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ACME Engineering Company Managing Employee Relations Report

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Updated: Apr 18th, 2021

Introduction

The success of any given organization entirely depends on the employees. Different issues that affect their satisfaction can determine their productivity. ACME engineering has put in place the best strategies to ensure that its employees are comfortable in all aspects of their duties. This is only possible through the application of proper employee relationship management. This is the development and the management of the relationship between employers and their employees and among employees at all levels. However, it is not only their satisfaction that should be depended on to guarantee high productivity.

For the best results, employees should be directly engaged in issues that are most important to them (Blyton & Turnbull 2004). To ensure that every employee understands why some things happen and why others do not, it is important to keep open communication them and the management team. They should be given opportunities to air their views as that makes them feel part of the organization.

When they are not listened to, they may become frustrated and lose morale. The consequences can be very destructive as it can lead to a hostile work environment, which will negatively affect production. To ensure that this does not happen, it is advisable to conduct employee surveys since they build a foundation for immediate feedback. This presents a clear understanding of the feeling of the employees about communication in the work environment. Keeping open communication ensures that misunderstandings between the management and the employees rarely occur (Ackers & Wilson 2003).

Though people may try as much as possible to avoid conflicts, they are bound to occur anywhere people interact. The working place is no exception to this; therefore, an organization should employ the proper conflict management measures to ensure that the conflicts do not do great harm. A problem handling is a fundamental tool that should be applied with a lot of care to ensure that none of the parties involved in the conflict feels discriminated (Cully et al., 1999).

All of them should be treated equally according to the problem being solved. The blame should not be put on any one of them without good evidence. It becomes worse if the problem is between the employer and the employee and especially if the employer is on the wrong side. The employee relations management team should be able to convince the employer that all the blame points his or her way. To maintain a good relationship with the employees, they should be made to understand their duties effectively.

That way, they will not have to spend hours in the working place just because they are supposed to but because they have duties to undertake—employees from the most important asset of any given organization (Ackers et al. 1996). Without them, nothing would go on as there would be no production, no sales and hence the company would be just but a standing building.

The employee relationship management can have a positive impact on the productivity of a firm by improving the employee’s morale, loyalty, turnaround, communication, and change readiness. All that leads to good relationships among all the individuals working under the same roof. These kinds of relationships are built when the parties involved feel close to one another and have a rapport with each other. The human resources department plays a critical role in managing employee relations (Rose, 2008).

It should train and coach managers and executives on how to establish and nurture their relationships with employees. It should also go ahead to measure and monitor those relationships to determine whether the intended objectives are being met. In short, it should make sure that the work-life needs of the employees are well balanced. It can achieve this by ensuring that there the proper and enough staff is employed.

On top of that, it should include part-time, flextime or off-site work assignments in the employees’ schedule. To motivate them, they should be a good salary package, which should include various allowances. Human resource management should ensure that each of them gets some time off to relax, which, of course, should be paid (Daniels, 2006).

The management style used by ACME

The ACME Engineering Company makes use of a combination of management styles to maintain ideal employee relations. One of the employee relations management style applied within the company is the Hawthorne effect. This management style was developed within the years of 1930s to 1940s. It was actually based on various Hawthorne experiments carried out by Elton Mayo (Williams &Adam-Smith 2006). This management style operates within the principle that creating a working environment, which makes employees happy, contributes to having good workers.

Consequently, good workers are considered highly productive. ACME management has been keen on ensuring that all the employees remain happy. Following this kind of management style, more concentration should be directed towards providing various essential amenities to the employees to make them happy. Some of these amenities are such as healthy diet, conducive working environment, as well as, adequate light. The provision of these amenities makes it certain that the employees’ output remains optimum. The Hawthorne effect management style also requires employees to be paid in accordance with group production rather than individual production (Hyman & Mason 1995). Group production leads to an increase in daily output as employees work jointly as a team.

ACME management applies this style by making sure that the workers operate within well-ventilated workshops. Moreover, the employees are offered considerably good salaries, which enable them to have healthy diets. Also, the employees are given lunch breaks, which are long enough to allow them, take their meals, as well as have some rest. Initially, the concept of the Hawthorne effect was formulated in reference to two basic beliefs. The first belief was that persons are neither economic nor rational beings, as indicated by various classical theorists (Christopher, 1995). The second belief was that social interaction should be considered as an essential aspect within every workplace. Besides, employee performance gets better once the workers are treated as valuable resources within the company.

The Hawthorne experiments revealed that increasing the daily office hours often leads to increased production. In that perspective, the ACME Engineering workers are allowed to end their office hour’s half-past seven in the evening. In general, the ACME Engineering has realized the benefits of making use of the Hawthorne effect. In relation to this management style, ACME management has learnt that employees are valuable for the success of any organization. Within the corporate sector, employees remain to be the main resources, which once taken care of, can lead to high productivity (Dicker, 2003).

The other management style applied within the ACME Engineering Company is the one termed as ‘complex man’. This particular style is a critique of the other management styles. The style is highly focused on cultivating a safety culture within the workplace (Farnham & Institute of Personnel and Development, 2000). This style was formulated by Schein, E.H within the years of 1960s. There are several major factors, which lead to the development of safety culture.

In the first place, the employees’ employment performance could not be made better with only one management style. Secondly, the employees’ motives are sometimes exceedingly difficult and variable at various times. Lastly, it is not obvious that well-satisfied employees will automatically ensure high productivity within the firm (Secord 2003). Furthermore, some of the management styles were too simple to resolve various complex employees’ issues.

It is always the desire of every individual to work within an environment secure from any sort of injuries. In accordance with the complex man-management style, there are various requirements that should be satisfied to ensure that a safety culture is established (Yaeger & Sorensen 2009). To begin with, safety should be more prioritized than production. Employees should not, at any given moment, carry out their duties within an unsafe environment. In addition, all the necessary safety measures should be observed while organizing company meetings. The senior management should also show commitment to ensuring workplace safety by attending safety meetings.

Any issue raised by an employee concerning safety should be treated with the kind of seriousness it deserves. Besides, every firm is expected to have a safety officer as part of its personnel. Information related to workplace safety should be communicated effectively to the whole workforce. The senior management should ensure that the supervisors pass all the information regarding workplace safety to the junior employees (Salamon, 2000). Moreover, all the employees should be empowered by being involved in the formulation of safety policies. The management should also exercise the delegation of safety responsibilities in order to increase employees’ commitment to safety.

Why they use this approach

The ACME Engineering Company uses this approach in order to ensure maximum productivity. It has realized that the best way in which the firm could register good growth is by building the best relationship among all the individuals who work under its roof. The firm has ensured that all its employees feel close to the employer and the management in general in order to the feeling of unity. This way, it is easy for problems to be noted early in advance before they do harm and affect working (Heery & Salmon 2000).

Its human resource management is part of the employee relationship management team, and it has seen to it that all the workers get what they deserve. It has also created a favourable working environment for all employees, which has helped it minimize hazards. The company has taken all these measures with only one aim, and that is improving its productivity.

When treated well, employees can fully devote themselves to their work (Fairbrother, 2000). This is a fact that ACME Engineering observes with great interest. All its employees are treated equally such that none of them can claim that there is discrimination in the company. To ensure that conflicts are solved in the right way, it has put in place a protocol that should be observed. A problem-solving panel helps in solving problems between employees. It is also a position to deal with conflicts involving the employees and the employer. The company does this with the intention of meeting the agreed production according to the needs.

The company has employed well-qualified staff, which is equipped with the necessary skills for various types of work (Gennard, 2010). In addition to that, it retrains them every now and then to make sure that they get new skills, which may play a great in the success of the company. As a result, its employees are considered to much competition in their work. It has also gone ahead to maintain its employees by making sure that they receive one of the best pay packages.

When people are satisfied with the salary, they do not waste time looking for better-paying jobs (Edwards, 2003). The company has put this in mind in order to ensure that it does not lose its skilled labour force to other companies. It has employees who have served it for a very long time, and they do not think of moving to other places. This proves that their needs are taken care of making them enjoy life as undertake their various duties. In short, they have made the company their second home.

The extent that this style is made possible

The ACME Company practically applies the ‘complex man’ management style. The company management has put in place a competent Environment, Health, along with Safety (EH &S) system (Lewis et al. 2003). Within the company policy, the management outlines its commitment towards the minimization, as well as control of all hazards. It is actually the objective of the management to eliminate all the possible hazards. In the event that one of the employees is involved in an accident while undertaking company duties, the ACME management offers the necessary assistance to ensure that the victim attains full recovery.

The management should be committed to ensuring that all employees who incur injuries in the course of duty return to productivity within the shortest time possible (Millward et al. 2000). The employees are also advised to ensure that they do not cause any harm to their colleagues while undertaking their duties. It is every employee’s responsibility to adhere to the established secure working procedures. The employees are also required to forward reports about any accidents, which have occurred within the workplace to the management regardless of how small it might appear. In addition, the employees are also encouraged to make proposals on how they think the E H& S system can be made better.

The supervisors are expected to make it certain that not all staff violate the established secure working procedures. In addition, they are expected to establish the accuracy of all accident reports. It is also their duty to find out whether the employees conceal any information regarding ‘near miss’ activities. Moreover, sub-contractors, along with contractors, are expected to undertake their duties within a comprehensive EH&S system.

They are allowed to make use of the ACME system and make their own arrangements for any additional protection elements, which they may require while carrying out their work. The suggestions made by contractors are not overlooked but are incorporated within the system, given that they are practical. In the event that the contractor is unable to adhere to the ACME’s EH&S system; then the company management is forced to cancel the contract.

To make it certain that the two management styles are operational within the firm, the democratic style of management is also applied. This style is, on other occasions, termed as the participative style (Kersley et al. 2004). In respect to this style, the ACME employees are allowed to air their opinions without any sort of victimization. All the ACME policies are formulated after extensive consultations are made amongst the whole workforce. Moreover, before any decision is made, the employees first forward their suggestions on what they think is the best direction to follow. While making minor, as well as, major policies, the meeting is organized within the whole workforce undertakes lengthy discussions.

This kind of management style is also associated with the establishment of efficient communication channels (Kessler & Bayliss1998). The managers are not allowed to introduce policies within the firm without initially communicating with the other employees. The top-down communication, along with bottom-up communication, should be flowing smoothly without any sort of interference.

The top management is not expected to handle policy formulation issues as matters of high confidentiality. ACME, as a firm has achieved positive results because of making use of open-door policies. ACME managers interact and share ideas freely with their employees. The supervisors do not act as superiors to the other employees but work as equals. They lead by examples and do not simply ‘bark orders’ to the junior employees. Moreover, the targets set to the employees are realistic, as well as achievable. The newly made changes are communicated to the employees through the company website as well as notices.

Conclusion

Employee relationship management plays a very important role in determining the success of a given firm (Hollinshead et al. 2003). Building the proper relationship among employees and between them and their employer ensures that an organization moves forward.

ACME Engineering has ensured that all its employees feel close to and have reported with each other. It has one of the best employee relationship management team, which has promoted good communication and interaction between all the individuals involved in the running of the organization. As a result, its productivity has continued to go higher and higher as all that has boosted the morale of its employees (Hyman, 1975). However, it does not rely only on employee’s satisfaction for improved productivity since that does guarantee it.

The company has put in place other strategies to help it meet its target. A combination of management styles is used by ACME Engineering in order to maintain ideal employee relations. The ‘complex man’ and the Hawthorne effect management styles are some of the employee relations management styles that it applies. Through the latter, it has made sure that a happy working environment has been created which in turn has to lead to the development of good workers and hence high productivity (Kelly, 1998). Using the complex man style has enabled it to create safety for its employees.

References

Ackers, P. & Wilson, A. (2003). Understanding Work & Employment: Industrial Relations in Transition. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ackers, P, Smith, C. & Smith, P. (1996). The New Workplace and Trade Unionism. London: Routledge.

Blyton, P. & Turnbull, P. (2004). The Dynamics of Employee Relations. Basingstoke: Macmillan.

Christopher, D.M. (1995). The Origins of Modem Management Consulting. Journal of Business and Economic History, (24) 51-58.

Cully, M., Woodland, S., O’Reilly, A. and Dix, G. (1999). Britain at Work: As Depicted by the 1998 Workplace Employee Relations Survey. London: Routledge.

Daniels, K. (2006). Employee Relations in Organizational Context. London: CIPD.

Dicker, L. (2003). Employee relations: How to build strong relationships with your employees. Crows Nest, NSW: Allen & Unwin.

Edwards, P. (2003). Industrial Relations: Theory and Practice. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.

Gennard, J., and Judge, G. (2010). Employee Relations. London: Macmillan.

Fairbrother, P. (2000). Trade Unions at the Crossroads. London: Man sell.

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Heery, E., and Salmon, J. (2000). The Insecure Workforce. London: Routledge.

Hollinshead, P., Nicholls, P. & Tailby, S. (2003). Employee Relations. London: FT Pitman.

Hyman, J., & Mason, B. (1995). Managing employee involvement and participation. London: Sage.

Hyman, R. (1975). Industrial Relations: A Marxist Introduction. Basingstoke: Macmillan.

Kelly, J. (1998). Rethinking Industrial Relations. London: Routledge.

Kersley, B. Alpin, C. Forth, J. Bryson, A. Bewley, H. Dix,G. Oxenbridge, S. (2004). Inside the Workplace: First Findings from the 2004 Workplace Employment Relations Survey (WERS 2004). London: DTI.

Kessler, S. & Bayliss, F. (1998). Contemporary British Industrial Relations. Basingstoke: Macmillan.

Lewis, P., Thornhill, A. & Saunders, M. (2003). Understanding the Employment Relationship. London: FT Prentice Hall.

Millward, N., Bryston, A., and Forth, J. (2000). All Change at Work? British Employment Relations 1980-1998: As Portrayed by the Workplace Industrial Relations Survey Series. London: Routledge.

Rose, E. (2008). Employment Relations. London: Prentice Hall.

Salamon, M. (2000). Industrial Relations. London: Prentice Hall.

Secord, H. (2003). Implementing best practices in human resources management. Toronto: CCH Canadian.

Williams, S., Adam-Smith, D. (2006). Contemporary Employment Relations: A Critical Introduction, Oxford: OUP.

Yaeger, T. F., & Sorensen, P. F. (2009). Strategic organization development: Managing change for success. Charlotte, N.C: Information Age Pub.

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