Assignment 2: Field Study (20%)
10 page report 20% of course grade
For this field study, each student will select an organization to study its Human Resources operations. The purpose of the assignment is to (1) understand and summarize the nature of the organization and how Human Resource policies, practices, and priorities contribute to the organizations success, (2) to gather information regarding key aspects of the organizations Human Resources and (3) compare this organization with the High and Low HR Management Quality benchmarks outlined on Page 16-17 of The HR Scorecard.
Each student must select one organization to study. Ideally, students will select an organization that they have some affiliation to, either as a current or past employee. Organizations may be in Kamloops or abroad. To study the organization, the student will need to interview either a Human Resources Manager or an organizational leader in companies which do not have an HR manager. Students may also network with other friends and family to help identify and contact an organization who will be willing to participate in a 30 minute meeting to understand their organization and Human Resources practices. In return, organizations will receive a copy of your report outlining how their HR operations compare with industry best practices.
Interviewing the Organization
Students will interview the HR Manager or organizational leader to gather the information outlined on The HR Scorecard Survey Part 1 and Part 2. The interviews may be conducted in person or via telephone. They should not be conducted via e-mail. The Understanding the organization questions in Part 1 are quite broad and open-ended, and will require students to spend time clarifying and understanding the specific goals of the organization to develop the responses to these questions for the Report. Part 2 questions require working with the organization to obtain accurate responses in order to be able to compare these responses to industry best-practices.
The report includes four sections. Section on is one page and is an introduction to the organization, how this report is structured, and the key findings in the report. Section two of the report details the answers to the questions from part 1. This part of the report should be up to six pages in length. Page 2 is titled Organization summary and includes the responses to Part 1, up to the section understanding the organization. Pages 3 to 7 answers questions 1 to 5 of the Understanding the organization. The third section (Page 8) lists the 16 HR Practices indicators from page 16-17 of The HR Scorecard, including the organizations score for each question, as well as the values for High and Low HR Management Quality organizations listed with those questions. The fourth section is a discussion of how the organizations HR practices compare to High and Low HR Management Quality Organizations, with explanation of how either (a) the HR approach taken by the study organization aligns with that organizations context and strategy, or (b) improvements the organization seeks to implement more effective HR.
Assessment of the assignment will be an overall assessment based on a letter-grade based on the based on the following weighting:
Depth of understanding and description of the organization
Depth of understanding and description of the HR practices and their importance to the organization
Effectiveness of the gathering of Part 2 data
Effectiveness of the analysis of the HR relative to best practices
Organization and presentation of the report, including spelling, grammar and formatting