Guidelines

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Guidelines

  1. 1. FURNITURE INDUSTRY IN RESTRUCTURING : SYSTEMS & TOOLS FURNITURE INDUSTRY IN RESTRUCTURING : SYSTEMS & TOOLS Guidelines How to align a human resources strategy with a business strategy Co-funded by the EUROPEAN UNION European Social Fund Article 6 Innovative measures
  2. 2. Contents 1 Identifying and rectifying weaknesses in the people organisation 4 2 The HR strategy development process 5 Define the business strategy 5 The business strategy in a human resources context 6 Undertake a SWOT analysis to identify key HR issues 6 Priorities for change 6 Action the change and measure the outcomes 7 3 HR diagnostics 8 4 Example case studies - furniture manufacturers 12 Bed and mattress manufacturer with 340 employees 12 Office furniture manufacturer with 100 employees 12 Manufacturer of furniture (wood and plastic) for the health care market with 130 employees 12 Upholstery manufacturer of furniture for the health care market with 51 employees 13 Cabinet manufacturer with 160 employees 13 How to align a human resources strategy 5 Examples guidelines 14 Annual/Seasonal hours working (Appendix 1) 14 Performance appraisal (Appendix 2) 14 Absence control measures and thresholds (Appendix 3) 14 6 APPENDIX 15 APPENDIX 1: Seasonal hours working 15 APPENDIX 2 16 APPENDIX 3 18
  3. 3. Introduction The globalization is changing the structure of labor intensive industries such as the furniture industry. Increased imports at lower prices force the European manufacturers to look for competitive edges and if necessary to restructure their operations. Some looked at their business model, other at the product, the production, productivity or the relation with the final consumer or a combination of some or all of these different aspects. The solutions, some more successful than others they come up with are multiple. The FIRST project has the ambition to look into this subject with the aim to formulate recommendations to serve as inspiration to manufacturers. The methodology used was to analyze 30 companies that either went to a restructuring or that had particular characteristics in one or more aspects of their business that allows them to (better) cope with the problems arising from the globalization. This analysis should lead to business models from which guidelines on specific strategies could be distilled. Case studies mapping Best practices 4-5 recurrent Business Models NPD BM1 BM2 SCM Guidelines Collaboration HR BM3 BM4 During the work it rapidly became clear that there are almost as many business models as there are companies, and on suggestion of the advisory board of the project, it was decided to concentrate on guidelines for practical strategies in specific fields rather than develop entire business models. The advisory board also suggested to formulate these guidelines in short separate formats easily usable by interested manufacturers. This way the work resulted in the formulation of six guidelines around specific activities: product development and innovation, supply chain management, industrial co-operation, outsourcing, human resource management and electronic communications. In parallel the partners developed a sub contracting database for manufactures interested in co-operation as an ins- trument of increasing such co-operation between manufacturers in the EU and especially with manufacturers in the most recent EU Member States. Information on the project and on the database can be found on the UEA web site www.ueanet.com. The analytical work has been done by the partners under the leadership and guidance of the MIP, the Polytechnic University of Milan and of AIDIMA, the Spanish technical furniture center. BFM, MEDIFA and the UEA and some of its other members contributed in the best practices and the redaction of the guidelines. Ifabrick, the information department of MEDIFA was responsible for the Web site and database. The current booklet formulates guidelines on how to align a human re- sources strategy on business strategy in the furniture industry. It is not meant to suggest that European furniture manufacturers should follow the strategies described, but the booklet wants to contribute to the reflection on this subject by those manufacturers who feel that it might fit into their business model. We hope it serves them well. Bart De Turck UEA secretary general FIRST project manager 3
  4. 4. 1 Identifying and rectifying weaknesses in the people organisation 1 Identifying and rectifying weaknesses in the people organisation A business strategy is seen as essential to any organisation but however A business strategy is seen as essential to any organisation but however well well researched and defined the corporate goals may be, the strategy will researched and defined the corporate goals may be, the strategy will be worthless be worthless without good people and people management systems. For without good people and people management systems. For example, in very simple example, in very simple terms, in order to develop a new product an idea terms, in order to develop a new product an idea has to emerge, research has to be has to emerge, research has to be undertaken into the potential market and undertaken into the potential market and the ease and constraints on production the ease and constraints on production capabilities and the supply chain assessed. and the supply chain assessed. these processes in various guises and capabilities People drive or deliver all People drive or deliver all these processes in various guises and departments, from design, marketing, sales, purchasing, departments, from design, marketing, sales, purchasing, technical and pro- duction (management (management and shop floor). technical and production and shop floor). Therefore, a business strategy and the strategic management of human resources are re- Therefore, a business strategy and the strategic management of human sources are linked. They are mutuallyThey are mutually informative. The way inextricably inextricably linked. informative. The way people are managed, motivated and deployed, motivated and deployed, and the availability of skills people are managed, and the availability of skills and knowledge will all shape the business strategy. and knowledge will all shape the business strategy. This tool is designed to: This tool is designed to: identify the key characteristics of an HR strategy • identify the key characteristics of an HR strategy clarify the issues that need to be addressed in an HR strategy • clarify the issues that need to be addressed in an HR strategy The tool: The tool: is aimed at smaller and medium sized companies that do not necessarily enjoy • is aimed at smaller and medium sized companies that do not necessarily the luxury of employing a HR specialist although the tool may be used by enjoy the luxury of employing a HR specialist although the tool may be used by those practitionerstoo those practitioners too • introduces method into HR analysis by providing three key performance introduces method into HR analysis by providing three key performance indicators thatthat will allow companies to review existing practices and work work indicators will allow companies to review existing practices and towards improvement towards improvement Key performance indicators (KPI): Do I have sufficient information at my disposal in order to compare the HR and business strategies? Action 1 and Action 2 Can I identify the weaknesses in the HR strategy? Action 3 How do I know if I am developing an effective strategy? Action 4 and Action 5 The KPI Action colours indicate a directly linked section of the guide The KPI Action colours indicate a directly linked section of the guide The intention behind the review of the people organisation does not have to be driven The an imperative for change. review of the people organisation specificnot have by intention behind the Reviews may be incremental addressing does areas to be driven by you are already believe change. Reviewsfor example, absence of concern which an imperative for may be problematic, may be incremental addressing specific areas offocus your mind onyou are already believe may be levels. This tool can help you concern which individual issues too. problematic, for example, absence levels. This tool can help you focus your mind on individual issues too. 4 4
  5. 5. 2 The HR strategy development process 2 The HR strategy development process Decide who is to be involved, Decide who is to be involved, how and at what stages how and at what stages Define the business strategy Set it in a HR context SWOT analysis Identify priority changes Action plan - implement and measure outcomes Example case studies in Example guidelines furniture industry Addressing HR weaknesses The intention behind the review of the people organisation does not have to be driven by an imperative for change. Reviews may be incremental addressing specific areas of concern which you are already believe may be problematic, for example, absence levels. This tool can help you focus your mind on individual issues too. Define the business strategy Define the business strategy Most organisations possess a businessbusiness strategic goals and it is important that it is Most organisations possess a plan with plan with strategic goals and important that the HR strategy is aligned to business need. Typically these the HR strategy is aligned to business need. Typically these plans can look 5 years plans can look 5 yearsaahead. If you do not have a a plan going forward, ahead. If you do not have clear written business strategy with clear written business strategy with a plan going forward, what information can be obtained about business intentions? You need to determine as well who should be involved what information can be obtained about 5 business intentions? You need to determine in formulating the HR strategy and at what stages? as well who should be involved in formulating the HR strategy and at what stages? Action 1: Do I understand the business strategy as it could affect people resourcing needs? If not, what further information/explanation do I require? The business strategy in a human resources context You must not only be aware of the business strategy but be able to assess its implications for HR management. This will mean that you will need to appreciate the strengths and weaknesses of the organisation and in this respect you will need to draw upon information on labour needs and core competency requirements as it affects business need, current and future. Action 2: Identify the information sources/tools available to assess your labour 5 requirements and the competencies of your employees
  6. 6. Do I understand the business strategy as it could affect people resourcing needs? If not, what further information/explanation do I require? The business strategy in a human resources context The business strategy in a human resources context You must not only bebe aware ofbusiness strategy but be able to assess its to assess You must not only aware of the the business strategy but be able its implications for HR management. This will mean that you will need to implications for HR management. This will mean that you will need to appreciate the appreciate the strengths the organisation and in this respect you will need to draw strengths and weaknesses of and weaknesses of the organisation and in this respect you will on labour needs and core competency requirementsneeds and core upon information need to draw upon information on labour as it affects competency requirements as it affects business need, current and future. business need, current and future. Action 2: Identify the information sources/tools available to assess your labour requirements and the competencies of your employees If you do not have sufficient information what do you need? Undertake a SWOT analysis to identify key HR issues The key issues are those that directly affect the achievement of the business goals. They may be arranged under headings such as training resources, personal Undertake a SWOT analysis to hours’ arrangements. Some will be development needs or working systems such as identify key HR issues general to the whole of the workforce or to particular employee groupings, while The key issues are thoseparticular skill or role. the achievement of the business others may be specific to a that directly affect goals. They may be arranged under headings such as training resources, personal development needs or working systems threats. as SWOT analysis SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and such A hours’ arran- gements. Some to establish for example, thewhole of but perhaps more critically, should enable you will be general to the strengths the workforce or to par- ticular employee HR strategy that need to be addressed. For example,particular skill weaknesses in the groupings, while others may be specific to a you may find or role. need to develop specific competencies to cope with the launch of new that you products for new markets. SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. A SWOT analysis should enable you to establish for example, the strengths but perhaps more critically, weaknesses in the HR strategy that need to be addressed. For example, you may find that you need to develop specific competencies to cope with the launch of new products for new markets. Action 3: Compare the business strategy/need against the human resources strategy - identifying gaps – SWOT Analysis Priorities for change 6 Once you have undertaken the SWOT analysis, you must set priorities for resourcing and/or change. By identifying potential defects in the current people organisation you Priorities forroad to developing a more effective HR strategy. are well down the change Once much innovation at any one time however may be difficult to achieve and that is Too you have undertaken the SWOT analysis, you must set priorities for resourcing and/or change. By identifying and timescale for action. the current why priorities are important together with a plan potential defects in people organisation you are well down the road to developing a more ef- fective HR strategy. at this stage – if not earlier – to do this with a group of senior It is advisable certainly managers because they will have important contributions to the debate and Too much innovation at any one time however may will difficult to achieve development of the strategic HR goals. Senior management be also have to authorize major changes. and that is why priorities are important together with a plan and timescale for action. Also, while identifying the need for change in a particular area may be easy, it may Itnot advisable certainly at it in its ideal– if not earlier – to do this change have is be possible to implement this stage form and therefore barriers to with a group of senior managers because they will have important contributions to the to be discussed to establish potential alternative courses of action including if debate and development of the strategic HR goals. Senior management will necessary outsourcing. also have to authorize major changes. Also, while identifying the need for change in a particular area may be easy, Action 4: it may not be possible to implement it in its ideal form and therefore barriers to changenew strategies and practices needed to bridge the gaps courses of Identify have to be discussed to establish potential alternative and action including if necessary outsourcing. rectify existing HR and organisational weaknesses Any potential barriers to change including any additional HR resources need to be identified 6 Action the change and measure the outcomes
  7. 7. It is advisable certainly the need for – if not in a particular area with a group of may Also, while identifying at this stage change earlier – to do this may be easy, it senior managers because implement it inimportant contributions to the debateto change have not be possible to they will have its ideal form and therefore barriers and development of to establish potential alternative management will including if to be discussed the strategic HR goals. Senior courses of action also have to authorize major changes. necessary outsourcing. Also, while identifying the need for change in a particular area may be easy, it may not be possible to implement it in its ideal form and therefore barriers to change have Action 4: to be discussed to establish potential alternative courses of action including if necessary new strategies and practices needed to bridge the gaps and Identify outsourcing. rectify existing HR and organisational weaknesses Any potential barriers to change including any additional HR resources Action 4: need to be identified Identify new strategies and practices needed to bridge the gaps and rectify existing HR and organisational weaknesses Action the change and measure the outcomes Any potential barriers to change including any additional HR resources need to be identified This section will obviously depend on the previous sections. Careful planning is Action and an change timescale for securing the outcomes set. required the achievable and measure the change needs to be You need to decide too how you are going to monitor or measure any actions you put in Action the change and measure the outcomes place and someone should be given responsibility for this. This section will obviously depend on the previous sections. Careful planning is required and an achievable timescale for securing the change needs to This section will obviously depend on the previous sections. Careful planning is be set. 5: Action You need to decide too how you are going to monitor or measure required and an achievable timescale for securing the change needs to be set. You any actions you put in place and someone should be given responsibility for need to decide-too how you are going to monitor or measure any actions you put in Action plan implement and measure outcomes this. place and someone should be given responsibility for this. Action 5: Action plan - implement and measure outcomes 7 7 7
  8. 8. 3 HR diagnostics Knowledge tree (current and in relation to future plans): 1 = inadequate 2 = fair (may need more) 3 3 HR diagnostics = Sufficient Knowledge tree (current and in relation to future plans): 1 = inadequate 2 = fair (may need more) 3 = Sufficient ACTION 1: Business strategy: 123 123 Current Future Do I understand the business strategy as it affects people resourcing – short and long term aims, goals and objectives? For example: Headcount and projected count – Key job profiles and department breakdowns Organisation structure Investment plans – machinery and systems Financial plans Expansion plans Contraction plans Changes in products Changes in processes Production and workflow (including productions bottlenecks etc) Payroll expenditure on labour – direct and indirect etc The supply chain Plans to acquire national accreditations (e.g. ISO 9001(quality) or 14001 (environment) Summarize the main aims as they effect resourcing needs: Identify areas of the business plan where you require further information and how you are to acquire it: ACTION 2: HR analysis information and tools: 123 123 Current Future Am I able to assess labour needs and competencies via information and tools at my disposal? For example: Organisation charts Training underway or planned and completion dates Job roles/profiles by department Appraisal data – identification of employee abilities, potential and aspirations Age profiles – by job, department (e.g. are employees in key roles near retirement) Vacancies Absence data – reasons and amount Labour turnover figures Employee reasons for leaving company 8 Working time and systems Details of outsourced labour if used Contracts of employment Health, safety and environment compliance information Pay data Performance data – group/individual Trends in the local labour market – supply and demand Identify main areas where you need to improve information and data resources: Priority remedial action for obtaining that information: 8
  9. 9. ACTION 3: SWOT analysis: 123 123 Current Future You will need to look at the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of your HR strategy against the business plans to identify key priorities. The key issues are those that directly affect the achievement of the business goals, for example: Organisational structure Specific skills and competencies Training and training resources Succession plans Induction of new employees (introduction to company and rules/procedures) Personal development Promotion opportunities Recruitment and selection Employee retention Flexibility/deployment Pay and incentive systems Working systems/productivity/quality Team working Motivation Communication strategies and policies Health, safety and environment practices and procedures Employee consultation/involvement Empowerment Working hours Work life balance (e.g. part time/flexible to family needs) Age profile of workforce/departments/key skills Absence management Clear written HR documentation Aide-memoire comments: ACTION 4: Priorities for Change: ACTION 4: Priorities for Change: Assign your own Estimated Managers Possible HR Area Reason Assign your own priority rating of Estimated Timescale Managers likely to Possible to barriers HR Area Reason priority rating of importance of Timescale To achieve likely to be barriers to implementing importance of action To achieve Actions be involved implementing change action 2 1 3 Actions involved change 1High 2 3 Low High Low 10 ACTION 5: Action plan: ACTION 5: Action plan: Start Identify How will Employee Set Start Identify How will Employee Set HR Area date and managers with any Communication outcomes HR Area date and managers with any Communication outcomes And end date individual barriers to s and how And end date individual barriers to s and how priority of action responsibilities change be will priority of action responsibilities change be will rating for delivery of overcome change be rating for delivery of overcome change be actions monitored actions monitored 9
  10. 10. Example 1: Action – to improve decision making and improve product quality –period for change – 6 months Example – Production to improve decision making and improve product Delivery 1: Action – manager supported by line managers quality –period for change – 6 months Benchmark reasons why? Speed-up day-to-day decision making and place more Example 1: Action – to improve decision making and improve product responsibility for quality with factory employees managers quality –period for change – 6 months Delivery – Production manager supported by line How? – rationalize the management structure, and empower employees through Benchmark reasons why? Speed-up day-to-day decision making and place more Delivery – Production manager supported by line managers education in the importance of quality and introduce systems that can track back responsibility for quality with factory employees individual faults to individual workers Benchmark reasons why? Speed-up day-to-day decision making and place more How? – rationalize the management structure, and empower employees through responsibility for quality with factory employees Inform employees of reasons for change and consult on major changes education in the importance of quality and introduce systems that can track back individual faults to individual workers structure, and empower employees through How? – rationalize the management Measurement – regular assessments against each of the benchmark reasons education in the importance of quality and introduce systems that can track back (above) using (defined) qualitative and quantitative data major changes Inform employees individual workers individual faults to of reasons for change and consult on Measurement – regular assessments individual of the major appraisal and Example 2 Action – to introduce anagainst eachperformancechanges Inform employees of reasons for change and consult on benchmark reasons (above) using (defined) in 6 months time development system qualitative and quantitative data Measurement – regular assessments against each of the benchmark reasons Delivery – Productionto qualitative Finance Director data Example 2 Action – Director and andindividual performance appraisal and (above) using (defined) introduce an quantitative development system in 6 months time Benchmark reasons why? Accurately monitor abilities and aspirations, provide Example 2 Action – to introduce an individual performance appraisal and training andProduction Director and Finance Director Delivery – development to motivate timeemployees, reduce labour turnover development system in 6 months How? – Develop appraisal forms and development plans and aspirations, provide Benchmark reasons why? Accurately monitor abilities and train managers in Delivery – Production Director and Finance Director appraisal techniques training and development to motivate employees, reduce labour turnover Benchmark reasons why? Accurately monitor abilities and aspirations, provide Inform employees of intentions and positive aspects of scheme How? – Develop appraisal forms and development plans and train managers in training and development to motivate employees, reduce labour turnover appraisal techniques Measurement – regular assessments against each of the benchmark reasons Inform using (defined) qualitativeand development data and train managers in How? – Develop appraisal forms and quantitative plans (above) employees of intentions and positive aspects of scheme appraisal techniques Barriers to change – internal resources – willeach of the benchmark reasons Measurement – regular assessments against need outside assistance (e.g. independent consultant)qualitative and quantitative data scheme Inform employees of intentions and positive aspects of (above) using (defined) Barriers 3: Action – internal resources will each of the benchmark reasons Measurement – regular assessments against need outside assistance (e.g. Example to change – to improve levels–of absence – introduce in 3 months independent consultant) qualitative and quantitative data (above) using (defined) time Barriers to change – internal resources – will need outside assistance (e.g. Example 3: Action – to improve levels of absence – introduce in 3 months independent consultant) Delivery – Payroll Manager (data) and Works Director (control system) time Example 3: Action – to improve levels of absence – introduce in 3 months Benchmark reasons why? An unacceptable level of sickness absence hindering time production and giving rise to(data) cost Works Director (control system) Delivery – Payroll Manager extra and through overtime working How? – introduce an absent An unacceptable level of sickness absence hindering Benchmark reasons why? control policy and absence thresholds once passed will lead to and giving rise to (data)cost throughDirector (control system) production counselling and/or formal cautions toovertime working Delivery – Payroll Manager extra and Works employees Inform employeesan absent control policy and level of sickness absence passed How? – introduce of reasonsAn unacceptable absence thresholds once hindering Benchmark reasons why? for change will lead to counselling rise to extra cost through overtime working production and giving and/or formal cautions to employees Measurement – regular assessments against each of the benchmark reasons (above) using (defined) qualitative and quantitative data thresholds once passed Inform employees an reasonscontrol policy and absence How? – introduce of absent for change will lead to counselling and/or formal cautions to employees Measurement – regular assessments against each of the benchmark reasons (above) using (defined) qualitative change Inform employees of reasons for and quantitative data Measurement – regular assessments against each of the benchmark reasons (above) using (defined) qualitative and quantitative data 12 12 12 10
  11. 11. Questions to consider when setting HR priorities Questions to consider when setting HR priorities What are the key components of the business strategy? How can HR strategies support the achievement of the business goals? What are the strengths and weaknesses of the strategy? What are the key components of the business organisation and opportunities and threats it faces? How can HR strategies support the achievement of the business goals? What are the implications of the political, economic, social, technological, What are the strengths and weaknesses of the organisation and legal and environmental contexts in which the organisation operates? opportunities and threats it faces? To what extent is the organisation in a stable or dynamic (turbulent) What are the implications of the political, economic, social, technological, environment and how will this affect our strategies? legal and environmental contexts in which the organisation operates? What is the nature of the corporate culture? Does it help or hinder the To what extent is the organisation in a stable or dynamic (turbulent) achievement of the organisation’s goals environment and how will this affect our strategies? What needs to be done to define or re-define our values in such areas as What is the nature of the corporate culture? Does it help or hinder the quality, customer service, innovation, team working and the responsibility achievement of the organisation’s goals of the organisation towards its employees? What needs to be done to define or re-define our values in such areas as What do we need to do to increase commitment? quality, customer service, innovation, team working and the responsibility How do we communicate our intentions and achievements to employees of the organisation towards its employees? and how do we obtain feedback? What do we need to do to increase commitment? How do we involve employees? How do we communicate our intentions and achievements to employees How how we increase resource capability? and can do we obtain feedback? To what we involve employees? How do extent does our HR practices meet future business needs and to what needs to be done to rectify our inadequacies? How can we increase resource capability? In light of the SWOT analysis what are the specific aspects of the HR To what extent does our HR practices meet future business needs and to processes and practices that we need to focus upon when formulating the what needs to be done to rectify our inadequacies? strategy? In light of the SWOT analysis what are the specific aspects of the HR How can we bundle the various HR practices together into a coherent processes and practices that we need to focus upon when formulating the whole? strategy? How can we achieve the flexibility required to cope with change? How can we bundle the various HR practices together into a coherent What kind of skills and behaviour do we need now and in the future? whole? Are performance levels high enough to meet demands for increased How can we achieve the flexibility required to cope with change? productivity, better quality and improved customer service? What kind of skills and behaviour do we need now and in the future? Does any aspect of the supply chain hinder effective performance? Are performance levels high enough to meet demands for increased Will any new products planned require different skills? productivity, better quality and improved customer service? Is the any aspect ofand management hinder effective performance? Does organisation the supply chain structure supportive of the business goals? Will any new products planned require different skills? Are we making the best use of our skills and capabilities? Is the organisation and management structure supportive of the business Are we investing in developing those skills and capabilities? goals? Are there potential barriers to change? and capabilities? Are we making the best use of our skills Are our investing in developinghigh? skills and capabilities? Are we employment costs too those Is there a likely need for any de-layering of management or downsizing of Are there potential barriers to change? the workforce? Are our employment costs too high? How can we ensure the strategic plans are implemented? Is there a likely need for any de-layering of management or downsizing of the workforce? How can we ensure the strategic plans are implemented? 13 13 11
  12. 12. 4 Example case studies - furniture manufacturers Bed and mattress manufacturer with 340 employees Problems identified: 1. To many suppliers performing at different levels 2. The need to continually re-engineer its production processes and materials/parts input to enable the maximum number of product lines to be met by the minimum number of components, whilst maintaining high quality and innovative sought-after designs 3. Age profile of workforce high 4. Shortage of skilled labour Actions: 1. Recruited a Supply Chain Manager to overhaul their systems and introduced Key Performance Indicators like supplier/vendor ratings 2. With the initial assistance of consultants introducing ‘lean’ management techniques to reduce number of components in production 3. Empowered individuals with the responsibility for the quality of their own work 4. Training & development programmes and skills needs analysis 5. Re-engineering certain jobs so as to de-skill them by deploying different designs or innovative techniques 6. Recruited skilled labour from Eastern Europe Office furniture manufacturer with 100 employees Problems identified: 1. The lack of codified practices, rules and procedures making it difficult to manage a workforce who were not sure of the workplace boundaries 2. A de-motivated staff Actions: 1. Engagement of a consultancy firm to audit its practices 2. The issue to all employees employment documentation covering their own employment terms and conditions and rules, policies and procedures as they affected all the workforce 3. A regular audit of the employment documentation via their affiliation to a national trade association for the furniture industry 4. All employees are now aware of what is expected of them, morale has improved and management can apply consistent standards when dealing with employees Manufacturer of furniture (wood and plastic) for the health care market with 130 employees Problems identified: 1. To be seen to have high quality standards by its customer base and for each employee to continually work to high quality standards 2. Skill shortages 3. A reward system that did not reflect individual contribution to the Company Actions: 1. Introduced the nationally accredited quality standard ISO 9001 and likely to introduce the environmental standard 14001 2. Individuals are empowered with making sure that any product they are working on meets the quality standard, with personal identification labels attached to each element of a product an employee works upon so quality 12
  13. 13. issues can be tracked back to individuals 3. A weekly quality control meeting looks at non-conformity issues which covers literally anything to do with process or service, allows the managers to discuss it and put in place procedures to prevent/limit re-occurrence 4. Extensive training and personnel development programmes starting with performance appraisals with all employees given opportunity to learn new skills so that they can cover positions or move into them when a vacancy arises - an apprenticeship programme for new employees 5. Training needs analysis 6. The employment of skilled labour from Eastern Europe and the use of a local prison’s workshop where prison inmates undertake outsourced work 7. The introduction of a 5-band payment system to reward individual development, skills and experience Upholstery manufacturer of furniture for the health care market with 51 employees Problems identified: 1. Unacceptable levels of absenteeism through ill health and poor timekeeping - lost production time (measured in hours lost) was on average 7.5% in any year and could peak around 12% Actions: 1. As an incentive to good attendance, it introduced an attendance bonus scheme that would incentivize good attendance and penalize bad attendance 2. Developed a clear policy on reporting all absences 3. Established benchmarks and thresholds which would result in formal cautions of employees and potentially dismissal if they continually recorded poor attendance levels 4. The incidence of lateness has reduced by around 50% and the amount of total production time lost fell by one third Cabinet manufacturer with 160 employees Problems identified: 1. To improve business efficiency given competition from low cost imported furniture 2. The need to significantly reduce the number of component parts in the production process Actions: 1. To lower the cost of production by introducing a range of systems and performance measures including the techniques of KANBAN (a system for manufacturing and calling off piece-parts), SMED (improved machine setting times) and the 5 S’ (individual methods of working and storing tools to improve efficiency) 2. The number of component parts used has reduced by 20%, 15% saving in general efficiencies with a target of 25% 3. All main skilled employees trained to nationally accredited standards in lean manufacturing methods 4. Introduced a flexible method of working time that uses in basic terms the concept of annualized hours, sometime called seasonal working where hours are adjusted to meet peaks and troughs in production 13
  14. 14. 5 Examples guidelines Annual/Seasonal hours working (Appendix 1) Annual/Seasonal hours’ arrangements can take a variety of forms and can be quite complex and some of these may not be suitable for companies within the industry. However, some arrangements will suit and they rely, in some form, on converting working time from a week to a year (or even to identifiable blocks within the year such as quarters), to vary working weeks to match peaks and troughs in production. There is also usually flexibility to change the scheduled hours in some weeks if workflow is not what it was expected to be. There are 52 working weeks in a year. Hours of work therefore, when based (in this example) on a 39 hour week, can be converted approximately to this (note: leap years and other factors can change the number of days slightly): 52 X 39 = 2028.0 Less 22 days of annual holiday at 7.8 hours = 171.60 Less 8 public holidays = 62.40 Available working hours in the year = 1794 or 230 days of 7.8 hours each. Appendix 1 shows how the working year may be laid out. Performance appraisal (Appendix 2) The main objectives of an appraisal system are to review an employee’s per- formance and potential. These systems may be linked to a reward system. A personal development plan is usually drawn up as a result of the appraisal. Appraisals are of benefit to employees and employers as the intention is to improve job performance by making it easier to identify strengths and weaknesses and determine the suitability for training and development. They are an opportunity to take an overall view of work content, quality and volume by looking at what has been achieved during the reporting period and then agreeing objectives for the next period. Appraisals also introduce a measure of objectivity, and without them, much will depend on the attitude of individual managers. Communications too should be improved, as should the understanding of the company’s objectives. Appendix 2 example shows the type of performance factors that can be used. Absence control measures and thresholds (Appendix 3) Absences (generally sickness) cost companies but can be controlled and usually the most disruptive and costly absences are the regular but inter- mittent ones that last for short periods. Firstly however you need to know the level of absence in your company and this can be done for it as a whole and then by department (see example measures). If an employee is taking more than the normal acceptable level of absence then by introducing absence thresholds you can require an im- provement in attendance by using formal warnings or cautions, that ultimately if unheeded could lead to termination of employment. Management counselling may also be appropriate, particularly if there is an apparent underlying cause. Long-term absences usually require a different approach and invariably involve seeking medical opinion before making any employment decisions. Legislation too can affect the way matters are handled and this can occur for example if an employee has developed a disability. See Appendix 3 for absence threshold triggers and these can be set to suit you. 14
  15. 15. 6 APPENDIX APPENDIX 1: Seasonal hours working Example of yearly pre-planned schedule of adjusted hours– based on variation to normal 39 hour week/8 public and 22 annual holidays APPENDIX 1: Seasonal hours working: Example of yearly pre-planned schedule of adjusted hours– based on variation to normal 39 hour week/8 public and 22 annual holidays Week Week Variable Cumulative Cumulative Holiday Number Begins worked Hrs Var./Stan.(39) Variation Public/Annual 1 2 Jan H 0 0 0 1PU/4AH 2 9 Jan 39 39 39 0 3 16 Jan 39 78 78 0 Apart 4 23 Jan 39 117 117 0 from 5 30 Jan 39 156 156 0 holidays 6 6 Feb 39 195 195 0 any new 7 13 Feb 39 234 234 0 starter 8 20 Feb 39 273 273 0 up to 9 27 Feb 39 312 312 0 week 39 10 6 Mar 39 351 351 0 works 11 13 Mar 39 390 390 0 39 hours 12 20 Mar 39 429 429 0 as 13 27 Mar 39 468 468 0 standard 14 3 Apr 39 507 507 0 15 10 Apr 31.2 538.2 538.2 0 1PU 16 17 Apr 31.2 569.4 569.4 0 1PU 17 24 Apr 39 608.4 608.4 0 18 1 May 31.2 639.6 639.6 0 1PU 19 8 May 39 678.6 678.6 0 20 15 May 34 712.6 717.6 -5 21 22 May H 712.6 717.6 -5 5AH 22 29 May 31.2 743.8 748.8 -5 1PU 23 5 June 34 777.8 787.8 -10 24 12 June 39 816.8 826.8 -10 25 19 June 39 855.8 865.8 -10 26 26 June 34 889.8 904.8 -15 27 3 July 34 923.8 943.8 -20 28 10 July 34 957.8 982.8 -25 29 17 July 34 991.8 1021.8 -30 30 24 July H 991.8 1021.8 -30 5AH 31 31 July H 991.8 1021.8 -30 5AH 32 7 Aug 34 1025 1060.8 -35 33 14 Aug 34 1059 1099.8 -40 34 21 Aug 34 1093 1138.8 -45 35 28 Aug 31.2 1125 1170 -45 1PU 36 4 Sep 34 1159 1209 -50 37 11 Sep 34 1193 1248 -55 38 18 Sep 39 1232 1287 -55 39 25 Sep 44 1276 1326 -50 New 40 2 Oct 44 1320 1365 -45 starters 41 9 Oct 44 1364 1404 -40 from week 42 16 Oct 44 1408 1443 -35 39 work 43 23 Oct 44 1452 1482 -30 the 44 30 Oct 44 1496 1521 -25 scheduled 45 6 Nov 44 1540 1560 -20 hours 46 13 Nov 44 1584 1599 -15 without 47 20 Nov 44 1628 1638 -10 premium 48 27 Nov 44 1672 1677 -5 49 4 Dec 44 1716 1716 0 50 11 Dec 39 1755 1755 0 51 18 Dec 39 1794 1794 0 52 25 Dec H 794 1794 0 2PU/3H 19 15
  16. 16. APPENDIX 2 Examples of performance factors to use when assessing in- dividual employees These are typical examples, although not all of which will suit each company. Points do not have to be awarded against the categories. The appraisal APPENDIX 2: Examples of performance factors to use when could simply describe the outcome for each category of measurement in a assessing individual employees narrative form. These are typical examples, although not all of which will suit each company. Points do not have to be Ifawarded againstallocated, 1-4 or 1-6 is typical and a comment sectioncategory of points are the categories. The appraisal could simply describe the outcome for each to allow the points awarded to be quantified. Weightings too can be given to more measurement in a narrative form. important factors so for example X2 so that the ratings are doubled with 2 becoming allocated, Measures, withand a comment section to allow the pointsthe following If points are 4 etc. 1-4 or 1-6 is typical points or otherwise, such as awarded to be quantified. Weightings too can be given to more important factors so for example X2 so that the can be used: ratings are doubled with 2 becoming 4 etc. Measures, with points or otherwise, such as the following can be used: Example performance rate for individual elements of work Unacceptable Slightly below standard Above Standard Well above standard 1 2 3 4 Overall performance rating - taking into account all aspects of the job Performance Occasional Consistently Outstanding Consistently under-performance good performance performance Unacceptable Performance against set objectives - the extent to which previously set objectives have been met Not acceptable - Achievements consistently fell below objectives or requirements. Below expectations - Achievements frequently did not meet several of the objectives or requirements Achieved objectives - Achievements consistently met the majority of the objectives or requirements Exceeded expectations - Achievements consistently exceeded objectives or requirements 20 16
  17. 17. Example individual work categories measuring/assessing the individual Job knowledge/abilities/skills - does the employee have the necessary knowledge/skills to perform in all aspects of the main job role Limitations in Lack of knowledge Above average Highly essential skills hinders progress skills skilled Adaptability/flexibility - ability to cope with changes, multi-skilling in other secondary roles Limited to Basic skills - more Above average skills Highly skilled - present task than 1 task - more than 1 task more than 1 task Volume of work - how does the amount of work output compare with the job requirement Insufficient Occasionally Usually above Consistently improvement needed unsatisfactory average high output Quality of work - attention to detail/consistent quality Quality is Occasional quality Quality good Consistent significant problem failures seldom a problem high quality Dependability - how well he/she works according to instructions/job requirements Requires constant Requires more checks Little supervision Always reliable supervision and/or and/or job instruction job instruction and gets in with job job instruction than normal needed without assistance Attitude to work/teamwork - commitment, motivation, enthusiasm Uncooperative A few issues with Team worker Very good team worker lacks motivation teamwork/motivation motivated highly motivated Communications skills - assumes no medical issues when allowance needs to be made Does not communicate Some problems Usually good Very good effectively communicating communicator communicator Work planning - how well work is planned/time managed Does not plan Some aspects need Organizes work Displays excellent effectively improvement well planning ability Attendance - the number of individual spells of absences - sickness and unauthorized - (requires care to distinguish between one-off long-term absences and those too that may related to an employee's disability) Individual spells of absence 5 plus 3-4 1-2 None Each unauthorized absences is weighted and multiplied by x3 Timekeeping - measurement of punctuality - individual occasions in last 12-months - an example Individual occasions of lateness 5 plus 3-4 1-2 None 21 Safety awareness/housekeeping - awareness and compliance with health, safety and environmental standards, policies and procedures Poor housekeeping Sometimes needs A good attitude to High and/or adherence to reminding of safety safety and workplace motivation safety standards standards and/or generally clean and tidy towards safety housekeeping workplace always clean and orderly Supervisory ability (where appropriate) - leadership, organisation, ability to train and develop staff Poor leadership Good in some Adequate in all aspects Extremely direction and aspects and needs good in organisation improvement in others all aspects 17
  18. 18. APPENDIX 3: Example absence control measures and caution APPENDIX 3 thresholds Average number of days lost per employee This is a broad measure that reveals the number of days lost on average per employee Number of employees ----------------------------------------------------- Number of days of absence The lost time rate This is a broad measure and takes no account of whether the absences consist of a small number of employees who are absent for long periods or whether the absences consist of a large number of short spells Number of days of absence ------------------------------------------------------ X 100 Total number of workdays available in year Frequency rate This shows the average number of spells of absence per employee as a percentage, irrespective of the length of each spell Number of spells of absence --------------------------------------------------- X 100 Number of employees Individual frequency rate This is used to measure the number of employees taking more than one spell of absence Number of employees taking more than one spell ------------------------------------------------------------------ X100 Number of employees Example of Company triggers for cautions: Company one Company two 7 working days 2 spells of absence in any 12-month in rolling 6 week period or period on a rolling basis, or 3 periods of absence 14 consecutive days in any 3 month period in a rolling 6 week period or on a rolling basis, or Regular patterns of Regular patterns of absence (e.g. on absence (e.g. on specific days or events driven) specific days or events driven) 23 18
  19. 19. Partners Institute of Technology for Furniture and Related Industry C Benjamín Franklin, 13. Parque Tecnológico. Apdo. nº 50 - 46980 Paterna. (Valencia) Spain Tel : 00 34 96 136 60 70 Fax : 00 34 96 136 61 85 vsales@aidima.es www.aidima.es BFM British Furniture Manufacturers Federation Wycombe House 9 Amersham Hill High Wycombe Bucks HP13 6NR Great Britain Tel : 00 44 1494 523021, Fax : 00 44 1494 474270 info@bfm.org.uk www.bfm.org.uk EFBWW European Federation of Building & Wood Workers Rue Royale 45/3 1000 Brussels Belgium Tel : 00 32 2 2271040 Fax : 00 32 2 2198228 info@efbh.be www.efbww.org EIAS European Industry Associations Services Rue de la Loi 26 1040 Brussels Belgium Tel : 00 32 2 2181889 Fax : 00 32 2 2192701 www.eiasnet.com IFA French Furniture Manufacturers Federation 28 bis avenue Daumesnil 75012 Paris France Tel : 00 33 1 44 68 18 00 Fax : 00 33 1 44 74 37 55 unifa@mobilier.com www.mobilier.com MIP Piazza Leonardo Da Vinci 32 20133 Milan Italy Tel : 00 39 0223992804 Fax : 00 39 0223992720 alessio.marchesi@polimi.it www.polimi.it UEA European Furniture Manufacturers Federation Rue de la Loi 26 1040 Brussels Belgium Tel : 00 32 2 2181889 Fax : 00 32 2 2192701 secretariat@uea.be www.ueanet.com
  20. 20. FURNITURE INDUSTRY IN RESTRUCTURING : SYSTEMS & TOOLS Editeur responsable Wetstraat 26 rue de la Loi B-1040 Brussels Tel. 003222181889 Fax 003222192701 secretariat@uea.be www.ueanet.com Co-funded by the EUROPEAN UNION European Social Fund Article 6 Innovative measures

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