Examining Human Resource Management Policies in Marks and Spencers

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Company Profile

M&S made a humble beginning as a single market stall; and have grown to become one of the UK's leading retailers of clothing, food, home products and financial services. M&S employs 68,000 employees over 30 countries, has more than 500 stores and cater tens of millions of customers each and every week.

M&S is committed to provide superior quality products and that too at attractive prices. M&S's turnover is £8 billion.

Values

Success story of M&S has been built on a number of core company values that have remained almost unchanged. These values are:

Quality - Delivering excellent standards consistently.

Value - Delivering exceptional value to customers.

Innovation - Need to continue to be at the forefront of innovation in both general merchandising and food.

Trust - The most trusted retailer. M&S have a proud heritage of staff welfare, customer care and involvement in the community.

Service - They are committed to deliver the best services to customers.

Valued - Employees contribution to the business is rewarded.

Fairly treated - Employees are respected and valued, whoever they are.

Proud - Employees take pride in everything they do.

Committed - To delivering great customer service.

Involved - Employees are informed of new developments and kept up-to-date with the progress of the company.

Challenged - Employees challenge each other constructively every day and work at full potential.

From the above mentioned points it is clear that quality of Human Capital at M&S forms the basis of their values.

"It's all about creating a working environment that encourages people to add to their skills, and where they're provided with everything they need to achieve their potential."

(Belinda, HR Head, M & S)

HR Policies and Rules:

Service Rules:

Promotion Policy & Rules:

Any opportunities for promotion are open to all and depend on ability, skills and experience.

Wage Structure:

Each job is positioned within a reward level according to level of responsibility and market value. This enables M&S to:

Provide competitive salaries for each job taking into account market rates.

Reward everyone according to their contribution.

Payment is by BACS (Bankers Automated Clearing System) so it goes straight into employees account.

How pay is calculated

If a person is on an hourly rate of pay, monthly pay is calculated as follows:

Store administered employees

(Hourly rate x minimum agreed weekly committed hours x 52.25)/12

Head Office administered employees

(Hourly rate x minimum agreed weekly committed hours x 52)/12

For those on an annual salary, the calculation is:

Annual salary/12

* The Company reserves the right to suspend pay where an employee fails to notify about absence from work.

Employee motivation & welfare schemes:

Reward Policies

Marks & Spencer believes in sharing its progress and profitability and reward accordingly. They offer a range of benefits which are service-related, so they build up as service of an employee increases. Each element of the benefits package is reviewed regularly to ensure it remains competitive and maintains Marks & Spencer as a leading employer. Some of them are:

Employee Discount

Car Allowance

Healthcare Offers

M&S offers following healthcare options to all monthly paid employees and their partners:

Private health insurance

Dental plan insurance

Hospital Saving Association (HSA).

Travel & Expenses

Travel is an integral part of work for many people. Marks & Spencer offers travel options and expenses so employees can travel in a secure and comfortable manner.

Social Activities

The Company provides a grant each year for sports and social activities which are organised at business unit/store level.

Freeshares

Sharesave Schemes

Sharesave allows to save tax-free for three to five years and at the end of that period employee can buy Marks & Spencer shares at a specially discounted price.

Season Ticket Loans

Catering

They provide a subsidised catering service for all employees.

Lifestyle Options

M&S provides following options and benefits:

Flexible working - Including a range of options:

part-time working, job sharing, term-time working

Unpaid special leave - up to nine months. If an employee have two years' continuous service and the timing fits with the operation of the business , he can take up to nine months' unpaid leave.

Paid special leave - In case of serious personal difficulties, e.g. where a child is hospitalized.

Unpaid leave - up to 48 hours.

Political appointments - If an employee has a minimum of five years' service, a break of five years is available for all who are wishing to become candidates for any UK or European parliament or assembly.

Public duties/involvement in local community - In case of any other public duties to attend, an employee can speak to his line manager for adjustments.

Justice of the Peace or school governor - If an employee intends to become, a Justice of the Peace or school governor, adjustments are made in the working hours.

Armed Forces Volunteer Services - Offer a period of paid leave to volunteers and ex-service men and women who are required to go on annual training exercises.

Confidential helpline - A 24-hour confidential support service which help employees to manage stress, personal, traumatic or financial issues which are affecting their attendance or performance at work.

Maternity, Adoption, Paternity and Parental Leave entitlements.

IVF - Provide support if an employee or his/her partner is having IVF treatment.

Fostering - Support is provided if an employee is considering to become a foster parent.

Health & safety rules:

M&S is committed to ensure the health, safety and well being of all its employees, customers and others who visit or work in their premises.

M&S Policy on Health and Safety includes:

The Health & Safety Committee

It advises on health & safety policy, monitors its effectiveness and reviews key performance measures on a quarterly basis. The information is provided by the Fire, Health & Safety Officer Network Groups which also meet quarterly. Information from each location is exchanged with Fire, Health & Safety Officers at Business Involvement Group Meetings (BIG).

The Store/Site Manager

The Store/Site Manager is responsible for ensuring with Fire, Health & Safety Officer that Company Health & Safety Policy is implemented. This includes:

• Suitable Induction and Legislative Update training for Fire, Health & Safety.

• The prevention, investigation and the reporting of accidents.

• The completion of ongoing Risk Assessments and maintenance of known hazard information.

The Fire, Health & Safety Officer (FHSO)

He assists the Managers and works closely with the Central Retail Operational Support Fire, Health & Safety team.

Business Involvement Groups (BIGs)

It represents all employees in a two way communication. They discuss health & safety policy, performance and implementation as an agenda item at each meeting and update the business through the FHSO Networks.

Retail Operational Support Group

This group is responsible for determining and monitoring the Fire, Health & Safety Risk Assessments, work practices and enforcement measures.

Property, Development and Facilities Management

They are responsible for the provision of working areas, equipment and materials that are safe and don't pose any risk to health.

Occupational Health Services

Under this, they provide advice and support to line managers on managing the impact of work on health, and health on work.

It creates to safe, secure and pleasant working environment for employees.

Training and development:

Personal Development

Learning & career development

M&S is committed to develop its employees into skilled, customer-focused, enthusiastic and motivated employees. They do this through training, developing the necessary skills and knowledge to perform effectively and fulfill potential. An employee is equally responsible for learning and development. One should actively identify training and development needs by recognising strengths and weaknesses.

Proper formal training consisting of coaching and practical on-the-job experience, supported by a wide

range of learning resources is provided. Training is given as and when required e.g. the implementation of new systems.

Employees with disabilities

M&S help disabled employees to realise their full potential and provide them with the same career prospects and promotional opportunities that are available to all employees. In addition, they are provided with the retraining, rehabilitation and reasonable adjustments for those who become disabled during the course of working life.

Review of performance

Line managers review performance continually in order to assess how a particular employee is doing. It helps employee in assessing themselves and look for further development.

Managing Diversity:

Marks & Spencer have a diverse range of employees and are committed to an active Equal Opportunities Policy. This doesn't just cover recruitment and selection procedures, but runs right through training and development, appraisal, promotion opportunities and eventually to retirement.

M&S is highly dedicated and committed to promote an environment free from discrimination, harassment and victimisation and work hard to ensure everyone is offered equality of opportunity to achieve their full potential. All the decisions are objective, free from bias and based solely upon work criteria and individual merit. 

Highlights of Equal Opportunities Policy are:

Promote a working environment free from discrimination, harassment and victimisation on the basis of:

gender, sexual orientation, marital or civil partnership status, gender reassignment

race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin,

hours of work

religious or political beliefs

disability

age

Adequate concern is shown towards individual's personal circumstances and the needs of the business in order to find solutions to such issues. Reasonable adjustments are made to ensure that disabled workers or applicants are not placed at a substantial disadvantage by a practice or policy that exists at M&S. Proper help is provided to people with disability or who have learning difficulty to complete the application process online and also in telephone assessment.

Identification of Jobs and their Analysis:

Entry level:

Job description:

Job Specification:

Detailed recruitment and staffing procedure

Designing the Compensation Pattern; Incentives and Benefits

Effective Training Methodologies

Suitable Performance Management System

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