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Strategic management refers to the process of formulating and implementing plans to achieve organizational goals in a competitive environment. Every business has to focus on human resource strategic management to ensure that the organization is in line with the planned goals. For the strategies to be implemented, the employees should have enthusiasm and the relevant skills that are crucial in achieving the set targets set to achieve a competitive advantage. The paper will utilize the Youth Aid Centre (YAC) case study to demonstrate how it can use frameworks in the strategic management process when planning their future success. It will also give recommendations Marie Wong would use in developing an effective human resource strategic plan for YAC.
Human Resource Strategic Management
Human resource strategies refer to all the activities undertaken by the employer to ensure that they operate and work within the objectives and goals of the organization to meet their current and future plans of the organization. HR strategies involve activities such as staffing, training of employees, developing workplace policies, retention, compensation and benefits, and ensuring the employees' safety. For instance, the human resource has to develop a plan that determines the number of employees the organization should hire. The human resource is responsible for hiring and selecting the right personnel for the right job based on their skills. This will enable the firm to have a competitive advantage because it has the best workers suited for the job (Allen & Wright, 2009, p. 4).
Besides the human resource staffing strategy must ensure that workers have an organized reporting channel and that their job description is well defined. The employees’ performance measure must be set in place to encourage workers to meet the goals of the organization. With the YAC case study, the part-time coordinators lack an organized reporting plan or a job description for their responsibilities in the organization. The human resource has not set performance measures and thus the part-time coordinators seem to do the work they feel is fit for them like looking for volunteers and assigning them duties (Allen & Wright, 2009, p. 5). The volunteers also bring their working styles and work with minimal guidance. The volunteers can request funding and the coordinators do not hesitate to approve the release of the money even without proper scrutiny. The processes and methods used in YAC are casual and hence can be a source of frustration to the organization.
Again, the human resource strategy involves setting up the workplace policies. They must be communicated to all the employees with regard to safety, scheduling, and how they should be achieved. Also, compensation and other benefits should be addressed and every employee should be accorded benefits besides the salary they earn. The YAC part-time coordinators are paid but there is no evidence of any compensation or additional benefit to their service (Meanger, 2018,p. 3). Employees should be motivated to remain focused and committed to the organizational service. Therefore, as part of the human resource strategic plan, benefits should be added to increase the overall performance of the workers.
Moreover, training and development is part of the HR strategic plan that ensures all workers are equipped with the necessary skills needed to effectively perform their duties. Job training is essential for all employees joining an organization to align them with the organizational goals. Training is essential because it helps new and existing employees in the development and growth of skills. The development of training needs and the implementation of the training programs is an important task for the organization (Delery & Roumpi, 2017, p. 2). The HR department in the YAC organization does not have a strategy for training the employees. Most of the workers are volunteers and they often go uncompensated due to the existing arrangement between them and the organization. The HR department should work on ensuring that the proper regulatory procedures are in place in order to promote a conducive work environment for the volunteers and the workforce in YAC.
Also, the maintenance of healthy relationships and other forms of motivation is crucial to the overall performance of YAC. Marie Wong's approach to ensuring the overall well being and satisfaction of the staff is a recipe for YAC success in community outreach and aid. Despite the efforts to elevate the staff’s motivation through a reward-recognition system, the approach is a deviation from the YAC’s goals and objectives to the community (Meanger, 2018, P. 4). The YAC is largely charity and the diversification of resources to cater for staff needs is considered wastage as it conflicts the volunteer aspect.
The competitive advantage approach is key in the current globalized economy and the success of an organization is based on its ability to maintain a superior performance as compared to other competitors in the same industry. The competitive advantage is explained from the cost and differentiation point; which means that an organization can attain its superior position through optimizing their costs or unique operations in the market (Delery & Roumpi, 2017, p. 4). As a community-based organization, YAC is placed at an advantage since it doesn’t have to adapt to the mainstream corporate culture which is guided by profit maximization. The YAC is driven by the humanity principle which advances human concern and support rather than profit and market prices and costs. The cost advantage in an organization is attained through the production of similar goods and services in the market at a competitively low price. Unlike an NGO, YAC relies on volunteers as workforce and donations and grants from institutions and government in order to deliver their services. Thus, the organization doesn’t have the cost advantage for it to maintain its position and performance.
On the other hand, the differentiation advantage is attained through the production or offering of unique goods and services. The YAC is perfectly positioned in the New Zealand market since it is attained its own brand and position in youth empowerment and other related projects. The quality of its services is unquestionable due to the amount of funding and support they have received over the years from the Wellington City Council. Marie’s innovative strategies and culture are a disruption to the norm and the leadership style is a cost to the struggling organization.
The poster analysis is a macro analysis approach to the political, economic, socio-cultural and technological and legal factors that affect the functioning of the organization. The external environment is key to attaining a competitive advantage in the market. For an organization like YAC, Marie’s networking skills are an asset in bringing international donors and NGOs into the picture. Also, the differentiation strategy is a key intervention in placing YAC at an advantage over other community-based organization. Marie’s plan to include management consulting, the banking industry, and finance organizations could be a resourceful advisory team and offer pro-bono services to the YAC. YAC long-term success is reliant on the introduction of new and different resources, competencies and workforce capabilities so as to share a common goal and objective in steering the organization into a different direction (Jurevicius, 2013). Marie’s ideas are likely to bring large-scale changes in organizational objectives, funding, staff motivation and HR strategies and thus the need to make proper adjustments in order to adapt to the new changes. The stability and sustainability of YAC and its functions are dependent on constant and large-scale funding and thus the adoption of a proper business model is appropriate for the new corporate culture. The inclusion of private corporations and NGOs will increase the value of the organization and shift the accountability patterns among the workforce and management.
YAC should be aligned to adapt to the political, economic, socio-cultural and technological and legal changes. In order to benefit from the changes, the HR department should address the upcoming challenge in workforce disagreement with the management. The general perception that Marie's reward system is a liability and wastage of resources is likely to bring about conflict and tensions in the workforce. It is important to strategically align employee interests with the mission and vision of the organization (Jurevicius, 2013). Thus, the rewards should be viewed as the organization’s way of recognizing the volunteers’ effort and providing a sustainable wage for the workforce.
The SWOT analysis focuses on the internal environment of an organization so as to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The analysis of YAC introduces the new changes in leadership and organizational culture which are threatening to destabilize the workforce relations as well as stabilize the future of the organization (Van Wijngaarden, Scholten, & Van Wijk, 2012, p. 37). Marie’s strategy in improving YAC’s functioning involves the building of an effective structure within the organization. The implementation of the new structure is meant to give the organization and the workforce new goals and directions. The YAC main agenda is sourcing new areas and corporations which will fund the activities of the organization. Also, the firms are facing challenges in terms of increased communal demands and needs, financial constraints, new leadership changes among others. Marie Wong’s new skills in the organization are crucial despite her inexperience and inability to blend with the new cultures.
The strengths of the YAC include the pool of communal resources and support from the local community. The organization has attracted massive volunteers who wish to advance the communal needs. The volunteers have inside information on the community and this makes it easy for the organization to address their needs and allocate the proper resources. The company is on the growth path and thus there is room for expansion and long-term success. The existence of an excellent relationship between the management and the workforce is a strong suit for the YAC since it creates a supportive and productive workplace. On the other hand, the weakness includes the lack of a proper strategic plan for the Human resource department as illustrated in the lack of proper housing and other staff related benefits and amenities. Also, the organization is not fully prepared to adapt to new organizational changes and cultures as illustrated in their reception of Marie’s ideas. Also, the workforce has not undergone formal training processes and other skills necessary for a community-based organization with a global vision. The organizational structure is not well developed to cater for unpredictable business cycles and changes.
The YAC has extensive opportunities for the future growth and sustainability as illustrated in the new injections in the organization’s leadership. The new leadership comes with new ideas in training programs which provide an avenue for workforce improvement and expansion of expertise. Also, the development of effective human resource department is crucial to the organizational relationships. The inclusion of new innovations and technology will enable to organization increase in communicative and connective abilities. On the other hand, the organization faces the threat of destabilization from disgruntled employees who fail to adapt to the new leadership changes and the new motivation structures. Thus, the SWOT analysis identifies the existing gaps in the organization and the various strategies in which the organization and the HR department can incorporate the new changes to the overall plan (Van Wijngaarden, Scholten, & Van Wijk, 2012, p. 37).
The YAC is juggling a tone of efficiency and inefficiency battle which should be solved through realigning the organizational structure and workforce in order to increase effectiveness and efficiency in the delivery of services. Marie Wong should establish a responsive and resilient work environment in order to cater for new and future changes. The creation of room for expansion and innovation within the organization is a way of increasing workforce synergy and motivation. The human resource department should receive the proper funding for the recruitment, training and compensation of the workforce so as to increase the performance and sustainability of the organization. The management should create a structure were equity and diversity is acknowledged and appreciated in the organization.
Allen, M. R., & Wright, P. M. (2009). Strategic Management and HRM. Oxford Handbooks Online, 1-28. doi:10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199547029.003.0005
Delery, J. E., & Roumpi, D. (2017). Strategic human resource management, human capital and competitive advantage: is the field going in circles? Human Resource Management Journal, 27(1), 1-21. doi:10.1111/1748-8583.12137
Jurevicius, O. (2013, February 13). If It's Time to be Brave a PEST may be your Best Defense. Retrieved from https://www.strategicmanagementinsight.com/tools/pest-pestle-analysis.html
Meanger, S. (2018). The Youth Aid Centre [pdf].
Van Wijngaarden, J. D., Scholten, G. R., & Van Wijk, K. P. (2012). Strategic analysis for healthcare organizations: the suitability of the SWOT-analysis. The International Journal of Health Planning and Management, 27(1), 34-49. doi:10.1002/hpm.1032
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