Background of the study
In today’s business world if it could have been asked that which industry has high level of stress then definitely the response will be inclined towards the call centers or BPO’s. It is to acknowledge that call centers are highly stressed organization where people are engaging onto making their clients satisfied and working excessive pressurized situations. However it is one of the industry that provide high level of earning opportunities to its employees but still the high level stress always lead towards the low retention and low level of satisfaction. It is to acknowledge that employee retention is generally very low in call centers due to less growth opportunities (Akroyd, Gordon-Dseagu and Fairhurst, 2006). However now the scenario is changing but still it is very minimal. Ahead it is also noticeable that the negative impact of stress level can be realized onto the behavioral aspects of employees. The communication is also not very smooth and various health related issues is also very common. Thus, to control these aspects there is huge requirement of focusing on strategic human resource management so that positive results can be created. The major factor or area where SHRM needs to work upon is the health aspects of their employees. It has seen at various instances that due to excessive use of technology and computers the employees face lots of illness and it put adverse impact at the productivity of employees (Holman, 2012).
It explains very articulately that the scenario related to both training and recruitment activities has been changed completely. Other than these activities rewards and incentives is another factor that has also considered as important functional aspects for the human resource management. Now it is something which allures the employees very much (Cram, 2010). It is one of major benefits of associated with the call centers that they provide heavy incentives and rewards to their employees. It is to acknowledge that most of the staff member just earns high income because of high level of incentives. Thus, it is clear that in order to assess the performance level of employees the company need to focus hugely on the proper performance appraisal system. It is to acknowledge that if call centers want to lower down the high retention ratio then there is huge requirement of focusing upon the proper structure of rewards and incentives. The monitoring process is very strict and popular in the call centers (Billsberry, 2005). Most of the call centers have targeted based work and their incentives based on the fact that how efficiently they have handled their clients (Davis, 2014). 360 degree feedback, benchmark, target achievement etc. these are certain performance assessment of monitoring techniques that has been adopted by human resource manager. It enables them to distribute their wealth as per the effort level of employees and staff people. Therefore, rewards and incentives could be treated as motivating factor for employees to stay with call centers. Ahead it has also found that on the ground of providing the future opportunities the call centers have created their negative reputation. It has been found that most of the people have tendency that call centers have less career development plans and there is no long term benefits in associating with this industry. It is a duty of human resource manager to provide new career development opportunities so that the employees may feel secure and such kind of negative reputation can be minimized. They can put its impact at the mindset of staff people and these myths can be removed. But now days these the call centers are expanding their business and providing new type of growth opportunities to their employees (Kelliher 2012). The human resource managers are contributing into these expansion plans and providing the career opportunities to staff people. BPO’s are acquiring business from external companies and their structure has become more systematic and organized. Therefore, it can be said that human resource management is trying to bring transformation within the call centers or BPO’s.
Other than HR activities the human resource policies are also putting huge impact at the working environment of call centers. Now the hr managers are more focused towards the health issues and put concentration towards the health aspects of employees. It is one of the major beneficial aspects that could be privileged by call centers. The introduction of various medical benefits and insurance policies is the major aspect of company’s human resource policies. The claim amount is also handsome for staff people (Kelly, 2001). The working area is tend to be hygienic and stress free it is something that has huge impact at the working efficiency of employees. It is also noticeable that with respect to improve the well being of employees the call centers are showing more concern and commitment. On the ground of ethical issues the human resource managers are showing very strict concern. Whatever issue or grievances employees faced the call centers show complete reverences to employee’s problems and challenges. The issue of inappropriate salaries and wages is also matter of concern for human resource department. In the case of termination and lay off also call centers pay adequate amount of compensation and follow the legal norms set by regulatory bodies. Overall the current scenario of hr practices in call centers is changing and leading towards the establishment of positive and stress free working environment (Akroyd, Gordon-Dseagu and Fairhurst, 2006).
Hence, in this world of globalization and the competitiveness, Human Resource has become one of the most crucial parts of the organizations. It is designed in such a way that it helps the company in meeting all the needs and demands of the employees so that they could be motivated. It has been proved that if the employees are motivated and positive towards the company then they will use their full potential to fulfill all the aims of the company very easily. This particular aspect deals with employee aspect of the business such as hiring, firing, promotion, salaries, benefits, training, incentives, safety and many more (Baker, 1999). One of the leading businesses in UK is the call centre services where thousands of people work 24 hours a day so the need of human resource management in this sector is increasing day by day. In this field, continuous hard work, attention and patience is required so the employees become unsatisfied very quickly so it is the duty of the company to use the human resource management and encourage these people so that they can work without any stress with a positive attitude. This report is made to evaluate the role of strategic human resource management theory and practice in UK call Centre’s.
Rationale of the study:
The main aim of the study is to evaluate the role of strategic human resource management in the BPO industry of UK. It has become a great challenge for the companies in this industry to fulfill all the needs and demands of the employees so that they could be motivated to help the company in reaching its goals and objectives. There were many companies who thought that just giving good salary to employees will motivate them enough but it was proved wrong as many companies did not show any positive results but when they started using the SHRM which covered all the aspects of employees, results were very interesting as the performances of the companies increased by the 50%. Therefore, the following study will focus on the role of strategic human resource management to increase the performance of the employees in call Centre’s.
Research Aim and Objectives
Aim: The main aim of the study is to evaluate the role of strategic human resource management theory and practice in the UK call Centre’s.
- To examine the role of SHRM in aligning employees capabilities with organization goals
- To study different theories of SHRM
- To understand the implications of SHRM specifically in UK call Centre’s
- What is the role of SHRM in aligning employee’s capabilities with organization goals?
- What are the different theories of SHRM?
- What are the implications of SHRM specifically in UK call Centre’s?
Significance of the study:
Call centers or BPO works in different type of business environment. The nature of work and the level of professionalism are also different in BPO’s. With the help of this report the role of strategic human resource management in the call center industry will become clear and call center organizations can bring appropriate changes in their working environment so that human resource management can be handled properly. Further new entrants can also understand the appropriate HR practices with respect to manage their operations and stress level within the call center. Accurate policies and procedures can be formed so that negative thought process about the BPO’s can be minimized.
Structure of the report:
This section is essential because it is related to the construction of aims and objectives. Here in introduction chapter the researcher cited the aims and objectives of the study and most importantly they just provide the reason behind the study. Here in this report also the aims and objectives have been explained in very articulated manner. Further this section is important for viewers and readers as well. Through introduction they can get fair idea about the concept and overview of the study. The researcher provides the brief knowledge about subject matter and helps in increasing the familiarity with topic. Thus this section should be taken into special consideration.
Now it is something that could be helpful for any researcher at very large scale. In the section of literature review the researcher has tendency to go through previous researcher that has been done into the related fields. The researcher should take this section very seriously as it helps immensely in the process of identifying the research gap. Without literature review it is not possible to get hold on subject matter.
The selection of appropriate research trajectories is also another factor that should not be neglected by any researcher. It is completely based on the aims and objectives that have been framed by researcher. This section consists of description about the research philosophy, approach, type and design. Further this chapter deals with the sampling and data collection process as well. In short it can be said that the entire process of conducting the report is described into this chapter in very well organized manner.
It is something that gives new dimensions to the research or study. The main aim of researcher is to accomplish the researcher objectives and for the same purpose data analysis section comes into existence. Thus it is very important section that should gain huge priority by the researcher. With the help of data analysis outcomes of the report can be presented. The selection data analysis techniques highly depend upon the nature of research report.
Conclusion and Recommendation:
It is very last section of the report which is essential for the purpose of presenting the findings or reports in very articulated and summarized manner. Here the researcher connects the findings with the objectives and state the results of study. Further recommendations are also very significant with a view of providing appropriate way to deal with challenges. Thus it is a structure that has been followed by researcher in current report.
Now it is something that could be helpful for any researcher at very large scale. In the section of literature review the researcher has tendency to go through previous researcher that has been done into the related fields. The researcher should take this section very seriously as it helps immensely in the process of identifying the research gap. Without literature review it is not possible to get hold on subject matter as identified by Shell, (2001). Here in this report also the researcher has focused on variety of studies relevant to rewards and incentives and its impact on various aspects of management.
Literature Review and investigation
Literature review in this project was made by keeping the subject of job satisfaction in centre so that its role and responsibilities could be accessed properly. In literature review different theories have been discussed like different activities which are done by human resource management and how they help employees to increase their job satisfaction. It was found that some important factors that can improve working of call centre are proper recruitment and selection, training and development, rewards and incentives, performance management, talent management, career development, etc. All these factors are completely missing in policies and working of different call centres of employees. Further there are different theories that can also be applied in these call centres that can help companies to increase some amount of job satisfaction. People admitted that there are not enough opportunities in this field and because of that they are leaving and joining other sectors. To further analyze view of companies regarding job satisfaction proper questionnaires were also made in which different questions were asked to them related to their field like preferred level of experience of employees, working shift, different activities carried out by companies on regular basis to increase job satisfaction, benefits that people are getting from all SHRM activities like satisfaction, retention, employee engagement, cost cutting, etc. This particular questionnaire will help researcher to address how active companies are in the field of protecting their employees from deviating to other sectors. Further, with the help of this questionnaire, it was also analyzed that how companies are making different strategies for future employees so that they could be retained from very beginning. All these strategies helped researcher to get a deep insight about this industry in UK and what are the different factors that are causing steep decline in performance of employees. Researcher was able to find different gaps which were studied further to identify different strategies, theories, etc that can be applied by these companies to increase job satisfaction among all these employees again and in appropriate ways.
Construction of human resource policies:
Amuedo-Dorantes and Mach, (2003) argued that major activity that could not be neglected by strategic human resource manager is that they need to focus on the formulation of favorable human resource policies. These policies should be flexible and not rigid as with the help of these policies the values and code of conduct could be disseminated at very large scale. While preparing the human resource policies need to understand the requirement of rules and regulations and have to structure the concrete polices accordingly. These policies should be beneficial to all and most importantly these policies should make the environment of discipline within the organization. Hence, these are some very significant activities that lie under the category of strategic human resource manager. The human resource policies required being flexible and it may include:
- Human resource policies define the time structure and in call center time is very significant element that must gain huge priority by the human resource manager. Majorly it could include the time for different shifts and different departments.
- Human resource policies define about the disciplinary measures as well. Like the format for the leave balance and working hours and dress and attire if there is any.
- Human resource policies might include the fact related to salary and incentive related plans.
- The possible legal actions and restrictions could be mentioned into the human resource policies with respect to avoid the element of discrimination and unequal behavior.
- The rules and regulations for the training and development could be disseminated within the call center.
- The human resource policy in the call center could revolve around the consequences of breach of terms and regulations within the call center.
- Human resource policies for the call centers could not be completed without mentioning the consequences or penalties of stealing the internal data. In HR policies it should gain huge priority by the HR managers.
- While designing the human resource policies the managers need to focus on referral policies, fringe benefits, recruitment and development plan etc.
Views of the people working in call centre
Lund. (2003) said that There are many people working in the call centre and when they were asked about the atmosphere of working in the call centres, it was analyzed that all the people were having the different views regarding it. Many people said that the working in call centres is very much stressful because of the odd work timings and very hectic and time bound targets. They also admitted that most of the call centres in UK have lack of control and autonomy, companies have the lack of potentiality and challenges and most of the people fight with each other in the company. Because of all these different factors that working environment in most of the companies is very poor. Further, people said that there is high need of improving the working conditions so that the proper development of the call centres can be done in the appropriate manner. People also contributed that they are not given enough career growth opportunities and they are working on the same position in the company from many years. They are also not given proper incentives and bonuses as per their work and the increment in their job has been not more than 10 or 20% which is very less than compared to the other industries. People said that all these factors are forcing them to leave the jobs and join the other companies.
According to Martins and Terblanche, (2003) job satisfaction can only increase if the employees are taken care of in the companies, they are provided good salaries, proper career growth is given to them with some responsibilities so that they can prove themselves to be the important part of the organization. Also, all the employees in the call centre should be given proper flexible timings so that stress do not overshadowed them. In this particular context girls said that as they have to work in the night shifts then they should be provided with the night cab facilities which will help them to feel safe and encourage them to work at night.
Factors that are increasing Job Dissatisfaction among call centre employees
An employee’s overall satisfaction with his job is the result of a combination of factors but all these factors can also increase the dissatisfaction among them. Some factors that are increasing the job dissatisfaction among the UK’s call centre employees are-
- Working Conditions- According to Qualls, (2008) employees in the Call centres spend so much time in their work environment every week so it is very important for the companies to take care of this point. Working conditions in the Call centres of UK is very poor, most of the people are working in lower levels and they do not have access to the basic things like food, water, etc. Lighting and health facilities in the offices are also not proper and these reasons are affecting the people a lot. The technology that these call centre people are using is also very poor which is causing lots of troubles for these people to work. If these working conditions will not be taken care of then soon turnover rate will increase further.
- Opportunity for Advancement- Employees feel more and more satisfied when they are given an opportunity to grow themselves while working so that they can prove themselves to be an important part of the company as identified by Shell, (2001). All these things are not at all available in the UK’s call centres and the people are forced to work at only one level. They are not at all given chance to move at higher positions or they are never included in the decision making of the companies which is one of the most dissatisfaction factor that is forcing the people to leave these companies.
- Workload and Stress Level- Workload and stress level creates pressure on the employees and if is not controlled than it can severely affect the working of people. It is a fact that workload in the call centres of UK is very much high but still all the employees are forced to do more and more as argued by Cattermole, Johnson and Roberts, (2013). The stress level of these people has crossed the limits and they have become very much impatience which is the main reason why people are leaving the jobs as soon as possible.
- Work Timings- Work timings in the call centres of UK is not at all flexible and most of the people have to work in the night shifts. Because of these odd timings, girls do not prefer the job in this industry. Perry, (2006) said that the people who are doing the night shift for more than a year are not allowed to change their shifts. Because of all these factors people are not getting comfortable with the job and the turnover rate is increasing day by day.
- Respect from Co-workers- Akroyd, Gordon-Dseagu and Fairhurst, (2006) identified that there is no social life of the people in the UK’s call centre as most of the people do not know each other and employers also do not care about introducing the new people in the company. Due to all these factors, people do not care about the co-workers which is one of the most disappointing factor in the companies and this is also one of the most important factor that has increased the job dissatisfaction among the employees.
- Financial Rewards- It is one of the most important factors that can easily increases the job dissatisfaction among the call centres workers. Sammons, (2009) argued that there are very few or no financial rewards in this particular industry and because of that people do not get motivation to work hard and prove themselves. When these people look in to the other industries they feel that those people are given lots of incentives but the call centre people are not so this factor has doubled the rate of turnover in the call centre employees.
Along with all these factors there are some other factors like the personality, educational level and the efficiency rate which also increases the job dissatisfaction. It is important that personality of a person must fit the job that he or she is doing also the work that is assigned to an individual must be as per his caliber but it has been seen that most of the employers of the call centre in the country do not care about the qualification and caliber of the person as they are only interested in increasing the workforce at cheap labors. Because of all these factors the job dissatisfaction is increasing much more than the normal. Salaman, (2005) added that the educational level also affects the likeliness of the individuals with their jobs as if the people get and job and position as per their qualification then they feel much more satisfied but in the call centres all the employees whether he or she is graduate or not are kept on the same position which creates dissatisfaction among the people and this is the reason why people are leaving the jobs and shifting to other industries.
Factors that will cause job satisfaction among the call centres in UK
- Recruit the people who value the work- It is very important for the employees of call centres in the UK to employ the people who really want to work in this field and they should not find the cheap labors. If the people are interested about their work then they will perform much better than the people who are not. As said by Kelliher, (2012) all these people who work in the call centres have to work directly with the customers of the company so if these people will have the skills than they will perform in the much better way that will benefit both the employees and the organization.
- Financial Rewards- It is one of the biggest problem in the call centres of UK that all the people working in this field are not given proper rewards even if they are working hard so if the organization will look into the working of each and every employee so that they can provide the better rewards for them, then it will allow the organization to increase the job satisfaction among the employees in the positive way. Also, all the efforts of the people should be highly recognized so that they can feel proud of themselves and can work efficiently and effectively.
- Working Conditions- It is also one of the most important factors that can easily increase the satisfaction among the cal centre employees. All the call centres in the UL should renovate their offices as per the employees so that they can feel comfortable while working as identified by Alewell and Hauff, (2013). All the employees in the call centres mostly work in the night shift so there should be proper canteen facilities where employees could have the refreshment also they should have the proper drinking water, lighting facility, medical tools so that in case of any emergencies proper actions can be taken in the most appropriate ways.
- Complementary services- It is also very important for these companies to arrange the complementary services for the employees so that people can work efficiently as argued by Davis, (2014). Girls in this particular industry do not feel safe working in the night shifts so there should be pickup and drop service facilities to all the females and even males those who are working in the night shift so that these people can feel safe.
- Training- Most of the people in this field are not given proper training before assigning them for the work and when these people see their poor performance, their job dissatisfaction increases. Milliman, (2002) said that it is very important for the employers of the company to provide the proper training to all the employees whether highly qualified or less so that they can work in the best possible way. It will make these employees efficient and when they will see that their performances are going high than they will feel very much satisfied with their job.
- Growth Opportunities- As discussed above, most of the people in this industry are not given proper job opportunities to grow and prove themselves so it is the high time for the call centres employees to change their views. It is very much important for the employer to provide the best growth opportunity to all these people so that they can develop themselves along with the organization. Mello, (2014) also added that these people should also be included in the decision making of the company because it might be possible that these people have better ideas to make the organization a much better place. If all these factors are taken care of then, the job satisfaction among the people increases at much higher level.
- Social Contact- It has been found that most of the people working together in this industry do not know each other and this is the reason they do not feel comfortable while work as they feel so much isolated. It is one of the most important duties of the company to important function of the organization to improve the co-worker relationships so that these people can work together in the most appropriate ways. It will help their employees to feel safe and get relaxed as he will be in the company of friends which is one of the most important job satisfaction factors. Company can take all the people for outing or can organize some activities which can increase the bonding between these people.
- Feedback- Most of the people those who are working in these organizations are not given proper feedbacks and applause for the work they are doing. It is important for the managers of the call centres to provide the proper feedbacks to the people so that they can develop themselves and can work in the most appropriate ways as said by Perry, (2006). Also, all these people should be given the proper applause for the work they are doing on the regular basis so that these people can understand that they are being supported and it will force them to work hard so that they can prove themselves.
- Flexible Timings- Cram, (2010) identified that it is one of the most important factors that can easily increase the satisfaction among the employees. All the employees working in the call centre should be allowed the opportunity to work on both day and night shifts so that people do not feel discouraged and they can work in the most appropriate ways.
Motivational Theories to increase job Satisfaction among Call Center Employees
Job satisfaction among the employees of UK’s call centre can also increase by using the appropriate motivational theories. These theories will help the companies to understand the needs of the employees in much better way which will force them to apply the best techniques in order to increase the job satisfaction.
- Maslow Theory- It is one of the best theories that can be used by the companies to motivate the employees. Huang, (2009) argued that this particular theory contains the different types of the needs which start with psychological needs in which all the basic needs of the employees are considered like the hunger, thirst and other bodily needs. It is very important for the call centre employees to full fill these needs as they are not being met appropriately. Second types of the needs are called as the safety needs which provides the safety to the employees in terms of the protection from the physical or emotional life. Employees of the call centre should be given the job security and company should also come forward to provide proper health insurance for them do that life of these people could get secured. Belongingness is called as the third need in which employers should make their employees comfortable in such a manner that they feel like they are important part of the company and they should also encourage the people to develop friendship from their co-workers. Further, Albrecht, (2012) also added that all these three needs are called as the deficiency needs and if they are not met properly then company will never be able to satisfy all their employees. Fourth need includes the Esteem needs which are all made up of the internal factors like the respect from the peers and proper recognition. Employers in the Call centre employee should provide proper recognition to the employees those who are working better, it will not only encourage the employees to work better but it will also motivate them to help the employees to fulfill their goals and objectives which is the most important sign of job satisfaction. Final need as per Maslow’s is called as the self actualization needs in which all the employees should be given chance in this industry to prove themselves so that they can grow in their careers.
Measuring the job satisfaction of the employees is one of the most important factors that can easily help the call centre companies to know the factors that are responsible for increasing the satisfaction and what not. Powis, (2012) argued that this particular measurement of the job satisfaction can be very much difficult because this particular concept is very much subjective. Many of the employers think that job satisfaction is not at all necessary and it is just waste of money and time but in reality it is very helpful as it allows the company to know the exact factors that can increase the efficiency and commitment levels of the employees in the call centres. There are different methods which can be used by the call centre organization to measure the job satisfaction level of all their employees and some common factors are surveys, interviewing the employee, monitoring performance targets, etc.
Surveys are considered to be the most common method to measure the job satisfaction of the employees. It can easily help the organization to access the satisfaction in the different areas of pay, promotion, supervision, tasks and the coworkers. Estelami, (2007) also identified that there are many standard surveys available in the market and call centre companies can easily use them but id the want to measure some specific factors than they can modify all those surveys and can easily create a new one. In the surveys there can be the majority of the question related to the job in terms of the multiple choice or direct answers. Employees those are likely to be anonymous are more likely to be more open and honest with all their answers and they will not feel any kind of the pressure. This survey will allow the organization to know how they can help the employees so that they do not shift to the other industries.
According to authors Worthington and Britton, (2009) one more method that can be used by the employers of the call centres are called as the interview method. It is one of the most useful methods that can be used by the organizations to get the exact views of the people those who are working in the call centres. This particular method is very much useful in the organization where the relationship between the employers and employees are very much positive and employees do not fear in telling their feelings. It has been seen that the relationships between the call centers workers and employers are not that good so it might be possible that employers would not get the real honest answers but still this method is very much straight forward and will provide the direct information to the organization.
Monitoring the performance targets is also one of the best methods that can be used in the organization to see the different factors that can help the employers to promote the job satisfaction. This particular method requires a business to be an active observer that can see and find even the small changes among the employees. In this particular method, management can monitor the employee satisfaction by using the different standard criterion's like achieving the bonuses, participating in the optional programs and the performance in reaching goals as analyzed by Kelly, (2001). This particular method provides the indirect data on the levels of the job satisfaction which is very much important. If this particular method can be combined with the survey and interview methods than the results that will arrive will be the best and it will help the organization directly in knowing all the job satisfaction factors.
Kelliher, (2012) said that other than these traditional methods there are some new methods that can also be used by the call center employees that will help them to measure the job satisfaction in the most appropriate ways. One unique and new method is called as the single global rating method which is none other than but a response of an employee towards the one particular question like how much they are satisfied with their jobs and provides the rating of the question in terms of 1 to 5.
Summation of the job Facets is also one modern technique that identifies the key elements in the job and asks the employees that how they feel about all those factors. This particular technique is very much apt for the call center companies in UK as it will help the employers’ tom know about the different factors. Typical elements include the work, supervision, preset day, promotion opportunities and the relation with the co-workers. All the call centers workers rate these elements on the standardized scale and the researcher add the ratings to create the overall job satisfaction score as argued by Shell, (2001). This particular method achieves a much more accurate evaluation of the job satisfaction than other ones.
From all the above factors, it can be clearly said that the conditions of the call centres in UK is not much good and if this is continued than soon more of the MNC’s will shift their call centres in the countries like India and Bangladesh. In order to gain the trust of the employees and reduce the employees turnover rate there are many factors which have to be considered like working conditions, financial rewards, etc.
Main aim of this study is to evaluate the role of strategic human resource management theory and practice in call centre of UK. This particular project was taken because it was analyzed that UK was once known as the hub for call centre for different MNC’s all around world. People engaged in job were performing at their best but as the time passed this industry start losing its charm and now it has been observed that people involved in this sector are leaving their jobs and shifting towards other sectors. One of the main reasons for shifting from this section is low job satisfaction and poor attitude of companies towards their employees. Job satisfaction can be defined as positive attitude in mindset of employees towards their work which force them to perform better on regular basis in order to fulfill all goals and objectives of company. Role of SHRM in job satisfaction is very important as it helps in company in employee retention, engaging employees, their career management, training and development, etc.
This is one of the most important chapters in whole research and it guides researcher to analyze data in proper ways. There are lots of factors which have to be taken care of in terms of methodologies, philosophies, design, etc because without them data will not be able to analyzed in most appropriate ways (Walliman, 2009). There are numbers of methods available which can be used and applied in dissertations but all of them do not serve purpose for which the report has been made. Because of this some of the selected methods are applied that can match with kind of research that researcher want to do. Other than this validity and reliability of information that is extracted is also judged so that proper feasibility of research can be taken into consideration. In this particular report, all methods that will be selected are tends to satisfy complete aim of study and it will make report reliable in nature.
This particular study aims to evaluate complete role of strategic human resource management theory and practice in call centres of UK. Further, it will also analyze satisfaction level of call centre employees working in this field because it has been noticed that all these people are highly unsatisfied with services of these companies and because of that they all are shifting towards other industries (Alicia, 2006). Human resource department of these companies are also not working in proper direction and most of the MNC's are shifting their call centre's in Asian countries. In order to conduct a in depth research, whole industry of UK has been taken into account and analyzed. There are different aims and objectives which are also suggested by research methodologies and all these are completely served by research work. These aims and objectives provide complete direction to research work and help researcher in doing proper research work. It is because of this chapter of research methodology different techniques and methods are identified which helps to create research in an appropriate manner.
Research Aims and Objectives
This particular research has been done to evaluate the role of strategic human resource management theory and practice in the UK call Centre’s. Further, it has also been noticed that because of the weak Human Resource Department in these companies, job satisfaction level of employees are going down day by day. So this feature has also been discussed with an objective to find out measures that should be adopted by UK's call centers companies in order to retain all these people in industry. The current research is conducted in order to complete following objectives-
- To examine the role of SHRM in aligning employees capabilities with organization goals
- To study different theories of SHRM
- To understand the implications of SHRM specifically in UK call Centre’s
Research approaches are very important thing in dissertation because it allows researcher to do the proper analysis of all aims and objectives. By using proper researcher approach, researcher can easily get best and suitable results that he desires to find in report (Birn, 2004). With proper research approach different results are gained in an effective manner which provides continuous improvement in research. In general, there are two approaches which are used in research projects and they are inductive and deductive approach. Deductive approach follows top to down pattern in which the main reasoning begins from general to more specific terms. Further in this, different hypothesis are also formed by considering certain specific theories. In this, different sets of theories are taken into account so that proper focus can be made on some of the specific issues. After this, judgment of hypothesis is also continued in order to gain best results on it. On the other hand inductive approach is just opposite of this approach, as it follows down to top approach and moves from specific to more general results. In this approach, different types of data's are being accumulated earlier which is completely relevant to specific areas. Because of this particular approach, researcher can easily draw different theories based upon it. Different types of data are collected that are completely relevant with the particular research aims and objectives (Diggines, 2010). After this, overall research evaluation is then entailed with an motive to develop different theories related to relevant subject matter. In this particular report, inductive approach will be used because data will be analyzed in terms of both quantitative and qualitative aspect. As this present study involves study of the role of HR Department in UK's call centers, behavior of call centre employees in terms of their dissatisfaction for job so this approach will help researcher in finding out proper conclusions. Main reason behind using this particular approach is that it supports in gaining proper knowledge that is related to current subject matter.
Research philosophies can be defined as principles by which different information related to particular subject matter is studied and evaluated. It is also called as a method which allows researcher to collect data in most efficient and appropriate manner which is based on certain types of assumptions, concepts and values (Saunders, 2006). In general there are three types of research philosophies which are called as positivism, realism and interpretivism. According to positivism philosophy, it is said that reality is completely of stable nature and it is observed from perspective of set objectives. It defines that all those data and reality cannot be changed in any kind of situation and it can only be used to identify results as per given situations. Interpretivism theory on other hand is not that much reasonable but it helps researcher to build overall understanding of the given subject matter. This particular philosophy depends highly on qualitative data and do not provide good results in terms of quantitative data. In this particular research, positivism philosophy will be used because it emphasis on the employment of different kinds of scientific and mathematical methods for data collection and it also allows researcher to provide data as per large sample size.
It completely determines the kind of study that will be used in particular research work. In general, there are two types of researches which are called as qualitative and quantitative types of researches (Möllering, 2012). Qualitative research involves data that cannot be measured in terms of numeric or measurable unit. Results from this approach are completely based on theories and it does to determine and provides quantitative results. On the other hand, analysis of quantitative data involves the adoption of different kinds of methods that includes SPSS, one way Anova, Cross Tabs, questionnaire, surveys, etc. This type of data and analysis allows researcher to get exact results in terms of subject matter that has been discussed. Based on the nature of this report, both quantitative and qualitative data will be used so that it can be analyzed what types of factors are causing dissatisfaction among call centre employees of UK and in what amount. Further, qualitative data will also allow research to focus on different theories in order to provide proper solutions that can solve all those problems.
It can be termed as one of the most systematic plan that is undertaken in order to issue particular issue or a problem. One of the main aims of conducting this particular research is to understand role of SHRM in UK's call centre industry (Perry, 2000). Also, dissatisfaction among the employees of this industry is increasing day by day and this is also one of the main aims of this particular report. Research design allows researcher to ensure that research will be carried out in appropriate manner. In order to get most effective results, it is very critical to choose proper research design. There are different types of research design which are classified as descriptive, experimental, case-study, Meta analytical, etc. By applying research design among the following, researcher can easily decrease the probability of misinterpretation and can also boost the authenticity of entire research in a most effective ways (Bryman, 2008). As per the nature of this report, descriptive design will be the one that can be used in this report because data will be analyzed in both qualitative and quantitative manner and descriptive design is best design when different theories have to be developed.
It is regarded as one of the best tools that allow researcher to gather one of the most suitable information in relation to subject matter. Different types of data are found under this method which helps in the formation of conclusion and recommendations. Data is collected by two types which are called as primary and secondary sources. Both of these set of data allow researcher to complete research in much better ways by finding fruitful and effective results from it (Clark, 2002).
Primary data is collected through different types of methods which is called as interviews, questionnaire, surveys, etc. It is also called as first hand data collection tool because most data is collected for first time. With the help of all these methods, researcher can easily find out different quantitative form of data. Other than the mentioned methods, there are some more methods which can also be used like focus group, quality observations, face to face interactions, etc. Researcher can easily find out most suitable information from this part of data and can present it in most exact results. On the other hand secondary research is also called as second hand form of data because the data that has been collected is based on researches done by several other authors. This type of data is generally acquired through books, journals, online articles, etc.There are many times researcher did not get proper information even after searching for it very deeply (Golafshani, 2003). Also all these sources are not much trustworthy but still it helps researcher to get understanding of current research subject and helps him in forming different theories related to topic. In this present case study, data has been collected by both secondary and primary resources. Primary data collection method will help researcher to support data by the form of observations, personal interactions, etc. While on the other hand secondary data will allow researcher to form general theories which will help in forming conclusions.
Sampling is another part, which plays very important role in gaining most suitable information that is required in given subject matter by selecting most desirable and suitable respondents very useful data can be collected that will allow researcher to form conclusion and suggest recommendation in most appropriate manner. In order to choose most suitable respondents it is very important for researcher to narrow down whole research universe into a sample population (Diment, 2012). By using this particular practice, important data and information can be gathered. There are different types of sampling techniques which are used in selecting most suitable respondents like probabilistic and non-probabilistic sampling. Both of these techniques are effective in their own ways and allows researcher to generate important data. In this particular report, non-probabilistic purposive sampling will be used because it narrows down whole research universe and select the most appropriate set of respondents that can provide most appropriate results. Further, this sampling technique also provides some different data collection techniques which reduce the efforts of researcher in terms of collecting important data (World Research Codes and Guidelines, 2011). Data will be collected with the help of questionnaire method in which 50 employees’ from UK's call centre industry will be selected and evaluated on different basis so that their satisfaction level in this industry and role of SHRM in their company can be understood in a appropriate manner. Further this particular sampling is also very helpful because all the data analysis and other things are completely based on it. Role of sampling in terms of data analysis is very much big as all the primary data are considered and then approaches are decided on that basis. Purposive sampling acts as a base for this study as it is one of the best techniques that can easily help the researcher to get the best respondents and also in most appropriate manner.
Data Analysis is one of the most crucial part in any kind of research report because it allows researcher to investigate overall data that has been generated by both primary and secondary resources. It is very important to analyze data in different suitable methods in order to find most effective results in terms of particular subject matter (Forzano, 2011). As discussed above, data is collected in two forms that is qualitative and quantitative way. In qualitative method researcher analyze data very deeply and in quantitative methods research and data is analyzed in numerical ways. Further, it has been identified that by using both of these approaches data can be analyzed in best and most suitable ways. In this present report, data will be collected by the way of questionnaire which will depict the views of call centre employees of UK. This whole data will be analyzed by using SPSS software in which different techniques will be applied like one way Anova, cross tabs, etc so that proper findings can be drawn out. Further, data that will be collected by the way of qualitative approach will be analyzed by using thematic approach because this will allow researcher to provide in depth analysis of particular subject matter (Guerin, 2006).
It is among one of the most important duty of researcher to follow all ethics and rules while conducting the particular research. It is important to gather most appropriate and suitable data so that proper information can be generated because based on that information only researcher will be able to draw out proper conclusions and recommendations. In order to conduct research with full efficiency it is very important to maintain appropriateness (Reiner, 2010). Further, proper conclusions of valid findings and different results of study should be detailed without any biasness. Here in this particular report, every ethic has been followed so that proper data can be analyzed and collected in most effective manner.
Limitations of Research
This particular research has been carried out with a view to solve important issues that are related with UK's call centre industry. There were different issues and limitations that occurred while collecting data as most of the employees were not able to provide accurate and honest data regarding their job (Mathur, 2005). Further, while collecting secondary data, researcher was not able to generate much deep information that is related with this particular topic. Researcher tried to get involved in every aspect of research so that proper data's can be collected. Lack of time and cost were also two main issues that were faced b researcher. Different steps were taken so that all these limitations could be minimized and appropriate report can be formed.
This is one of the most important chapters in whole dissertation because it allows researcher to find proper conclusions to all questions that have been prevailing in the current industries. All the data that has been collected will have to go under deep evaluation so that relevant outcomes can be developed in proper manner. As per present situation, quantitative analysis has been done using SPSS on 50 employees of call centre industry in UK. In this, different hypothesis will be formed and then these entire hypotheses will be tested in order to find gaps and develop proper outcomes.
Hypothesis to be tested
- H01- There is no significance difference between roles of call centre employees with the services provided by Human Resources Department of these companies.
- H02- There is no significance difference between things that are given importance by call centre employees with different policies that organization has adopted.
- H03- There is no significance difference between performances of employees with the trainings given to them.
Theme 1- One of the most important factor to employees while working in call centre is basic Salary.
Findings: This particular chart was created in order to know the factors that affect the employees while working in call centre. From the questionnaire, it was analyzed that employees demand basic salary should be high so that they can live their life in most appropriate manner. It has been observed that basic salary of employees in call centres is very less and because of the motivation of these people is very low. If HR managers want to make these people satisfied than it is very important for them to increase their basic salaries in most appropriate manner. Other than the basic salary, employees also agreed that, it is very important to have flexible timings in office so that these people can work and relax themselves. It has been seen that most of the employees have to work on night shift every time and they are not given chance to work in day. This decreases their motivation and forces them to quit their job. In order to change that, it is very important for HR managers to make changes in timings so that employees can be rotated on regular manner while working on different timings. Location of work also maters a lot to these people so if the call centre is situated in the outskirts of city, proper cab facilities should be provided for girls as well as boys too so that these people can come to office in appropriate manner. Health care is also a big factor, but it did not affect the employees much but still there should be proper health care facilities in organization and also proper insurance of all these people should be done so that they can be satisfied in most appropriate manner.
Theme 2- HR department of call-centers do not fulfill needs and demands of employees in appropriate manner.
Findings- This chart was created in order to know the perception of employees regarding their HR department in call centres. From this chart, it can be clearly seen that 74% of the employees said that their HR department is not able to fulfill their demands in appropriate manner. No attempt is made by this department to know the issues that these employees are facing while working in call centres. Further, different policies are made without even knowing the perception of these people which affects their working on regular basis. Most of the time these people are given heavy work and the work timings are also not flexible. All these things have created a negative impact on the mind-set of these people and they are very much dis-satisfied with the working of HR department. It has also been seen that if these things are not done in appropriate manner then slowly all the employees will leave the company and join other departments. It has become very important for these HR managers to understand the needs and demands of these employees so that appropriate actions can be taken. All the actions that are taken in company should be clarified with these people so that their working do not get affected and their motivation can be increased in suitable manner.
Theme 3- Work life balance of employees while working in call centres is very bad
Findings- This particular table was created in order to understand the work-life balance of employees while working in call centres. From this chart, it can be analyzed that this life balance of employees is very bad as almost 50% of the employee agreed on this fact. This has happened mainly due to the increasing dissatisfaction among these people. It has been seen that most of the employees are not given proper salaries and due to that they are not able to live their life in appropriate manner. Most of the people have to find second job in order to fulfill all their expenses. Further, Because of doing too many jobs, these people are not able to spend proper time with their families and because of that their work life balance has got disturbed. Other than this, these people are also not able to work appropriately because of the non-flexible timing as many of these people work on night shift and due to that they are not given opportunity to work in day time. It has affected the mind-set of these people in negative manner and have forced these people to shift their jobs in other fields. Because of this bad work life balance, mental pressure on these people increasing day by day and it has affected these people directly.
It has become very important for the HR department to take appropriate steps in order to changes this problem and take actions so that work life balance of these people can be set appropriately.
Theme 4- One of the biggest factor that can increase the work satisfaction of employees is financial rewards.
Findings: This particular chart was created in order to know the factors that can create work satisfaction among the employees of call centre. From this chart, it can be analyzed that 30% of the employees said it is very important for call centre companies to provide proper financial rewards to these people so that they can work in most appropriate manner. Currently in terms of finances, even the basic salary of these people is below average level and it creating huge dissatisfaction among them. In order to remove that, policies should be made so that these people can enjoy appropriate salaries and further, if some targets have been achieved then also some extra amounts can be given so that it can motivate these people to perform in most appropriate manner. Other than the financial rewards, recognition is also very important to these people as nothing is said to these people even when some new targets are achieved, etc. This also reduces the motivation in these people. It is very important for top management to understand this and provide proper recognition to these people so that they can be encouraged to perform even much better. Other than this, training should also be given so that people so that their work and performance level can be increased accordingly and they do not face any problems while working on different levels.
Conclusions and Recommendation
This particular report was made in order to evaluate the strategic resource management theory and practices in UK call centres. It was analyzed that to be effective in global market places, it is very important for human resource departments of company to become an active partner in organization. It is one of the most important duties of this particular department to recruit, interview and hire right personnel as per organization. Other than this it is also crucial for this department to gather the interest of all employees towards the goal of organization by motivating them taking care of them and helping them to develop their careers in most appropriate manner. Call centre industry is among the most popular industries in world that is strictly directed towards the consumers. In UK, this industry once was considered as most important one but in present time, the churn rate of employees are increasing day by day and because of that most of the MNC’s are shifting their call centres from UK towards Asian countries. It was observed that this dissatisfaction among employees is increasing because human resource department and organization itself is not taking care of the needs of these people in an appropriate manner.
In this report, questionnaire method was used in order to analyze views of people working in this industry. It was found out that most of the employees are not at all satisfied with the services of their organization because of one of the most basic reasons and that is that the salaries of these people are below standards. People are not able to live properly in this low salary and because of that they are shifting towards other industries. It was also noticed that most of the organizations do not provide proper working conditions and these people are treated like labors. No career opportunity and flexible timing is provided and because of that people working in night shifts are not able to work in day shifts. Further, organization and human resources departments take no efforts in improving the relations of different employees and also no training are provided before allotting work to them. All these things have increased pressure on this people and their work life balance has been completely destroyed. If these things will be continued then soon this industry will diminish from UK and many companies will have to suffer a lot.
There are many things that companies and human resource department can do in order to bring back the interest of these people towards work. It can be further analyzed by looking at the objectives of report-
Role of SHRM in aligning employees’ capabilities with organization goals
It is very crucial for companies as well as their HR department to align employee’s capabilities with organizational goals. It can be done using many things in which one of the most important things is to recruit and select best people. It has been noticed that most of the call centre employee people without checking proper skills and knowledge of the candidate. This affects the working of company and also creates dissatisfaction among employees. HR department of call centre companies should employ people as per needs and expectation of higher authorities. In BPO, a person has to do lots of work so for that proper interviews can be conducted in order to check the mental level of candidate. It will allow company to hire best person and they also will have to provide less training to these people. It will allow company to work in much better manner. Other than this, one another important think that should be considered in call centres is providing proper training and development. Training and development is important because it not only increases the efficiency of worker but it also forces him to work hard in order to fulfill all goals and needs of company. It will create satisfaction in mindset of an employee that he is improving his career which will help him in his future. It will also reduce the pressure on the shoulders of these people and they will be able to do work much easier and in much better ways.
Different theories of SHRM
There are different theories and models that can be used by call centres companies to increase the performance of all employees and also to retain them. One of the best theories is grounded theory in which proper care is taken of employees in all matters and they are helped to develop their careers. It will allow companies to match all needs and demands of employees which will force them to provide services in order to improve their motivation levels. Another theory that can be used by these companies is called as the McClelland’s motivation theory which has divided different needs of employees in two parts and that are hygiene factors and motivation factors. If company will fulfill both of these factors in an appropriate manner them they will be able to retain employees and performance of company will also improve in best possible ways.
Proper rewards and incentives are core to increase motivation among employees. It has been seen that employees are not paid as per their capabilities and this is affecting their work. So, it is the most important thing that has to be considered very urgently. It is the responsibility of human resource department to provide both monetary and non monetary rewards to employees. It will increase motivation level of employees in positive manner and they will work more hard in order to prove themselves. Alongside this, employees should also be appreciated and recognized as per their work because work activities in call centres are very much hectic and if employees are working hard to provide results them an appreciation will motivate them a lot. Performance of employees should be monitored on regular basis as then they should be rewarded on regular basis. Some of the techniques like bench marking, 360 degrees performance appraisals, balance scorecard, etc are some methods that can be adopted by managers to enhance the performance of employees in positive manner. In addition to this, working environment and relations with colleagues also play an important part as if the work environment is good then it will help employees to perform better and relationship with colleagues will retain them in offices so this thing should also be taken care of in appropriate manner.
Implications of SHRM specifically in UK call Centre’s
Role of SHRM in UK’s call centres is increasing day by day and because most of the employees are leaving this industry are shifting to others. It has become crucial SHRM department to understand needs and wants of all these people in order to create better environment for them and retain them. There are various human resource activities that can lead towards the eradication of these negative aspects and the organizational culture could be improved. The major factor that attracts young age people to get inclined towards the call center is working flexibility and high income opportunities. The employees have flexibility to deliver their work. But now days this scenario is changing and high level of professionalism is taking birth in call centers.
The human resource practices are changing very rapidly in BPO’s. It provides lots of improvement on the ground of human resource management. As mentioned above that call centers has very low retention of employees and employees doesn’t associate with the company for longer period. It is to ascertain that to control this factor there is requirement of focusing on effective recruitment and selection strategies. In call centers the hr managers follow the stringent interview structures and give preference to hire competent employees. It has become major responsibility of human resource managers to bring appropriateness in the hiring process as per the nature of job and designation. Face to face interview, written test, checking the voice modulation and knowledge about the technological aspects is the major prioritized element of the interview process. With respect to bring improvement in recruitment process the hr managers follow the two or three round interview sessions and they generally check the communication and confidence of candidates. At the same juncture it is required to clear that through such kind of recruitment process the company can get efficient employees. It definitely put its impact at the productivity of the all centers. Another main hr activity is the arrangement of training and development sessions. The need of training and development is very high in BPO industry. It is to acknowledge that within the call centers the employees has to perform various activities. The need with respect to technical efficiency is very high. Thus training managers in call centers ensures that people should get proper training with regards to operate software’s and computer. The employee should be tech enabled; it is something which generally determined into the recruitment process. It helps the training manager at very large scale to increase the effectiveness of the staff people. They can provide training sessions for the new kind of technical aspects. Ahead it is also clear that mainly BPO’s handles both the international and national process but in international process the money factor is huge and exposure is also very high. So while working onto the international process command on language is very much essential. Now days this factor gains huge priority by the human resource manager and language efficiency could be treated as advantage for candidates.
Other than the mentioned above recommendations, there are some things that can be done by Human Resource management in order to satisfy the call centre employees are-
- Appropriate Recruitment and selection- It is one of the major activities that are supposed to be done by human resource managers. It is a prime duty of human resource manager to fill the vacant positions as per the demand and expectation level of higher authorities. Now days the scenario of recruitment and selection has been changed completely and new innovations in the recruitment practices have been taken place. Job description, job analysis, job responsibilities these are certain aspects that gains huge priority by the human resource manager. It has become tendency in SHRM that human resource manager should give priority to such aspects as it allows them to explain the nature of job and relevant applications can be generated.It enables the candidates to identify that what kind of job is available into any organization ad what kind of responsibilities and duties they are expected to be fulfilled. In case of call centers and BPO’s where lots of functional areas are available so the role of these elements is huge with respect to make people aware with the nature of job. The activity of recruitment and selection is the basic one which facilitates the organization to grab maximum human resource and they can meet out their operating cost.
- Proper Training and development- As far as basic and core human resource activities are concerned the role of training and development is very huge. With the help of training and development the company can create their workforce who is capable of meeting out their expectations. After the recruitment process once candidate enters within the organization he/she needs training as per the working environment of that organization. It is a duty of human resource manager to arrange such kind of training sessions for their new candidates. Strategic human resource managers firstly try to understand the need of training for their employees and then make it aligned with the nature of job. The working environment of call centers is different from other industries. They usually work on the behalf of their clients so in order to deliver the quality work they have to rely on training sessions.
- Timely Rewards and incentives- It is also a responsibility of a human resource manager that they should assess the performance level of employees in very strategic manner and need to provide incentives accordingly.It is a responsibility of strategic human resource manager that they need to provide both monetary and non monetary rewards to their employees so that various issues of human resource management (related to employee motivation, job dissatisfaction and employee retention) can be resolved easily. In order to strengthen the strategy of rewards and incentives the organizations generally concentrates on the implementation of proper performance appraisal techniques. Thus, rewards and incentives along with the bonuses, perks etc. is essential to be available within the strategic human resource management.
- Measures of Performance management- Performance management is a method in which the organization is committed to assess the performance level of employees in very accurate and effective way so that their efforts level could be identified in effective way. This activity supports the reward and incentives distribution management. Most of the management experts have given their viewpoint that if they will be having huge level of alignment with the proper performance management technique then it will help in managing the rewards structure in most appropriate way. There are various ways of assessing the performance level of employees and these techniques could be used as per the nature of job and profile. Bench marking, 360 degree performance appraisals, balance score card, target achievement etc. these are certain methods that could be adopted by managers with respect to support the rewards and incentives distribution ratio. HR department can easily assess the potential level of the employees and can prepare the future strategies related to responsibilities to be assigned. Hence, performance management should be taken into special consideration by the strategic human resource managers.
- Check on Talent management- In simple words talent management is one of the primary activity of the human resource managers which they can start right from the recruitment and selection stage. It is to acknowledge that at the stage of recruitment and selection the managers can become familiar with the potential of any candidate and assess their growth aspect of that individual. After identifying the capable employees HR department in call centre need to focus hugely on the talent management. It is a responsibility of human resource management to foster such kind of environment where the organization is respecting the talent associated with the company and contributed a lot in ensuring the organizational success. Employees should get proper working environment, the training is required to be imparted in appropriate way and most importantly their performance should be assess at each and every stage. Thus, in this way with the help of talent management the skill set of any employee could be nurtured and their competencies can be channelized in right direction.
- Appropriate Career development- Career development is another activity that is highly supportable to talent management. Talent management is possible only through providing the career development opportunities to the people working within the organization. It is a duty of human resource manager to ensure that the employees should get adequate amount of growth opportunities so that they could be retain with the company for the longer period. In case of call centers this factor gains huge priority as they mostly have lots of process hired from various companies and they need manpower at higher positions those who can perform well and enable an organization to deliver their best for the clients. Thus, career development should be taken as serious responsibility by strategic human resource management.
- Construction of human resource policies- HR policies should be flexible and not rigid as with the help of these policies the values and code of conduct could be disseminated at very large scale. While preparing the human resource policies need to understand the requirement of rules and regulations and have to structure the concrete polices accordingly. These policies should be beneficial to all and most importantly these policies should make the environment of discipline within the organization.
- Job Responsibility- Most of the management experts have stated that due to increment in department and functions the role of job description has been increased tremendously. It enables the candidates to identify that what kind of job is available into any organization ad what kind of responsibilities and duties they are expected to be fulfilled. In case of call centers and BPO’s where lots of functional areas are available so the role of these elements is huge with respect to make people aware with the nature of job.The activity of recruitment and selection is the basic one which facilitates the organization to grab maximum human resource and they can meet out their operating cost.
There were many problems while creating this particular report in terms of cost, time, availability of resources, proper collection of data, etc. But all these problems can be easily solved by making a proper time table of all activities of projects and then doing it in proper ways. Further the data that has been collected will also help other researcher to analyze this industry in an appropriate manner.
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