This report will cover my findings on what is attributes are required in HR department. I particularly choose HR because I see myself in this occupation in the future and this assignment would give me a head start.
I am going to look at different types section in HR and see what is best fitted to me.
By looking at six organisations, I want to find out what are their requirements to have perfect candidates. With this knowledge I will go on and compare my skills and attributes to the requirement of the organisations. This is going to tell me what skills I lack and to make a plan on how to gain those skills.
2.1 Terms of research
The research and report is based on what is required to become a graduate in HR. the research will came across sectors that make HR. (See appendix 1) the information, will give a better insight of Human Resource manager this will help in the decision making process as it would give a better idea on what is required to work in a HR sector. The outcome of the research will be to see what skills are needed to become a HR manager.
The target, in this section was to get the latest information on the six organisations. The focus would mostly be on large organisations due to the current credit crunch. The credit crunch has affected many businesses and the small business would have been affected the most. This would also mean that, those businesses would not be able to expand in the near future, which would affect the graduates.
Internet sources would provide the opportunity of getting up to date information. It is a good chance to review the latest information about the organisation through looking at sites like BBC, or any news article that was relating to the six organisations which would provide sufficient information on the current state of affairs.
The advantage of using internet is that similar information can be access online rather than having to look at newspaper articles which are time consuming. Another advantage is if any query came up they would be easily accessed via email.
2.3 Main Findings
Organisation one is, Royal mail. The profits have been surprisingly high, considering the economic situation. The high profit has resulted in nearly 2500 post offices closing down. (See appendix 2) This meant that many staff was redundant. This will have a major impact to the hiring of graduates. On the other hand this would an ideal opportunity to hire graduates as they would start on a low salary and work as hard as other employees
In the role of HR Royal mail would offer a graduate a chance to build on their general and specialist HR skills. The program will give the graduate a chance in experiencing in number of HR areas; this would be an opportunity to find out where you want to grow your career. To help you to identify which roles are most suited to your experience and interests. The graduate will have experience on various roles including recruitment, learning, reward and recognition, corporate social responsibility and advice and support. (See appendix 10)
The requirement for this role see (bottom of appendix 10). The application process see appendix 11.
Second company is Shell, they are getting stronger and stronger in terms of their profits the current crisis has had little or no effect on the organisation (see appendix 3). Oil is the most actively traded commodity. This is shown in terms of the increase in profits. The increase in profit means that the company put vast amount money into their recruitment process.
Shell encourages students and graduates to come to their recruitment days, and they would help you to make career choices. (See appendix 4). Shell will have the graduate focusing on recruitment, performance management, learning and development or another specialist area. Shell require their graduates to be able to able to absorb information, analyse problems, make objective decisions and come up with ideas of their own. You also need sensitivity and influencing skills to work as part of a team. (See appendix 12)
The organisation has three ways of which to recruit staff and you have to choose a path during the application process. (see bottom of appendix 12)
Nestle is the third organisation. Nestle is a controversial organisation, pressurised by trade unions, governments and by the press, but they cannot take away the fact that they are a very successful company. The career options for graduates is very well organised and give a sense of welcome into the organisation. (See appendix 5). Nestle are creating jobs in New York (appendix 6) this is good news as the credit crunch is causing other organisation to cut jobs. Even if the jobs are in New York, there is a good chance that the trend is going to continue in to the UK. For graduates there is a two year two-year programme designed to give you an overall perspective in HR they will be working in areas such as Recruitment, Learning & Development, Information and Advice (see appendix 13). Nestle are looking for graduates who has a HR degree or Masters they have other needs see appendix 13 for rest of them. Also in appendix 13 there is the application process.
Forth company is Marriot, this is a big hotel chain specialising in hospitality. The economic crisis will have a major impact on the organisation because people are looking to save money. To save money they are cutting down on luxury and Marriot hotels fall under this category.
In terms of working the Sunday Times named them in the top 20 best Big Company to work for in 2008. (See appendix 7). Marriot offers graduates to a get an insight on how the HR side of the business works. They are looking for graduates who are innovative, guest-focused way of thinking. (See appendix 14). In appendix 15 shows the application process in which a graduate must go through.
The fifth company is Lloyds TSB. Lloyd’s are going through a tough period the credit crunch has hit them hard and they are on the verge to be taken over by HBOS (see appendix 8). The plan could result in job losses, but on the other hand this would ensure the organisation save millions of pounds. And in the future Lloyds would look to hire staff with a low starting salary to ride out the crisis. And this could be a great opportunity to hire the graduates who would bring fresh ideas into the organisation together with great challenge and commitment to help the company out of the sticky situation. Again similar to other companies Lloyds will help the graduates to see what HR is all about. The difference lies in the organisation helping graduates towards your chartered institute of personnel development (CIPD). They break the programme down into three section first is the generalist placement – duration: 9 months, second is, front line placement – duration: 6 months, finally generalist/specialist HR placement – duration: 9 months. They require the graduates to bring excellent judgement, drive, influence and the ability to successfully deliver and exceed even your own expectations (see appendix 16). They have a section on educational criteria which you can view in (appendix 17). This shows what the requirement to become a graduate at Lloyds is. Furthermore in appendix 18 shows, the process in which the graduates will be chosen.
The sixth company is British Airways. BA profits have declined due to the credit crunch, looking at the positive they are hoping to make some profit in the financial year. (See appendix 9). The future looks bright as they have opened a new terminal and are expecting high profit from this. The new terminal would require more staff and to save money they could hire graduates.
They have recently created a programme in which the HR graduates can benefit see appendix 19. They are very clear on who they are looking for in graduates which is Personal Credibility, Delivering Results, Customer Service, HR Mastery and Business Mastery. (See appendix 20). They have clearly stated the requirements i.e. 2:1 Honours Degree in any discipline. The application has to normally be completed on line, if successful you would be going through tests like psychometric tests & personality questionnaire, a group discussion, work related exercise and interview. (See appendix 21).
In this section I will be analysing my skills and relating it to the skills which is required by the six organisations. Through using tools such as Gap analysis and Action Plan.
3.1 Personal Analysis
I have gained valuable skills through various activities, whether it is during Cricket, group work or individual. My coaching badge has enabled me to implement and improve various skills such as communication skills and leadership skills, as well as acquiring new ones such as adaptability. I was given a chance by Stanmore Cricket Club to implement these skills. I was able to coach different groups such as under 14’s, as well as manage the under 10 year olds. Individual and group work in both college and university has enhanced my ability to communicate and work as a valuable team member.
Currently I have grasped the skills like Adaptability, Leadership, Organisational skills, and Communication Skills and Excellent time management.
3.2 CV and Covering Letter
See appendix 22 and 23
3.3 Gap Analysis
In appendix 24 I have set out what all the companies require the skills their graduates should have. I am going to compare those skills to my current skills which are on appendix 25. I have a skill gap in areas, such as the ability to absorb information and experience. The areas I am deficient are Analyse problems, Make decisions, Presentation, Knowledge of HR, Interview skills and Numerical skills. (See appendix 26)
3.4 Career Action Plan (CAP)
My career action plan has various activities that I need to address. Firstly I need to improve on my interviewing skills. Interviews are used as a mean of selection by the six organisations which I have looked at. The action that I will be taking is by arranging an appointment with the placement office to practice my skills, in which they will sit with me and rehearse the interviewing process. I will be also using my friends to practice the process. I am planning to do this as soon as possible.
Secondly I need to improve on my numerical skills, again all six organisations will require men to give an numerical test, I always lacked this skill and after finding out that there is a maths drop in sessions I will be attending those classes as soon as possible.
To deal with experience I need to get a part time job in a HR department this would give me valuable knowledge of how the department is run. This would also give me an advantage over other candidates as this could mean the difference between me getting a job or not getting the job. I will search for the job using newspaper, job offices on the internet and going to university’s placement office.
To improve my presentation skills first step is to book an appointment with UHSU and attend workshops i.e. training sessions in presentation skills. In which they will give me good information on how to present from planning, preparing, helping me on how to use visual aids, using PowerPoint, using graphs and charts, help me practice and assist me on non-verbal communication. I am planning to achieve this by the end of the course.
To gain a 2:1 I need to do the basics right i.e. attending all the lectures and seminars. This would not be enough because to further my knowledge I need to ask for help more often by attending various classes or talking to lectures if I am stuck.
In my action plan I have not included my weakness of absorbing information and analysing problems because I feel that by following the action plan this would automatically be addressed. (See appendix 27, for the summary of the action plan)
I have learnt a lot both about myself and about the requirements of the organisation in the HR position. This assignment has made me think about aspect of employment which previously had eluded me for example made me think long and hard about my future. Whereas before my idea of a job in HR, was purely based on paper work and staying in a office and now realising that there is more to it i.e. meeting new people having various tasks to do, it has increased my desire to work as a HR manager.
Now knowing the skills that I lack, encourages me to put the CAP into action.