People, Management, & Organizations

People, Management, & Organizations

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People, Management, & Organisations


Human resource management (HRM) is one of the most important departments in the operations of an organization. Different entities as well share HRM responsibilities differently depending on the size, situation/context, and the goals of the organization among other functions. HRM in overall aims at improving the performance of the business by extracting maximum value from the capabilities, knowledge and skills and efforts of employees in the most cost effective manner as possible.

To achieve this value, organizations share various responsibilities through shared service centres, HRM department, and outsourcing or through line managers. The paper therefore, focuses on the different ways of sharing responsibilities using the case of Vodafone Company. The paper further deliberates on how this work and ways to improve the same putting into consideration the drivers of trends in service delivery.

People, Management, & Organizations

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Case study

Vodafone is one of the leading multinational corporations in the area of telecommunication companies operating in India. The company ranks second after Airtel in terms of mobile network coverage. The company offers an array of services including services that relates to voice, mobile phones, and internet services such as 3G and many others. The company dominates the mobile telephony market because of the quality of services it renders to its customers. The company has as well managed to grow because of the competitive personnel it has.

The nature of HRM delivery the company uses is both outsourcing and HRM department. The company has a HRM department that deals with the affairs of its employees. It as well on various occasions uses outsourcing services to supplement its HRM department functions. Various drivers or trends in service delivery exist such as technological advancement/change, competitive pressures, and globalization and are critical in the operations of HRM systems. These drivers as well have played a key role in the operations and HRM responsibilities of the company.

For instance, competitive pressures have contributed to the innovations and creativity experienced in the company. The company has managed to come up with competitive products and services that have contributed to its success. Globalization has also contributed to the adoption of the HRM strategy in the company. The company has as well adopted best practices embraced by different companies across the world to be competitive.

People, Management, & Organizations

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Advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing of HR mode of delivery the company has adopted

 Outsourcing of HR activities is one of the HR service delivery the company uses. Various HR practice areas such as training and development and recruitment, and payroll, and general administration are sourced from various HR specialists. This however, does not mean the company has poor systems, but some of the personnel’s to be recruited requires vigorous scrutiny (Torrington, Hall &Taylor, 2008). Recruitment agencies for instance, possess greater skills and experience concerning suitable caliber of candidates to recruit.

Furthermore, outsourcing reduces costs of operation, especially in the short run because it can be expensive to maintain or retain internal staffs due to employment cost such as holiday pay, office accommodation, and pension pays. Outsourcing removes, potential rigidities as they are not covered (Bresnen & Marchington, 2014). Outsourcing has advantages because it allows the company to buy in external expertise not available in house. It is also useful and appropriate in change programmes, and is cheaper in the long run.

However, using outsourcing as a method of delivery have potential problems that the organization put into consideration to ensure that they does not derail smooth operations and functioning of the organization. This includes loss of internal synergy in the Human resource functions in the company. It also limits the company when it comes to application of best practices and there may cause interference in the process of reaching amicable solutions (Torrington, Hall &Taylor, 2008).

Furthermore, the company faces threat of experiencing additional costs because of monitoring and definition of performance that must be undertaken even after the outsourced experts or specialists leaves the organization (Bresnen & Marchington, 2014).

People, Management, & Organizations

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Advantages and disadvantages of HRM department mode of delivery the company has adopted

HRM department is cheaper to administer and to run because personnel’s are familiar with the internal process of the organization (Torrington, Hall &Taylor, 2008). However, some of the challenges or problems that this company experience using this mode of service delivery is   when it comes to policy implementation and implementation of programmes due to long processes created in the organization structure.

 These delivery methods as indicated from the discussion are appropriate and help the organization to gain value. The company does not incur huge costs operating on these delivery methods. Furthermore, returns in terms of value are higher.

Outsourcing has contributed to recruitment of skilled and knowledgeable staffs that have contributed to achievement of the objectives and goals of the organization. Furthermore, it has contributed to smooth operations because; the right people that have the requisite skills are employed to help champion the issues of the organization forward.

Other modes of HR service deliver

Advantages and disadvantage of front-line managers

Even though, the company uses outsourcing and HRM department, Purcell & Hutchinson (2007) argues that using other modes such as front line managers and shared service centers (SSC) can as well add value to an entity. According to  Bresnen & Marchington (2014),  the potential advantages of using  front line managers is that  is easy to intervene in any  HR issues as they are closer to issues that the department of HR perform.

Furthermore, line managers have higher understanding of the business and they own ideas that help them to engage with others (Purcell & Hutchinson, 2007). However, they have some drawbacks such as may not be familiar with the goals of the organization, may lack skills and competencies, may experience work overload that may derail their smooth operations and may as well face inconsistencies when it comes to application of HR rules.

People, Management, & Organizations

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Advantages and disadvantage shared service centers HRM service delivery mode

 On the other hand, shared services centres are also becoming popular in entities. This involves a small group of HR professionals that drive the strategic vision of an organization at the same time a call center exists that provides advice to line managers as well as administrators and individual workers (Marchington & Wilkinson, 2011).

Some benefits of this include higher customer satisfaction, efficient processes, and economies of scale, transparency of costs, among others. Potential problems using this kind of delivery mode is increased workload to line manager that may affect service delivery, higher than expected costs and staffs may experience IT problems among many others.

Wider theoretical perspectives

  Various theories provide wider perspectives on the functioning of different organization. Resource based view is one of the theories that explains how the key drivers of HRM and organization performance are shaped (Bresnen & Marchington, 2014). In Vodafone, the primary forces that impacts on its performance is based on the inside out approach. The internal capabilities including the skills of employees and processes as well as employment relation play a critical role in its success (Lepak & Snell, 2007).

The organization therefore has used different individuals in different areas they cause greater impacts. Practices or goals that are ascertained to be are, valuable, not easy to copy, and not easy to substitute are given preferential treatment. Therefore, HRM architecture has as well been of greater value in the functioning of HRM as the modes of delivery is based on centrality to the mission of the company (Bresnen & Marchington, 2014).

People, Management, & Organizations

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Ways of improving delivery and alternative HRM service delivery modes recommendations

 Based on the literature and discussion, delivery can still be improved to ensure that the organization achieves higher performance. One way of improving delivery is applying various models of delivery that suit the company and which help achieve the goals and visions of the organization (Lepak & Snell, 2007).

It is also important to select the mode of delivery that is cost effective, ensure that problems are solved and those that ensure adoption of best practices in the functioning of the organization. It is also important to utilize resource based view theories by incorporating internal capabilities that can add value to the organization. I recommend use of HR departments and outsourcing of HR in circumstances where an organization wants to save costs and to attract talented individuals.


Human resource management is critical in the operation of   the organization. It is prudent that organizations adopt suitable service delivery modes that can help them meet their goals. Organization such as Vodafone uses HR department and outsourcing and this has contributed to its success. In dealing with various problems entities encounter, it becomes prudent to adapt to most suitable and appropriate modes of service delivery.

People, Management, & Organizations

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Other modes that entities can use include front-line managers and Shared Service centers. It is also important to consider the drivers of factors of service delivery such as globalisation, technological changes, and competitive pressures in deciding the appropriate service delivery mode to use. Theoretical views such as resource based and architectural modes are important to consider in service delivery.

Using inside approach by considering internal capabilities of individuals can go extra miles in ensuring that an entity remains competitive. It is therefore recommended that organizations make appropriate decisions on the modes they want to use by weighing their benefits against drawbacks and putting into consideration the context or the situation they are operating in.


Bresnen, M, & Marchington, M 2014, People, Management & Organisations, study guide; The University of Manchester; Manchester.

Lepak, D, & Snell, S 2007, ‘Employment subsystems and the ‘HR architecture’, in Boxall, P.,Purcell, J. and Wright, P. (eds), The Oxford Handbook of Human Resource Management, Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Marchington, M, & Wilkinson, A 2011, Human Resource Management at Work (4th Edition), London: CIPD.

Purcell, J, & Hutchinson, S 2007, ‘Front-line managers as agents in the HRM performance causal chain: theory, analysis and evidence,’ Human Resource Management Journal, 17(1), pp 3- 20.

Torrington, D, Hall, L, & Taylor, S 2008, Human Resource Management, 7th edition, FT Prentice Hall, London.

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