Assessment task details and instructions
For this task you should consider yourself a management consultant who has been recruited by a company (see the case detailed below) to advise them on how to implement a planned change.
A) Read the case study below:
SAR Health Services (SARHS) are part of a multi-national enterprise based in Switzerland. They supply sophisticated diagnostic equipment to hospitals across Europe and have recently entered new marks in Asia. SARHS’s relationship with its customers is based on high trust, high quality products and in Europe on 24/7 servicing. The company employs around 3000 staff, consisting of technicians, production, office staff (sales, marketing, distribution) managers and drivers.
SARHS puts particular emphasis on environmental education through staff training and induction. New staff receive a half-day session on sustainability. In addition, monthly departmental meetings in head office include a ‘green slot’ where updates and activities regarding environmental sustainability are discussed. The organisation also runs an internship, which has proved to be a useful source of ideas regarding green initiatives.
The company has gone through two reorganisations in the last 3 years. The most recent involved shifting from a functional to a matrix structure. Managers however, have complained that this last structural change confused authority and responsibility relationships.
Due to pressure on equipment budgets for healthcare organisations, and increasing competition, SARHS senior management team is aware that it has to find ways of reducing operating costs.
A decision has been taken to close one production site (Site A) and consolidate operations at another (Site B), some 100 miles away, in 6 months’ time. During this time site B will be redesigned, including the development of an ‘open plan’ office, which it is expected will reduce energy costs. It is anticipated that the overall number of office and production staff will be reduced by 5 -8%, but technical and sales staff numbers are expected to remain the same. **
The management’s aim is to decrease the company’s carbon foot print by a third by 2022.
A number of green initiatives are also planned to reduce costs, including:
Recycling and waste reduction
Encouragement to recycle by putting lids on waste bins to make recycling easier and providing recycling bins to customers
Company drivers are to be provided with training in fuel efficient driving, with a bonus of 100 Euros twice a year for those who are found to be fuel efficient.
Home based working will also be introduced for the entire sales team, who will only attend the Site B office for monthly meetings.
To be successful, the relocation and proposed green initiatives need to be fully supported by all staff. Unfortunately, began to hear rumours about the planned changes. As a result, the Managing Director brought forward his formal announcement and held a briefing meeting for staff.
Having now heard about the plans formally there is a fair degree of anger and concern amongst the workforce, with remarks from production staff such as “we’ve only just got over the last change and now I might have to move” and “it’s going to cost me money to travel, that’s effectively a wage cut” being typical. Some sales reps are however happy about the idea of being home-based, as this will cut down their overall travel.
Re **: You are not expected to understand and discuss redundancy or consultation.
B. Write a management report of 3,000 words (plus or minus 10%, not including the reference list) which draws on theory and addresses the following:
1. Identify the factors that the management team might wish to consider before going ahead with their plan.
2. Identify and discuss the people management issues that the management team are likely to face in implementing the plan, explaining the reasons for this.
3. Develop and justify recommendations as to how to proceed with this project.
4. Identify the factors that the organisation may need to consider in order to build its change capability.
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