Air Arabia is the first and also the largest passenger carriers in the Middle East and North African countries. The company has been making incessant successes in the past with the ultimate theme of being a low-cost carrier. Air Arabia has spread across 57 destinations with its flight services that are now amongst the most reliable and comfortable in the region. It totally suits the idea of value for money. One can also consider Air Arabia to be one of the largest organizations in the country as far as flight services are concerned. The reason for the same is its widespread network which it has started to maintain. For a company that is so huge in its network, one would certainly require a suitable HR system to be in place. This is because; it would have to keep up with the reputation that it boasts of. The company has a mission of maintaining multi-functional teams which makes it even more important to have a well-selected crew. This is the place where HRM has a role to play. The entire design that is involved in selecting the employees has to be extremely organized so as to meet the expectations of an organization as huge as Air Arabia. (Know Us, 2010)
Job Evaluation and Design Process
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For a large organization, especially when it gets distributed in different branches, one would have to perform a ranking of each of the jobs. The reason for the same is that once this is done, responsibilities can easily be assigned to the employees who are deemed to be eligible for a particular job. The job evaluation criterion is also reasonable from the perspective of defining the salaries and wages of the employees. This is because, once the companies can make an estimate the quality that exists in a person, they can very well map it to the salary they can offer. There are various factors on which job evaluation and design of a particular company are based. They have been mentioned as follows:
The first of these factors is the skill possessed by the individuals. It is very important for a company to recruit aspirants on the basis of the skill-set they possess. On numerous occasions, a company can manage with the employees of a lower skill category, but it is the specific skill-set that a person possesses which accounts for the work done during critical periods. Only once Air Arabia is well- acquainted of the skills of the employees can it make use of the right employees at the right time. The parameters for job evaluation through skills are education, experience and communication. The following discussion explains the utility of each one of them in the job evaluation and design process:
Education: This is the foremost criterion that every company must see in order to fulfil the goals of selecting the best candidates. The amount of education that employees in Air Arabia have determines the strength of the company to a large degree. This includes those who are appointed as pilots to those who are appointed as managers in different sectors like marketing, finance and human resource. It is only through a sound education system that air-hostesses in the flights used by Air Arabia can make live up to customers' expectation even when they know that the customer is not all that educated to understand. These are the times that ethical behaviour which is taught as an integral part of education comes into play. If one sees the marketing role played by the company, it is certainly a break-point to be recognized as a low-cost carrier in the market. This is where education counts.
Experience: Another very important factor for the job evaluation process is to know the experience of a candidate. The reason is that based on experiences, one can rank a person to a particular job. The organization hierarchy is rather based on the experience of a candidate. Even the pay-scale for an experienced candidate is generally more as compared to that for a fresh entrant. Many-a-times, past results become extremely useful for decision analysis purposes. But it becomes very significant at that point in time if the experienced employees are the ones who were actually a part of those past projects. This is where paying more to such people actually makes more sense.
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Communication: The final criterion in the skill section is that of communication. This becomes important as education and experience would only be extremely y be meaningful if there is communication involved in it. The employees are required to know the native language of the region along with English as well so as to make the maximum out of their skills. It is generally better to be able to convey rather that just waiting for circumstances to become worse.
The second criterion for job evaluation and design is effort. Air Arabia, being a flight carrier requires a huge amount of mental labour to be involved in most of their work. This is because it is certainly not an easy job to be at such huge altitudes having the responsibility of so many on your shoulders. In spite of all taking all the precautionary measures, if something goes wrong, problem solving techniques also count for all the employees. As this is a very critical job, so this attribute is also a must for the employees. There are other characteristic like concentration and complexity which also form a major reason for the company to accept or reject candidates. Once again, for a job as difficult as this, a high deal of concentration and a capability to fight the complexities are of high value for the company. (An Overview of the Job Evaluation Process, 2010)
For a company as large as Air Arabia, there are many dimensions of responsibility. These are in the field of finance, supervision, act of liberty, decision making, liaison and operations. Every candidate selected should be able to possess at least one of these responsibilities so as to deserve a place in the company. It must also be mentioned that these responsibilities are a long way possible after a certain degree of experience and education in the field. This is the reason that the job recruitment process for a person who is experienced should consist of a test to note the extent that the candidate has gone in responsibility after such exposure to the industry.
The final criterion for job evaluation and design is the working condition that the employee finds suitable for the person to have. This is attributed to the mental demand of the candidate. There are many candidates who in spite of having all the experiences and education in the industry, do not find it mentally suitable to work in flight. Many-a-times, the physical efforts and the visual demand also are areas of concern for the employees. So, job evaluation and design should be done in such a way that the companies are able to find the employees who can best suit the work environment that they can provide.
One must acknowledge the fact that a systematic process in the hiring procedure is a must for a company to accommodate people who can best serve to achieve the company's goals. So, as far as the first step is concerned, it starts with the process of recruitment. It is the phase where a company attracts candidates for a job and then follows it up by conducting a thorough screening. One can also say that recruitment is a process that is of an extremely harsh nature. The reason for the same is that candidates move into interviews, carrying the attraction that the advertisement for the recruitment process. But once they go on to get interviewed, they are tested for their lives. This is quintessential even though it doesn't sound very convincing at least for the candidates. But just in order to test for all the qualities that have been mentioned already, one would have to undergo such a process. If it is about Air Arabia, it has to be a little harsher. The reason for the same is that wherever a person is placed at Air Arabia, he would have to face the most critical of the conditions. So, the company has to ensure that only if a candidate has the capability to stand up to these asks, he can be recruited in Air Arabia. For example, the company can't just pick up any candidate from an aeronautical branch for the post of a pilot. There have to be other qualities like handling critical situations etc. On a broad spectrum, there are basically five different types of agencies for recruitment. They have been mentioned as follows:
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Traditional Agency: Traditionally, recruitment agencies have been seen to be physically located where the candidates are asked to come in for short-interviews. Once this is done, the shortlisted candidates are further interviewed by certain potential employers. This process is still in use at a number of places. In most of the cases Air Arabia has been using this approach. Such places include institutes and other academic organizations. There are three steps that Air Arabia follows in the processing. These three processes are a technical interview for short listing, followed by a management interview and then a HR interview.
Head hunters: The second type of recruitment agency is a situation controller. This is generally applicable when the normal traditional approach to recruitment has failed and the company is in a dilemma in its efforts to recruit the people. Let's say that Air Arabia is finding solutions to recruit a new set of employees. If it can't distinguish on the fact whether an experienced employee would be more productive as compared to an employee who is a fresher but with better skills, then head- hunters can certainly be taken into use. In this case, the recruitment process can become even harsher as compared to the traditional way. This is because, the differences between the qualities of the candidates is not worth distinguishing. These type of agencies are also used for negotiating on salaries and generally able to draw a suitable result for the recruiting company.
Niche Recruiters: The next form of recruitment agency is that of niche recruiters. These agencies generally function in a very narrow domain. If Air Arabia has to go for recruiting employees only for the post of pilots, they can take help of such companies. These agencies are also seen to come up with excellent results considering the fact that they can channel all their resources in order to test only a particular quality in a candidate. The specifications that such agencies choose can also include only a certain demographics. They have an aim to strengthen their relationships with the candidates so they are often engaged in recruiting the same employee again and again. This way the pilots of Air Arabia would be more and more experienced and also tested again and again so as to prove their skill. Hence, this recruitment agency is certainly responsible for drawing the best results.
In-house Recruiters: These are agencies who have taken the job of recruitment for masses. There are many companies which appreciate only a selected lot of candidates to appear for their interviews. This is possible by hiring such agencies which even go on campus recruitment to institutes short listing candidates so as to appear outsourcers of recruitment.
Passive Candidate Research Recruiters: These are agencies which make a combination of research aspects with the recruitment process so as to find employees capable of doing a particular job. So, in case Air Arabia is looking for marketing professionals who could further strengthen its theme of being a low-cost carriers, it would have to consult such agencies so that it can put them on research of their airline sector. (Recruitment Process, 2010)
The second process involved in the job hiring process is that of selection. It is totally different from recruitment as it is commonly confused with the term. The reason is that while recruitment deals with the harsh procedure of eliminating employees, this process once again excites the employees by making a selection out of the ones that had been shortlisted. So, the final entry into the company is made only through the selection process. As this is the case, it is essential that a thorough analysis of all the interviewees, their resumes, their references, their professional experiences, their knowledge in both technical as well as managerial fields and their literacy level (according to the demographics required by the company) should be done before moving further into training. Some of the companies use a number of business software solutions to help them out in the selection process. This form of automated technology is highly commonplace these days so as to make the work of selection faster and easier as well. Many filtering processes that are involved in the process of selection are done on the basis of applicant tracking system and the results have been absolutely fair and square. Air Arabia has also been used to conducting certain psychometric testing so as to test the mental status of an employee when the situation becomes highly critical. The company performs these measures when it is selecting employees who would be a part of the crew when the Air Arabia is on service. Situations that the company generally tests at this point in time are the sudden disturbances in weather or a tragic fault in the technical system of the flight. The company also tests employees for the intelligence they would use when urgent landing becomes a requirement. So, once the employees go through this entire trauma, they are finally adjudged as selected or rejected. So, for those candidates who finally appear victorious at the end of these selection procedures, are required to go undergo a training phase as the company needs to make them suitable enough to carry the reputation of Air Arabia on their shoulders. It is often seen that selection process doesn't take as much time as the recruitment process. The reason for the same is that there are very few candidates who are shortlisted once the recruitment is over. Moreover, with the assistance of recruitment agencies which have been discussed already, it becomes even easier to select employees. So one can conclude that selection procedures these days especially in companies like Air Arabia have become much different from what it used to be initially. The attributes of today's selection process are advanced technology and trade agencies.
There are many reasons where even the best of hiring processes adopted by a company can't get the best of candidates they desire. The reason for the same is that the companies have not been to the right place for their recruitment purposes. So, socialization becomes an extremely important option under the conditions. This is because; with the help of socialization a company can advance the network for their job selection. This is applicable in those areas where the previous employees serve as endorsements so as to draw the best employees in order to fulfil a particular vacancy in the company. Moreover, technology has advanced to a large extent these days. What happens these days is that a number of internship and placement options are open at social networking sites that include Facebook, Twitter, Orkut, LinkeIn etc. These are the sites where placement and internships can be easily advertised and that too at the least of expenses. Many companies in the recent past have started to do the same. As Air Arabia still feels that it can hire a better lot of employees, socialization is certainly a better way of doing the same. There are other advantages to use socialization process as well. This is that with the help of this process, a company can also estimate the amount of time that a particular employee would wish to work for it. Many-a-times, Air Arabia goes to some of the top institutions, but finally it turns out to be a failure. The reason for the same is that the employees who do join them also, do not do so for a considerable period of time. There are a number of disadvantages to the same. The first of these is that the company would have to waste a lot of effort, time and money just in order to compensate for the loss of a particular employee. This generally happens in the first year of recruitment. As it is so, it results into an even graver loss. This is because; the employees first undergo a period training where the company has to put in a lot of expenditure. Followed by this, if an employee goes in a rival company, there are great chances of a number of confidential matters to be revealed. This would certainly not be tolerated by the company. So, one can see that socialization has a huge degree of importance in the hiring process of a particular company. There are even further advantages that are associated with socialization. When a company puts up its advertisement for selection done on social networking sites, even those people who are already employed at different companies have a look at it. Now, if the company's job profile suits such candidates, then the company holds a great chance of hiring those employees who also have a considerable degree of experience in the industry. (Recruitment process socialization, 2010)
Once a candidate has been employed in the organization, the next factor that has to be taken into account for a proper functioning is the training part. Every employee requires a groom over the condition he has faced prior to joining the company. He needs to adopt the policies that are followed in the company which can only happen through a considerable degree of training. So, training is a process where an employee seeks knowledge sharpens his skills, clears his concepts about ideas and those pertaining to the company, making changes in his attitudes and finally enhancing his performance as well. Training has become a necessity because everyone wants to achieve something in life. This would certainly be incomplete without knowing how to reach it. Training provides the answer in such significant situations of life. Training might not as well lead one to the destination he was looking at, but it would certainly lead one to some destination which might even be better for him. If dreams have to come true, training is something that can give one the knowledge of doing so. Now, the role of HR management is changing as time is moving by. The relationship between training and HRM is also strengthening as a result. Now, both HR management and training are given priorities unlike older days when they were simply considered to be a waste of money.
The following section shows the association of HR professionals in the training process of a certain organization:
Employee education requires an active participation of the HR professionals. This can take place through some vigorous training processes.
At the end of the training process, the HR professionals are also required to give specific rewards to the employees who excel in the training period. This can be used to motivate the employees in order to function in the same manner as he had been doing in the training phase. (Exploring the training process, 2010)
Training process also works a lot in lifting the self-esteem of the employees. The HR professionals have a major role to play in the same. Once training has been done, the trainees feel that they have adequate understanding of the company they are working for which in turn is a matter of self-esteem so as to be associated with such a name.
HR professionals are also responsible for developing the skills of the employees that are related to the market they are aiming at. What also becomes of great concern here is that once these attributes come into the employees during their training period itself, they can further use it as an advanced education in order to provide training to the people who would work under them in the future. It is all about making the employees know about the importance that the training period has and all that can be learnt in the same period.
HR professionals can't just be harsh in their means as far as training is concerned. The reason for the same is that training involves candidates who are new to the company whose morale certainly needs to be lifted. So, what is required from the HR professionals is that they are as flexible as it is possible for them. The reason is that if the employees find the comfort to suit their mental condition, they would further work with a better zeal for the company. The degree of absenteeism in the company would also decrease to a substantial degree under the conditions. Flexibility is not just required from the time frame but it is also required from the place frame as well. If the trainee can manage his work at the resident itself, it would not be advisable for the HR professionals to call them to the work place all the time. As Air Arabia is such a huge organization, these sorts of allowances would only help it in its cause.
Performance Evaluation Process
Air Arabia operates in those countries where the level of competition in the airline sector is higher than almost all other sectors. The reason for the same is the amount of tourism that is ever-increasing in the region. So, such a situation leaves very little margin of error for the companies who have put in a lot of investment in the airline industry. It becomes even more vital for Air Arabia because, the company has a theme of being a low-cost carrier. Once this image of the company has been taken away by the competitors it would become very difficult for it to regain the same name and fame. So, performance evaluation becomes extremely necessary under the conditions. This is used to help the team leaders and managers at Air Arabia to consistently have meeting with regard to goals set by the organization, the performance of individual employees and the outcomes of the various projects that the company has undertaken. It may also include the training process. A suitable performance evaluation process would help the HR team to make better decisions for improvement of the job, development of career, recognition of the company and employees, compensation options and also corrective actions wherever necessary. It has become the need of the hour to use a proactive approach these days as compared to the reactive approach that was used previously for taking corrective actions. (Performance Evaluation System, 2010)
In a broad sense, performance evaluation basically consists of goal setting followed by performance evaluation on an annual basis.
Goals are generally set when the new evaluation period sets in. It becomes the responsibility of the supervisor that the employees follow the SMART principles in this context. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Result-Oriented and Time-Bound. They have been explained as follows:
Specific: The employees are supposed to create a manual, maintain a database of their performances, make it to special training in course of their work and also be equipped enough so as to be able to take a training session on all that they know. This varies from employee to employee as per as the log they maintain with respect to their performance in the company.
Measurable: Based on the accolades that the employee can manage at the end of time period which includes a certificate of appreciation, one can measure the performance of the particular employee. Even the success of the training session that the employees conduct can measure the extent to which a particular employee has succeeded in his efforts.
Achievable: It is also advisable for the employees to make sure that set only such goals that they can afford to achieve in a year's time. Here the balance would depend on the amount of exaggeration that the employer does and the amount of constraints that the employee puts. At times, just to emerge as champions amongst at par quality employees within the organization, some employees tend to set huge targets which they are finally unable to finish in the stipulated time frame. This becomes highly negative in the long run.
Result -Oriented: It must also be acknowledged at this point in time that the company focuses on what has been achieved rather than on the oath that the employee took in order to do so. For employees who are generally accustomed to giving excuses for not being able to achieve a target, it must be a pre-warning. The reason for the same is that employers are of the view that they would only set those targets that are achievable by the employees. So, an excuse in this respect can be highly harmful. For example, if Air Arabia sets a target of a certain number of passengers in a particular year, the sales and marketing people would be responsible for making it happen.
Time-Bound: Every goal that is signed by an employee as achievable needs to be done in time for it to the effective. Only once this happens, a company can fight the competition. Required service if provided at the required time makes sense or else it goes in vain. Every employer needs to keep this in mind as performance evaluation is largely based on this fact. (Quinn, 2010)
In order to measure the extent of growth at both professional and personal level, a company maintains a written documentation for each employer so as obtain a formal evaluation. The company ensures that it can check the progress, find the places of accomplishments, areas where there have been improvement or otherwise, also identify the goals that need to be set for the following year for the development of the company and the employee as well. The information that the employer gives about a particular employee should never be surprising for the employee as it is done in consent with the employee.
An employee can make use of a self-assessment questionnaire so as to assess his performance over the last year or so. He can also maintain a form that would include annual goal setting. It should also be mutual in nature. So, every employee can also maintain the evaluation document of the employer for best results.
Career Planning and Development Processes
Every employee has knowledge and areas of interest in a particular field. Career planning is about mapping these potentials that employees have with the requirements of the organization they are working for. Let's say that an employee has an upper-edge in mechanics. He has the option of taking care of the cock-pit of air planes. Career planning is to ensure that the organizations can manage the right amount and type of people, at the right time and right place as well. The process of development in this direction can only come from the fact that the employees would always go looking for opportunities rather than staying stagnant, obsolete and dissatisfied. The following are the roles of career planning:
It serves as a medium to motivation which is required for growth.
It helps in providing motivation for training and development perspective. We have already seen that a huge amount of difference is there between employees who are actually motivated and those who are not. It has a direct impact on the efficiency of the employees.
It also increases faith in organizations as employees feel that the organization is working in its favour. This makes them synchronize their goals with those of the company.
Career planning also increases career opportunities in the organization. The employees would now think of what they can manage to attain as a designation in the organization.
Career planning serves as a medium to provide direction to growth and development. This is because it would arouse interest in the employees to work.
It improves the image of the organization as a market for better employment. This would mean that more worthy candidates would now be applying for the organization. This would also help in socialization process. Once a company has the brand image of good employment, networking sites like Facebook and Orkut would actively participate in making recruitment more efficient for the organization.
It decreases negative parameters like absenteeism. If such parameters remain in the region, they are bound to stagnate the growth opportunities of the organization. (Career Planning, 2010)