The business world has become increasingly global in the 21st century facing competition from every corner of the universe. In this fierce battle of competition, a company needs to have top employees in order to gain competitive advantage and stay ahead of the rest of the world. Getting and recruiting the best employees from a hive of workers is not an easy job. A company needs to have good HRM policies and procedures through which they can attract the diamonds from the vast amount of people wanting to be employed.
(Mondy 2007).With the passing time, Human Resource Management for organizations has become complicated than ever before since the recruiting of employees is no more considered an easy job. A survey conducted reported that recruiting and retaining key employees is the single largest concern of the fastest growing companies in the world. A company’s success depends on the managers and employees of the organization who need to be highly productive and efficient at their work to generate positive results.
Human Resource Management does not only deal with the recruiting of employees but consists of various other activities. These include determining the staffing needs of the organization, hiring, recruiting and training the employees based on those needs, dealing with the performance issues in order to ensure they are high performers, outlining the pay and benefits, doing performance appraisals and finally ensuring that all the HRM practices are in accordance with the company and legal regulations (Burke & Cooper 2008).
Since Human resource management is the current issue in most of the organizations today, therefore, my term paper will discuss this in detail based on the practice of those companies which are most efficient at it. The topic for my term paper is therefore, HRM FOR RECRUITING TOP EMPLOYEES BASED ON GOOGLE, INC. Google, Inc has been selected because Google is no#1 on this year’s list of Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For. The top most priority for today’s fresh graduates is to seek employment in Google, Inc because of its efficient human resource management and growth opportunities. This paper will discuss the role and importance of HRM in recruiting top employees and define best practices which can be used by organizations in hiring and retaining employees over the long run. The case of Google will be discussed where emphasis will be placed on its HR practices which is actually responsible for the impressive results. Different resources will be used from books, journals, online articles to provide maximum and most relevant information on the issue.
Human Resource Management is a field which evolved with the realization that employees’ are company’s greatest assets and need to be managed properly. This field only centers on the workers of an organization to remain competitive. Organizations continuously invest on human capital (employees) of an organization in order to maximize the return and minimize the risk from employee dissatisfaction, job turnover and absenteeism. As already explained, Human Resource Management is concerned with a number of activities related to the employees including their hiring, selection, recruitment, training and development, performance evaluation and management, promotions, pay and benefits, and career development(Dessler 2007).
Keeping the employees motivated and satisfied in order for them to be productive is the most important issue facing organizations today. Employees’ satisfaction and motivation are continuously worked upon so that they stay committed to the company’s goals and objectives and strive for accomplishing them. The first and foremost task of HRM is to make employees as productive as possible for the organization. (Mathis & Jackson 2007). With the world changing so fast, the importance of employees has become prominent in strategy execution, improved service, adoption to ever changing business environment and efficient decision making process. An organization should always be geared towards continuous change and transformation to stay ahead of competition and without committed employees this cannot happen. Sound recruitment and selection process is necessary to ensure the long term success of an organization. For efficient recruitment and selection, the organization staffing needs should be identified first and then applicants should be evaluated against those needs of the business through written practical tests and interviews. Then based on the results of these, the best employees should be selected who are capable of contributing their maximum to the organization (Sims 2002). Employees also need to be trained so that they can identify the changing business environment and adapt accordingly. Training is counted amongst the most vital thing done by human resource department in an organization so that the workers should know how the task needs to be performed. Performance evaluations should be conducted regularly to know where the employees are lacking and further training can be provided to enhance their work skills. Moreover, proper compensation, benefits, bonuses, praise and recognition should be given to them to keep them motivated both intrinsically and extrinsically. It should also be ensured that the HRM practices are in line with the company regulations and as defined by the law (Barber 1998).
Motivation is considered the key factor which makes employees satisfied and geared towards accomplishing the organizational goals. If the employees aren’t motivated to perform well then the managers cannot get the work done productively from them. In order to do so managers can do a number of things which keep the employees continuously engaged with the company’s goals and objectives. (Herzberg 1987). The first thing which the managers can do is to align the company’s goals with the individual employee’s goals so that they are motivated to do what is in their best interests. This can be done by intrinsically motivating them through praise and recognition and also by keeping them involved in the company’s important projects and plans. Secondly, employees should have reasons to work for the goals of the company and these reasons should be based on their personal growth and success. Thirdly, an important factor is to know what drives the employees at work. This means that an organization should have a work environment which lets the employees feel good about them and fulfill their individual needs. This can be done by paying attention towards their needs and attitude and asking suggestions from them for job improvements (Arthur 2001). Employee feedback is important to know their current level of motivation and satisfaction from the job. Managers should develop a habit of appreciating the uniqueness of every employee so that they do not develop an inferiority complex from the other employees. By following these measures, managers and executives can ensure that their employees are motivated and will contribute effectively towards the organizational goals (Dale 2006).
Google Incorporation is an American public corporation and 9 year old global technology service provider with its headquarters in Mountain View, California. It is counted amongst the successful companies of the world. It has been on the top of the list of Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For. The employees feel self satisfied and excited being part of Google mainly because of the organizational culture based on trust rather than politics and providing resources and meaning to the employees’ work with transparent management process and accessible company founders. It is a company based on ‘doing and promoting good’ and hiring the best people from the world to help the company accomplish its mission, vision, strategies, goals and objectives.( Great Place to Work Institute, Inc. 2008). The service of free food at all hours, transportation, child care and elder care, gymnasium, on-site medical staff and entertainment provided by the company to its employees is what differentiates the Google from other companies. The culture at Google, Inc adds to this differentiation in which employees are treated with respect with special emphasis on fair workplace policies and procedures. Due to this culture, employees show high levels of cooperation and commitment to the company’s mission and goals. Since this paper is based on the Google, Inc HRM practices, it is important to discuss them so that other companies can also establish their HR policies and procedures on those lines. (Great Place to Work Institute, Inc. 2008).
RECRUITING AT GOOGLE
Google takes the selection and recruitment of employees as a serious task since the company considers hiring the right people the reason behind its success. Google is able to retain employees over the long run due to the aligning of employees’ skills and interest with the company’s culture due to which the company has lowest turnover and recruitment costs which allows for greater in-house knowledge retention. Such is the level of commitment that employees at Google state that they want to continue working with this company for the rest of their work life. (Fogleman, Anderson & McCorkle n.d.)
Google does not only take the recruitment of employees a serious issue but also gives special emphasis to their learning and growth by providing them such opportunities. Google sponsors classes on different subjects such as team and presentation skills, business writing skills, leadership and communication skills, foreign languages etc. Every group of employees is provided unique development opportunities according to their line of work. Recently, the company has enhanced its training and development programs for creating future leaders so that they can further themselves professionally (Tynan 2006). Besides this, the culture of the organization gives special importance to innovation and creativity so that the company can introduce new products and services and continuously enhance the existing ones. Though this is prevalent in every company but the support of top management, collaboration among various departments and the creative and expert engineers is not found in every company but it exists at Google which makes it stand above all. Moreover, a number of external events are organized which allows the non-Googlers to see the exciting culture of Google thus, making them attracted towards the company’s culture and developing a desire to work for it. The culture is also geared towards doing social good and believes in the statement ‘don’t be evil’. (Dalgaard 2007) .The Company has adopted various practices through which it can ensure preservation of nature and ethical conduct. (Berger & Berger 2003).
BEST PEOPLE PRACTICES
Following are the few of the numerous best practices and programs selected which are followed by the Google Company in retaining their employees and keeping them motivated. These practices and activities can be pursued by other companies and organization in order to strengthen their employee base. ( Great Place to Work Institute, Inc. 2008)
The company built credibility by fostering a two-way communication between the leaders, managers and employees, competence in the skills of the workforce, and integrity which depends on honest and reliable actions. (Hack 2000). There are quarterly company-wide strategy sessions and informal weekly get together where the senior executives and employees both discuss the pertaining issues and problems. The company also conducts various surveys on job satisfaction for those who cannot speak publicly about any issues so that the programs can be reshaped according to their needs. Moreover, the employees can create their own blogs through which cross-functional interaction has increased.
The practices that Google undertakes in order to build respect are professional support given to employees through the provision of training, resources and equipment, collaboration between managers and employees for generation of ideas and suggestions, and expression of care shown by managers to their employees to give latter a personal feeling.( Jardine & Amig 2001). This can be seen in various steps undertaken by Google to incorporate these practices. When the company introduces any product, it is first offered to the employees so that by collaborating with them, they can determine the shortcomings and ideas and how they need to be changed. The policies for new mothers and new-fathers are very lenient allowing them paid leave for longer periods of time. The flexible work hours, part-time work options, vacation policy etc allows the employees to maintain the best possible work/life balance. Continuous learning opportunities are provided to the engineering group and the company is also working on the opening of a Google University soon. Top and influential guest speakers are invited to speak with the employees in order to instill in them feelings of success and growth. The most exciting event took place when the company invited 2008 presidential candidates to speak with the employees.
Principles incorporated in Google, Inc which support fairness are sense of equity, impartiality and justice. Google provides recruitment opportunities to women and minorities thus, ensuring that there is no discrimination. Google has formed various groups for this namely Google Women Engineers, Black Googler Network, Native American Googlers and Hispanic Googler Network. This is done so that the company can derive the top talent from every group of people. Google also provides scholarships to in partnership with various other scholarship programs so that it helps in creating talent for the future. Further, the company follows a strong code of conduct to ensure fairness throughout the organization. An open door policy is also there to know the opinions of employees and promote a friendly and cooperative atmosphere. (Stewart &Brown 2008).
Employees at Google, Inc feel pride in their personal job, team and company as a whole because of the considerable efforts of the company. The company is a part of various social programs which makes the employees proud of their association with Google.
This is build at Google from the level of intimacy, hospitality and sense of community available within the company. The employees feel a part of the big family in the cultural events, parties, informal sessions on every Friday which allow them to foster the above mentioned attitudes and behaviors.
Thus, all these practices and policies tell us about the culture at Google which truly makes it the top ranked companies to work for. It places highest value on its relations with employees who are fruitful in the long run for the success and profitability of the company. Google is known for best employee services in the whole world and this gives company strategic edge and differentiates it from the competitors.
THE CASE STUDY OF GOOGLE
“Google’s HR Practices: A Strategic Edge?”
This case study basically talks about the innovative HR practices and policies adopted by Google, Inc. The company was rated as a best employer by college students, MBAs, engineers etc in a survey conducted. It is ranked the 1st by Fortune among ‘100 best companies to work for’. The HR practices employed at the company based on attracting and motivated the employees are responsible for the employee productivity and impressive results. The case first discusses the HRM practices in knowledge-based industry and then discusses the HRM practices employed at Google. (John, Nightingale & Girjia 2008).
HRM in Knowledge-Based Industries
In today’s knowledge-based company, the human capital is considered the greatest asset and a strong determinant of growth and success. The fast changing nature of the business which has increasingly become global with an increasing competition requires knowledge-based workers and an environment where they can work productively. Human Resource Management is a part of every organization today in order to manage the greatest assets (people). The most important challenge facing organizations today is the hunting of talent from a vast pool of human resource and their recruitment and retention in such a way that they become a perfect fit for the job. For this, the employers try to provide training sessions for the skill enhancement and built a conducive work environment beneficial for them. As the talent acquisition is growing, the companies are facing the challenge to select the best from this pool of talent. HRM allows the employees to adapt to the culture of the organization and technology change while bridging the gap between top management and employees in order to maintain high levels of performance. HRM provides benefit packages to employees who consist of numerous services so that the employees remain motivated and committed. Knowledge-based companies have work places which enable employees to generate high levels of productivity and performance. (Hansell 2007).
GOOGLE HRM PRACTICES
The analysis of the HRM practices at Google, Inc reveals the following information about its HR policies and corporate culture.( John, Nightingale & Girjia 2008).
· Google is recognized as the most innovative organization where people continuously work on development of products and services to enhance employee morale and creativity.
· At Google, the HR practices are known as “People Operations’ so that it is not a part of the administrative function. People selected on the basis of their abilities rather than on the basis of experience.
· The company uses a disruptive approach for attracting, recruiting and retaining employees. For recruitment purposes, a recruiting machine has been created which contains all the details about the staffing needs and requirements of the company
· The statistics reveals that there were around one million applicants last year and the company produced 800 hires per month. The new assessment tool based on algorithm is used in identifying the applicants with the top existing performers. This marked a shift from traditional approach to an innovative approach. Moreover, the company follows a model called ’20 percent time’ where employees are asked to dedicate 20% of their work time in thinking innovatively.
· The work place is designed to keep the employees excited and in mood due to the various colors and lighting used in designing the premises.
· The compensation program followed at Google is ‘pay-for-performance’ due to which there is strong motivation among employees to perform well for gaining the rewards. Moreover, the benefit packages in place are more than what employees can even expect in other organizations. This makes Google the best place to work for with an employee turnover of only 5% in 2007.
· A number of services are provided to the workers included transportation and free food all day long so that they enjoy their work and generate positive results. Few other services have been discussed in the previous section of this paper.
· Tremendous training and learning opportunities are provided to the staff including classes, sessions, meetings with higher officials and lectures from qualified individuals.
· The company has unique HR policies and work culture because it does not follow the traditional methods and focuses on exciting practices. This way employees at Google can become top performers.
· One drawback which I came across is that Google should be about more business and less pleasure. Balancing business and pleasure can hinder growth and success. The fun loving environment and work culture can deviate the employees all together from work instead of keeping them motivation. Fun should be provided but to an extent.
· The future implication is that Google might face difficulty in maintaining continuous growth and the work culture which motivates the employees since the nature of work at Google is such that it undergoes constant change and employees feel difficulty in adjusting.
· The company should always be mindful of its business strategy and should not lose track while focusing too much on attracting talent and other HR activities.
To sum up the entire discussion, we can say that the HRM is a crucial part of the highly competitive and global business world today which should be given utmost priority since people make the most important assets of the company. In this regard, the HRM practices at Google are worth mentioning since they become the best example and ideal for other companies to follow in order to gain competitive advantage. The HR practices at Google differentiate the company from the competitors allowing it to generate high revenues. Google’s importance to HR is justified since it is the employees who can cause the company to rise or fall through their work efforts. Employee recruitment is the most important since hiring the best talent will ensure the success of the organization. Efficient techniques should be used for these purposes based on Google’s practices in order for the company to generate positive results in the long run. Thus, HRM plays vital role in the recruitment and retention of employees which has become the top most priority of the companies today. (BNET Editorial n.d.)
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