Examining Human Resource Management Models and Tools

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The human resource management is based on the techniques and idea to develop and enhanced the employees' motivation, performance and productivity. The human resource management models should emphasizes on the following points

To encourage employees to think that management is the partner rather then its opponent and creating a thinking of 'us and us' rather then 'us and them'.

To treat the employees as an individual rather then a part of a combined workforce.

To find out new ways of working with the employees.

Human resource management is focused on flexible recruiting, committed and capable human resources, to reward and manage the human resources and to develop key competencies (Alan Price, 2004). This report will emphasis on three major points firstly it will investigate the contribution of human resource management for the achievement of organizational goals and objectives, secondly the examination of human resource planning and the development methods and at last would analyze the ways in which the performance of human resource may be planned.

Background of the company

One of the first McDonald's restaurants was opened in 1940 in California by two brothers named Mac and Dick McDonald. They started with the idea of cheap good quality food with fast and quick service. But the business started growing when Ray Kroc- a Chicago based salesman with a talent of marketing joined the company. There are more then thirty thousand McDonald's restaurant serving on an average fifty million people in one hundred and nineteen countries and territories. McDonald's consider people as the main asset of the organization and believes that people do well in their job when they feel good to work for their job in the organization. The employee working for McDonald's not only becomes the part of the largest global brands but is constantly developing organization which offers culture of flexibility, equality, opportunity and diversity.

Human Resource Management Activities:

Recruitment, Selection Methods and Training:


The recruitment in McDonald's is based on two position- crew member and trainee business manager.

Crew Member:

The application process is a two step application process for the potential crew member. The first phase is the online application process and if successful the applicant is invited to restaurant for an On Job Evaluation (OJE) and interview. During the OJE process which last for not more then 15 minutes candidate is asked to work in the customer facing areas and the specified instruction will be given to the candidate. After OJE the candidate is interviewed by the business manager. The process is no longer then more then 30 minutes. Once the crew member is hired they are asked to attend the welcome meeting at a particular restaurant or the recruitment centre. This meeting is for an hour in which involves viewing of DVD and getting more information about the company. This meeting also allows for an interaction between the manager and the new starter. The second part is the online test on health and safety and food safety which the new candidate has to complete in their own time.

Trainee Business Manager

The candidate for the trainee business manager should be a long term career minded personality. To make sure that the candidate and the McDonald's are right for each other the selection process is of four stages. The first stage is the initial screening to find out whether the candidate meets the basic requirement. The successful candidate is asked to complete the online personality questionnaire. The third stage is the restaurant based evaluation on job. The candidate has to do the real job for the whole day to discover the experience working in the McDonald's restaurant. The final step is the interview with the senior manager.

Human Resource Management Models:

The Matching Models of Human Resource Management- Michigan School (Fombrun et al, 1984) The management and the human resource systems should match with the strategies of the organization and most of the organization consists of four common functions- selection, rewards, appraisals and development.

Selection - here selection means the matching of existing perfect people to the perfect jobs/internal vacancies in the organization.

Rewards - this is the important tool in driving the performance of the organization but is one of the under developed tools of the management. Hence it is notice that for the development or the performance of the organization in the present it must reward short term as well as long term achievements of the employees to succeed in the future development of the organization.

Development - the employees with high skill or a high quality human resource should be developed to achieve the goals and objective of the organization.


Performance Management




The Human Resource Cycle

(adapted from Fomburn er al, 1984)

A Handbook of Human Resource Management Practice, Armstrong, Michael, Kogan Page publisher, 1 January, 2006

The Harvard structure - Harvard School of Beer el al (1984), Boxall (1992)

The framework of Harvard is based on the idea that any problem of human resource could be solved by the managers who can involve the employees in the development of the organization by their own development. And by doing so the human resource management policies might achieve the goals of the organization. Hence overall, the human resource is taught to be an independent activity guided by its own practice without the strategic vision of the manager.

Today, as it is a belief by Beer and his team that due to lot of pressure on the company's human resource management to be more inclusive and have a broader and strategic view which put employee has an asset rather than a cost to the organization. Organization considers that human resource management belongs to the line manager and is involved in all the decisions made by the management. This would have an affect on the relationship between the organization and its human resource. Two main features which are suggested by the Harvard School are as follows -

The responsibility of combining the competitive strategies and the human resource policies should be accepted by the line managers.

The HR policies could be made strong if set up through employees to manage the way HR activities are developed and implement.

Stakeholder interest:

Shareholders, management, employees, government, unions

Situational factors:

Work force characteristics, business strategy and conditions, management philosophy, unions, technology, laws and social values, labour market

HRM policy choices:

Employee influence, human resource flow, work and reward system

HR outcomes:

Commitment, congruence, cost effectiveness

Long-term consequences:

Individual well being, organizational effectiveness, societal well-being

The Harvard Framework for Human Resource Management

(Source: Beer et al, 1984)

A Handbook of Human Resource Management Practice, Armstrong, Michael, Kogan Page publisher, 1 January, 2006

The following are the advantages of the above model (Boxall, 1992)

It identifies the proper management control on strategic choices connecting socio-cultural logic and the product market.

It expands the perspective of human resource management to include the control of the employees, the working of the organization and questioning the approaches by the supervisor towards the human resources.

It gives importance to strategic choice which is not forced with the environmental or situational determinism.

It includes the interest of stakeholders.

It includes the interest of the employees and the owners as well as with the other group's interest either directly or indirectly.

Thus the models of Harvard as more impact on the theory and the real practice of human resource management keeping the fact that human resource management is a general concern of management rather then mostly the function of human resource.

HRM and Selection Tools (the selection of right person for the right job for maximum performance):

(Hay Group Pte Ltd., January, 2004) The selection tools are used to assess the variables to directly relate the performance of the candidate and the job. Thus greater the relation of selection tools with the job and the ability of the candidate to perform or the ability for testing the required skills and the knowledge greater is the chances to predict the future performance of the applicant. The selection of an employee is made through three different types Person-Job fit, Person-group fit and Person-organization fit. Person-job fit is a matching between the individual's knowledge, abilities and skills identified through the analysis of job. The long term performance of an employee could be improved by correct matching between the skills of the candidate and the quality of the job with proper training to improve productivity. Thus the individual who are engaged with the jobs with challenges could perform well (based on the presentation from the twelfth equipment management workshop). Person-Group fit is a matching between the new hire employee and the current group of employees already working in the company. Thus if the interaction of the new employee with the existing group is of good quality it might also increase the performance of the other team members in the group. Many researches demonstrate that the employees sharing certain values and beliefs are likely to have a positive work attitudes then the human resource that do not (Ostroff & Kozlowski, 1992). Person-group fit could take place if the new employee's distinctive characteristics compliments and support the existing member of the group (Muchinsky & Monahan, 1987). Since all the members of the group have some personal qualities and deficiencies as compared to the overall performance of the group, the group performance could be enhanced by complimenting the deficiency of one member with the strength of another group member. Person - organization fit is a matching between the values and culture of the company with the individual's idea, personality and principles. A cultural mismatch between an employee and the company may result in dissatisfaction and high attrition rate leading to poor performance on the job. New employees who perfectly match with the company culture and values are likely to remain for a longer time in the organization.

To access the fitness between the applicant and the job, as well as the organization employers could use the following combination of selection tools.

Work Sample: - In this test candidate are actually asked to perform a part of the job so that the success of candidate in doing the particular job could be determined. The maximum result or a realistic assessment of the scene could be achieved through correctly defining the part of the job asked to perform. Firstly candidate should be given reasonable time to complete the task asked to perform. Secondly, candidate should not need specialist knowledge to complete the task. Overall, all the candidate should be asked to perform the same task under the same condition. It has a high validity in assessing the Person-job fit.

Personality test - this method is used to find the right characteristic of the individual which is not obtain from resume and increases the chances of fitting the job requirement and the employee. Moderate validity in individual-group fit and moderate validity in assessing Person-organization fit.

Reference checks - many organizations asked for the references from the previous organization to find out about the candidate. Since the references are given by the candidate there are chances that it would always present the positive image of the applicant. It has a low predictability and mainly used to find out the truthfulness of an employee known as pre-employment check.

Structured Interview: - Structured interview make sure that the question are job related contributing connection between the methods of selection and fitness of the candidate selected. The various types of structured interviews are

Criterion-based interviews - this form of interviews are based on the previously planned questionnaire based on all aspects of the job. The structure of the interview, interviewer and the questions are selected to find out the requirements for effective performance and attempts to search for specific skills relevant for the job. It has high validity in assessing individual-job fit, moderate in assessing Person-group fit and moderate in assessing Person-organization fit.

Situational Interviews - these are used by asking the candidate 'what if'- type questions. The questions could be could be chosen to reflect the critical or the difficult aspect of the job. It has high validity in assessing person-job fit, moderate in assessing Person-group fit and moderate in assessing Person-organization fit.

Unstructured interview - little planning is conducted by the interviewer due to lack of time and mostly there is a great extent of variation between the interviewers. Low validity between an individual and the organization and also low validity in Person-group fit.

General mentality test: - It differentiates the candidate's mental ability required for the job. This test is mostly used for entry level jobs and for applicant without advanced degrees or professional qualification. It has a high validity in assessing Person-job fit.


Overall, McDonald's recruitment and selection process is a combination of online test and personal interview with the business managers. This type of selection is good for the selection of short term employees. But for the selection of long term employees McDonald's should focused on new recruitment and selection procedures like structured interviews and personality test. Overall though McDonald's recruitment is targeted on students and part time employees, an improvement in the recruitment and selection process would boost the human resource management to achieve the long term goals and objective of the organization.