Company XYZ Case Study

Company XYZ Case Study

Company XYZ Case Study



PART A: Answer the Two (2) questions regarding workforce planning for the Company XYZ case study. Only two (2) questions from the list below appear in the exam. All questions are of equal value. Please read the Company XYZ case study below: Company XYZ A large national supermarket chain with 40,000 employees of which 28,000 are supermarket outlet staff, 4,000 are supermarket outlet department managers (supervisors), and 8,000 are clerical, information technology, warehouse, and transport staff. It has a national head office, five State offices and 250 retail supermarket outlets. The business model is based on high turnover of very low profit margin grocery items. The company has no short-term plan to increase the number of supermarket outlets. Its overall business plan is to increase its market share of supermarket grocery sales in outer-suburban locations. A longer-term strategy option is to develop and expand its expertise in warehouse, transport and logistics operations so that it could supply these contracted services to other grocery supermarket businesses. 1. Individual labour market characteristics can either be “malleable” or “indelible”. How can this understanding of workers assist the way workforce planning is conducted for the Company XYZ described above? 2. How can national demographic changes influence the way workforce planning is conducted for the Company XYZ described above? 3. By discussing the Company XYZ described above, outline the workforce planning factors for this organisation in a scenario of decreasing industry economic activity (fall in the demand for supermarket grocery goods and services)? How might these be different to the workforce planning factors for Company XYZ in a scenario of increasing industry economic activity (growth in the demand for supermarket grocery goods and services)? 4. Workforce planning seeks to forecast the numbers of people and type of skills needed to achieve organisational goals by comparing the available workforce capabilities with human capital needs of the future, determine if any gaps are evident, and then develop action plans to reconcile – or close – any gaps identified. When conducting these workforce planning steps a range of external (e.g. changes in regulation, technological improvements, the product market environment) and internal (e.g. staff workloads, turnover rates, staff development) factors are assessed. By discussing the Company XYZ described above, explain which of these two factors – external or internal – is more important for its workforce planning process. ? PART B: Case study of one (1) organisation described below. Answer the ONE (1) case study question in Part B. Please read the Harley-Davidson case study (discussed in the Week 7 class) below: During 2007, legendary motorcycle producer Harley-Davidson pulled in $5.7 billion sales in 60 global markets and had a workforce of 9,700 employees. But it also found itself facing labour shortages in critical fields, such as materials and marketing. “It was taking more effort to fill our pipelines,” says director of talent management Lisa Coury. Job openings at the company included engineers, material planners and supply chain analysts. Production workers made up two-thirds of the company’s workforce. Although U.S. sales slowed in 2007, international sales increased by 13.7%. Vice president of human resources Harold Scot noted changes in market conditions, the company’s heavy retirement rate and the growing complexity of managing a multi-generational workforce, and asked Coury to create a workforce planning capability within the human resources functions. Coury began by conducting substantial research, benchmarking and discussing workforce planning with organizations that already had a workforce planning processes in place: “We knew from talking to other organizations that we needed to walk before we could run. So we started small, using pilot groups and feedback from those groups to enhance our methodology and processes”, Coury explained. The first pilot group was the materials group, which was experiencing high levels of employee movement. Coury used key quarterly metrics segmented by business unit to spur interest in workforce planning. A report on the workforce was compiled, which included 30 different measures of workers. The report also noted the potential impact this workforce profile could have on the business. The report showed trends over a three-year period. The workforce planning process involved a number of key members in each business group. “We begin with one-on-one meetings with leadership to obtain qualitative workforce information, and then we marry this to our detailed quantitative analysis to project hiring needs over a three-year horizon … Then we develop an action plan for the steps we need to take within an agreed-upon time frame”, Coury says. The workforce planning process at Harley-Davidson incorporated three areas: forecasting; workforce segmentation; and strategic skills identification. “The objective is to increase HR’s ability to service the business. That means turning data into information that can help the business leaders make more informed decisions”, she concluded. Anastasia Ioannou of Westpac Banking Corporation suggests organisations need to answer several questions when conducting workforce planning (discussed in the Week 9 class). Her last question involves evaluating the workplace planning process. Write a report evaluating the workforce planning done at Harley-Davidson using the first five (5) questions nominated by Anastasia Ioannou. In your report, identify when and/or how each of the questions was answered. The five questions are: First question is “who are we?” Second question is “where are we heading?” Third question is “where are we now? Fourth question is “where do we want to be?” Fifth question is “what don’t we have?”

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