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This report analyses six problems currently existing within the business, which have been identified by a small business service organisation, and looks at possible means of overcoming them.

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SOFTWARE SYSTEMS Executive Summary The report analyses six problems currently existing within the business, which have been identified by a small business service organisation, and looks at possible means of overcoming them. Research indicates that these problems could be resolved through implementation of Performance Management Systems, Motivation (Retaining and Generating Commitment), Training & Development programmes and Communication. The report has concluded by providing possible ways in which these problem areas could be overcome and by providing recommendations for Helen and Brian to put into action. Introduction As part of the HR2004 assessment criteria, we are required to complete a report based upon a supplementary case study issued by our module tutor. The supplementary case study is based upon a company called Software Systems. It was established by Helen Marsh and Brian Taylor through the support of a grant and funds provided by Business Link in 1995. The primary risk taken in order to enhance their business idea was that they were required to take out substantial loans secured on their home. This investment paid off as the company grew rapidly through its initial research and through Helens knowledge of software solutions. The company expanded extensively from a two-person partnership in 1995 to 200 people in 2001. The main reason for this was that Software Systems were now able to specialise in offering tailorised solutions to local government computerisation problems on housing benefit and social services. The company seems to be meeting sales targets on a regular basis and most of the outstanding debt is being repaid and things are going to plan. The aim of this report is to analyse the case study with regards to the main problems that are being faced by the company in the analyst's opinion. These include the growth dominated strategy, performance management, motivating, retaining and generating commitment from the employees, training and development and finally my recommendations to Helen and Brian. ...read more.


If employees are uncapable of doing certain tasks managers often take no notice of this whereas this should be addressed. It may be the case as managers feel that this problem will go away itself or that the individual involved will leave. A consequence of this problem may result in the company being taken to an employment tribunal by the individual involved. Lastly, performance management systems require support for individuals in order for performance requirements to be met through welfare and counselling services. This could take the form of informal support from an individual manager, or maybe through a quiet chat in the office, which may be the only thing necessary to improve things for both the individual and the company. More and more companies are using external services for counselling and as the Internet is more widely used companies use the web, as employees feel that an independent person is listening to their concerns due to the increasing pressures and stress faced by employees within organisations. Motivating, Retaining & Generating Commitment In order for the management of Software Systems to remain successful they need to motivate, retain and generate the commitment of its workforce. The most common way of motivating the workforce is through monetary rewards, but the SBS have pointed out that employees within the company view the reward system as being inappropriate as it just consists of a flat salary plus an expenses system. Therefore Helen and Brian need to look at alternative means. "Motivation is a process in which people choose between alternative forms of behaviour in order to achieve personal goals" (Cole G.A., 1995). This definition is based upon an individuals choice, who tends to react upon the "emotions and deeply-held values" (Cole G.A., 1995) of themselves. "The traditional definition of employee loyalty is being replaced by the new type of commitment that requires a more mutually beneficial relationship between the worker and the employer" (Laabs J., 1998). ...read more.


This is required to ensure that all the software engineers as well as all the other employees of the company to make sure that they are properly trained. The final task involves Helen and Brian looking at possible ways of improving communication across the three sites. This would benefit the company as all employees can provide and receive information on a daily basis, which will ensure that all the internal departments within the company are running smoothly. Recommendations I would recommend Helen and Brian to take the following steps in order to resolve the main problem areas which exist within Software Systems: Performance Management Use the following performance methods for Sales Representatives: - Introduce employee appraisal systems to monitor the progress and planned performance of individuals - Managers are required to conduct staff appraisals on a regular basis throughout the year - Look at the four main stages of performance management systems i.e. Induction, Review and Appraisal, Reinforcing Performance Standards and finally Welfare and Counselling Services Motivation, Retaining & Generating Commitment - Regular communication between employers and employees - Offer improved benefits - Regular appraisals - Increase in responsibility where possible - Job rotation - Suggestion box - Employee of the month - Recognise trade unions and staff associations. Training & Development Use the following training methods for the Software Engineers: - Learning theory - Cater for all learning styles - Train on team working skills - Role plays - Case studies - Led discussion groups - Brainstorming. Communication Use the following methods to improve communication across the three sites: - Use LAN (Local Area Network) - Use WAN (Wide Area Network) - Upgrade the current in house system - Appendix A The performance management process Performance management systems Reviewing and appraising performance Reinforcing performance standards Appendix B The Learning Cycle Activity Planning how to Reflection put it into practice Theory building Source: Torrington & Hall (1995) Personnel Management, 3rd ed. ...read more.

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