Managing Human Resources

Importance of Human Resources Management


Managing human resource in an organization is a critical task as it aids in comprehending different aspects related to existing workforces. HRM policies and strategies aids the organization to get the contribution of employees in different work processes and along with that, it also increases organizational productivity (Ristow and, 2009). The present research study has been made on Harrods which is one of the renowned retail organizations in London. The retail store has employed more than 5000 employees from different countries which helps the organization to deliver prominent services to the customers. Harrods has been finding employees who have the potential to augment success aspects of the business and who can bring long term sustainability respectively. The subsequent study has been showcasing different perspective of human resource management along with the difference between traditional HRM and Personnel management. It has been observed that HRM is useful concept since it adds value to the business and afterwards it aids in achieving the strategic goals of Harrods.

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Task 1

1.1 Guest model of HRM

The main facet lies under Guest model specifies that HRM of an organization is accountable to manage all types of facets. The model also showcases vast difference between traditional approach of HRM and personnel management. As per the model, Harrods develops suitable policies and strategies for the employees so that they can be involved in all processes of the firm (Regis,  2008). It has also been observed that in terms of outcomes, Guest model assists the subsequent business entity to enhance the opportunities of growth and success by acquiring greater commitment from workforce. The model represents the value of personnel management in an organization by highlighting its purpose and success facets.  

The model also aids in managing the value of financial dimensions by retaining the workforce from indifferent strategies. According to the case study, it is being explored that performance of business is hampered due to financial and cost aspects and along with that, it has a significant impact on turnover (Haines and Bandt, 2002). At Harrods, employees are leaving the job roles even after completing one year period. Execution of Guest model aids in mapping out the activities which further helps in deriving appropriate outcomes for the business entity. However, on the other hand the model does not focuses on people management since it is a challenging aspect.

1.2 Compare the different between storey’s definition of HRM, Personnel and IR practices in context to the given case

According to Storey, HRM can be defined as the strategic and coherent approach to the management of an organization’s most valued assets i.e., are human being working within the firm who are individually and collectively contributing towards the achievement of company’s corporate objectives. While on the other hand, author sees personnel management as the management of the workforce or employees to comply with different rules and regulations as required by the owners of the business. However, personal management is more concerned towards the recruitment process, pay rolls and employment laws. According to Storey, it is important for the companies to follow or abide the industrial relations practices so that relationship between human resource and management can maintained as well as developed strong for the better execution of business activities.

There exists range of differences between personnel management and HRM where in human resource management assists in managing human capacity and commitment through emphasizing on all practices of organization. Personnel management chiefly focuses on developing better industrial relations for the purpose of enhancing the opportunities of growth and success at higher extent (Fauske and Raybould, 2005). It has been observed that Harrods is emphasized towards HRM practices where NHS is focused towards the concept of personnel management.

1.3 Implications for line managers as well as employees for developing strategic approach in Harrods

Human Resource Strategies of Harrods are the integrated version of all developed strategies which are also executed in the business entity. In order to implement HR strategies, Harrods is no longer required to develop clear directions as HR strategies are executed in the business for varied purposes.  

  • Adopting strategic approach for HRM leads the line managers to identify different terms and modes through which personnels can be encouraged to produce better outcomes (Managing employment relations, n.d).  
  • The approach also aids line managers to derive support from all the employees in all actions which further results in involving them all in processes of the business. Line managers are also required to communicate directly with the employees for the purpose of acquiring their contribution in decision making processes.  
  • Strategic goals of Harrods should be accurately communicated within the line managers so that they can delegate duties and authorities to the employees in proper manner (DeSimone and Werner, 2009). From the case analysis, it has been observed that the dimensions of HRM helps the line managers to augment the performance standards; however this is not suffice for acquiring competitive advantage.   
  • Hence, from the discussion it is clear that line managers are accountable to execute HR strategies in the business actions; however most of the line managers of Harrods find it difficult to practice HRM. This has a great impact on efficiency of such managers. 

Task 2

2.1 Explain how model of flexibility can be applied in practice

In service industry, employees have the authority to demand for flexibility at workplace if they have completed more than 25 weeks of service. Employees who have the idea of their rights and obligations can demand for alteration in working hours, job roles and place of work. Employers of Harrods are allowed to facilitate changes in the work patterns once in a year and afterwards accepting the change, employers can alter specified terms and conditions of employment (Chuang, Church and Zikic, 004). Only employee of Harrods has the right to demand for flexibility at workplace. 

For instance – an employee of Harrods can claim for flexibility if in case he is unable to manage work life balance. Here, a model of flexibility has been stated which Harrods could execute in the business actions. Shamrock organization model of flexibility can be adopted where in employees of Harrods should be considered the only sources that facilitate changes. The model basically works on three diverse facets where by the first leaflet represents the core staff members of Harrods. They are highly trained since they have to manage crucial business processes (Brockbank and Ulrich, 2005). The second leaf consists of contractual fringe who supply services to the business. They add value to the business by providing appropriate amount of resources to Harrods. The third leaflet is comprised of professional and experienced employees who shows greater commitment to the business by maintaining standard performance. They are more loyal to the business and are involved in every organizational processes.

2.2 Various types of flexibility which can be adopted by business enterprise

Functional approach

The approach helps the employees to change their roles and responsibilities; however for that they need to develop multiple skills. The standard form of employment is different since this is designed to improve efficiency and it also aids Harrods to reduce operational costs. This is a core area of traditional conflict because that involves division of skilled labor and non skilled labor (Bridle, 2010). Hence, this refers to a firm's ability to adjust and deploy the skills of its employees to match competitive scenario.    

Numerical approach

This refers to Harrod's ability in terms of adjusting the level of labor inputs to meet fluctuations in outputs. In this phase, part time and temporary workers are required who can perform different work processes of Harrods. The main purpose of adopting such flexibility is to increases the mixture of non standard employment forms in cheaper and efficient manner. Core permanent workforce and peripheral non permanent employees are different to each other and both are employed for diversified purposes.   

Financial approach

This refers to the achievement of flexibility through the pay and reward structure. Hence, in order to adopt the subsequent flexibility aspect, it is vital for Harrods to recruit people as per the availability of supply and demand facets (Boxhall and Purcell, 2008).

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2.3 Asses the use of flexible working practices from the point of view of employee and employer in the perspective of business enterprise

A range of benefits can be acquired by adopting the model of flexibility at Harrods as that not only saves time but also it saves cost which increases resource capability of the business entity. With the help of flexible work practices, tasks and projects can be completed within appropriate time limit and alongside that also increases quality of work processes (Managing people for success, 2000). Flexible work practices can help the firm to acquire success only when they are executed in adequate way. For that right sort of strategies should be used both by the employer and employee. From the case study, it is analyzed that Harrods has provided authority to the employees where in they can change their roles and responsibilities and they can also switch to different practices which subsequently matches their skills and abilities. Such efforts towards flexibility assists Harrods to derive employee support and appreciation at different stages of business management. Having flexible working hours increases the interest and faith of employees towards the business and this also aids them to develop different skills as per the job roles.

2.4 Discuss the impact of change in labor market that had on flexible working practices at business enterprise

Harrods and its work practices are highly affected from the changes in labor market as that generates range of other employment opportunities for workforce of Harrods. Labor market keeps on changing frequently and due to that, human resource strategies of Harrods also changes. While developing human resource policies, Harrods needs to consider aspects of labor market since that could only balance supply and demand. Huge demand in labor market for the employees increases the requirement of flexibility at Harrods so as to meet the needs of customers. Thus, it can be said that changes in labor market affects supply and demand aspects and as a result, that directly changes the ratio of employee attrition at Harrods (Bohlander and Snell, 2012). It is requisite for Harrods to satiate all the employees so that while appearing any changes in labor market, employees of Harrods may not switch to other organizations. And this is possible apparently through adopting flexible work practices. In respect for such concerns, Harrods have paid more concern towards employee engagement which also improves organizational environment. Besides that, the subsequent business entity has developed better relations with the employees. 

Task 3

3.1 Explain the forms of discrimination that can be take place in the workplace

Discrimination can take place in any of the form where in cultural, social and religious discrimination prevails the most. Employees of Harrods do not have any issues related to discrimination because the management considers equality and diversity aspects on higher grounds. These are the basic forms of employee discrimination:

  • Direct discrimination: In this form of discrimination, employers gives special preference to similar background employee. Here in this case, discrimination also prevails where in handicapped and disable employees are not provided with any rights and duties (Bhattacharyya, 2009). Employees are also discriminated on the basis of skills and other capabilities.  
  • Social abuse and harassment: Social harassment is a kind of exploitation in which people are discriminated on the basis of religion, caste, race and minority. Such type of discrimination also prevails in organizations which greatly impacts the mindset and mentality of employees.

Summing up the discussion, it can be stated that discriminating employees on any ground also disrespects rights of employees and that further affects effectiveness of organization. Harrods in such respect has been contributing to equality and diversity management where in all the employees are provided equal opportunities (Benevene, 2010).

3.2 Discuss the practical implications of equal opportunities legislation practiced in Harrods

Harrods has been managing legal practices in all business actions where in the major focus should be given on equal opportunities to the employees so that the value of organization can be augmented. There are certain acts that have been maintained at Harrods in response to equal opportunities for the employees:

  • Sex Discrimination Act 1975: As per the subsequent act, Harrods and the managers are not allowed to discriminate the employees on the basis of race, gender and marital status. Equal roles and responsibilities should be provided to all the employees (HR Policies & Employment Legislation, n.d).  
  • Race Relation Act 1976: Furthermore, employees should not be exploited through race, color, nationality and ethnic groups. Application of the act says that it is the duty of public authority to undertake positive actions so as to promote good industrial relations.   
  • Disability Discrimination Act 2003: Employees who are disable and handicapped should also be provided same authorities so as to spread a sense of responsiveness.  
  • Equal Pay Act 1970: There should be equal and adequate pay for both male and female as per the work done by them (Barbeito, 2004).

3.3 Compare the approaches which are adopted for managing equal opportunities and managing diversity

The above mentioned section of the research has specified the approaches that have been taken at Harrods for the purpose of managing equality and diversity management.  At the same time, the employees are provided with equal rights and responsibilities which helps Harrods to  undertake better decisions for the business. The organization is fair enough in managing all the practices where the leaders are authorized to involve all the groups for developing better coordination level (Armstrong and Taylor, 2014). Managing equality and diversity ensures Harrods to protect the employees from exploitation and discrimination and this also assists the business entity to facilitate innovation and creativity in business. Therefore, for such aspect, line managers are required to engage all the employees in organization's processes. On the contrary, employees of Harrods are provided with rewards and monetary benefits which encourages their morale and as a result, helps the subsequent organization to get employee contribution in growth and success. Hence, application of all such aspects aids in augmenting the value of employment practices at Harrods.  

Task 4

4.1 Compare and comment on different methods of performance management adopted by organization

Performance management system is a practice that is undertaken at Harrods for the motive of identifying the level of effectiveness among employee performance. There are number of tools that could be executed at Harrods to improve the performance of business consistently. The performance management system of Harrods measures different aspects in employee performance so as to find out the best talent among all the workforces. In such context, peer advice is taken into account where in leaders and supervisors are also authorized to present their views in performance management process (Dhar, 2008). Employee whose performance reaches to extra ordinary scale get the highest reward and pay. This is yet another source of motivation for them and employee even gives the best in goal achievement process. Harrods has a proper performance appraisal system where in performance of employees are analyzed on yearly basis and afterwards, they get recognition from the top executives. Similarly, the level of learning is also measured while evaluating the efficacy of performance. They are also rewarded on the basis of their contribution in goal achievement process.

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4.2 Assess the approaches to the practice of managing employee welfare in Harrods

Harrods has been managing the concept of employee welfare where in all the workforce are provided with proper remuneration as per the work done by them. At all stages, Harrods ensure that there is no discrimination among employees. Employee welfare scheme is the top priority of Harrods where in the mentioned aspects are considered respectively:

  • Availability of health, safety and security measures (Ristow and, 2009)  
  • Proper food amenities (including canteens, cafeteria and drinking water)
  • The employer make sure that the premises is clean and clear so that it may not hamper the health of any employee.  
  • On the other hand, flexible timings are arranged for the employees where in workforce can make their own schedules as per the job roles.  
  • Employee harassment policy is also formulated at Harrods which protects the rights and obligations of employees.
  • Females are provided with maternity leave benefits which they can avail in particular circumstances (Bhattacharyya, 2009).  

4.3 Discuss the implications of health and safety legislation on human resource practice

At Harrods, employers have given major concern towards health and safety aspects of the employees so that they can work in an environment which is healthy and suitable for them. This also avoids the chances of accidents and mis happenings. From organizational analysis, it has been observed that Harrods has maintained “Food Safety Team” where in the quality of food (which is served to the employees) is reviewed twice so that they can be protected from all sorts of harms and hazards (Regis, 2008). The firm never compromises with the health of employees as they are the only source that manages entire business functions. Accident and Emergency services are also arranged for the employees in the same way. 

4.4 Evaluate the impact of issues related to human resource practices reflected in the present case study and additional research

The issue related to employee turnover has been increasing at Harrods where in employees are leaving the firm within a year; thus for such aspect, it is vital for Harrods to undertake appropriate action. Employees are engaged in all processes at higher extent which maximizes the encouragement level and up to some extent, it results in achievement of goals and objectives. Upward communication structure has been followed at Harrods and this assists the employees to get adequate idea about their roles and responsibilities (Fauske, and Raybould, 2005). Thus, as per the prevailing issue, Maslow’s theory of Motivation can be adopted where in employees should be provided with monetary and non monetary both the benefits. At every stage, employee needs should be fulfilled so that they can show greater commitment to Harrods. 


Concluding the above research study, it can be articulated that every organization faces a number of issues related to human resource management due to involvement of different aspects in the concept. The government of UK has developed several policies and regulations for protecting the interest of employees in business entities. Summing up the dimensions of HRM, it can be stated that it aids all the employees of Harrods to participate in all processes which increases the degree of employee involvement. At the same time, employees are also allowed to claim for their rights and responsibilities related to health safety and other facets.


  • Armstrong, M. and Taylor, S., 2014. Armstrong's handbook of human resource management practice. Kogan Page Publishers.
  • Barbeito, C. L., 2004. Human Resource Policies and Procedures for Nonprofit Organizations. JohnWiley & Sons.
  • Benevene, P., 2010. Human resource strategic management in NPOs: An explorative study on managers' psychosocial training. Journal of Workplace Learning.
  • Bhattacharyya, D. K., 2009. Human Resource Planning. 2nd ed. Excel Books India.
  • Bohlander, G.W. and Snell, S.A., 2012. Managing Human Resources. Cengage Learning.
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