Hrm And Management In Sainsburys Management Essay

Consider an organization you are familiar with and with reference to associated theory and practice critically asses the approach that is taken to strategic HRM. Evaluate the extent to which the approach has contributed to the organizational effectiveness


This assignment focuses on Sainsbury’s human resources strategies regarding its recruitment and selection, Training and development, Diversity and Performance management.


Handling humans is at the core of almost all real-life management ‘problems’.

What it takes to ‘succeed’ humans? Why humans are a ‘resource’ and what makes them special?

The purpose of this assignment is to bring out issues involved in the management of human resources (HRM), both from the existing theory as well as practice. The assignment will examine human at work and discuss different aspects which are basic to human motivation at work and in satisfying career objectives within organisations.

HRM comprises of various issues right from recruitment-selection to performance appraisal, training and development of employees in organisation

and opportunity for management provided by employee diversity.

My objectives were to study the key processes and policies for which the company provides vital information.


John Storey (1989) defined HRM as ‘Set of interrelated policies with an ideological and philosophical underpinning’.

Storey (1995) defines HRM as ‘a distinctive approach to employment management which s seeks to achieve competitive advantage through the strategic deployment of a highly c committed and capable workforce, using an array of cultural, structural and personnel t techniques’.

It is easy to manage machines, but it is much difficult to manage people [human] in an organization. The  failure of an organization is much contributed to the failure of managing human resource.(

“ The process of attracting, developing, maintaining quality workforces, and mobilizing these human capital [workforce], to implement organizational strategies in achieving organizational objectives, within the labor laws of the country”

STRATEGIC HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT means expressing and performing human resources policies and practices that grow the employee competencies and behaviours the company needs to achieve its strategic goals. New strategic required employees with the skills, knowledge and inspiration to run the new programmed plant. Strategic human resource plan involved detailed guidelines about what skills and knowledge the workers required, as well as how to recruit, test, select and train the new workers. Human resources managers are now days involved in associating with their top managers in both planning and executing their companies’ strategies. Human resources managers must express their departmental plans so that they can focus more on competitiveness and operational improvements.(hrm book pg-13)

Sainsbury is a super market which will operates its business in retail sector from the year

1869. Sainsbury is started by James and Mary Ann Sainsbury’s.

in UK. It has many branches located throughout the country selling different range of products. Sainsbury control a much centralised Human Resources policy in which all decisions are taken by top management. The main objective of Sainsbury is to meet customer needs successfully and provide investors with good financial return. Sainsbury aims are to provide all colleagues right opportunities to develop their skills and are well rewarded for their contribution to the success of business.

Sainsbury brand is built upon providing customers quality product at fair prices. Sainsbury store have a particular emphasis on fresh, healthy, safe and tasty food and continues launching new product for the customers.

Sainsbury supermarkets employ 150000 colleagues and with above 19 million customers are visit stores each week. Sainsbury offer many products such as food, grocery and other household products.

They sell other brand name products as well as Sainsbury brand product, which are often cheaper than other brand names.


Flippo’s definition: “It is a process of searching for prospective employees and stimulating and encouraging them to apply for jobs in an organization.”

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Job analysis provides information about what the job and what human characteristics are essential to perform these activities. This type of information which is in the form of job description and specification help managers to decide what kind of people to recruit. (hrm book pg130)

Purpose and Importance of Recruitment

¶ Control the present and future requirements in combination with personnel planning and job analysis activities

¶ Rise the pool of job candidates at lowest cost

¶ Help growing success rate of selection process by dropping number of under-qualified or over-qualified applications. 

¶ Reduce the possibility that job candidates once selected would leave shortly

¶ Meet legal and social duties 

¶ Identify and prepare potential job candidates 

¶ Estimate effectiveness of various recruitment techniques and sources for job applicants. 


Sainsbury offers large numbers of job opportunities available in different stores. They looking for people with good customer skills but job are available in clerical, stockroom and technical rules. Flexible contract, term time contracts and dual contracts offer colleagues to work on hours basic. Job opportunities are advertised on in-store job board, in local newspaper and at job centre plus. Sainsbury opening new supermarkets and local and central stores in many towns creating job vacancies in advance, Sainsbury recruit staff two or more months before in order to allow staff training.


Sainsbury recruit around 100 graduates’ colleagues every year and more than 70 works within stores. Graduates recruitment is conducted online at Sainsbury graduate recruitment website. Graduates are trained in all aspect of store management under trainee management scheme. Under this training period they will work in all areas of store and later doing their jobs under manager supervision.

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Work experience offer to school students

Sainsbury encourage school students to come our stores for work experience. These placements are organised at a local level. Students who need work experience work in different department during their particular period of time.


1.The first method that they use is collection curriculum vitae’s(C.V),letter of Applications and Applications forms from applicant.

2.Sainsbury would then shortlist applicant and is done by recruitment manager. This shortlist of applicant is done to meet criteria that they looking for, right person for the right job.

3.Next would be the interview stage. Interview is the main stage of selecting applicants. A number of question are designed to provide a deeper insight into candidates, An interview enables candidates to present their case of selection. It will show the difference between those who are good on paper and those who have good communication skills.

4.Suitable person is selected for the job. They would judge the applicants against the person specification.


Training means giving new employees opportunity to develop skills to perform their job well. Develop skills by means showing new salesperson how to sell products, or a new superior how to stop the firm’s weekly payroll sheets. It might involve simply having the existing job holder explain the job to the new hire. Training is the symbol of good management, and the task that managers overlook at the risk. Having high-skilled employees doesn’t promise they will succeed. Instead, they must know how you want them to do it and what you want them to do. If they don’t they will create nothing productive at all.(hrm book pg-298)

Training used to focus mostly on developing technical skills such as training assemblers to solder wires. “we don’t just concentrate on the traditional training objectives anymore.. We just sit down with management and help them to identify strategic goals and objectives and the skills and knowledge, and when they don’t, that’s when we discuss training needs.”(Christine ellis and sarah gale, “a seat at the table,” training,march 2001,pp 90-96)


Development of human resources- training and development creates an opportunity to develop human resources technical and behaviour skills.

Growth of skills of employees- it helps in growing skills and knowledge and overall personality of the employees.

Productivity- it help in increasing the productivity of the employees that help the organisation in achieving its goals.

Healthy environment- creates healthy work environment to build good relationship among employees and help in achieving organisation goals faster.

It helps in improving organisational development i.e. organisation get more active in decision making and problem solving.

Financial gain through higher efficiency in process and innovation of products and strategies are increased.



At the beginning of their training period all new trainees are given a general overview of the organisation and clear understanding of their rights and responsibilities.

Trainees undergo a general introductory training programme during the first eight week of their employment period. Under this programme, introduction of the company is given on the day one and is followed by intensive programme of training covering various aspects like safe working practise, food safety, law, store security and customer care. During trainee introduction period, series of modular workbooks is provided to them that they have complete. Through the preliminary training all trainee are accessed as they progressed are their performance dictate whether or not they will be offered permanent employment.


We provide everyone right opportunity to develop their skills and knowledge so that they perform well in their jobs.

All colleagues have a Performance Development analysis to discuss their career development with their managers, measure their progress or training needs at least once a year.

For evaluation training and development and plan for the future, we have career development committee’s team in each area of business.

Various types of training approaches are used like course, workshops, mentoring, qualification, self-development books and videos.

Purposes of training at Sainsbury’s :

Well trained workers will be more useful. This will help the business in increasing profit as well as achieving company’s objectives.

Creates a more flexible workforce

It would lead to job satisfaction

The attitude of the workers would be improved and therefore the image of the company and employees will feel better and more relaxed if they are trained beforehand. The employee would reach their potential and the business will be profiting as well as the employee.


Senior management training is focused to meet the business and individual needs. Through promotion, external recruitment and training, senior management capabilities can develop.

Through running training courses Sainsbury aims to achieve specific benefits and training needs restructuring if these benefits are not achieved.

Training and development helps Sainsbury to improve quality and service and therefore productivity can be raised. Training increases the individual motivation and creates flexibility around the workforce.


IIP is a national standard supported by the department for education and skills.

Sainsbury became the first major food retailer to achieve Corporate Investors in people recognition. This followed a three-year programme involving 450 assessment covering 13500 Sainsbury colleagueship recognition is a unique achievement that gained from the bottom up rather than the top down. Almost every unit that makes up Sainsbury supermarket went through the process individually.

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Company that has been recognised by IIP is capable in adopting and implementing its four fundamental principles:-

Promise to improve all employees to achieve business goals and targets;

Regularly reviewing training and development needs in the context of the


Taking relevant action to meet training and development needs throughout

People’s employment;

Evaluating outcomes of training and development for individuals and the

Organisation as a basis for continuous improvement


Organisation growth and competitiveness depends upon its ability to hold diversity and realize its benefits. When an organisation actively implements diversity plans various benefits are reported such as:

Benefits of diversity:

By employing a diverse workforce employees from different background bring individual aptitude and new ideas which are flexible in adapting to fluctuate markets and customer demands.

A various collection of talents and experiences (e.g. languages, cultural understanding) allows a company to deliver service to customers on a global basis.

A diverse workforce that feels happy expressing varying points of opinion provides a larger pool of ideas and understandings. The organization can take ideas from that pool to meet business strategy needs and the needs of customers more successfully.

Diversity at workplace inspire all employees to perform to their highest ability resulting in higher productivity and profit.


In 2004/05, Sainsbury’s introduced a diversity management website on internet. This site was introduced to guide about managing faith and belief, disability management and guidance on local commodity recruitment. The site is planned to help all colleagues gain more awareness of other people needs.

We talk about equality and diversity policy at training to all colleagues and deliver written guidance to managers on equal opportunities and recruitment of disabled colleagues. This year Sainsbury using ‘Disability Confident’ which is a new learning means to help colleagues in our stores move beyond disability awareness to become more confident in dealing with disability.

Colleagues can report discrimination or harassment through our fair treatment and complaint procedure. Sainsbury began to develop plans to target older workers. It introduced retirement plan pension protection mechanisms. Full payment is received if anybody recruited until their 65th birthday.

In application form age has been removed and its requested for monitoring purposely only. Mixed age workforce has led to improved customer satisfaction by perfectly reflecting the profile of their customer.

Sainsbury’s diversity and equality policies are an important part of their business plan. All diversity and equality are anticipated to ‘add value’ to improve both customer services and sales.

Flexibility in covering holidays has improved as different religious festivals are spread out across the year. A calendar of religious festivals has been produced and displayed in stores.

(Sainsbury’s case study from age positive campaign)

( http;//

Employers’ forum on age case studies of employers who have adopted approaches

based on the principles of age diversity)


Performance management as a process “that unites goal setting, performance appraisal, and development into a single, common system whose aim is to ensure that the employee’s performance is supporting the company’s strategic aims. Performance management measures the employee’s training, standards-setting, appraisal, and feedback relative to how his or her performance should be and is contributing to achieving the company’s goals.

Performance management therefore never just means meeting with the assistants once or twice a year to “review your performance”. It means setting goals that makes sense in terms of the company’s strategic aims. It means daily interaction to ensures continuous improvement in the employees capacity and performance. And it means ensuring that the employee has the training he or she needs to perform the job. .(HRM book pg-338-gary dessler)

Benefits of performance management

It brings the organisation in placement with its goals and reduces the time it uses to make strategic changes by communicating the change through a brand new set of goals.

It creates an amount of clearness in understanding the targets and control management improves and is flexible to management wants.

It make sure that all workers are treated equally as the assessment are built primarily on the results offered by them. It changes the effort from activity orientated to result orientated.(

At Sainsbury


Performance Management is very important at Sainsbury’s. Sainsbury’s achieve the performance of its employees effectively so as to remain competitive in the market. Various methods are used at Sainsbury’s to know how well individual employees doing their responsibility and for the managers to be able to observe how well they are carrying out.

Performance monitoring offers information which is of value for identifying future training or promotion opportunities and areas where inadequate skills or knowledge could be judged as a threat to an employee’s efficiency.

Managers exercises control at organisation and individual level through:

Development by planning objectives and targets

creating performance values

perceiving actual performance

Comparison against actual performance and targets

adjusting mistakes and taking action

Management by Objectives

The objective of management in which the performance of the individual and Sainsbury’s is frequently being measured against objectives and targets which have been fixed by managers and employees.

Objectives at Sainsbury’s are determined through discussions between managers and employees. This technique will involve both a top-down and a bottom-up style.

The manager at Sainsbury’s presents the corporate objectives and the individuals and team members then state what they feel can be achieved. The objectives are more likely to be successful if they are:

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“The role of HRM is fundamental in strengthening the organisation’s capability, and

Maximising everyone’s potential right across the business”(Sainsbury website)

The human division of business and partners with every business is driven by human resource at Sainsbury’s to make sure that employee development strategy is associated to convey the business goals. Sainsbury uses HRM strategy to develop its financial position; it has used new recruitment and selection tactics to give job opportunity to large number of people and selecting the best candidate for the right job through selection process.

In every organization it is important to have a right person for the right job. Recruitment and Selection plays a major role in this situation. Use of new technology is putting considerable pressure on how employers Recruit and Select staff. Talent Acquisition is a process of discovering the sources of manpower to meet requirements of the staffing schedule and to employee effective measures for attracting that manpower in adequate numbers to facilitate effective selection of efficient personnel.

Training and development strategy improved the employee skills and knowledge so that they perform their responsibility effectively. The attitude of the workers would be improved and therefore the image of the company and employees will feel better and more relaxed if they are trained well. Sainsbury’s take care of its employees by means of retirement plan and free medical facilities.

Sainsbury’s considers diversity as a major driver of innovation, creativity and development. Sainsbury using ‘Disability Confident’ which is a new learning means to help colleagues in our stores move beyond disability awareness to become more confident in dealing with disability. Sainsbury’s believe that having diverse workforce express various innovative ideas and understanding. Organization can take ideas to meet business strategy needs and the needs of customers more successfully. Diversity at workplace motivates all employees to perform to their highest ability resulting in higher productivity and profit.

Performance management is very essential for Sainsbury’s. Various method are used to know if employees doing their job effectively. There are also specific training programs for managers at all levels in the organization.


I would suggest to Sainsbury’s introducing some new products which will give to a company a comparative advantage over their challengers.

Sainsbury’s would be an opening of local shops located in the city centre rather than on the outskirts of the city. Customers frequently choose local shops rather than supermarkets to save time and money if they do not need large purchase, because undoubtedly in large stores often they purchase more than actually have planned.

At Sainsbury’s, human resources management is the most important department.

To understand if Sainsbury are competively compared to their rivals, they need to compare their prices of product with that of rivals. A way of finding out rival’s information is by going undercover. A member of the Sainsbury staff could visit rivals supermarket like Asda, Tesco and note the prices that are charged for the same product that Sainsbury selling.

If the prices is cheaper for that particular product that Sainsbury selling then Sainsbury’s have to cut down the prices for that particular product. If the prices are higher at Tesco than Sainsbury for that product, are ahead in competition over Tesco.

The human resources management department at Sainsbury’s control the workforce and see how they perform. A poor workforce in terms of lazy workers could result in low output.

Mayo’s theory, working in team is virtually important for Sainsbury’s and creates friendly environment which can increase company’s profit.

The human resource department get the workforce and main problem after that is keeping them happy. Rivals may look for Sainsbury’s existing employees by offering them better pay and promotion. The HRM department at Sainsbury’s should be more alert of this problem and may offer their employees more pay and promotion in order to keep existing employees.

If promotion or better pay offered to employees then he/she would feel important to business. HRM needs to safeguard that Sainsbury employees right quality and quantity workers.

HRM department at Sainsbury’s have to plan in advanced, if a manager is leaving in near future than advance planning for recruitment, interviewing and selection is important in order to safeguard department not to get suffered and business not to be affected by a member of staff leaving.

Maslow theory, pay may have something to do with the employees being dissatisfied.

At Sainsbury’s, if labour turnover is high, then is regarded as a failure by the HRM department. If labour turnover is low then is regarded as a success by the HRM department.

To analyse absenteeism rate is also important. HRM seeks to ensure that absenteeism is low. High absenteeism caused lack of commitment, poor motivation and poor management by the HRM.

Maintaining 100% service levels as the online business grows

Sainsbury’s is now operating with high service levels. Even so, there is still some room for improvement to ensure that all orders are delivered in full and on time. There are a few ways in which Sainsbury’s could further still improve service levels; however, the law of diminishing returns would come into play at this stage and so investment would need to be able to provide definite improvements. Also, the online business is growing at a rapid rate, ahead of overall market growth. Picking such large orders from stores during busy periods could become an issue


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