In this assignment you are asked to adopt the role of HR manager who is required to design the HR strategy for an organisation.

In this assignment you are asked to adopt the role of HR manager who is required to design the HR strategy for an organisation.

Choose an organisation that you have knowledge of, or interest in. Make sure it is an organisation where you can get useful information, preferably from first hand sources. You may wish to interview the HR manager of the organisation responsible for managing HR issues at strategic level, for greater insight into the issues faced by the organisation. Please note: your task is to make an independent assessment of the needs of the organisation. You are NOT to report on current practice within the organisation.

Quite often students make their task more difficult by selecting organisations that are too large, too complicated or too distant, or for which there is too little available information. Examples of organisations that are too big, too complicated, or too distant from you include Woolworths, Telstra, Optus, Qantas, General Motors, Nokia, Apple. Sometimes students choose organisations that are too distant – not in geography, but in useful, independent information about the organisation – and leave the student reliant on organisational websites, press releases or newspaper articles about the business. If you work for these organisations in a managerial role you probably will be able to obtain sufficient information.

Sometimes students, especially HR practitioners who work in the organisation they are using for this exercise, are unable to make an independent assessment of the organisation. As a result, these papers tend to repeat existing policy.

Sometimes students look at businesses for which there is too little to analyse – for example, analysing small retail stores, which are part of major chains, who are caught within major national business strategies, have no money to change anything and have already worked out the most efficient way to do business. One consequence of these approaches is that you will be limited in your scope to analyse the business. As a result, these papers tend to be the weakest submitted and receive the lowest marks.
Use a variety of sources of information in your background research on the organisational context. If you can, (but you are not required to) talk to people that work in the sector. Search and read stories in business news media, and study websites of the organisation and similar organisations in the sector. Be aware of the possibility of bias in an organisation’s public material. Use the knowledge of the typical threats, opportunities, strengths and weaknesses in organisations in the sector to develop a profile of your fictional organisation.

Step I: Business Strategy
Consider yourself the human resource manager. Begin by describing the organisation. Develop a profile of the organisation. What is the organisation’s core business product(s)? Undertake a STEEPLED analysis and describe the business environment in which the organisation operates. What are the external threats and opportunities confronting the organisation? Describe the organisation’s goals. Then, taking these into account, develop a statement of business strategy (how does the organisation intend to achieve its goals, given the challenges and opportunities presented by the external context?).

Step II: Design HR Strategy
Consider the implications of this business strategy for the HR system. Think about the internal characteristics of the organisation. What are its strengths and weaknesses? Most importantly for this set of assessment items, think about the organisation’s staff, their skills, the people management system. Think about how HR can add value. Taking into account the business strategy, develop a statement of HR strategy – the broad features of a people management strategy for the organisation that uses HR policies and practices to better achieve the organisation’s goals. Outline the ways in which HR can help the organisation achieve these business goals. In addition, consider ways in which HR can be a source of strategic advantage.

Step III: Delivery of HR Strategy
Next, consider the areas of HR activity covered in the course. What specific HR policies and practices will be needed to implement the HR strategy? Your task here is to convert the overall plan of the HR strategy into distinct and effective HR activities. The policies should be explicitly linked to the HR strategy.
Assignments are steps in a developing case. Each assignment contributes towards the next step

Assignment 1: Prepare a PowerPoint Presentation

You are asked to prepare a presentation of Step I (Business Strategy) and Step 2 (Design an appropriate HR strategy).

Prepare a PowerPoint presentation (500 words )
Key issues to address in your presentation:

(i) Did the presentation contain details about the external environment of the organisation? Was the STEEPLED analysis coherent? Are the main opportunities and threats explicitly identified?

(ii) Is there a clear statement of business strategy? Is there a clear logic for the business strategy?

(iii) Is there a clear recognition of the organisation’s HR-related strengths and weaknesses in being able to implement the business strategy?

(iv) Is there a clear statement of HR strategy? Is there a clear logic for the HR strategy? How well does it support the business strategy given the strengths and weakness analysis?

(v) Is the presentation organised in a coherent manner?

Please note: If you draw on an authority, you will need to acknowledge the source with an in text-citation and a full citation at the end of the document.

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