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“Explain the key challenges that Amey faced in terms of structuring and organising its HR department, and critically evaluate the approach taken to tackling these challenges. What future challenges can you foresee, and what recommendations would you mak
You will be given a case study on Amey plc, a company that won the CIPD People Management Award in 2011. The case study explains how the company’s new Group HR Director, Valerie Hughes-D’Aeth, introduced a series of changes to the HR department and its operation that significantly enhanced the company’s performance and perceptions of HR’s role.
Based on the case study, your task is to write an individual assignment of no more than 2,500 words ( not including reference) that addresses of the following question:
“Explain the key challenges that Amey faced in terms of structuring and organising its HR department, and critically evaluate the approach taken to tackling these challenges. What future challenges can you foresee, and what recommendations would you make for addressing these?”
This question focuses on the structure & organisation of the HR department (rather than the general issues of Amey)
Therefore you need to consider the following:
LEVEL1 -Descriptive:
How was the HR department structured prior to the change process?
What changes were made to the structure & organisation of the HR department?
LEVEL2 -Critical Analysis
(Think about: Why were these changes made? What particular challenges were these changes addressing?)
Write about:
Which approaches were taken to managing this change? This requires you to consider the various theories and models of change management to assess which apply to Amey’s approach to managing change for its HR department. You must critically evaluate the approaches that were taken i.e. what were the strengths and weaknesses of the approach taken by Amey?
What future challenges can you foresee, and what recommendations would you make for addressing these?
This should account for approximately 25% of the total word count
Description:
What is the strategy of Amey for the next 4-5 years? What HR challenges can you foresee as a result of this strategy?
Critical Analysis:
Make recommendations for addressing the HR challenges you have identified.
Given the emphasis in this module on the practical application of theory within the HRM arena, it is important that your assignment clearly draws on relevant theories and models in analysing the case study. The lectures and seminars, together with the textbooks and additional reading provided for the module will constitute a good starting point, and we recommend you also read more widely around your chosen subject.
Samples of theory applies
Balogun and Hope-Hailey’s (2004) Change Kaleidoscope
Balogun and Hope-Hailey’s (2008) Change Kaleidoscope
External & Internal Environmental Factors Influencing HR Activities
It is required to identify more theories relevant an essay`s subject and structure.
The marking criteria for the assignment are given at the end of the module guide. We will be looking for the following:
A well-written, well-presented, clearly structured and well-argued piece of work.
The demonstration that you have understood and applied relevant theories in your answer.
Evidence that you have read and understood the case study.
Critical analysis and insight; in other words, it is important not to just describe your views, but rather you need to weigh up one argument against another, using academic sources, and then come to a considered view based on the available evidence.
Evidence that you have read and understood a range of academic journal articles. It is not enough to rely solely on textbooks for your assignment. We are expecting you to do some independent research to find relevant articles .
ADVICE ON STRUCTURE FOR THIS ASSIGNMENT
Introduction:
A very brief introduction to the case study organisation and the main issues relevant to your question (i.e. either the HR department or general HR issues)
Main Body:
Begin with Level 1 Descriptive account relevant to your question – but don’t use up too many words doing this! Start with the broader or most significant issues first and work through logically all the issues relevant to your question. Make linkages between issues to ensure you are developing a ‘story’
How you structure the initial step of your Level 2: Critical Analysis arguments is up to you! There are a couple of choices e.g.
Alongside identifying the issue you discuss why these changes were made? What particular issues were being addressed?
After describing all the issues you then go on to discuss why the changes were made
You then need to evaluate which approaches were taken to managing change? Remember to relate back to relevant theories and models from the literature.
Conclusion:
This should cover the question that is the same for both i.e. What future challenges can you foresee, and what recommendations would you make for addressing these?
And then one final paragraph at the end briefly summarising your findings and arguments
Assignment format:
The assignment should be up to 2,500 words in length, excluding references and appendices.
Always use the Harvard referencing system as advised in your Programme Guide, and ensure that you fully acknowledge all sources you use.
Any direct quotations should always be indicated with inverted commas and the full reference including page numbers is required. Turnitin will check for plagiarism.
You do not need an abstract or executive summary, or table of contents. You should not use sub-heading in this assignment.
SPACE OUT YOUR WORK!
Please leave wide margins, double space the text, and use a minimum of 12pt font size.
Any coursework submitted with narrow margins and single spacing is unlikely to receive any written comments or feedback on the text itself due to lack of space.
Assignment content:
Make sure you answer the question, do not just write everything you know on the topic!
Although the focus of this module is on practice, we also expect the assignment to have a strong theoretical content.
Therefore, we envisage that assignments will be structured according to relevant theories and concepts and include practical examples as illustrations, rather than the reverse.
You need to refer to the module textbooks AND also academic journal articles. It is not enough simply to cite the textbook to get a good mark. We are looking for evidence of wider reading.
The Moodle site is a good place to start, as there are some useful reading lists and articles posted there.The textbook will give you some further references (and also look at the reference lists at the end of articles), and you can search yourself for relevant articles via the University’s e-resources.
At a expect to refer to at least 9 sources beyond the textbook(s) and total references 19.
There are no hard and fast rules about how to allocate your 2,500 words within the assignment. One possibility is as follows:
Cover page: name, Kent login, question number, word count, module code.
Introduction c. 200 words: explain the focus of your essay and how it is structured.
Main body c. 2,100 words: structured around the relevant theory/concepts and illustrated with some practical examples. We expect most word count to be allocated to the theory element, with three or more short illustrations/case studies. As a rule of thumb, expect the approximate balance between theory/practice to be around two-thirds/one-third. Do not just drop the examples into the text without referring to them, it is important to show how the examples relate to the points you are making.
Conclusions c. 200 words. Bring together your main line of argument and conclude your assignment.
Reference list
Appendices (if needed).
Reading list :
Human resource management – Derek Torrington 2014 (electronic resource)
Armstrong’s handbook of human resource management practice – Michael Armstrong 2012
Armstrong’s handbook of human resource management practice – Michael Armstrong 2012 (electronic resource)
Human resource management: a contemporary approach 2014
Human resource management: theory & practice – John Bratton, Jeffrey Gold 2012
Human resource management in a global context: a critical approach – Robin Kramar, Jawad Syed 2012
An introduction to human resource management – Nick Wilton 2013
Contemporary human resource management: text and cases 2013
Strategy and human resource management – Peter F. Boxall, John Purcell c2011

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