Introduction to assignment
This assignment provides an overview about the HR role and function that are important to an organization which would like to achieve its objective, by understanding how HR role and function work and support for reaching that objective; indicates how employees are important to this and also points out a distinction between management and leadership. For this case study, we will see the process in Hilton Group plc which related to HRM and its employees such as how can they deliver a service quality to their customer ,and who was behind the success.
Company Brief Overview
Hilton Group plc was a hospitality organization which was integrated between Hilton and Stakis plc to create a new brand. It was divided in to four global regions and each of them was given the decentralized organization structure .By the way, they have the same objective "Hilton Brand". Nowadays, there is no longer Hilton Group plc. It sold its hotels division, Hilton International, to Hilton Hotels Corporation in 2006.
Defining the roles and function of HRM
The role and function of HRM is the distinctive key point that drives an organization to achieve a current or future objective .It can increase organization success and also develop employee potentials through the high- performance by taking initiatives and provide guidance and support on all matters that relating to its company (Michael Armstrong,2006). The HRM emphasizes in "having the right people, in the right number, in the right place, in the right job, at the right time and cost and also with the right attitude and motivation.(RDI handbook, 2009) As we can say, the effective management of people in organization can drive your organization to achieve the goal efficiently. The HR function is something that dealing with people by managing and developing (Michael Armstrong, 2003)
Significantly, most part of an organization depends on the in HR department. "It is particularly concerned with all the activities that contribute to successfully attracting, developing, motivating and maintaining a high-performing workforce that results in its success"(Ronald R. Sims,2007,p5). Without people those activities do not exist; the HR function needs to demonstrate that it can add values to an organization (Lengnick-Hall, et al.,1999). Delivering a good quality of services to make customers satisfied is the considerable point for the organization especially in the hospitality industry , an organization with more satisfied customers will be more successful and more profitable .Unavoidably, Service Quality and customer satisfaction have long been recognized as playing a crucial role for success and survival in a competitive market and not surprisingly, especially in the condition of the market in the present worldwide recession, if any organization can make a competitive advantage through the high quality services that means they can step forward more than other organizations which are running the same business. For this reason HRM is the major part of the organization which can produce a good quality of employees in order to deliver a good quality of services to all customers.
According to the case study, when these two organizations, Hilton and Stakis decided to integrate to the Hilton Group plc, there were many factors that they had to consider and focus on such as reputation and structure, and clearly, the different organizational cultures between the two companies was the most difficult for them to integrate together, even though these two companies were running the same kind of business. We can, firstly, recognize that the HR department was the important part who played the significant role for the new organization. They chose to maintain the Stakis organizational culture "personality", engendering customer loyalty by being "accessible and intuitive", make service mistakes but overcoming them in a friendly manner. They did this first by placing the senior people from the Stakis organization into the key position. (Case study). By all evidences, these two organizations heavily focused on a service quality because best service quality can affect their customer satisfaction and we can notice that maintaining Stakis culture was important in this. From my point of view, I think this was a good start of 'new Hilton' because of this culture is a vital factor which can lead and support Hilton to reach its objective "brand promises"
Move to the employee section, a new HRM policy initiative called "Esprit" was expressed as a training program. This program was based on technical and behavior skills.(case study) It is extremely true that the good service should come from heart of the deliverer, the employee spirit not just from the system that was set. The HR department had designed a route to bring the spirit from their employee such as set up efficient training to change their staff behaviors and rewarding staff by developing an individual training record to motivate their staff to improve their competences. All the way from recruiting until deliver a good services we can notice that Hilton truly concentrated to people who work for it .As the last important role of HRM is maintain effective workforce relations. How did HRM make employee commit to Esprit? Leadership is might be an answer which impacted on improving employee performance. Leadership can be defined as the process of influencing others to understand and agree about what needs to be done and how to do it (Gary Yukl, 2006) .Not just manager should have a leadership skill to motivate and support their colleagues to adapt the knowledge which they got from joining "Esprit", to perform in a real situation by their hearts desire not just following their tasks but also giving a training program which can provide a leadership skills for employees. Some situations need employee empowerment to deal with and if employee can get self-esteem according to A Theory of Human Motivation (Maslow,1943) delivering a good service is likely to be effective.
To conclude, HR department was a crucial part of the Hilton Group plc that played a significant role through the organization by applying the strategy which was set by the management team to manage their employees. Without HRM, playing their part properly, as seen in, the case study, the "Equilibrium" strategy could not transfer to employees efficiently, delivering service quality to make customer satisfied.AS mention in the earlier part, we can, definitely, recognize that HRM participated in every part of the organization from the top management trough the bottom line .Therefore, emphasis on HRM is most important for any business who aim to succeed in their objective.
Whether jobs are easy or hard to obtain and keep everyone would like to work for a distinguished organization. Many decide to work because of a brand of an organization including its image of a high quality of employees. In presenting a value brand to the world, employees are important since engaged employees significantly impact customer satisfaction that they are promoting a brand of the organization by customer recognition (CIPD,2009)
Defining a corporate brand
Corporate brand is the strategic asset that can gain advantage of market entry, penetration, and a differentiation over their competitors. (MJ Hatch and M Schultz,2008) It is shown not only by organization's name, symbol and logos which make and attract their customer but by what the customer since experienced. Not surprisingly, most people always buy a product that they recognize by name, symbol or logo and where they know the staff will treat then well."There will be no guest delight without employee delight" (Andera Kluit, case study). How can an organization have a strong corporate brand without effective employer branding?
Defining an employer brand
Minchington (2006) defines an employer brand as "the image of an organization as a 'great place to work" It means ,as a future employee you will be definitely willing to work in an organization which can provide you a great time at work and appreciate you being a part of it .That expectations depends on things such as how an organization treats their employee by training , rewarding , salary, work/life balance or other compensations including all activities that related to an employee ,these are the key reasons why they choose to go to work and remain there.
"HR is increasingly involved with developing an employer brand as a way of attracting and retaining people" (Bill Quirke,2008,p297) .In an organization engaged employees are the main factor who can build an employer brand competitive edge (Mike Johnson,2004).Delivering employer branding is not only for employees who are in the front line but for the whole of an organization, they all have to take this responsibility to perform a high quality work to the customer but because front line employees are in the customer's eyes , they can make a reputation for any service by delivering positive or negative performance. Employee behaviors are the crucial aspect which can affect to a customer satisfaction by their performances. Interestingly, not only a behavior between employee and customer but also including behavior between employees (case study).Customers perceptions of face-to-face interaction with service employees have traditionally been considered one of the most important determinants for service satisfaction and loyalty (Grönroos, 1990). For this concept, we can notice that the HR VP of Hilton strongly emphasized it in developing quality of service through the Equilibrium program. An effective employee work performance definitely comes from employees who are well-trained and well developed by HRM. Successful delivering an employer branding is another significant role for an employee apart from working to reach their needs. "Employer branding, the creation of a brand image of the organization for prospective employee" (Michael Armstrong,2006,p395), as the best of employers to work for. In the world of business, facing challenges is unavoidable and lack of employee loyalty, commitment, and performance, or skill shortages are important key aspects which all organizations must, strongly, consider. How can an organization build a reliable brand for a future employee? Training, development and also the way an employee is treated are the answer which most organizations also know but how to make it real?
A successful employer branding initiative requires an awareness that employer branding continues beyond selecting the right candidate, into giving them opportunities to improve their career, and even can extend into retirement. Giving employees training and developing their performance are significant indicates of an employer awareness that promoting a strong employer brand is dependent on its employees performances. A high quality training and development program can establish a positive perception and attitude about an organization. An employer has to make their employees feel that their employer treats them as they are a part of an organizational success. Making an employee commit to his/her employment is the crucial mission for the employer. "people working within a culture of commitment are prepared to work longer, apply greater ingenuity to resolve a problem, try that much harder to win an order"(Alan Price,2007,p229).Therefore, rewarding or giving employee benefits are an important thing by which an employer can try to give in return for an employee effort .For instance, becoming a member of Esprit Club after a completion of the training program will give the employee benefits and also scheme rewards.(case study).Nowadays Hilton is continue shifting their employees performances by adding Hilton University, which is pivotal in empowering their employees to deliver exceptional service by using e-learning facility that provides a superb, varied range of learning opportunities to help employees develop their skills - apart from Esprit .Even if you are part time staff that come from an agency, Hilton also provide you a primary training for all to help your performing on their standard . ()
In conclude, the reason why the Hilton group plc can maintain their reputation brand up to now (Hilton Hotels Corporation) it is not because of luck, but it is because of what it does itself. It strongly focuses and emphasize on its people from the beginning of the process, recruiting and selecting, giving training and development program including measuring and auditing quality which can lead employees to a high-performance, giving a good quality service to their customers and making Hilton a leading choice of hotel brand for their future employees, worldwide.
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Together with another student who is studying the same course , I interviewed Mr. Jurgen Sutherland ,general manager, of Hilton ,London Paddington, on 18th November 2009.The purpose of this interview is to get some extra information which might support the assignment such as current operations in HRM after Hilton Group plc change to Hilton Hotel corporation.
I provided a few questions for this interview as follow:
- Is there any program apart from "Esprit" which is provided for its employees?
- How do they measure and audit quality?
- How can their part time staff give a customer service in a same standard?
- Mr. Jurgen Sutherland ,general manager, of Hilton ,London Paddington
- Miss Suthira Chayakrit
- Miss Vanessa Trivino