource Management (HRM) influence Wal-Mart stores’ operations. Human Resource management entails the management of an organization’s employees. The report covers issues in HRM that Wal-Mart undertakes that should be emulated by other organizations for their success. The critical areas for business success covered by the report include- Human Resource Planning, HRM and the Law, Job analysis, job design and quality of work, recruiting human resources, employee selection, and human resource development. As a company, Wal-Mart is in the business of selling anything that a customer wishes to have in everyday life. Wal-Mart is thus, expected to manage its human resource diligently. The report, therefore, makes a depth analysis of its operations in terms of management of HRM and how it is entangled with its success (Charles 2010:56).

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Aim and scope of the report

According to Adler (1991), there exist several issues in human resource management that brings positive benefit to an organization if well emulated. Wal-Mart’s daily operations involve various HRM concepts ranging from Human Resource planning, HRM and the Law, Job analysis job design and quality of work, recruiting human resources, employee selection, and human resource development. Aron (1999) in his report covers HRM departments of the Wal-Mart company. It discusses management issues of HRM at the Company and how they positively influence the daily operations of the organization. The report demonstrates all the concepts of Human Resource Management that Wal-Mart Company pursues in daily operations.

Body of the report

Information collected was on human resource management issues which included and were not limited to Human Resource planning, HRM and the Law, Job analysis job design and quality of work, recruiting human resources, employee selection, and human resource development. In the Wal-Mart case study, there are various methods used to collect information concerning theory and research on Human Resource Management issues and on how they positively impact the operations of the company. Structured questionnaires are used in the case study, for easier retrieval of information from the current employees. The questionnaires are administered using a drop and pick method. The population included all employees of HRM departments in Wal-Mart. The sample consisted of 25 employees chosen using stratified random sampling. The response rate was high as 20 employees. Thus, the response rate was 80% while the department that did not respond was 20%. The data from this report was analyzed using MS Excel. After which Tables, pie charts, and bar graphs were generated.

Being a case study, quantitative and content analysis was used in the case study. Content analysis is used to make systematic inferences about the collected data. Filled and completed questionnaires formed the basis of quantitative analysis. The data collected was edited for completeness and accuracy to ensure that maximum data quality standard is achieved. After editing and coding, the data was entered, explored, and analyzed using the descriptive statistics tool of Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) to generate the percentages. Data was presented through tables, graphs, and charts.

Discussion

The success of Wal-Mart stores is based on sound management of Human Resources. Charles (2008: 123) says that there is a range of issues that make Wal-Mart predominantly prosper in all its endeavors. Human Resource Planning, HRM and the Law, Job analysis job design and quality of work, recruiting human resources, employee selection, and human resource development, training, recruiting college students, and development are some of the major activities that Wal-Mart has involved itself in. A five-year program of compensating its employees is a factor that undoubtedly contributes to the motivation of all employees in all sections and different regions of operation. 0.65 of the entire management staff at Wal-Mart work on an hourly basis. This is a reasonable phenomenon in employee advancement programs. Employee promotion at Wal-Mart is manageable; this has worked well with all the employees of Wal-Mart, making the company to be voted as the most admired and preferred by many employees in the US.

Human Resource Planning is the act of a company to ensure that it has the best employees to perform the assigned work in the best way possible, at Wal-Mart, this is highly achieved by good plans on how to recruit the best candidates for interviews of vacant positions and employment, planning on good employee retention, perfect and up to date training techniques, skills and much more. New technological advancements are good, as they help resolve any upcoming challenges of a company, Wal-Mart just ensures that it’s HRM Resource Planning is perfect and respected all the way.

At Wal-Mart, the Law of HRM is distinctively followed to the letter, in this way, there is no conflict. From the managers, the employees, the customer, there is always no act of disagreement at Wal-Mart, this makes the operations of the company to be efficient, effective, reliable, and credible.

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At Wal-Mart, the work done by the employees is always to the standard, proving lots of work quality. This is justified by the fact that customers who are interviewed about Wal-Mart’s services confirm that the company provides the best services, in this, they end up commending the company to some people, and always willing to re-purchase the company’s product once again.

Recruiting of the HRM is the hiring and employment of the workforce to a company. At Wal-Mart, people from all walks of life are employed; there is no discrimination on employment. Employment follows a well-laid order,

Appraising and Managing Performance is about the provision of feedback to the employees about their performance, when this is done, there is motivation to the employees for they know how well they are performing, this too enables Wal-Mart to ensure that when one is not performing to the expectation of the company, then the individual can be held responsible not a department as a whole, in this way, there is always hard work that is well achieved by the company.

On the part of training, recruitment, and development, college students are targeted by the company to employ more staff. Over 80 college campuses were considered by the company in the recruitment, as well as considering people from all walks of life, gender, race, as well as the general family of Wal-Mart. These college students are offered various training ranging from management, marketing, negotiations, and all sorts of wide training that make them prepared to work in any environment, this has brought success in Wal-Mart operations, as it can hire and employ the already trained students in the workforce.

Employees at Wal-Mart are so motivated and appreciate the benefits that come forth by working for the company. Indeed it is on record that 0.60 of total employees admit that whatever they are paid at the company takes exceptional care of them as well as their families, thus no alarm on any kind of meager payment. Remember that unhappy employees of any company would always wish to walk away looking for the greener pasture.

This report covers some of the research done by the HRM department of Wal-Mart company to justify how the aforementioned various issues influence the operations of the company and to justify the way forward.

To discover all these aspects, the case provides a discovery that was collected by a consulting firm to prove and learn ways to improve the operations of the entire company. The data collected was analyzed and the information is put into use. Among some of the information received and analyzed by the company include:

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  • Analyses on how the theory and research on Human

Resource Management (HRM) issues influence Wal-Mart stores’ Operation:

  • Benefits of Employee Advancement/ Training
  • Improved quality of service

Table 1: the Level of approval on the statement that employee advancement training leads to quality service. Source: Research Study.

Response Strongly Disagree Disagree Neutral Agree Strongly Agree Total
No. of Respondents 2 0 2 8 8 20
Percentage 10% 0% 10% 40% 40% 100%

The above table illustrates the level of approval by the respondents on the statement that employee advancement training has led to quality service. Both strongly agree and agree scored highly at the approval of 40% of the respondents while both neutral and strongly disagree had 10% of the respondents and there was non for disagree. This is an indication that Employee advancement training leads to improved quality of services.

Increase productivity

Table 2: Level of approval on the statement that employee advancement training leads to increased productivity. Source: Research Study.

Response Strongly Disagree Disagree Neutral Agree Strongly Agree Total
No. of Respondents 0 0 2 14 4 20
Percentage 0% 0% 10% 70% 20% 100%

On the level of approval on the statement that employee advancement training leads to increased productivity, it is noted that an institution will increase its productivity. This is demonstrated in table 2 above where, 70% of the respondents agreed, 20% strongly agreed while 10% of the respondents are neutral. Both strongly disagree and disagree scored Zero percent. This is a clear indication that Employee advancement training leads to increased productivity.

Human Resource planning benefits: Better and accurate decision-making

Table 3: Level of approval on the statement that Human resource planning brings about better and accurate decision-making. Source: Research Study..

Response Strongly Disagree Disagree Neutral Agree Strongly Agree Total
No. of Respondents 0 0 8 10 2 20
Percentage 0% 0% 40% 50% 10% 100%

The above table illustrates the level of approval by the respondents on the statement Human resource brings about better and accurate decision-making. Strongly agree has10%, agree scores highly at 50% neutral has 40%. Both strongly disagree and disagree scores 0%. This is an indication that Human resource planning brings about better and accurate decision-making in organizations.

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HRM and the Law

Table 4: Level of approval on the statement that Human resource planning and the Law bring about a better relationship between the employees, the management, and the clients. Source: Research Study.

Response Strongly Disagree Disagree Neutral Agree Strongly Agree Total
No. of Respondents 0 0 6 6 8 20
Percentage 0% 0% 30% 30% 40% 100%

The above table illustrates the Level of approval on the statement that Human resource planning and the Law bring a better relationship between the employees, the management, and the clients. Strongly agree has the highest at 40% while agreeing and neutral both scores 30%. Strongly disagree and disagree scores 0%. This indicates that there is a positive relationship between the issue of law and HRM.

Limitations

However, this report needs to put down that in pursuit of gathering the desired and outlined information on the theory and research on Human Resource Management (HRM) issues at Wal-Mart stores, some limitations perhaps might not have made a full retrieval of the desired information. Some of the limitations that the case study postulates are:

  1. The process of implementing HRM issues is ongoing hence it was not possible to get responses from the entire sampled population.
  2. Some respondents were unwilling to respond on time as agreed or they did not respond totally.
  3. The schedule given was not sufficient.
  4. Security of information was also a challenge because data could be lost to computer viruses. Besides that, some respondents were unwilling to disclose information to protect their self-image.
  5. The process of information gathering and its success entirely depends on a manager’s cooperation in the response to the questions, which posed a formidable challenge.

Conclusions

Adams (1965:456) postulates that HRM is a phenomenon that substantially brings benefit to many organizations that apply the best operations, such issues as Human Resource Planning, HRM and the Law, Job analysis job design and quality of work, recruiting human resources, employee selection, and human resource development must be perfectly addressed and well dealt with, in such pursuit, the organization shall make a lot of profits, leading to an improved standard of living on the employees. Some of the great benefits of accomplishing these issues of HRM are;

  1. Planning in HRM makes the company know where it is headed and how to accomplish what it desires, the goal, the mission, and the objective (Aron 1999:234)
  2. HRM and the Law guide the daily operation of the employees, employers, and clients as well as a strong relationship between such players.
  3. Recruiting of the best human resource has a significant and measurable effect on the firm’s performance.
  4. Perfect and well-organized employee selection, ensures that an organization has the best workforce, which provides services desired for continuous improvement (World Bank 1994:123).
  5. Training and continuous development of Human Resources ensures that new methods of performing things as well as new technology are embraced in the best time possible to remain competitive In the marketplace.
  6. According to Robins (2004:49), employee promotion enables a firm to improve on productivity, efficiency, the processes and thus gain a competitive advantage.
  7. VII The operational cost of an organization is reduced in a situation where there exists no stress among the employees themselves. In this case, there would be increased motivation and interdependence.
  8. VIII Appraising and Managing Performance bring with it motivation to the employees, as they get promotion and possess a culture of continuous improvement.
  9. IX. When there is the quality of work by the employees, the customers are proud to purchase the products of the company and are always proud of the said company. At Wal-Mart, there is the quality of work that brings good operations of the company.
  10. X. Recruiting the best workforce is the best way that makes a company succeeds in all its endeavors, and Wal-Mart just does the best at this issue, the recruitment is to all walks of life, no discrimination of employment, this makes the company have a wide range of employees that provide the best effort to ensuring that the best is done in the company.

Recommendations

For an organization to perform its functions well, issues in Human Resource Management such as Human Resource Planning, HRM and the Law, Job analysis job design and quality of work, recruiting human resources, employee selection, and human resource development need to be dealt with in the best way possible. In this way, the companies, investors, employees, and even the customers of an organization would abundantly ascertain exceptionally economic benefits and hence bringing about competitive advantage (Desimone 2008: 236). The report thus recommends that, for a company to succeed in its daily dealings, it must be out to fully commit itself to ensure that it respects all the Human Resource Management issues. Among the things that this report recommends are:

Dunnette (1993:179) says that a company needs to put down a well laid Human Resource Planning, for this will make it know its direction when the HRM plan is in place, the company will act following the plan.

  1. Law governing the Human Resource Management should be in place, this will daily guide the operation of the Company, without law, there would be a day in day out conflicts, and a company may end up even closing down. Thus a good lawyer needs to be in place for a company that needs to succeed.
  2. In his work, Hewstone (1986:176) postulates that recruitment of the workforce should not be subjected to any form of ethnicity, tribalism, and even corruption, there should be a good process of doing the employment, a company needs to be an equal employer, employing people from all walks of life brings with its diverse range of great work.
  3. The training and continuous development of employees is the best recipe for a company that needs to do things the modern way. Technology advances every day, the employees of a company must always be trained so that they know the best way of dealing with contemporary issues.
  4. Stress need not be in a company. With stress, the company is headed to failure, there needs to be good motivation in the company, this makes the employees happy, and ready to give their best in the operation of the company.
  5. Quality of work by the employees is good, as this will always ensure that good products are produced when this happens, the customers will be happy of the company, purchase from the company, makes a good profit, and who knows? Perhaps the payment of the workers can be raised, hence improving the living standards of the employee fraternity.
  6. Appraising and Managing Performance ensures that the hard-working employees are promoted, in turn, this will make employees work even harder to be promoted, reduction in mistakes will be reduced, making the company always be at the forefront in making the best products and providing the best services.
  7. The Companies that are willing to maintain a competitive advantage should fully embrace the culture of dealing with HRM issues soundly as the Wal-Mart Company does. In this way, they will always be admired and be on the top of the world
  8. Researchers should put more emphasis on the impact of operational issues on HRM

References

Adams, J.S. 1965. Inequity in social exchange. In L. Berkowitz (Ed.), Advances in experimental social psychology (Vol. 2, 267-299). New York: Academic Press.

Adler, N.J. 1991. International dimensions of organizational behavior. Boston: PWS-Kent Publishing Company.

Aron, E.N. 1999. Statistics for psychology. (2nd ed.). New Jersey: Prentice-Hall International, Inc.

Charles, M.V. 2010. Managing a Global Workforce: Challenges and Opportunitites in International Human Resource Management . New York: M.E. Sharp.

Charles, R.G.2008. Strategic Human Resource Management: Oxford University Press.

Desimone, W. 2008. Human Resource Development. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall International, Inc.

Dunnette, & L.M. Hough (Eds.) 1993 , Handbook of industrial and organizational psychology. (2nd ed., Vol. 4, 447-483). Palo Alto, CA: Consulting Psychologists Press.

Hewstone, M., & Brown, R. (Eds.). 1986. Contact and conflict in intergroup encounters. Oxford: Basil Blackwell Ltd.

Robins, P.S. 2004. Managing resources. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall International, Inc.

World Bank. 1994. Averting the old age crisis: Policies to protect the old and promote growth. Washington DC: World Bank and Oxford University Press.

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